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Program and Application Information
Interim Department Chair:Dr. Mark Nawrot
Department Location:232 B2 Minard Hall
Department Phone:(701) 231-7065
Department Web
Application Deadline:Program not accepting applications for fall 2018; application deadline for fall 2019 is January 15, 2019.
Degrees Offered:Ph.D.
Test Requirement:GRE
English Proficiency Requirements:TOEFL ibT 79 IELTS 6.5

Program Description

The Department of Psychology at North Dakota State University grants both M.S. and Ph.D. degrees. We have three doctoral programs that prepare students for research and academic careers: Psychological Clinical Science, Visual and Cognitive Neuroscience, and Health/Social Psychology.

Doctoral Programs

Students enter one of three Ph.D. programs: Psychological Clinical Science, Visual and Cognitive Neuroscience, or Health/Social Psychology. These areas represent the strengths of the department's faculty in experimental research, as well as three of the most active and cutting-edge areas in the field of psychology. The program accommodates approximately 20 students, with approximately 4 new Ph.D. degrees awarded each year. Training in the program includes course work in the student's area of emphasis, as well as methods courses, breadth requirements, and research experience under the supervision of a faculty mentor. Training and experience in college-level teaching is an important part of all three programs. Student support is available through teaching assistantships, research assistantships, and teaching stipends.

Admissions Requirements

The Department of Psychology graduate programs are open to qualified graduates of universities and colleges of recognized standing. Applications are due by January 15 in order to receive full consideration for admission in the upcoming academic year. However, applications will be considered after this date to the extent that space in the program is still available.

Financial Assistance

Students are routinely supported through research and teaching assistantships. Applicants are considered on the basis of scholarship, potential to undertake advanced study and research, and financial need. All students who submit complete applications to the program by the appropriate deadlines are considered for assistantships. There is not a separate application for financial aid. Doctoral students are eligible for university fellowships that are awarded on a competitive basis.

  1. Complete a master's degree in Psychology. This may be done at NDSU or elsewhere.
  2. Complete at least 90 hours of graduate credit, including those completed for the master's degree;
  3. 60 or more of these credits must be earned at NDSU. At least 30 credit hours must be in approved didactic courses, and at least 18 of these must be at the 700 level.
  4. Complete quantitative and research methods courses
    PSYC 640
    PSYC 762
    Experimental Methods
    and Advanced Research Methods and Analysis
    PSYC 761Applied Research Methods (for Health/Social)3
  5. Complete core courses in the specific program area: Health & Social Psychology - four courses:
    PSYC 733Social Judgment3
    PSYC 771Social/Health Psychology Research3
    PSYC 782Emotions3
    PSYC 787Advanced Social Psychology and Health3
    Visual & Cognitive Neuroscience:
    Select three of the following:9
    Visual Neuroscience
    Advanced Topics in Cognitive Neuroscience
    Advanced Topics in Visual Perception
    Fundamental Processes in Cognition
    Research Methods in Visual and Cognitive Neuroscience
    Advanced Topics in Attention
    Psychological Clinical Science:
    PSYC 755Empirically Supported Interventions I4
    PSYC 756Empirically Supported Interventions II4
    PSYC 770Testing and Assessment3
    PSYC 672Advanced Psychopathology3
    or PSYC 673 Child Psychopathology and Therapy
    PSYC 758Diversity in Clinical Psychology3
    PSYC 794Practicum/Internship1-8
    PSYC 795Field Experience1-15
  6. Complete three (for Psychological Clinical Science), two (for Health/Social students), or one (for Visual & Cognitive Neuroscience students) breadth courses at the graduate level from area outside specialty track (which can include approved courses from other departments).
  7. Complete PSYC 790 Graduate Seminar (graduate seminar and colloquium series) each semester.
  8. Participate in a continued program of research apprenticeship with at least one faculty member and, accordingly, enroll in PSYC 793 Individual Study/Tutorial each semester for 1-5 credits.
  9. Teach one undergraduate course under the supervision of a faculty member, after completion of COMM 702 Introduction to College Teaching in the Humanities and Social Sciences, or STEM 810 Teaching College Science.
  10. Complete a major area paper to serve as the comprehensive exam for Ph.D. candidacy. The area paper will be a comprehensive literature review of the student's area of research and will include an oral defense.
  11. Complete the dissertation. The student will defend a written proposal before a faculty committee, conduct an original research project, and complete a comprehensive written report on the project. The student will complete a final oral defense before the same committee.

Benjamin J. Balas, Ph.D.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2007
Field: Brain and Cognitive Sciences

Barbara Blakeslee, Ph.D.
University of California, Santa Barbara, 1983
Field: Biopsychology, Vision Science

Martin D. Coleman, Ph.D.
University of Sussex, 2005
Field: Emotion and Decision Making

Erin Conwell, Ph.D.
Brown University, 2009
Field: Cognitive and Linguistic Sciences

Keith F. Donohue, Ph.D.
Florida State University, 2011
Field: Clinical Psychology; Alcohol, Research Methods, Teaching

Robert D. Dvorak, Ph.D.
The University of South Dakota, 2012
Field: Clinical Psychology; Selfregulation, Health-Risk Behaviors, & Ecological Momentary Assessment

Kathryn H. Gordon, Ph.D.
Florida State University, 2008
Field: Clinical Psychology, Eating Disorders, Suicidal Behavior

Clayton J. Hilmert, Ph.D.
University of California, San Diego, 2003
Field: Health and Social Psychology; Stress Psychophysiology, Cardiovascular Health, and Pregnancy

Verlin B. Hinsz, Ph.D.
University of Illinois, 1983
Field: Social and Industrial/Organizational; Small Group Performance, Group Decision Making

Leah Irish, Ph.D.
Kent State University, 2011
Field: Health and Social Psychology, Health Behaviors, Sleep, Stress

Jeffrey S. Johnson, Ph.D.
University of Iowa, 2008
Field: Visual Cognitive Neuroscience

Linda Langley, Ph.D.
University of Minnesota, 1998
Field: Cognitive Neuroscience, Cognitive Aging, Attention

Kevin D. McCaul, Ph.D.
University of Kansas, 1978
Field: Social Psychology; Health Behavior, Applied Social Psychology

Mark E. McCourt, Ph.D.
University of California, Santa Barbara, 1982
Field: Biopsychology, Vision Science; Visual Psychophysics, Neuropsychology

Mark Nawrot, Ph.D.
Vanderbilt University, 1991
Field: Visual Neuroscience; Neural Mechanisms for Perception of Depth and Motion, Eye Movements, Alcohol

Michael D. Robinson, Ph.D.
University of California, Davis, 1996
Field: Social/Personality Affective Processes

Paul D. Rokke, Ph.D.
University of Houston, 1985
Field: Clinical Psychology; Psychopathology

Clay Routledge, Ph.D.
University of Missouri-Columbia, 2005
Field: Health and Social Psychology

Laura E. Thomas, Ph. D.
University of Illinois, 2008
Field: Embodied cognition, Links between action, perception, and cognition

David A. Wittrock, Ph.D.
State University of New York at Albany, 1990
Field: Clinical Psychology; Behavioral Medicine, Headache, Stress, Appraisal and Coping


Terence W. Barrett, Ph.D.
University of North Dakota, 1989
Field: Counseling; Issues in Therapy, Forensic Psychology

Scott G. Engel, Ph.D.
North Dakota State University, 2003
Field: Health and Social Psychology; Obesity and Eating Disorders

Holly Hegstad, Ph.D.
University of North Dakota, 1999
Field: Clinical Psychology; Anxiety and Mood Disorders

Jessica T. Kaster, Ph.D.
University of South Dakota, 2004
Field: Clinical Psychology; Child Psychopathology, Assessment

H. Katherine O'Neill, Ph.D.
University of North Dakota, 1991
Field: Clinical Psychology; Psychopathology, Addiction, Anxiety

Jennifer A. Redlin, M.S.
North Dakota State University, 1999
Field: Clinical and Behavioral Psychology