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Graduate School of Professional Psychology
PsyD Requirements

Program Requirements

The PsyD program at GSPP requires course work for a minimum of three calendar years plus an APA approved clinical internship, generally full-time for 12-months. Transfer of credit for courses may be granted to people who have already done graduate work in psychology or a related field.

Some students may elect to lengthen their residency in the program. The University of Denver is on a quarter system, and GSPP schedules courses during all four quarters of the year, including summer.


The doctor of psychology degree requires 135 quarter hours of acceptable graduate credit. GSPP requirements include core curriculum (I), practical work (II), specialty focus tool (III), comprehensive exam (IV), doctoral paper (V), and internship (VI). The internship is in addition to the 135 quarter hours. The program is designed to be cumulative and sequential, so students take required courses in order, with their cohort. Students (in consultation with advisors) so have flexibility in planning their elective coursework.

  • History and Systems – A graduate level course in history and systems in psychology is required for graduation. This may be taken prior to or during enrollment.
  • Transfer Credit – Transfer credit may be used to replace parts of the core curriculum and may be included in the specialty focus tool, but it may not replace practical work or the doctoral paper.
  • Core Course Waivers – It is possible to waive core courses with adequate documentation of equivalent graduate course work.
  • Independent Study, Independent Research – Elective courses are offered through GSPP and other University of Denver departments. They may include Independent Study (IS) for relevant subjects not covered in formal courses and in special circumstances can take Independent Research (IR) credit for work on the doctoral paper.


DU's residence requirement for doctoral students is enrollment for at least six quarters, including at least two consecutive quarters of full-time (eight quarter hours) attendance. However, GSPP has a three-year residence requirement. Students should be at the school for at least three years of practical work at the Professional Psychology Center and Community Field Placements.

GSPP does not offer a formal part-time PsyD program, however, students experiencing circumstances that require modifying their program may petition the faculty to adjust their program timeline.


Because ongoing feedback is essential to clinical and scholarly development, students are evaluated from a variety of sources throughout their time in the program. Students are given grades in all courses, are evaluated twice each year by their clinical supervisors, and receive feedback from their performance on the Clinical Competency Examination. This feedback is reviewed with the faculty each year, and is compiled in an Annual Review by the student's advisor.

The PsyD program at the GSPP also recognizes that evaluation is a circular process, and we seek feedback from students on a regular basis. Students are asked to evaluate all of their coursework each quarter, to evaluate their supervisors and their field placement sites, and to evaluate the program in a yearly anonymous student survey.