PhD in Clinical-Community Psychology

The PhD in Clinical-Community Psychology is accredited by the American Psychological Association as a clinical psychology program.

Special Note: The PhD program in Clinical-Community Psychology has suspended admitting students on the UAF campus.  All new students will be admitted to the UAA campus and will follow catalog copy for the PhD program in Clinical-Community Psychology with a rural, indigenous emphasis that is provided in the UAA catalog effective 2017. 

The PhD in Clinical-Community Psychology with rural, indigenous emphasis is a program jointly-delivered and administered by the departments of psychology at the University of Alaska Anchorage and the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF). The degree is awarded jointly by UAA and UAF. Students can complete the entire degree program in residence at UAA. All program courses are co-taught across campuses via video conference and all program components are delivered by faculty at both campuses. The student experience is equivalent regardless of students’ city of residence (Fairbanks or Anchorage). The program focus includes clinical, community and cultural psychology with a focus on rural, indigenous issues and an applied emphasis on the integration of research and practice. As a UAA-UAF partnership, the program integrates the strengths and resources of both campuses to advance academic excellence, promote innovative and practical research, and provide solid graduate training in clinical-community psychology.

The program ensures that graduates have obtained the full range of clinical training mandated for doctoral-level clinical psychologists and will be adequately prepared for licensure as psychologists.

Admission Requirements

Satisfy the Admission Requirements for Graduate Degrees.

Students apply to the joint PhD in Clinical-Community Psychology program through the UAA Office of Admissions. All applicant materials are collected and evaluated by the joint UAA-UAF PhD admissions committee, which makes admissions recommendations to the dean of the UAA or UAF graduate school, depending on a selected applicant’s campus of residence. Applicants may specify a preference for either campus as a location for their studies. For more information about the application process, visit the program website.

  1. Application deadline: received by January 15 for fall admission. This is the only opportunity for program admission each year.
  2. Compliance with the requirements for admission to graduate studies as detailed in the UAA and UAF catalogs.
  3. Minimum of a bachelor’s degree (BS or BA or BEd); major in psychology or related field preferred. All requirements for bachelor’s degree must be completed by June 30 prior to matriculation.
  4. Minimum 3.00 GPA in major and in all psychology courses.
  5. Coursework in the areas of abnormal psychology, statistics, research methods, and one of the following: personality, clinical psychology, social psychology or community psychology. All prerequisite coursework must be completed by June 30 prior to matriculation.
  6. Letter of intent describing the applicant’s interest and purpose in studying clinical-community psychology, the reasons why a PhD in Clinical-Community Psychology through the joint UAA-UAF program is sought at this point in the applicant’s professional development, and demonstrating an understanding of relevant professional ethics.
  7. Professional vita, including documentation regarding academic, research and professional experiences; special projects and activities; and recognitions or honors.
  8. Three professional letters of reference (preferably curriculum or research advisors, major course instructors with whom the student had contact in more than one course, and/or supervisors).
  9. Disclosure statement must accompany the application to the program. Lifetime criminal background check must be submitted by students invited to a personal interview at least two weeks prior to the interview. Additional information on the FBI criminal background check is located on the program website.

Graduation Requirements

Program Requirements

Students must complete the required courses, dissertation, predoctoral internship, and electives. Students must accumulate a minimum 115 credits to graduate and must have completed all required coursework. Students entering the program with a master’s degree in psychology or related field must complete at least two years of full-time coursework, 18 credits of dissertation and 18 credits of predoctoral internship, all as approved by the student’s advisory committee.

Cultural experience: During their time in the PhD program, students must participate in a cultural experience as defined by program faculty. The actual experience will vary from year to year, but includes direct exposure to Alaska Native and other cultural worldviews, values and life experiences through contact with cultural elders and advisors in a non-classroom setting.

PSY A602Native Ways of Knowing3
PSY A604Biological and Pharmacological Bases of Behavior3
PSY A605History and Systems1
PSY A607Cognition, Affect and Culture3
PSY A611Ethics and Professional Practice3
PSY A612Human Development in a Cultural Context3
PSY A616Program Evaluation and Community Consultation I3
PSY A617Program Evaluation and Community Consultation II3
PSY A622Multicultural Psychopathology3
PSY A623Intervention I3
PSY A629Intervention II3
PSY A632Community Psychology Across Cultures3
PSY A633Tests and Measurement in Multicultural Context3
PSY A639Research Methods3
PSY A640Substance Abuse: Etiology, Treatment and Assessment3
PSY A652Practicum Placement - Clinical I6
PSY A653Practicum Placement - Clinical II6
PSY A657Quantitative Analysis3
PSY A658Qualitative Analysis3
PSY A672Practicum Placement - Community I3
PSY A679Multicultural Psychological Assessment I3
PSY A684Clinical Supervision and Consultation3
PSY A687Multicultural Psychological Assessment II3
PSY A686Predoctoral Internship18
PSY A699DDissertation18
Total Credits115

A total of 115 credits is required for the degree.

Additional Requirements

Clinical Competency

Clinical competency is demonstrated through preparation of a clinical portfolio that will be evaluated by an ad hoc committee. Criteria for the clinical portfolio are clearly defined and samples will be provided for students. Students must demonstrate clinical competency before applying to advance to predoctoral internship and must pass the clinical competency and community competency before starting PSY A686.

Community Competency

Community competency is demonstrated through preparation of a community portfolio that will be evaluated by an ad hoc committee. Criteria for the portfolio will be clearly defined and samples will be provided for students. Students must pass both the clinical competency and community competency before starting PSY A686.

Research Competency

Research competency is demonstrated through preparation of a research portfolio that will be evaluated by an ad hoc committee. Criteria for the research portfolio will be clearly defined and samples will be provided for students.

Advancement to Candidacy

Before students are allowed to register for dissertation credits, they will be reviewed for performance by the joint UAA-UAF PhD committee, using existing university standards and forms for advancement to candidacy. Review will be based on faculty experience with the student to date, submitted paperwork and the student’s progress through the program. Feedback from the review will be provided to the student by her or his advisor. To advance to candidacy, students must also have received at least a conditional pass on their comprehensive exam. The program defines the comprehensive exam as being met through passing the required competency portfolios. Passing one portfolio qualifies the student for a conditional pass on the comprehensive exam, which is sufficient for advancement to candidacy. All portfolios must be passed for the comprehensive exam to be fully passed.

Doctoral Dissertation Proposal Defense

Before commencing data collection for a dissertation project, students must defend their proposal to their dissertation committee. The defense must be based on a written dissertation proposal to be distributed to the dissertation committee after approval by the dissertation chair. The defense will be an oral presentation to the committee by the student and will not be a public meeting. For data-collection based dissertations, the proposal must also be approved by the UAA or UAF institutional review board before data collection can commence.

Doctoral Dissertation

A doctoral dissertation must be carried out successfully and approved by a doctoral dissertation committee. The dissertation committee will consist of at least four members. It is recommended that the dissertation chair be on the same campus as the student. There must be at least one committee member from each psychology department at UAF and UAA. Content areas can vary widely, but must be related to clinical, community, or cross-cultural issues and applicable in Alaska settings.

Advancement to Internship

Students must pass the clinical portfolio and at least conditionally pass their dissertation proposal defense before applying to advance to PSY A686. In addition to passing the clinical portfolio and conditionally passing the dissertation proposal defense, students must apply to the local program director by September 30 (the fall semester prior to the year during which the student seeks to complete the internship) stating their intent to advance to internship. For most students this will mean that the application needs to be made in the fall of the fourth year in the program. The program director will notify the core faculty committee, which will review each student’s coursework, ensure that adequate progress has been made toward all prior milestones (i.e., clinical competency, community competency, research competency, doctoral dissertation proposal defense, and advancement to candidacy) before approving the student for internship and before writing a letter of support for the student. Students must fully pass the clinical portfolio, the community portfolio and the dissertation proposal defense before starting internship. Failure to pass the clinical portfolio, the community portfolio and the dissertation proposal defense will result in the student not being eligible to apply for or enroll in internship credits.

Predoctoral Internship (PSY A686)

A full-time, 18 credit (one-year) predoctoral internship is required. This internship should meet the criteria laid out by the American Psychological Association (APA); selection of an Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers (APPIC)-approved internship is encouraged. Placements in Alaska are preferred, but not required.

APA Ethical Guidelines

Strict compliance with APA ethical guidelines is required throughout participation in the degree program. Violations can result in immediate dismissal from the program and failure to graduate. Completion of an annual disclosure statement is also required. Affirmative answers may result in dismissal from the program and failure to graduate. The disclosure statement may be viewed on the program website.

Program Student Learning Outcomes

Students graduating with a Ph.D. in Clinical-Community Psychology will be able to demonstrate:

  • Culturally grounded knowledge and skills in scientific inquiry.
  • Competency in using the research and evaluation skills to disseminate new knowledge and inform clinical and community practice.
  • Culturally grounded knowledge and skills in rural clinical-community practice.
  • Competence in developing and implementing culturally relevant prevention and intervention efforts and programs.
  • Culturally grounded knowledge and skills relevant to social and healthcare solutions.
  • Competency to facilitate policy and social change.