Program Overview:

Preclinical Psychology Certificate Program

The Preclinical Psychology post-baccalaureate certificate program consists of nine psychology courses required for application to most graduate programs awarding either the doctor of psychology in clinical psychology (PsyD) or the doctor of philosophy in clinical psychology (PhD). While this program meets minimal requirements for application to clinical psychology graduate programs in the Chicago area, students are strongly advised to confirm the admission requirements of the graduate schools in which they are interested before enrolling to ensure that the SPS program will fulfill their needs. This program is designed for career changers who do not have an extensive background in science. Students who need only some of these courses may register as students-at-large or meet with an adviser to design a customized certificate, but will not be eligible for financial aid.


Students are required to take the following courses:

  • PSYCH 110 Introduction to Psychology
  • PSYCH 201 Statistical Methods in Psychology
  • PSYCH 205 Research Methods in Psychology
  • PSYCH 215 Psychology of Personality
  • PSYCH 218 Developmental Psychology
  • PSYCH 228 Cognitive Psychology
  • PSYCH 303 Psychopathology
  • PSYCH 306 Introduction to Clinical Psychology
  • PSYCH 375 Psychological Tests and Measurements

    In addition to the program requirements, students have the option to take any of the courses offered at SPS to fulfill prerequisites. Elective courses are NOT eligible for financial aid, based upon federal financial aid requirements.

    Transfer Credit Policy for Preclinical Psychology

    Students in the Preclinical Psychology post-baccalaureate certificate program may transfer up to six semester hours, or nine quarter hours of academic credit. A transcript and grade of B or better are required for transferred courses in the program. Courses audited or taken with the pass/no credit option cannot be applied toward a certificate program. Courses earned for a bachelor's degree at SPS may not be applied retroactively toward certificate requirements. Required courses that have been completed in the past two years by students-at-large may be applied toward the completion of a certificate, subject to the approval of the admissions committee, and provided admission requirements for the program are met.  All transfer credit must be approved before a student begins his or her course work at SPS.

    Additional Information

    Preclinical Psychology students have different admission requirements and application processes than other post-baccalaureate students. Visit the Acceptance Criteria page for details on admission requirements for this program, and for SPS Office of Admissions contact information.