Degree Requirements

Section 1


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

The Doctor of Philosophy degree is awarded to candidates who have completed an approved program in their areas of specialization and meet departmental and Graduate College requirements for the degree. This must include:

  1. At least 96 hours of graduate work
  2. Satisfactory performance in courses or examinations dealing with quantitative methods and chosen areas of specialization
  3. A masters thesis or equivalent
  4. Appropriate courses and seminars in the area of specialization and in related and supporting areas
  5. Satisfactory performance on a doctoral qualifying examination
  6. Satisfactory performance on an oral preliminary examination; and
  7. Completion of an acceptable Ph.D. thesis and satisfactory performance on an oral examination in defense of that thesis.

Credit Transfer. Credit for graduate courses taken elsewhere and not used for any previous degree may be transferred to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The amount of credit and the particular courses qualifying for transfer are determined after a student has completed at least 8 hours of coursework at UIUC. Students holding a masters degree can have 32 hours transferred to their Ph.D. program if the department approves their previous degree. All additional hours (64) required for the Ph.D. degree must be earned in residence.

Teaching Requirement. The Department of Psychology requires Ph.D. candidates to gain teaching experience as part of their academic work. Such experience is considered a vital part of the graduate program and usually takes the form of a teaching assistantship for at least two semesters.

Master of Science (M.S.) in Psychology

The Master of Science degree is awarded as an intermediate degree to candidates for the Doctor of Philosophy degree who have satisfactorily completed 32 hours of graduate work, including an acceptable thesis. The department does not require that students obtain a master's degree, but a master's-level research report must be submitted to the department as part of the Ph.D. program. NOTE: this degree has recently changed from a Master of Arts degree to align with the department's STEM classification for the instructional program.

This web page is only for informational purposes. Official program requirements should be obtained from the Graduate Admissions Office, Department of Psychology, University of Illinois, 603 East Daniel Street, Champaign, Illinois 61820.


Section 2



Graduate Spotlight

Katherine WoodKatherine Wood

Congratulations to Katherine Wood! She's been awarded an NSF fellowship for her research she describes below. Katherine is a Graduate Student in the VCHP program area working with Dan Simons. Research Summary: We don't perceive everything that passes before our eyes. Often this means that irrelevant information doesn't occupy limited cognitive resources, but sometimes these failures of awareness blind us to important aspects of our environment. My research focuses on these failures of awareness, particularly on the information that gets filtered out. What kinds of objects are we most likely to miss? When are we most vulnerable to these failures of awareness? How do changes to the task or environment affect this filtering? Better understanding of how we filter information from our environment can potentially help us understand demanding real-world tasks, such as driving.

Graduate Information

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