Program Overview

The following program overview is divided into sections for easier navigation.

APA-Accredited Returning Student?
Program Student Teams
Perspective Need A Role Model?
Structure Career Choices
Location Admission Requirements
Program Outline Transferring?
Faculty Leaders Accreditation Address


Successful completion of the program results in a doctor of psychology degree (PsyD). The curriculum was designed from the outset to follow the guidelines for graduate study in psychology provided by the American Psychological Association in the Accreditation Handbook (APA, 1986, 1996 and 2011), and the Competency Model of Training promulgated by the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology (NCSPP).

The goal of the program is to prepare graduates who are competent, professional psychologists. Graduates should know and exemplify high standards of legal, ethical, and professional conduct. They should be able to provide a wide variety of clinical services, including assessment and psychotherapy with individuals of all ages and from diverse ethnic, cultural, and social backgrounds.

A special emphasis of the program is training clinicians who are specialists in dealing with psychological aspects of religious issues.

Life doesn't stop for five years while you pursue your doctorate. George Fox University invites you to join a caring community of exceptional teachers and scholars – a "household of faith" – in a beautiful, friendly part of the world. Our door is open. Come on in.

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Learn to integrate your faith with a practice in clinical psychology in our residential program leading to the doctor of psychology (PsyD) degree. Our outstanding professors have shaped a curriculum based on the practitioner-scholar model to fully equip you for internship and professional practice on many levels – coupled with the support you need to succeed. Student cohorts and clinical research teams allow you to grow with others, while faculty mentors guide you individually.

Course work that expands and challenges your knowledge and beliefs ... effective, rewarding practica ... research in your field of interest: these form the heart of the George Fox program. Caring, committed professors and students are its soul. Come work alongside those who value the unique spiritual and intellectual gifts you bring to the classroom. The relationships you build here will continue to open doors.

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A good psychologist must accommodate a variety of worldviews. George Fox's PsyD program prepares you to work with people from all walks of life, and to specialize in treating clients who may prefer a therapist that understands their religious backgrounds. To do this, we provide traditional education in the theory and practice of clinical psychology; an open, interactive study of Christian theology; and training in how to provide effective therapeutic services inclusive of personal faith.

Besides their distinguished scientific/scholarly credentials, George Fox professors hold a deep spiritual commitment. The university's Quaker heritage places an emphasis on personal integrity, social justice and peacemaking – values that will contribute greatly to your professional development. All of this comes together in the classroom, where as one doctoral candidate puts it, "the spirit of God is evident."

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Our PsyD program is designed to develop psychologists of high ethical and professional standards of conduct who can provide clinical services to clients of any age or background. The core curriculum addresses general training, while electives let you explore your special interests. Learn how the research process works, and then engage in it. Gain practical experience and opportunities to teach what you know during every year of the program – from first-year simulations to advanced practica and clinical internships. All clinical training is closely supervised by licensed psychologists who model the skills and conduct you strive to attain.

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Unlock your potential in a place you can call home. Newberg is a best-of-both-worlds kind of place: a small population set among vineyards, woods and farmland – a stone's throw from a major metropolitan area. Cost of living? Relatively low. Quality of life? Definitely high. A short walk to downtown or residential streets, our campus also enjoys easy freeway access for commuters. Local enterprises run from computer stores to feed stores, coffee houses to family-owned restaurants. Newberg is a great place to live while you study, to meet new people or to raise a family; George Fox offers many housing options.

Many of our students choose to live in the city of Portland, just 23 miles away, which presents further diversity in culture, entertainment, shopping and business opportunities. And not far beyond lie the spectacular natural attractions of the Pacific Northwest: Pacific Coast beaches, the Cascade mountains and national forests, the Columbia River Gorge and more. Where will you spend the next five years of your life?

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Program Outline

Classes meet fall, spring, and summer, with reduced semester hours in summer. The MA degree is conferred after successful completion of required classes in years one and two and the PGRE competency exam.

Click here to access an outline of courses in recommended sequence.

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Faculty Leaders

Graduate Department of Clinical Psychology faculty are highly qualified, adept professors and working clinicians ... and great people to get to know. While they expect excellence, they are warm and approachable. One of them will be your mentor from beginning to end – a job they take seriously.

The atmosphere in the department office says it all: a sense of camaraderie, dedication and excitement pervades in a place where faculty and students interact closely, as colleagues and as friends. George Fox professors reach out to you, come to know your particular interests and talents, and help you to develop professionally and spiritually toward a rewarding career. For our faculty, mentorship is a way of life.

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Returning Student?

When the time is right for you to pursue a new path of learning, we're here to help. "In two years of searching for a program, doors kept closing for me," says John Rathbun, a 50-year-old PsyD student, "but George Fox was different from the start." His first phone call was answered by the department chair – not a machine – who asked about his goals and invited John to join the next cohort. "I was encouraged on the first day of class when I seemed to be surrounded by older students. They turned out to be the professors!" Adult scholars appreciate a respectful mentoring relationship as well as the exchange of ideas with their younger peers. This type of supportive community contributes largely to the high rate of completion by George Fox PsyD candidates.

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Student Teams

Each entering PsyD class moves through the program together, looking to each other for ideas, information and encouragement. "Being part of a cohort makes a big difference," says one first-year student. Smaller classes and the consistency of the group experience help simplify the five-year program, and lend an energizing effect to your work. The value of a great support system shows in our high success rate: a recent cohort of 17 doctoral candidates completed 15 dissertations on time.

Research teams form early in the program, after a period of exploration and instruction in technique. Small student teams that share a focused interest are vertically integrated with participants from each class year, supervised by a faculty mentor. This means first-year students are immediately included in the process alongside those with more experience. Together, you'll work toward your dissertations in a well-planned sequence, showing each other by example how to succeed. The sense of community at George Fox is like no other.

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Need a Role Model?

Finding a professional niche is easier when you have a lead to follow. PsyD candidates find such models in George Fox faculty.

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Career Choices

George Fox PsyD graduates are successful in many domains of psychological and professional practice including therapy, consultation, psychological assessment, test development, higher education and research.

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Admission Requirements
  1. Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution, with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 for the most recent 60 semester hours (90 quarter hours) of work
  2. 18 semester hours in undergraduate psychology
  3. Scores from the GRE, GRE writing test and Psychology Subject Test (taken within the past five years)
  4. Application and admission statements

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You may transfer up to 35 semester hours of applicable graduate-level courses in psychology and/or theology/Bible to the George Fox program. Comparable transfer units must be earned at a regionally accredited graduate school or theological seminary, and are subject to GDCP faculty approval.

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Our program is accredited by the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges and the American Psychological Association, 750 First St. NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242, phone 800-336-5979.

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Learn more about us through the George Fox University Vimeo channel.