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School of Arts and Sciences

Psy.D. in Clinical-Community Psychology


Pictured is a Point Park student and industry professional at the 2017 Humanistic Psychology Conference at Point Park University. | Photo by Shayna Mendez

Fall 2017 applications are now closed. Applications for Fall 2018 admission are now being accepted. 

A Psychology Doctoral Program Outside of the Ivory Tower — and in the Community

Point Park University's Psy.D. program in clinical-community psychology uniquely integrates community psychology with clinical psychology, equipping students with diversified skills to pursue a variety of career paths.

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Contact Information

Point Park University
Office of Graduate Admission
201 Wood Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15222 

Phone: 412-392-3808 or 1-800-321-0129
Fax: 412-392-6164

Affording Your Degree

The following options can help you afford your Psy.D. degree:

* With its already affordable cost, the Psy.D. program is not eligible for tuition discount programs.

This is one of only a few doctoral-level programs in the nation to teach humanistic psychology, which seeks to better understand and explain human experience and behavior through empathic understanding and appreciation of diverse ways of living in the world.

Unlike many other clinical psychology doctorate programs, Point Park's Psy.D. program emphasizes evidence-based community research and applications. Students will graduate prepared to manage established clinical and community programs — or start their own.

In Point Park's Psy.D. program, students are taught to understand human suffering in its larger social and cultural context, with particular attention to social justice and ethical implications of clinical theory and treatment. Psychology is understood within a framework that serves to preserve the dignity of the persons served.

Affordable Cost, Key Features of the Program

Point Park's Psy.D. degree in clinical-community psychology is one of the most affordable doctoral programs in the Pittsburgh region.

The fall 2017 tuition rate for the Psy.D. program is $881 per credit.

Learn more about 2017-18 tuition and fees at Point Park. (Please note: With its already affordable cost, the Psy.D. program is not eligible for tuition discount programs.)

Other key benefits of the Psy.D. program:

  • Take classes in the heart of Downtown Pittsburgh
  • Practice hands-on psychotherapy work in the community
  • Learn from faculty with experience in both clinical psychology practice and scholarly research

Additionally, graduates of Point Park's M.A. in clinical-community psychology program may transfer in equivalent credits based on recommendations from the Psy.D. program director.

Pictured is Associate Professor Robert McInerney, Ph.D., at the 2017 Humanistic Psychology Conference at Point Park University. | Photo by Shayna MendezPsy.D. Curriculum

This 90-credit Psy.D. program — offered in weekday classes — can be completed in just four years, including the dissertation. Students must enroll full time and follow the course sequence as outlined below.

It is comprised of a variety of theoretical, research and clinical course work as well as four clinical practicums, one community practicum, a dissertation and a one-year clinical internship completed in the fourth year of the program.

The range of courses offered in the Psy.D. program include:

  • Psychotherapy I and II
  • Psychopathology in the Context of Society and Culture
  • Couples and Family Therapy
  • Lifespan Development
  • Mental Health and Well-Being: Individual and Collective
  • Psychology of Human Diversity
  • Brain Body and Experience
  • Qualitative Research

Take a look at the four-year program schedule for completing a Psy.D. degree at Point Park. 

Pictured is Associate Professor of Psychology Brent Robbins, Ph.D.
Brent Robbins, Ph.D.

Meet the Faculty

Full-time faculty in the Psy.D. program include:

  • Matthew Allen, Ph.D., expertise in clinical psychology, transpersonal psychology and humanistic psychology
  • Robert McInerney, Ph.D., expertise in community psychology, clinical psychology, qualitative research, phenomenology, existentialism, post-structuralism, neurophenomenology and hermeneutics
  • Sharna Olfman, Ph.D., expertise in clinical psychology, developmental psychology, psychoanalytic theory, critical theory and existential psychology
  • William Purcell, Ph.D., expertise in clinical psychology, forensic psychology, psychoanalytic theory, critical theory, post-structuralism and Lacanian analysis
  • Brent Robbins, Ph.D., expertise in clinical psychology, community psychology, qualitative research, quantitative research, mixed methods, humanistic psychology, existential psychology, critical theory, phenomenology, virtue theory, personalist ethics, neurophenomenology and hermeneutics
  • Sarah Schulz, Ph.D., expertise in clinical social work, behavioral health, qualitative and mixed methods research, critical and queer theory, LGBT/Q health and issues of diversity and multi-culturalism
  • Jill C. Thomas, Ph.D., expertise in clinical psychology, constructivist and humanistic psychology and AASECT Certified Sex Therapist

Admission RequirementsPictured are attendees at the 2017 Humanistic Psychology Conference at Point Park University. | Photo by Shayna Mendez

  • Complete the online application for admission. Application fee waived if submitted online. 
  • Request official transcripts from all previous institution(s) attended and have them sent to Point Park University. 
  • A minimum 3.25 cumulative G.P.A. at the undergraduate and, if applicable, graduate level is required for consideration for admission to the program (i.e., students may apply directly to the Psy.D. program with only a B.A. or B.S. level degree).
  • Students should understand that admission to the program is competitive, and that the average G.P.A. of students admitted is typically much higher.  Successful applicants will typically have a strong academic background, at least one letter of reference from a prior faculty member, and also some type of experience working/volunteering with people in a "helping" context.
  • Submit a written description of the reason for pursuing a terminal degree and why you feel Point Park University will provide the program best suited to meet your needs. A two-page minimum, three-page maximum description should be faxed to 412-392-6164 or emailed to gradadmission@pointpark.edu.
  • Submit three letters of recommendation. All letters should address your ability to work successfully under multiple demands. Recommenders may be contacted by Point Park University.
  • Once all materials have been received and reviewed, selected applicants will be invited to participate in a required, on-site interview.
  • Psychology, social science or philosophy background is preferred.

These are the minimum requirements for consideration. Please note that meeting these requirements does not guarantee admission. Learn more about the admission requirements for Point Park's doctoral programs.

Program Goals

The goals and objectives of the Psy.D. program are based upon the values of the American Psychological Association and designed to prepare clinical psychologists for state licensure.

Upon completion of the Psy.D. degree, graduates are able to:

  • Apply the psychological foundations of clinical-community psychology for the prevention and amelioration of mental illness and improvement of mental well-being
  • Employ research skills to explore questions and help solve problems in clinical-community psychology
  • Demonstrate understanding of ethics and values in the field of psychology
  • Demonstrate sensitivity to and respect for individual and cultural diversity

Career Opportunities with a Psy.D. Degree

Individuals with a Psy.D. in clinical-community psychology have the opportunity to pursue a variety of career fields including:

  • Administering/directing agencies and programs in human services, mental health, prevention community, education, health promotion and community development
  • Clinical work in community programs with children and adults with a community/preventive perspective
  • Organizational training and development
  • University teaching and/or research on social/community issues
  • Government or philanthropic foundation research or administration on social/community issues
  • Policy advocacy work for legal/social change 

Professional Affiliations

Point Park's psychology department is affiliated with the American Psychological Association's Divisions 32 and 27. Click on the links below to learn more.

Apply Now, Learn More

Apply online for the fall 2018 semester. For additional information, contact Kathy Ballas, director of the Office of Graduate Admission, at kballas@pointpark.edu or 412-392-3812.