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PhD in Clinical Psychology, Fresno

Expand your knowledge with advanced studies in clinical psychology.


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Doctorate in Clinical Psychology Overview

The Fresno clinical PhD program introduces you to the ethical values and orientation of the professional psychologist by exploring the psychological, biological and sociocultural factors that influence human behavior. In this rich and challenging program, you’ll develop clinical, research, and teaching competencies, and build the technical skills needed to work effectively with diverse populations in clinical settings.
The program takes a systemic approach to analysis and intervention, examining the role of eco-systemic contributions, such as family, ethnicity, religious practice, medical and legal issues, access to social privileges, and other factors. In addition to training you in the role of clinical psychologist, you’ll understand the important role you can play as a psychologist acting as a consultant, community advocate, and contributor to social change.

To learn more about this program and other offerings, visit our CSPP-dedicated microsite. You’ll find videos featuring our university president, dean of CSPP, and faculty, along with numerous interactive features!




Learn About Admissions Requirements




Get to Know Our Diverse Faculty



Degree Information

Profession-Wide Competencies

Throughout the program you’ll study in specific, profession-wide competency areas in order to acquire and demonstrate knowledge, understanding, and skills. These competencies identify knowledge, attitudes, and skills you must achieve to graduate from the program. These include the following areas:

  • Research
  • Ethical and legal standards
  • Individual and cultural diversity
  • Professional values and attitudes
  • Communication and interpersonal skills
  • Assessment
  • Intervention
  • Supervision
  • Consultation and interprofessional/interdisciplinary skills

You’ll demonstrate your competencies in these areas through the academic and training components of coursework, practicum and internship placements, along with supervised research and teaching experiences. Your progress in achieving these competencies is monitored regularly throughout the year.

Program-Specific Competencies

As a student in the program you’ll also be expected to demonstrate competency in the area of teaching.

Discipline-Specific Knowledge

Students in the program must also acquire discipline-specific knowledge and demonstrate understanding in these areas:

  • History and systems of psychology
  • Foundational science domains of psychology including biological, cognitive-affective, development, and social aspects of behavior
  • Advanced integrative knowledge across foundational domains of psychology
  • Research methods, statistical analysis, and psychometrics

Experience Area

Mindfulness and meditation-based practices have increased steadily over the past decades, even as scholars such as Jon Kabat-Zinn have noted the independence of these practices from the original teachings and theoretical origins from which these practices have derived. The Buddhist psychotherapy experience area aims to address this void in the field of psychology.

Learn more about this experience area

Fresno Program Features

Doctoral students in the Fresno clinical psychology program also have the opportunity to gain practical skills by providing mental health services through the W. Gary Cannon Psychology Service Center, as well as through local psychology internships.

Fresno Area Community Services and Placements



The CSPP Fresno clinical psychology PhD program is accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA), which requires that the school provide data on time to completion, program costs, internships, attrition, and licensure. Please follow the link below for that data. We hope this information will help you to make an informed decision regarding your graduate study.

Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data (.pdf)

The CSPP clinical psychology PhD and PsyD programs offered on the Fresno, Sacramento, Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Francisco campuses are individually accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association (APA).

*Questions related to a program’s accredited status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation.

Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation
American Psychological Association
750 1st Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002
Phone: (202) 336-5979

Our Campus Location

Alliant International University
5130 E Clinton Way
Fresno, CA 93727

Directions to Campus


Links and Downloads

School Performance Fact Sheet


Aims of the PhD

The Fresno PhD in Clinical Psychology focuses on students achieving nine specific aims through the development of clinical, research, and teaching competencies. The aims are as follows:

  • To produce students/graduates who are competent in integrating the foundations of scientific psychology in all of their work as clinical psychologists.
  • To produce students/graduates who are competent in research and evaluation.
  • To produce students/graduates who demonstrate competence in understanding and engaging in diversity.
  • To produce students/graduates competent in assessment skills as an ongoing process that informs and guides professional practice.
  • To produce students/graduates competent in intervention skills.
  • To train students/graduates who will engage in lifelong learning and ongoing professional development.
  • To prepare students/graduates to be competent supervisors and consultants.
  • To produce students/graduates competent in being teachers of psychology at the university level.

Training Opportunities

Professional Clinical Training Opportunities

You’ll begin your professional clinical training in your second year at our on-site Psychological Services Center, which provides diverse therapeutic, testing, and didactic training opportunities. In your third year, you’ll train in community mental health centers, clinics, inpatient mental health facilities, medical settings, specialized service centers, rehabilitation programs, residential or day programs, forensic/correctional facilities, and educational programs. Students typically receive a minimum of 1,600 hours of clinical training prior to internship.

Teaching Practicum

Clinical PhD students also enter teaching practica in their fourth year of their program either through the university or at local colleges and universities such as Fresno State University and the North Centers of the State Center Community College District, as well as hospitals. You should be prepared for teaching through coursework in classroom and online pedagogy.

Research Training

In addition to clinical and teaching practica, you’ll be involved in research practica coordinated by our core faculty. Over the course of four semesters, you should learn how to apply skills you have learned in statistics and research design to actual research projects. These projects involve faculty expertise primarily in the areas of play therapy, cognition and affect, psychometrics, and health.

As a result of collaborative work in research practicum and methods courses, students and faculty have presentations at several professional conferences, including the meetings and annual conventions of the following professional associations:

  • American Psychological Association
  • Association for Play Therapy
  • National Academy of Neuropsychology
  • National Council of School and Programs of Professional Psychology
  • Western Psychological Association
  • International Summit on Preventing, Assessing & Treating Trauma across the Lifespan

The faculty prides itself on the quality and breadth of training its students receive. Through clinical work, teaching and research, Fresno PhD clinical graduates contribute significantly to the solutions for major mental health problems confronting communities today. If you want to find out more about how the program prepares you as a clinical psychologist, please contact Dr. Debra Bekerian, Academic Director,


Explore our clinical psychology program research opportunities, practicum partners, and student communities.



Why Alliant

At Alliant, our mission is to prepare students for professional careers of service and leadership and to promote the discovery and application of knowledge to improve lives. We offer an education that is accredited, focused on practical knowledge and skills, connected with diverse faculty and alumni, and aimed at the student experience.

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Founded in 1969, CSPP was one of the nation’s first independent schools of professional psychology. Today, CSPP continues its commitment to preparing the next generation of mental health professionals through graduate-level degree programs in clinical psychology, marriage and family therapy, clinical counseling, organizational psychology, psychopharmacology, and more.


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