College of Arts & Sciences

Psychology- Graduate

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Doctoral training takes place in the context of research and training clusters that reflect prominent themes, levels of analysis, and methodologies within psychology. Each cluster comprises faculty members whose primary identification is with the cluster and faculty members who have interests relevant to the cluster but whose primary identification is with another cluster.

Clinical Psychology

The clinical program is devoted to training clinical scientists and to the promotion of an integration of science and practice. We understand the scientific method as the appropriate basis for clinical psychology: it provides the strongest basis for developing new knowledge in our field, and clinicians should provide those services that are shown scientifically to be effective. We train our students to be leading researchers, critical consumers of the scientific literature, and clinicians who depend on scientific findings to guide their applied activities. All of our doctoral students are expected to conduct original research, and most of our graduates make ongoing contributions to the scientific literature over the course of their careers...(more)

Cognitive Neuroscience

The Cognitive Neuroscience program is intended for students who wish to study the underlying neural systems of cognitive processes. It provides a strong background in both systems-level neuroscience and cognitive psychology and allows students to develop integrative research interests that cross domains. Research includes a range of topics and methodologies aimed at understanding mechanisms of behavior in laboratory animals and human subjects. Drug use and addictive behaviors are a key focus. Levels of analysis include cellular function, animal behavior, and human substance users. Methodologies include electrochemical measurements, chemogenetics, neuronal cell culture, psychopharmacology, analytical chemistry, quantitative modeling of cognitive functions and decision-making, and fMRI. (more)

Developmental, Social, and Health

Within the Developmental, Social, and Health program, there are several available tracks for PhD students to pursue in their research, coursework, and program requirements. Students may choose to focus on one or more tracks (e.g., Social or Developmental or Health, or Social and Developmental, etc.). Note: Students interested in the Health Psychology track should explore more about our interdisciplinary "Health Psychology Concentration" for PhD students:

In general, you will receive primary training in content and methodology from your advisor and lab that reflects the expertise of their respective subfield (e.g., Social Psychology) and that prepares you for the academic job market in this subfield. As some faculty in the Developmental, Social, and Health program are truly “hybrid” psychologists (equivalent expertise in Social and Developmental Psychology, for example), you may also, if you so choose, gear your training across subfields by pursuing relevant coursework, research collaborations, teaching experiences, etc. We understand that Psychology is increasingly integrative across topic areas, which is one of the features of our collaborative Developmental, Social, and Health program. As part of our program, we encourage you to complete the requirements of your training in ways that maximize your professional development, career goals, and interests...(more)

Doctoral (PhD) Degree - Application Requirements

  1. CV
  2. Personal Statement
  3. Three letters of recommendation

Applicants must meet the Graduate School admission requirements.

The GRE is not required for admission to this program for the 2021-2024 academic years.

More information regarding applying and the online application system may be found at


Application Deadlines

​Fall: December 12


Dr. Michael Bardo

Director of Graduate Studies

Department of Psychology

College of Arts & Sciences

106-B Kastle Hall

Lexington, KY 40506-0044