Psychology, Clinical-Community

College of Liberal Arts
Department of Psychology

PhD Degree

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Minimum Requirements for Degree: 115 credits

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

The PhD program in clinical-community psychology with a rural, indigenous emphasis is a program jointly delivered and administered by the Departments of Psychology at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and the University of Alaska Anchorage. The degree is awarded jointly by UAF and 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 the 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 UAF-UAA 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.

The clinical-community psychology program objectives are:

  1. To prepare culturally competent scientists.
    Program graduates will demonstrate culturally grounded knowledge and skills in scientific inquiry. Graduates will also demonstrate competency in using research and evaluation skills to disseminates new knowledge and inform clinical and community practice.
  2. To prepare culturally competent practitioners.
    Program graduates will demonstrate culturally grounded knowledge and skills in rural clinical-community practice. Graduates will demonstrate competence in developing and implementing culturally relevant prevention and intervention efforts and programs.
  3. To prepare culturally competent policy and social change facilitators.
    Graduates will demonstrate culturally grounded knowledge and skills relevant to social and healthcare solutions and possess the competency to facilitate policy and social change.

PhD Degree

Applying for Admission

Students apply to the joint PhD program at both UAF and UAA. All applicants submit identical application materials to both institutions; materials are collected and evaluated by the joint UAF-UAA PhD admissions committee which makes admissions recommendations to the dean of the UAF or UAA 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.

Admission Requirements

  1. Application deadline: Received by Feb. 1 for the following fall admission. This is the only opportunity for program admission each year.
  2. Compliance with the university requirements for a doctoral degree and admission to graduate studies as detailed in the UAF and UAA 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 undergraduate grade point average of 3.0.
  5. Minimum 3.0 grade point average in major and in all psychology courses.
  6. Course work in the areas of abnormal psychology, statistics, research methods and one of the following: personality, clinical psychology, social psychology or community psychology. All prerequisite course work must be completed by June 30 prior to matriculation.
  7. Letter of intent describing the applicant's interest and purpose in studying clinical-community psychology, the reasons why a PhD in clinical-community psychology at UAF/UAA is sought at this point in the applicant's professional development, and demonstrating an understanding of relevant professional ethics.
  8. Professional vita, including documentation regarding academic, research and professional experiences, special projects and activities, and recognitions or honors.
  9. Three professional references (preferably curriculum or research advisors, major course instructors with whom the student had contact in more than one course, and/or supervisors). Reference rating forms are at
  10. A disclosure statement, located at, 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 at

Graduation Requirements

  1. Complete the general university requirements.
  2. Complete the program and additional requirements listed below:

Program Requirements

Students must complete 26 required courses (for a total of 70 credits), 18 credits of dissertation, 18 credits of predoctoral internship and 9 credits of electives. Students must accumulate a minimum of 115 credits to graduate and must have completed all required course work. Students entering the program with a masters degree in psychology or related field must complete at least two years of full-time course work, 18 credits of dissertation, and one year of predoctoral internship, all approved by the student's advisory committee.

  1. Cultural experience: During their first year in the PhD program, students must participate in a cultural experience as defined by program faculty. The actual experience varies from year to year, but includes direct exposure to Alaska Native and other cultural world views, values and life experiences through contact with cultural elders and advisors. The goal of the cultural experience is to provide an opportunity to interact directly with cultures in a non-classroom setting.
  2. Complete the following required courses:
    PSY F602--Native Ways of Knowing--3 credits
    PSY F603--Alaska and Rural Psychology--3 credits
    PSY F604--Biological and Pharmacological Bases of Behavior--3 credits
    PSY F605--History and Systems--1 credit
    PSY F607--Cognition, Affect and Culture--3 credits
    PSY F611--Ethics and Professional Practice--3 credits
    PSY F612--Human Development in a Cultural Context--3 credits
    PSY F616--Program Evaluation and Community Consultation I--3 credits
    PSY F617--Program Evaluation and Community Consultation II--3 credits
    PSY F622--Multicultural Psychopathology--3 credits
    PSY F623--Intervention I--3 credits
    PSY F629--Intervention II--3 credits
    PSY F632--Community Psychology Across Culture--3 credits
    PSY F633--Tests and Measurement in Multicultural Context--3 credits
    PSY F639--Research Methods--3 credits
    PSY F652--Practicum Placement -- Clinical I--3 credits
    PSY F653--Practicum Placement -- Clinical II--3 credits
    PSY F657--Quantitative Analysis--3 credits
    PSY F658--Qualitative Analysis--3 credits
    PSY F672--Practicum Placement -- Community I--3 credits
    PSY F679--Multicultural Psychological Assessment I--3 credits
    PSY F681--Substances of Abuse in Alaska--1 credit
    PSY F682--Substance Abuse Assessment and Treatment Planning--1 credit
    PSY F683--Clinical Interventions in Substance Abuse--1 credit
    PSY F686--Predoctoral Internship--18 credits
    PSY F699D--Dissertation--18 credits
    Electives--9 credits
  3. Minimum credits required:--115 credits

Additional Requirements

  1. Clinical Competency: Clinical competency is demonstrated through preparation of a clinical 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 demonstrate clinical competency before applying to advance to the predoctoral internship and must pass both the clinical competency and community competency before starting the predoctoral internship.
  2. 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 the community competency before actually starting a predoctoral internship.
  3. Research Competency: Research competency is demonstrated through preparation of a research 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.
  4. Advancement to Candidacy: Before students are allowed to register for dissertation credits, they will be reviewed for performance by the joint UAF/UAA PhD committee, using existing university standards and forms for advancement to candidacy. Review will be based on faculty experience with students to date, submitted paperwork and student's progress through the program. Feedback from the review will be provided to the student by her or his advisor. The program defines the comprehensive exam as being met through passing the required competency portfolios. All portfolios must be passed for the comprehensive exam to be fully passed. Passing one portfolio qualifies the student for a conditional pass on the comprehensive exam, which is sufficient for the advancement to candidacy.
  5. 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 UAF or UAA Institutional Review Board before data collection can commence.
  6. 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.
  7. Advancement to Internship: Students must pass the clinical portfolio before applying to advance to predoctoral internship. In addition to passing the clinical portfolio, students must apply with a formal memorandum to the local program director by Sept. 30 (the fall semester prior to the year during which the student seeks to complete the internship), stating his or her intent to advance to internship. For most students this will mean that the application needs to be made in the fall of the third year in the program. The program director will notify the core faculty committee, who will review the students' course work, assure that adequate progress has been made toward all prior milestones (i.e., clinical competency, community competency, research competency, doctoral dissertation outline [the outline must be completed, submitted and approved by the chair] 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 before starting the internship. Failure to pass the clinical portfolio or the community portfolio will result in the student not being eligible to enroll in internship credits.
  8. Predoctoral Internship (PSY F686): A full-time, one-year predoctoral internship is required. This internship should meet the criteria laid out by the American Psychological Association; selection of an Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers-approved internship is encouraged. Placements in Alaska are preferred, but not required.
  9. 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 at