GENERAL PROCEDURES TO APPLY FOR GRADUATE SCHOOL
IN CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY IN THE UNITED STATES
(as well as Canada and Australia)
1. Take the TOEFL exam. To study in a different country, it is important to be proficient in the language spoken in that country. When you apply for school in the United States, you usually must demonstrate your English language abilities by taking the TOEFL exam. However, some universities do not require you to take the TOFEL if you have studied in an English language country in the past. In general, international students should have a TOEFL score higher than 550. More information may be found at: http://www.ets.org/toefl/. In Vietnam, the TOEFL is administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE), their website containing current fee information, etc. is at http://ww.iievn.org/Toefl.htm.
2. Take the Graduate Record Exam. The GRE is the basic test used to assess applicants’ potential to succeed in graduate school and in their career (see http://www.gre.org). There are two parts to the GRE. The General Exam tests your verbal, mathematical, and analytic abilities. Some programs also require you to take the GRE Subject Exam in Psychology which tests your knowledge in Psychology. Some programs may require you to take the GRE, but only require relatively low scores. More information may be found at:
http://www.gre.org/generalreg.html (General GRE)
http://www.gre.org/pbstest.html#testreg (Subject GRE)
http://www.gre.org/pracmats.html (GRE Practice Tests)
http://www.ets.org/Media/Tests/GRE/pdf/Psychology.pdf (GRE Psychology Practice Test)
In Vietnam, the GRE is administered by the Institute of International Education, their website with fee information, etc. is http://www.iievn.org/GRE.htm
3. University or College transcripts. You must submit official academic records (issued by the institution) from all colleges and universities attended. If the scoring system is different from the system used in the U.S. (0.0-4.0 scale), it may be important for you, or preferably your school, to provide information about your grades in comparison to other students.
4. Letters of Recommendation. Most programs require three or four letters of recommendation from people qualified to evaluate your academic and professional qualifications. These letters from your college instructors, professors, or from your employer indicate their endorsement of your application by stating your unique strengths.
5. A Curriculum Vita. A vita is your professional resume, listing your professional history. It should include: (a) your education, (b) awards that you have received, (c) your publications, (d) your research experience, (e) your teaching experience, (f) and your clinical experience. Some programs have you Complete an Application Form instead of submitting a vita. This often can be done online.
6. Personal Statement. Most graduate programs in psychology require that you write and submit a personal statement. Your personal statement describes your professional interests, defines the areas in psychology you want to pursue, indicates why you are interested in psychology, and outlines your career goals (or what you plan to do professionally after you graduate).
Additional Information That May Be Requested
1. Test of Spoken English (TSE). This test is often recommended for international students. It assesses your ability to communicate verbally in English (http://www.ets.org/tse).
2. Previous Degrees. International applicants should apply only if their previous degrees are in the “first class” or “first division”. A three-year bachelor's degree is not sufficient for admission to most programs of graduate study. If you have earned a three-year degree, you probably will need to successfully complete at least one year of a Master's degree program.
3. Financial Resources. In order to meet requirements for entry into the United States, applicants must demonstrate that they have sufficient financial resources to cover the cost of their education. Scholarships, funding from the university, and funding from our grant (if approved) would constitute financial support.
4. Application Fee. There is often an application fee involved when submitting applications to different institutions. Sometimes this fee is waived if you apply online.
5. Acknowledgment of Application Card. You may be asked to address a postcard yourself (with sufficient postage to reach you from the U.S.) and enclose it with your application so that the department can confirm that they have received your application.
The Graduate application process
1. Apply. Submit the requested application materials to be received by the stated deadline.
2. Review Applications. The graduate program will review your file and consider all of these different pieces of information in order to make a decision as to whether or not they will admit you to their program, and what kind of funding they will provide. Applying to graduate school in clinical psychology is very competitive. Thus, most people apply to multiple programs that fit their interests.
3. Interview. Most programs request that you participate in an interview. We realize that for people living outside of the U.S. it is not feasible to travel such a long distance. In such cases programs often will interview people over the phone. As part of our program, we will interview people in Hanoi, probably sometime in January, 2007. We will contact people and let them know when this will occur once we have set an exact date.
When you apply to graduate school, there are a number of items that you must submit. These will be used by the school to evaluate your application and to select students.