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California State University, Sacramento

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Psychology College of Social Sciences & Interdisciplinary Studies

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Admission Requirements & Application Instructions

Admission Requirements (All Applicants)

  1. Preferred Cumulative Undergraduate GPA of 3.0. Applicants with GPAs between 2.5 and 2.99 will be given lower priority.
  2. Graduate Records Examination (GRE) – Verbal, Quantitative, and Written.
  3. Undergraduate degree in Psychology preferred. Applicants without a B.A. or B.S. in Psychology must have completed the preparation before applying to the program.
  4. Psychological Statistics/Methods Coursework Requirement. All Applicants must have completed 2 upper division Psychological statistics/methods courses with a grade of C or greater. Accepted courses are those which include research methods, in which students have analyzed a dataset and written an APA paper; and descriptive and complex inferential statistics such as factorial ANOVAs, mixed model ANOVAs, ANCOVAs, MANOVAS, planned and unplanned comparisons, factor analysis, and multiple regression. The Sacramento State courses that correspond to these statistics/methods courses are PSYC 121 and PSYC 102. Students may apply if they have at least one of these courses or an equivalent.

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I-O Applicants Only

The I-O Program will be undergoing Program Assessment & Updates during the 2019/2020 academic year. Therefore, applications for the I-O program will be accepted during the fall semester, 2020 (selected students from this application process would begin the program in Fall, 2021).

ABA Applicants Only

All ABA Applicants are recommended to have prior course work in Applied Behavior Analysis prior to applying to the program. This could be achieved by taking PSYC 171 at Sacramento State, or an equivalent at another university. Applicants without Applied Behavior Analysis coursework will still be considered but may be asked to take PSYC 171 during their first year of graduate school.

Dates & Deadlines

  • Department and University Applications are available October 1
  • University and Department Applications are due January 15, 2020
  • Letters of Recommendation are due by January 20, 2020.

International Applicants and Domestic Applicants with Foreign Documents

International Applicants and Domestic Applicants with foreign documents must submit their application to the University and Department no later than December 15, 2019 to ensure verification of their transcripts. All transcripts must be evaluated by World Education Services (WES). International Applicants please contact the International Programs and Global Education office for assistance. Domestic Applicants with foreign documents should consult the Office of Graduate Studies prior to submitting their documents.

Application Instructions

Applicants to the Sacramento State Psychology Graduate Program must submit both a University Application and a Departmental Supplemental Application.

University Application

  1. Complete a CSU System Application via CalState Apply
  2. Send one hard copy set of official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended, except Sacramento State. Transcripts should be addressed to:
    Office of Graduate Studies
    California State University, Sacramento
    6000 J Street,River Front Center 215
    Sacramento, CA 95819-6112
  3. Send one set of official Graduate Records Examination Scores to Sacramento State. Use Institution code 4671 and Department code 2016. It may take 2-6 weeks for Sacramento State to receive GRE scores, plan accordingly.

To check the status of a Cal State Apply application, contact Graduate Studies at (916) 278-6470.

Departmental Supplemental Application

Second, submit the following materials directly to the Psychology Department by January 15, 2020 using the Psychology Graduate Supplemental Application site which will be available October 2019.

  • Personal Statement
  • Specific program option requirements (see below)
  • One (1) PDF copy of unofficial transcripts from ALL colleges and universities attended, INCLUDING Sacramento State
  • One (1) PDF copy of unofficial GRE Scores
  • 3 Letters of Recommendation (submission instructions are below)
  • Proof of meeting the Psychology Stats/Methods requirement (e.g. course description, syllabus etc.)

Additional Program-Specific Application Requirements

Submitted with the Departmental Supplemental Application. Please carefully review the following information as it relates to the additional items required by each program. Failure to submit these additional materials may result in a denied application.

ABA Option Requirements

  • A personal statement of professional goals and experiences (max 2 double spaced pages). Include information on previous research and practicum experiences, academic training in ABA (if any), and post-graduation professional goals. Applicants should demonstrate that they are committed to studying Behavioral Analysis as a science to understand human behavior.
  • Provide a list of faculty within the behavior analysis program with whom you would like to work and why. Research some of the ABA faculty’s academic publications to become familiar with their research interests.
  • A resume or Curriculum Vitae (CV). List any behavior analysis classes with grades.
  • A minimum of three letters of recommendation (two must be from former professors).
  • Indicate whether you will be able to attend a personal interview/program tour on campus, to be held on TBA. Applicants are asked to RSVP on the Department application. A remote interview option is available.

General Psychology Option Requirements

A personal statement (max 2 double spaced pages) addressing the area of psychology you wish to study (e.g., Social, Developmental, Clinical, Biological, Cognitive, Quantitative, etc.) long-range career goals, research experience, as well a ranked list of three Psychology faculty members with whom you would like to work with. Applicants are encouraged to research the interests of the Department faculty to determine if their interests overlap. An applicant’s ranked list of faculty helps to determine if there is space available in the program and to assign them and advisor upon admission.

I-O Psychology Option Requirements

A personal statement addressing the following questions (max 3 single spaced pages):

  1. Why are you interested in the field of I-O psychology?
  2. What academic background (e.g., I-O related coursework and/or research experience) do you have that prepared you for a graduate program in I-O psychology?
  3. What work experience (e.g., internship, volunteer work, full or part-time jobs) have you had that prepare you to study I-O psychology?
  4. What area(s) of I-O psychology do you want to study in graduate school, and why? Why are you interested in studying I-O psychology at Sacramento State?

Letters of Recommendation

All applicants are required to submit 3 letters of recommendation (preferably Psychology faculty members) with their application. The Sacramento State Psychology Program allows these recommendations to be submitted online.

In order to have your letters of recommendation sent to us please follow the instructions below:

  • Applicants must complete the Online Recommendation Form. On this form you will be asked to provide us with the person’s name, title, field/discipline, e-mail address (must be an .edu or verifiable business address), and their institution/employer.
  • Once we receive this information, your recommender will receive a link to our recommendation form. They will be asked to fill out a short survey about you as a student and be provided an opportunity to upload a Recommendation Letter.

The recommendation must be submitted by January 20, 2020. Applicants are responsible for reminding their recommenders of the due date.

Questions about the process can be directed to Saba Kbrom, Graduate Program Admin Support.

Additional Information