Areas of Emphasis

Advanced Training in Focused Fields

Your core PhD training at PAU provides broad and general preparation through the integration of scholarship, professional experience, and research.

We also offer specialized training in seven key emphasis areas – all in high demand and focused on building your practitioner-scientist experience and expertise.

PhD in Clinical Psychology Areas of Emphasis
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Diversity and Community Mental Health Emphasis

The Diversity and Community Mental Health (DCMH) area of emphasis at PAU gives you specialized knowledge and clinical training to provide psychological services for the public mental health sector.

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Forensic Psychology

The PhD emphasis in Forensic Psychology at PAU trains specialists in the clinical application of psychology to the legal system. We focus on broad and general clinical training, along with specialized forensic elective courses and practical experiences.

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Health Psychology Emphasis at Palo Alto University
Health Psychology Emphasis

There is an enormous and increasing need for clinical psychologists who are prepared to work effectively in medical settings. Integration of psychologists into medical settings helps reduce health disparities for people of color, sexual and gender minorities, and others with marginalized identities by enhancing access to behavioral health services, reducing stigma, and facilitating holistic care.

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LGBTQ Psychology

From theory and research to clinical approaches, Palo Alto University’s unique LGBTQ Area of Emphasis focuses on expanding our understanding and treatment of these under-served populations.

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Meditation & Psychology

The Meditation and Psychology Emphasis in the PhD Clinical Psychology program involves clinical and research training concerning the interplay of mind-body factors in health and well-being. The Meditation and Psychology emphasis will not be enrolling students for the 23-24 academic year.

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Memory. Concentration. Reasoning. Logic. Language. Perception. Personality. The impact of brain function on human behavior is endlessly fascinating – and it’s a great career path for science-minded psychology students.

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Pediatric Behavioral Health Care

The Pediatric Behavioral Health Care (PBHC) emphasis at PAU has evolved from a general “child and family” focus to reflect recent bench science, translational community studies, advances in clinical intervention, policy/funding initiatives, and workforce trends.

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Nurse in Trauma

When you choose an emphasis in Trauma at Palo Alto University, you’ll work alongside researchers, teacher, policy makers, and clinicians to treat patients in crisis and address the growing public health needs.

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PhD in Clinical Psychology Admissions

Admissions Snapshot

Application review for the fall 2025 cohort begins November 1, 2024. Application deadline is January 5, 2025

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PhD Admissions FAQS

FAQS on information on applying. 

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Expert Faculty

The PhD Clinical Psychology program faculty is a talented and highly distinguished group of psychologists from across the globe, with wide-ranging clinical and research specialties. As a whole, the faculty members support evidence-based approaches to practice and are actively involved in important clinical research. Core faculty – those primarily based at Palo Alto University’s (PAU) main campus provide the backbone of the program.


Meet the PhD Faculty