The Doctor of Psychology (PsyD) degree program is for individuals who are interested in advancing their knowledge of clinical issues in psychology and developing the practical application of this knowledge for the professional practice of psychology. The curriculum is designed to meet the educational requirements for licensure as a clinical psychologist in the State of California. The Doctor of Psychology exposes learners to theoretical and practical methodologies within the field.

Our innovative program provides comprehensive courses as well as a variety of elective courses and opportunities for supervised clinical experience to emphasize the service orientation of a professional clinical degree. The program provides learners with the knowledge and skills necessary for growth in their professional career.

Admission to the PsyD program requires both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree with the master’s degree in psychology or a related field of study.

Quick Facts:

  • Credits required: 66
  • Cost per credit: $545
  • Program length: 4-5 years (full-time status)
  • Max transfer credits: 30 credits

Time to degree completion can be shortened by accelerating completion of courses and through credits accepted in transfer.

What you’ll learn

Formulate and express in writing advanced conceptualizations of psychological ideas with the capacity to design, evaluate, and defend these concepts.

Employ appropriate oral communication skills to successfully interact with people from a variety of experiences and backgrounds in presentations, discussions, negotiations, and conflict management situations.

Construct and assess logical and/or empirical evidence from advanced clinical psychological theory and research, employing complex judgments drawn from inferential statistics and scientific methodology.

Critically weigh and consider the clinical impact that cultural and social institutions have on psychotherapy clients’ ethical systems, values, worldview assumptions, and presenting, psychological symptoms.

Design an advanced system of inquiry that is rooted in peer-reviewed, empirical research findings to describe, critically evaluate, hypothesize about, predict outcome, and intervene with clinical populations.

Incorporate psychometric theory in designing assessment methods in clinical psychology, including critically evaluating established systems of diagnosis.

Create and evaluate evidence-based psychotherapeutic treatment plans to reduce psychopathological symptoms and improve clients’ adaptive functioning.

Distinguish between statistically normal and abnormal patterns of development across the lifespan, and discriminate between the various protective vs. risk factors that influence developmental outcomes for clinical populations.

Career Outcomes

Clinical Psychologist*

Work with clients in Private Practice, Mental Health Clinics, Hospitals, and the Justice System

Administrative Supervisorial Positions

Graduate or Post-Graduate Faculty



*Our program fulfills the educational requirements to pursue licensure as a psychologist in California. Please see the California Board of Psychology for additional coursework that may be required.

Doctor of Psychology Degree Requirements

Degree Requirements Credits
Required Core Courses 33
Elective Courses 18
Comprehensive Examination 1
Doctoral Project Courses 14
Internship (optional) 0

Disclaimer: All program requirements for the Doctor of Psychology degree program must be completed through California Southern University in no less than two (2), no more than ten (10) years of initial course enrollment.

Courses + Credits

The following courses comprise the requirements for the PsyD degree program at CalSouthern. The PsyD program includes 33 credits of required core courses, 18 credits of elective courses, and a Comprehensive Examination, in addition to a doctoral project and other requirements. Unlike the PhD, which is often more focused on research and scholarly publication, the PsyD at CalSouthern is an applied degree that is more clinically focused.

Required Core Courses

  • PSY 8500 Advanced Theories of Personality – 3 credits
  • PSY 8503 History and Systems in Psychology – 3 credits
  • PSY 8504 Ethical and Professional Issues – 3 credits
  • PSY 8506 Advanced Psychopathology – 3 credits
  • PSY 8708 Cultural Diversity – 3 credits
  • PSY 8724 Cognition, Emotion and Motivation – 3 credits
  • PSY 8700 Psychopharmacology – 3 credits
  • PSY 8701 Physiological Psychology – 3 credits
  • PSY 8740 Statistical Methods and Analysis – 3 credits
  • PSY 8127 Research Methods in Psychology – 3 credits
  • PSY 8702 Psychological Assessment I – 3 credits

Comprehensive Examination

  • PSY 8800 Doctoral Comprehensive Examination — 1 credit

Elective Courses

  • PSY 7307 Advanced Physiology and Pharmacology of Addiction – 3 credits
  • PSY 6309 Advanced Ethical and Professional Issues in Addiction Counseling– 3 credits
  • PSY 7316 Advanced Personal and Professional Wellness for the Substance Abuse Counselor – 3 credits
  • PSY 7007 Advanced Case Management: Assessment, Treatment Planning, Relapse Prevention – 3 credits
  • PSY 7523 Psychology of Learning – 3 credits
  • PSY 7700 Applied Sport Psychology I – 3 credits
  • PSY 7701 Applied Sport Psychology II – 3 credits
  • PSY 7711 Current Issues in Sport Psychology – 3 credits
  • PSY 7715 Psychology of Coaching – 3 credits
  • PSY 7720 Enhanced Performance: Preparation / Motivation – 3 credits
  • PSY 7725 Research in Sport Psychology – 3 credits
  • PSY 7507 Advanced Human Sexuality – 3 credits
  • PSY 7509 Advanced Psychology of Marriage and Family Systems – 3 credits
  • PSY 7513 Psychological Tests and Measurements – 3 credits
  • PSY 7514 Brief Therapy – 3 credits
  • PSY 6515 Social Psychology – 3 credits
  • PSY 7718 Hypnosis: Theory and Practice – 3 credits
  • PSY 6519 Crisis and Trauma Counseling – 3 credits
  • PSY 7521 Industrial/Organizational Psychology – 3 credits
  • PSY 7522 Consulting in Business, Education, and Mental Health – 3 credits
  • PSY 7525 Cognition and Memory – 3 credits
  • PSY 7527 Psychology of Stress and Stress‑Related Disorders – 3 credits
  • PSY 7728 The Psychology of Violence and Domestic Abuse Reporting – 3 credits
  • PSY 7529 Myers-Briggs Type Indicator – 3 credits
  • PSY 7530 Dream Analysis – 3 credits
  • PSY 7533 Psychology of Death and Dying – 3 credits
  • PSY 7534 Dual Diagnosis – 3 credits
    PSY 7536 Cognitive-Behavioral Psychotherapy – 3 credits
  • PSY 7737 Psychology of Chronic Illness – 3 credits
  • PSY 7738 Advanced Psychology of Addiction and Compulsive Behaviors – 3 credits
  • PSY 7739 Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity, Autistic Spectrum and Neurodevelopmental Disorders – 3 credits
  • PSY 7541 Psychology of Religion – 3 credits
  • PSY 7742 Eating Disorders – 3 credits
  • PSY 6743 Systems of Care in Community Mental Health – 3 credits
  • PSY 7745 Interpersonal Neurobiology – 3 credits
  • PSY 6747 Career Counseling – 3 credits
  • PSY 7750 Positive Psychology – 3 credits
  • PSY 7760 Media Psychology: Writing, Publishing and Promoting of a Self-Help Book 3 credits
  • PSY 7761 Interpersonal Conflict in the Workplace – 3 credits
  • PSY 7762 Supervision and Consultation – 3 credits
  • PSY 7763 Clinical Interviewing – 3 credits
  • PSY 8702 Psychological Assessment II – 3 credits
  • PSY 7704 Practicum I – 3 credits
  • PSY 7705 Practicum II – 3 credits
  • PSY 7706 Practicum III – 3 credits
  • PSY 7707 Psychology of the Mind: Mind-Body Connection – 3 credits
  • PSY 7710 Integrative Therapy: From Orientation to Practice – 3 credits

Doctoral Project Courses

  • PSY 8991 Doctoral Project I – 3 credits
  • PSY 8992 Doctoral Project II – 3 credits
  • PSY 8993 Doctoral Project III – 3 credits
  • PSY 8994 Doctoral Project IV – 3 credits
  • PSY 8995 Doctoral Project V – 2 credits


An internship course may be required in your state or jurisdiction. Learners should check their state board requirements.

  • PSY 8900 Internship (optional) — 0 credits

Download the University Catalog for full course descriptions, prerequisite information, and program details.

Recent Doctoral Projects

The culmination of the PsyD program, these projects represent the research, efforts, and academic contributions our learners are making in the fields of psychology and the behavioral sciences. These projects have officially been added to the CalSouthern Library and the ProQuest global database and will serve as academic resources for current and future learners.

School of Behavioral Sciences Doctoral Projects

April-May 2021

  • Aga, Brittany. Qualitative study understanding college students’ perceptions of mental health services on campus.
  • Allen, Nicole. Examination of jail-based competency restoration programs: A qualitative study.
  • Bezoumi, Ava. The effects of excessive use of social media on primary relationships.
  • Broughton, Wendy. Lack of access to care for medication assisted treatment.
  • Campbell, Victoria. Trauma recovery interventions: Advancing patient care.
  • Chiangeh, Divine. Impact of culture change on the etiology of depression.
  • Cornwall, Kasey-Ann N. Efficacy of integrated treatment for comorbid PTSD.
  • Cunha, Dina L. Exploring the impact of children with neurodevelopmental disorders on single parents.
  • Cunningham, Sarah. Secondary trauma in non-profit support staff.
  • Flores, Annastasia. Hope dealers: Alcohol and drug counselors as agents of hope.
  • Fournier, Rebekkah. The effects of covid-19 stay-at-home orders on perceived control and stress.
  • Frazier, Gary P. Decreasing students’ use of profanity in the high school: A theoretical proposal.
  • Joslin, Melissa A. The impact of compassion fatigue on mental health professionals in high-risk environments.
  • Hettinger, Heather. The impact of the #metoo movement on disclosure of sexual violence.
  • Hinckley, Megan. Bending without breaking: The role of organizations in fostering employee resilience.
  • Hourigan, Megan. Relationship between spirituality and resilience during pandemic.
  • Howard-Williams, Dinah. Evidence-based recommendations for early intervention for childhood depression.
  • Ibrahim, Izaida. Autism spectrum disorder, premenstrual symptoms, and premenstrual dysphoric disorder.
  • Johnson, Lynn F. PTSD co-occurring symptoms and predictors.
  • Lessin, David S. Social acceleration and emotion regulation in the orthodox Jewish community.
  • Logan, Gayle V. (2017). Self-regulation of impulsive behavior: a theoretical model for adhd-h1 subtype.
  • Manzioni, Michelle Lee. Emotional regulation as a treatment target for comorbid SUD.
  • Mathews, Marsha. Therapist views on parental influences on adolescent non-suicidal self-injury: Qualitative descriptive study.
  • Nolasco, Ma Genevieve D. A study of Filipino American family dyads, intergenerational patterns, and mental health care.
  • Parsons, Bruce. Deception detection: Utilizing cues from multiple communication channels.
  • Ramsey, Natasha M. Trauma and intimate partner violence.
  • Reis, Melanie H. An investigation into the rising rate of autism.
  • Rinaldi, Tracey Lynn. Efficacy of psychotherapy delivered at home with depressed and suicidal older adults.
  • Rogers-Franco, Lorre. The connection between chronic stress and dementia in African American women.
  • Rohrbach, Amanda. School counselor readiness in differentiating suicide assessments for gifted youth: Case study.
  • Shing, Linda. Actors and writers in Hollywood: A qualitative study.
  • Vanderau, Katharine Quinn. Gender differences in PTSD in post 9/11 veterans.
  • Vigil, Yolanda. Applications of CBT and play therapy as treatment for anxiety in adolescence.
  • Villa, Marcia Y. A phenomenological qualitative study on a police officer’s ability to detect deception.
  • Villarreal, Nicole. Marianismo and social support: Predicting achievement motivation and ganas in doctoral Latinas.
  • Wilson, Michal Carolyn. Biopsychosocial associations of comorbid ADHD and excessive gaming: A systematic literature review.
  • Zeux, David. The efficacy of martial art interventions in reducing anger and trauma.

I had a wonderful experience and loved the flexibility of the program. I could go at my own pace, was able to work ahead when I needed to, and to take extra time when I needed to. The faculty mentors were fantastic and very helpful and inspiring. I feel like I got an excellent education for an affordable price and I appreciate everything that it brought to my life.

– Jinxi Caddel, PsyD

Ready to get back to your dreams? We can help!

Contact us to learn more about our online PsyD degree program.

Call us at: 1.800.477.2254 | Email:

Accreditation & Approvals

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California Southern University is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), which is one of six regional accrediting bodies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). Regional accreditation is the most highly respected and recognized form of accreditation in the United States, and it provides students with a number of important benefits and opportunities.

Please visit the Accreditation & Licensure page to learn more.

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