Graduate Admissions for Experimental Psychology
Admission Information Specific to the Experimental Program
Admission decisions are made by the department faculty and forwarded to the dean of the graduate school for final approval. Only applicants for full-time enrollment toward the Ph.D. will be considered. We do not accept applications for part-time enrollment or to complete a terminal master’s degree. We review applications only once each year for admission the following August.
Admission to the Experimental Program at The University of Mississippi, as at other programs across the country, is extremely competitive. We receive a number of applications each year and, from this group, the experimental faculty invite the top applicants for on-campus interviews. These interviews usually occur in February, and we extend interview invitations weeks in advance. We consider these on-campus interviews to be an important source of information for applicants in making informed decisions about where and how they will spend the next several years of their lives. While on campus, applicants have the opportunity to observe firsthand what graduate training at The University of Mississippi is really like. Applicants usually interview with experimental faculty members, meet with other graduate students, tour the campus and the psychology department and attend two informal dinner gatherings.
Applicants usually are informed of admission decisions before April 1, and those offered admission are required to notify us of their acceptance of our offers by April 15. We typically admit around 4 – 6 students annually.
The Experimental faculty consider all of the information submitted by applicants in making admissions decisions. However, while we do not have absolute cutoffs for GRE scores and grade-point averages, applicants with the highest scores on these two dimensions tend to be the ones offered admission. We also attend to one’s prior experience with research and the rigor of prior coursework.
Because we are a research-oriented program, applications from students who have been involved in empirical research are usually rated higher than those from students with no such involvement. Similarly, we prefer letters of recommendation from academic psychologists who can better assess a student’s potential for success in an academic environment. Those applicants with expressed interests in the research areas supported by our faculty are more likely to receive offers of admission.
In general, we encourage applications from students who have an overall undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher (on a 4-point scale), a GPA in psychology of 3.2 or higher, and GRE scores (verbal and quantitative) of 150 or higher. Students with lower scores on these measures who have strong backgrounds in research, particularly those with publications, also receive favorable consideration. Our faculty and graduate students recognize the value of a diverse student body and a supportive educational environment that affirms the value of cultural diversity, and thus we encourage applications from members of ethnic minorities, other groups traditionally underrepresented in academia, and those who would contribute diverse perspectives to the program. Our department’s Diversity Statement is located here: https://psychology.olemiss.edu/diversity-statement/. We do not require the GRE Psychology Subject Test.
Students should apply to the psychology graduate programs through the Graduate School. The entire application process is completed online, and is initiated by clicking the Graduate School link. Detailed instructions are presented below and should be followed carefully. There is a checklist at the end of this document to make sure your application includes all required materials.
Step-By-Step Instructions for Applying to the Ph.D. Program in Experimental Psychology
ALL application materials are due by December 1.
Application Part I: Applying Online at the Graduate School’s Website
Step 1: Go to the Graduate School’s Website and click on the Apply now tab.
Step 2: Select “Create a new Application”
Step 3: Make sure that your computer will allow pop-ups.
Step 4: On the Second Page “Application for Graduate Admission” you must check the box at the top that states: “I have read the application overview” as well as the type of application you will be submitting (United States or International Applicant).
Step 5: On the Third Page “Application for Graduate Admission-Personal Information” You must provide all of the information that has a red asterisk including: gender, race, and date of birth.
Step 6: On the Fourth Page, “Admissions” enter the Department as “Psychology” and the year you wish to apply. Next, under “Educational Background” answer the three questions.
Step 7: On pages 5 through 7 fill in your contact information, educational, and employment histories.
Step 8: On page 8, the online application will ask you for payment of a $50 processing fee. Once you have paid for your application to be processed, a window will pop up for you to review your application.
Step 9: PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO REVIEW YOUR APPLICATION BEFORE YOU SUBMIT. ONCE YOU HAVE SUBMITTED YOUR APPLICATION, THE GRADUATE SCHOOL IS UNABLE TO CHANGE INFORMATION. After reviewing your application, please select submit.
Step 10: Once you have submitted your application, a window will pop up prompting you to upload supplemental documents.
Application Part II: Submitting your Supplemental Application Materials
Step 1: Recommenders: PLEASE HAVE YOUR RECOMMENDERS UPLOAD THEIR LETTERS ONLINE VIA THE LINK PROVIDED BY THE GRADUATE SCHOOL. PLEASE DO NOT HAVE YOUR RECOMMENDERS MAIL, FAX, OR EMAIL YOUR LETTERS DIRECTLY TO THE DEPARTMENT.
Step 2: Recommenders: After filling in the contact information for your three recommenders, you must complete the following steps: (1) check the box stating that you waive your right to see the recommenders letter, and (2) under the “action” subheading, select the second circle (save information and contact recommenders now).
Step 3: Under “Supplemental Admission Documents” Upload the following information: (1) Personal Statement, (2) CV/Resume, and (3) Optional 3rd document (such as a writing sample). After each required piece is uploaded, a green check mark will appear.
Your personal statement should address the following (no more than 2 pages, single spaced):
- Your reason(s) for pursuing a doctoral degree in Experimental Psychology
- A discussion of how your background led to your decision and has prepared you to pursue graduate education in psychology. This may include, but is not limited to:
- Your academic preparation for your proposed field of study
- Your research experiences
- Personal experiences that have uniquely prepared you for graduate school or that sparked your interest in psychology
- Relevant volunteer or paid work experience
- An explanation of why the University of Mississippi is a good fit for your graduate education, addressing:
- Your current research interests
- The name(s) of faculty with whom you would like to work
- The match between your goals and the department’s mission (https://psychology.olemiss.edu/department/) and commitment to diversity (https://psychology.olemiss.edu/diversity-statement/)
Step 4: When you have finished filing out the supplemental application hit save. PLEASE NOTE THAT ONCE YOU HIT SAVE YOU DO NOT NEED TO DO ANYTHING OTHER THAN LOG OUT OF THE APPLICATION SYSTEM. THE COMPUTER WILL AUTOMATICALLY UPLOAD YOUR SUPPLEMENTAL APPLICATION TO YOUR ONLINE PROFILE.
Part III: Additional Information about the application process:
- In addition to the steps above, the Graduate School must receive your official transcripts and official GRE scores. It is your responsibility to ensure that your official transcript(s) and official GRE scores are sent to the graduate school. See instructions here: https://gradschool.olemiss.edu/prospective-students/items-to-send/
- Once your application has been submitted, it takes approximately 24 to 48 hours for your application to be uploaded into the system.
- Keep track of your application number.
- Under the admission status tab, click the hotlink to see the status of your application materials.
- Community college information: COMMUNITY COLLEGE TRANSCRIPTS ARE NOT REQUIRED BY THE GRADUATE SCHOOL. DO NOT SUBMIT THEM.
- Application Fee: $50.00
- MAKE SURE THAT YOU SUBMIT ALL REQUIRED MATERIALS BY THE DEADLINE. *This includes all letters of recommendation, GRE scores, transcripts, etc. Incomplete applications are unlikely to be given full consideration.
CHECKLIST OF APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS
This checklist is included to assist you in ensuring your online application is complete before the December 1 submission deadline.
___ Graduate School Application
___ Official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions attended
___ GRE official score reports
___ 3 letters of recommendation (uploaded by recommenders)
___ Personal Statement
___ CV and any other materials you wish to submit (e.g., writing sample)