Billy Graham Center BGC at Wheaton College
Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology
Student sitting on the window sill in the Billy Graham center
Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology

Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology

Why Pursue a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology?

The Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the Wheaton College Graduate School equips scholars and practitioners of clinical psychology with an academically rigorous, integrated, justice and service-focused, and Biblically grounded foundation for Kingdom service to the academy, the marginalized and underserved, and the Church.

Credit Hours
Years to Degree
Active Research Labs

A New Ph.D. Program Built on a Legacy of Excellence

The new Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology is founded on nearly three decades of excellence in doctoral clinical psychology training at Wheaton. The Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology admitted its first class in 1993, and received APA accreditation in 1998. In light of our excellent record of student outcomes, academic rigor, emphasis on research, high licensure rates, and job placements, and in recognition of the wide-ranging applicability of a Ph.D. in academics and research, the international job market, and select sub-disciplines, Wheaton's doctoral program in clinical psychology is in a phase of transition from a 120-credit Psy.D. to a 122-credit Ph.D. program:

  • The Ph.D. will enroll its first class in Fall 2021*
  • During the initial phase of the Ph.D. we will also continue to admit select students to the Psy.D. program*
  • Once the Ph.D. program is granted APA accreditation, the Psy.D. program will discontinue enrollment and will continue training until the final eligible student graduates.
  • Following our final Psy.D. student graduation, the doctorate in clinical psychology will solely operate as a Ph.D. program

*Please note that the Psy.D. and Ph.D. are two separate academic programs with distinct admission and degree requirements.

Scandrette Lecture Series

On April 17, 2024, the School of Psychology, Counseling, and Family Therapy hosted the 41st lecture in the Scandrette Lecture Series with Dr. Bryan Dik.  


About the School of Psychology, Counseling, and Family Therapy

Why Choose the Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology Program at Wheaton?

Pursue Justice

We are an unapologetically rigorous, foundationally Christian program dedicated to serving the underserved and the Church in a manner consistent with Biblical justice. We are dedicated to the holistic development of our students, training scholars to be grounded, informed, and shaped by beliefs and practices of the Christian faith. Learn more about diversity and justice.

Serve with Excellence

We train scholars to become highly competent academic contributors using a scholar-practitioner training model committed to professional scholarship and practice as service, especially to the Body of Christ, the church, and all persons marginalized and wounded by society on the basis of racial or ethnic identification, age, socioeconomic status, or gender.

Develop Holistically

Teaching and research take place within a community context which features a balanced focus on spiritual, personal, professional, and interpersonal growth and development. Learn more about student development.

Read this helpful article to discover the key similarities and differences between our Psy.D. and Ph.D. programs in Clinical Psychology.

The Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology is a five-year, 122 credit-hour program

  • 122 semester hours:
    • Core Courses (54)
    • Clinical Training (16)
    • Research Lab (8)
    • Dissertation (15)
    • Spirituality and Integration (5)
    • Electives (12)
    • Bible and Theology (12)
  • Comprehensive Exam
  • Professional Qualifying Exams
  • Clinical Dissertation
  • Practicum
  • Internship

The Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Wheaton College is a five-year program. Degree requirements must be completed within seven years of the first date of enrollment.

The program has a curriculum similar to our current APA-accredited Psy.D program which is built to meet most state educational requirements for professional licensure. See our Professional Licensure Disclosures for additional information for each state.

The program has a curriculum similar to our current APA-accredited Psy.D program which is built to meet most state educational requirements for professional licensure.  See our professional licensure disclosures for additional information for each state

Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology graduates pursue professional licensure as clinical psychologists, and as such will be prepared to practice, consult, research, and teach in a range of domestic and global contexts, such as:

  • Community mental health clinics
  • Hospitals and medical centers
  • Colleges and universities
  • Veteran’s Administration
  • Rehabilitation facilities
  • Forensic/Correctional facilities 
  • Private practice

The Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology is in its initial years of operation (first cohort enrollment in 2021-2022). This new doctoral program must operate successfully for two years before seeking APA accreditation. Due to the success of our APA-accredited Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology, we are optimistic about the possibility of obtaining APA accreditation before our first students complete their degrees in 2026.

Wheaton Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology Admission and Tuition

Affording your Wheaton College Graduate School degree is possible through scholarships and financial aid packages. The doctoral clinical psychology program has a substantial budget line dedicated to direct scholarship aid to students. Every student receives scholarships, which typically range from $8,000 to $12,000. 

Admission requirements include:

  • Application deadline: December 15
  • Prerequisites (See requirements)
  • Bachelor's Degree from regionally accredited institution
  • GPA 3.5 Minimum
  • GRE General Test - See GRE At Home option
  • Three Recommendations (Academic, Pastoral, and Professional)
  • Writing Sample: Research Paper 
  • Personal Statement
  • Professional Statement
  • Affirmation of Statement of Faith

The Psy.D. in Clinical Psychology and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology are separate and distinct programs with separate admission and degree requirements. Students wishing to transfer after matriculation from the Ph.D. program to the Psy.D. program should seek the counsel of their advisor and are required to apply and gain admission to the Psy.D. program through the Graduate Admissions Department (transfer credit subject to Wheaton College transfer policies for coursework). Transferring from the Psy.D. to the Ph.D. program is not permitted.

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