Frequently Asked Questions

UW Psychology Graduate Studies Q and A

Program Questions

No, we do not have a stand alone Master's program. However, accepted students to our Ph.D. program may earn a Master's on the way to a Ph.D. The Master's is optional to our Ph.D. program requirements.

No, it is not required to have a prior degree (Bachelor's or Master's) in Psychology to apply to our graduate program. It is actually not required to have a Master's before applying to our Ph.D. program; applicants can apply with just a Bachelor's. We do strongly advise that applicants have prior experience with psychological research. It is important whether applicants have realistically assessed their interests and motivation to pursue a career along the lines available in our graduate program. It is unfortunate for everyone when a graduate student discovers that he or she has undertaken a career whose real rewards simply do not fit the needs of that student. Applicants with relevant previous experience, especially, participating in studies at some level, however rudimentary, are more attractive because we can be more confident that the applicant understands both the rewards and frustrations to be encountered in his or her chosen career.

Much like the previous response in #2, some coursework in psychology or relevant area (psychology statistics or research methods) is desired if no prior psychology degree was obtained. More important would be applicable research training and fit into our program.

Our program generally takes 5 to 7 years to complete. Because you are preparing to become a research scientist, courses after the first year are typically chosen with the advice of your advisors and supervisory committee with your individual career goals in mind. Students in Adult or Child Clinical tracks will also be required to complete a one-year predoctoral internship.

It is unlikely that having a Master's degree before entering our program will significantly impact how long it takes you to complete your degree here. Nor is it required for one to have a Master's degree before applying to our Ph.D. program. It is possible to place out of a course or two, but you will be required to register for a replacement course at a higher level. Everyone who begins our program, will start on the same page.

It is not possible to participate in our program on a part-time basis. This is generally a more than full time commitment which includes coursework, lab work, participation in seminars and lab meetings as well as the 20 hrs/wk appointment as a Teaching or Research Assistant.

Because of the scientific nature of the program which includes a great deal of lab participation, it is not possible to do this program without being here in person. In addition, students admitted to our program receive departmental funding in the form of a Teaching or Research Assistant, the duties of which can only be completed while on-campus.

Tuition rates can be found online here. The Department of Psychology is Graduate Tier 1 on the Seattle Campus.

The faculty of the Psychology Graduate Program is committed, above all else, to research that promotes the advancement of psychology as a science. First, we attempt to select individuals for whom the scientific investigation of psychological questions is an integral part of their career goals. In all fairness, we want to discourage applications from people who, for any of a variety of reasons, will be disappointed by participation in a science and research oriented program. Second, we believe that psychological research benefits from the involvement of people with diverse backgrounds. We encourage applications from people who represent diverse educational, cultural, and ethnic backgrounds.

Yes. Our program provides excellent training in both clinical and research competencies, and all Clinical students complete a one-year predoctoral clinical internship in the final year of their training. Internships are listed in the APPIC book or website. Many (but not all) states also require additional supervised postdoctoral training in order to qualify for licensure. Statistics on obtaining licensure is beyond the breadth of the Graduate Program Office's responsibility. However, this website provides a listing of licensing boards and other relevant information (Note: We do not endorse this website, but merely suggest it as a resource. Please use or not use the previous website at your own caution). Historically, our students have done very well on national and state licensing examinations.

Students from the other non-clinical areas do not take internships, and are not qualified to apply for one. Students from other areas cannot move into the clinical areas after they are accepted. Clinical faculty accept only those they can support, financially, in class time, in lab time, and mentoring time. If you are interested in clinical psychology then please apply to one of clinical tracks.

No. The Graduate School does not accept transfer credits for any doctoral programs.

Maybe. Please know that being accepted as a GNM student and completing a few classes with our department does not make your chances better if you apply as a regular graduate student later on. GNM is commonly an option for professionals who are looking for more continuing education hours or students at other nearby graduate programs seeking a specific course/training offered in our department. Please email us directly, so we can properly advise you.

Admissions Questions

As of 2012 admissions, we are NOT accepting ANY paper materials in the mail. Although, exceptions can be made for letters of recommendation, which may be accepted to the Department of Psychology if applicants use a letter service or their recommenders prefer to mail paper letters.

U.S./International Applicants may be requested to provide official paper transcripts if an interview invitation has been extended, but no sooner. International Applicants will be required to mail additional materials (will be listed in the check list provided on our site and the UW Graduate School Application) to the UW Graduate School only if they receive an offer from the Department of Psychology. Otherwise, nothing is mailed to the UW Graduate School unless you are notified to do so.

If using the addresses below, please do not revise/change anything.

  Department of Psychology UW Graduate School
Using regular postal service Graduate Selections Committee
Department of Psychology
University of Washington
Box 351525
Seattle, Washington 98195-1525
University of Washington
Graduate Enrollment Management Services
Box 353770
Seattle, WA 98195-3770
Using UPS, FedEx, DHL, etc, when a street address is needed

Department of Psychology
University of Washington
Guthrie Hall, Room 119
Seattle, WA 98195

University of Washington
Graduate Enrollment Management Services
G-1 Communications Bldg
4109 Stevens Way
Seattle, WA USA 98195-3770

Beginning with admissions for 2015, U.S. and International applicants, the online UW Graduate School application must be completed by 11:59pm (PST) on December 1. Please be aware that if you wait until the last minute to submit your application, it is likely the application system will crash or lag due to the large volume of applications being submitted. Do not wait until the last minute to submit your application. EXCEPTION: U.S. and Permanent Resident applicants who are requesting application fee waivers must submit their applications one week in advance of our application deadline. International applicants, please ignore any other deadlines you may see during this process, and complete your online materials by December 1. We no longer accept mailed paper transcripts or recommendations.

We only accept applications once a year, for the following academic year which begins late September. We only complete admissions for one year at a time. If you miss the deadline, we will hold onto your materials for one year. If you choose to apply the following year, please notify us by email to reactivate your file and what materials you plan to reuse before the application deadline. You will have to create another application in order to see any changes made to the application process, submit any new/updated materials, re-request any letters of recommendation, and your payment. (In other words, keep the same online profile and login but do not reuse your online application from the previous year, because you will miss any changes we've made. If you need assistance in retrieving your materials from the previous year, please email us.)

If you have a feeling that you might submit your application late despite your best efforts, please contact us BEFORE the deadline. We will try to work with you as long as we hear from you BEFORE the deadline. Those waiting for application fee waiver requests, please write to us BEFORE the deadline. No exceptions.

Because mailed application materials are no longer needed in our admissions, applicants must submit and pay for their online applications by 11.59pm (PST) on December 1.

Please plan accordingly, the online system WILL get overloaded and crash if you wait until the very last minute to submit and pay for your online application.

Faculty acceptance status is listed on their individual faculty profile. Please visit our website, click on Graduate Studies, Areas of Study (click on the area you are interested in), People, Faculty (click on the faculty you are interested in). A new text box will appear on the lower right side of your browser and it would indicate the faculty's acceptance status for the year of entry. If there is no advising comment in this small text box, click on "Psychology Directory" (also in the same text box) which may have the advising/acceptance status, the resulting page will have more information including their current research, publications, and link(s) to their lab(s). Acceptance status is usually updated each September. Our office sends out reminders to faculty, but it's up to the faculty to make the updates based on their individual circumstances.

Faculty with emeritus status no longer advise students; please do not list them in your application.

You can log into your online application to check the receipt of items as they arrive. It is your responsibility to ensure that your recommenders submit their letters for you in a timely manner. Receipt of recommendations is noted when you log into your application. Then it is up to you when or how you choose to contact your recommenders to remind them of their submission.

You must select the option with ETS to transmit your GRE/TOEFL scores (electronically) directly to the University of Washington, provided you list the correct institution code (4854, no department code necessary). It will usually take a couple weeks for the scores to show up as received in your submitted application.

Please continue to check your application for updated status on received items. If you have not yet submitted your application or submitted it recently, please do not ask our office for a status update because we cannot access materials from an unsubmitted application and recently submitted applications need time for the various databases to share information.

Please add our email to your addressbooks to ensure that you receive any messages. If you are away during the holiday season, try to check your email at least once a day.

We will update your application and the materials received on your behalf as they arrive, please log into your application profile periodically to see when your status has changed. Your application will be marked "complete" when all items you list in your profile arrive and are checked off. (Exception: if you listed 4 letters of recommendation and we have only received 3, we will not mark your application as complete even though you have enough letters to meet our requirement. The same goes for any non-degree schools you listed and did not upload the transcripts, these are optional items.) Please be sure to check receipt dates for individual items (especially the required components) rather than the "complete" status! The important thing is to have your required items checked in and the 'complete' status should be considered secondary.

It takes the Graduate Program Office several days after the deadline to process application materials and update the items received.

In regards to the optional items (Optional applicant profile questions, Academic Resume/CV, and Personal Statement), if you did not submit something that was optional, the "not received" status will remain, but will not affect the completeness of your application. Your application will not be penalized for having "not received" optional items, please do not upload a file for the sake of having it marked as "received" if it is not truly the item requested. Thank you.

Log into your online application periodically to check the receipt status of your materials, especially the required components.

This varies from area to area within the department, and from year to year. Overall, the department receives more than 600-800 applications for approximately 20 open positions.

Sure, statistics for the past three years are located on our Apply page, item #4 to download.

As of the 2015 admissions, we will allow a 2nd area of interest. It is not required to have a 2nd area of interest. If you only have one interest, please list only the one. The clinical areas (adult or child) can ONLY be listed as a 1st area interest with NO 2nd area interest. Once you have selected your area(s), please list the faculty within the area(s) that you have interest in, in the Faculty Match question. If these sections were filled out incorrectly, our office will try to contact you and work together on correcting the sections.

Our evaluation will be based on the application as a whole. We do not have rigid cut-off points on conventional criteria such as GRE scores or GPA. However, the bulk of our accepted applicants are strong on these criteria. We have provided admissions statistics for GRE/GPA because this is a popular inquiry. Because standardized tests were designed for the standard student and may not reflect the capabilities of applicants from less traditional backgrounds, we would also like to encourage applicants with unusual qualifications to submit supplementary materials (e.g., non academic recommendations, summary of work experience) which they feel will more truly demonstrate their competence.

In general, we are looking for students whose capabilities and motivation will allow them to contribute significantly to the advancement of psychological science. These capabilities include the obvious intellectual strengths, the ability to reason clearly and insightfully, creative imagination, the ability to articulate one's ideas, and mathematical and computational skills. It also includes diversity of perspectives, and the strength of motivation to pursue difficult problems.

We will post brief updates periodically on our Apply page to let applicants know about where we are in the admissions process. We do not provide updates specific to an individual applicant. Please check the Apply page instead of contacting our office because we will direct you to the Apply page. Even if the date may be old; it is the where we are in admissions. Thank you.

Each area within the Psychology Department has a different timetable for reviewing applications. Most areas begin to make selections in January and will contact applicants by phone or e-mail for interviews beginning in February, although some could happen in March or even early April. We encourage applicants to visit if they have been invited to do so, and can sometimes, but not always, assist in at least partial funding of travel expenses. For applicants who are unable to visit (due to cost or time, etc), interviews by phone or skype can be arranged. The Graduate Program Office does not know who will receive invites until after the applicants have been contacted by faculty or research staff directly. We also will not know if an area is done extending invitations. You could try contacting an area faculty directly (via our directory) to ask, but whether you receive a reply is up to the individual. Please respect their time during admissions. Please resist contacting the Graduate Program Office to ask these questions because we do not know (sorry!).

Adult Clinical interviews are on an individual basis. Child Clinical usually selects one of the 'middle' weekends during the month of February. The non-clinical areas have organized weekend visits that also occur around mid-February as well. The Graduate Program Office will not know if more interviews will be held after the first ones have been completed.

Since each area within the Psychology Department has a different timetable for reviewing applications and whether they will have a waitlist, we will notify applicants of decisions as soon as they are confirmed by the area. This does not usually begin until sometime in February or March. Offers are not made without some kind of extended contact with the applicant (via email correspondence, telephone, or in-person meeting). Denials are sent via email. The Graduate Progarm Office does not have any information on waitlists. Please make sure you have a current email address for any correspondence.

The last day for making offers or accepting students to our graduate program is April 15. This is also the last day for applicants to notify us whether they intend to accept our offer.

We do not make offers to U.S. or International applicants unless we can fund them with either a Teaching or a Research Assistantship for half time (expected workload of 20 hrs/wk). Occasionally, we will have access to fellowships which we can nominate incoming students for. Your application to our program makes you eligible for this support. There is no additional application to apply for departmental funding, your consideration is automatic.

Financial support package information can be found in our Admissions Newsletter, bottom of the second page.

The funding package is usually enough to cover the needs of most students including international students. Some students may require additional funding for books, childcare, etc. If so, you may consider applying for financial aid through the UW's Office of Student Financial Aid or various other outside funding agencies. These sources are not generally available to international students.

International applicants: In order to qualify for TA funding, a speaking language exam must be taken (either TOEFLiBT speaking portion, or the UW offers the VERSANT test). More information can be found on "conditions of appointments for TAs who are not U.S. citizens." Please also view the Section entitled "Graduate Application Questions" Answer #41 below for additional information on testing. If you receive an offer from the Department of Psychology, please return to the Application Checklist and complete item #3.

Due to the highly competitive nature of our program, we do not allow enrollment deferments—new students must enter in the following September.

The earliest you can apply would be September before the December 1 deadline. Any earlier, you would fall into the previous year's admission profile, miss valuable revisions to the application process, and would need to complete another online UW Graduate School application and payment for your intended year of enrollment. Please contact us if you are unsure if it is too soon to apply.

Our application and its procedures are only available online on our "Apply" page. We no longer mail paper materials to save time and resources.

The Department of Psychology hosts invitation only interview weekends for prospective graduate students. Applicants who have been selected for interview will be notified personally, so please be sure to get your application completed on time and have current contact information.

Applicants who wish to visit at other times should contact faculty with whom they are interested in doing research before they arrive in Seattle to schedule individual meetings. Meetings with faculty or current students (Faculty might refer you to one of their students) are most beneficial for visitors who are deciding if the UW Psychology Graduate Program is right for you. You will be able to speak about research currently being done here and also possibly tour a lab or attend a journal club meeting.

Applicants may also contact the Graduate Program Advisor by email to schedule a meeting to discuss general admissions questions only, such as the information covered in our Application Newsletter, Admissions statistics (both can be found on our "Apply" page) and FAQ. Drop-in appointments are generally not preferred due to the varied schedule and workload of the office. We will not review transcripts, critique writing statements, discuss other graduate programs/departments, or provide career guidance. More in-depth questions about the various labs and research being conducted is better answered by faculty or their graduate students. Please note that appointments are very unlikely during the peak times. Email is the preferred method of communication. We can respond by giving you specific links or FAQ items to read. We appreciate your consideration!

Graduate Application Questions

Regarding Online Graduate School Application

Please remember to return to our application page and download the current application materials for applying to our department. Thank you!

U.S. citizens, permanent residents (green card holders), immigrants, and citizens of U.S. protectorates (American Samoa, Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, Marshall Islands, Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, Puerto Rico, and U.S. Virgin Islands) will likely use the U.S. application. Please confirm with the UW Graduate School. All other countries/statuses, please use the International application.

Application information/processes are updated by September each year. If you started your application before the Graduate Program Office had completed updating the materials and process for the current year, then you will have to redo your whole application. This means that anything that you have uploaded and any recommendations received online will need to be done again. We cannot retrieve materials from an unsubmitted application from the wrong year to transfer them to a new application for the right year. If you have any doubt that you might be starting your application early, please email us

Be sure to use the "Click here to print this application" link on the screen and not any keyboard shortcuts otherwise the system will not recognize you as having completed this step.

There are a few application fee waivers available for U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents. International applicants are ineligible to request an application fee waiver. If you are in need to be considered for an application fee waiver, please know that you must complete/submit your waiver request and application ONE WEEK PRIOR to our application deadline. This means, if you need an application fee waiver, you must submit your entire application with waiver request no later than November 24, otherwise your application will automatically be rejected and no waiver given (you would then need to pay the application fee). If you receive a waiver, you will need to log back into your online application to apply it and then submit your application to completion. The Graduate School/Department of Psychology does not submit your application for you because you requested a fee waiver. More information on requesting one is available on the payment step of the online application. You will be emailed by the Graduate School whether you receive a waiver or not, to the email listed on your application profile. If you are waiting to hear back from your fee waiver request, please let the Graduate Program Office know.

We cannot accept any revisions to your application once it has been submitted. However, we will contact you if a file cannot be read/opened and ask that you email us the requested file quickly.

If you need to update your email or mailing address, you can do that if you log back into your application.

If you would like your application materials returned after admissions, please write us as soon as the admissions season completes. You are eligible to receive all parts of your application except for the recommendation letters.

Regarding Exams: GRE, TOEFL, etc.

ETS will send your scores electronically to the UW Graduate School as long as you use the UW's institution code, 4854. A department code is not necessary. You can send your scores early; before you even start an application with us. We can look them up once you have submitted your application to the Graduate School, provided that you use the institution code as shown above. If you are applying to another UW department at the same time, there is no need to request two scores, both departments can have shared access to your scores.

In the event that you reapply to us the following year (or later), please check with us because we may still have your scores so you don't need to re-send them.

No, we do not. Only the general test—verbal and quantitative—is required. We do not keep statistics on whether successful applicants have taken the psychology subject test. It is up to you if you wish to still send us the subject exam scores.

It is recommended that you take the GRE no later than the October exam, possibly even early November. Scores will be sent to the Graduate School two to three weeks after you take the exam but there may be delays due to the increased enrollment for graduate admissions across the country. You may self-report scores to us within your online UW Graduate School Application. If you cannot take your exam by our December 1 deadline, then we recommend you apply next year, because your materials will be marked late and incomplete.

You can check out admissions statistics to see what successful applicants achieved by percentile by visiting our Apply page and downloading item #4. If you find your percentiles do not fall in those listed or among our suggested combined verbal/quantitative of 1200 (old scoring) or ~160 for each verbal and quant (Revised test as of August 2011), it's up to you if you'd like to retest. If you know you aren't the best test-taker, then perhaps you should concentrate on the other parts of your application that you can improve, such as a stellar "statement of purpose," a consistent and strong GPA, amazing/demonstrated research experience, and very nice letters of recommendation from people who know you and believe that you would be a great graduate student! If you do retest, then the retest must happen before our application deadline of December 1 to be considered.

Unfortunately there is no substitution for the GRE in our admissions review process. For the TOEFL, there are some options. Please see the next question for all the foreign language exams and their minimum scores which may be accepted by the Graduate School.

International applicants are required to take either TOEFL (minimum score 580), TOEFLC (minimum score 237), TOEFLiBT (minimum score 92 includes all 4 sections), MLT (minimum score 90), or IELTS (minimum score 7.0).

As the TSE has been discontinued, it has been determined that a score of 26 or higher on the speaking portion of the TOEFLiBT is equivalent to a 55 on the TSE, which will allow international and permanent resident graduate students to assume teaching duties required of a teaching assistantship. The UW also provides the VERSANT test for a fee which is can be used for this requirement (it is only accepted at UW though).

The language requirement is waived for individuals with a bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or from an institution in Australia, the Bahamas, Canada, Ireland, Jamaica, New Zealand, Singapore, Trinidad and Tobago, or the United Kingdom. In addition, graduate students who are not native speakers of English must meet the spoken English proficiency requirement before being assigned teaching duties, such as the TSE or iBT speaking score or VERSANT (UW's own speaking test) and participate in the Center for Instructional Development and Research, International Teaching Assistant Program.

More details can be found on the Graduate School website, Memoranda no.8 and no.15.

We accept GRE scores that are within 5yrs of the test date. ETS may not keep scores as long though (their retention calendar is from June 30-July 1), so you should contact them immediately if you have taken the GRE close to 5yrs ago. If you have taken it multiple times, we look at the single highest exam sitting. We will accept old (within 5yrs) plus the revised GRE scores for admissions consideration. ETS has provided a score conversion table so that Departments can understand the difference between old and revised GRE scores.

International applicants: Language exams are accepted within 2yrs of the test date and the most RECENT exam is used for admission.

Contact Educational Testing Service (ETS) for questions about your exam.

We look at the single best exam if you have taken the GRE more than once. This means that we won't pick the higher Verbal score in test 1 and the higher Quant score in test 2. We will pick between test 1 and test 2 as a whole. If the scores are tied, then we refer to the percentiles to decide which exam will be used in making decisions. Beyond this, we will go with the more recent exam.

International applicants: Regarding the language exams, we will only review the most recent scores. Only tests taken within the past 2yrs are valid.

For US/International applicants: The GRE is only waived if you have earned a doctorate-level degree from an accredited institution in the United States previously.

For International applicants: The TOEFL/lanugage exam is waived for non-U.S. applicants who have earned a degree (Bachelor's or higher) in the United States, Australia, the Bahamas, Canada, Ireland, Jamaica, New Zealand, Singapore, Trinidad and Tobago, or the United Kingdom. In some cases, a speaking score is required to qualify for Teaching Assistantships if your citizenship is not of the countries listed. The speaking score can either be the TSE, TOEFLiBT speaking section, or the UW offers the VERSANT exam. The speaking score is not required to qualify for a Research Assistantship, however all our students will teach at some point so it is best to meet this requirement as soon as possible. More details can be found on the Graduate School website, Memoranda no. 8 and no. 15.

Regarding Writing Samples

We consider the required Statement of Purpose a writing sample. You may mention your other written accomplishments in your statement or CV, but a complete copy is not necessary or desirable, unless requested by a reviewer. It is not necessary to mail (or email) us your writing sample. Please do not upload a writing sample in your online application under another item's heading. It will be removed.

Statement of Purpose (required): Typically, the statement of purpose describes what motivates you to pursue a career in psychology. What theoretical issues, research problems, clinical problems, or application areas are your central interests? Why are these issues especially interesting and important? Include in your statement the following: description of research experience, reason for applying to our graduate program, and the name(s) of faculty members who are pursuing similar research in our department with whom you may wish to work.

Statement of Purpose are on average 2-4 pages, double spaced (or equivalent formatting)

Personal Statement (optional): You may also include a brief section on any of the following topics that may apply to your situation: first generation to attend graduate school, low-income background, overcoming adversity in your educational or other development. This information is voluntary and will be used only to identify students who may qualify for diversity funding.

You may combine the two statements into one document as long as you stay within the page limit and upload it as a "Statement of Purpose."

Regarding Letters of Recommendation

No, we do not require or provide forms for the online letters of recommendation. We only accept letters online through the UW Graduate Application. The letters should address your academic and research abilities as much as possible.

We require three online letters of recommendation. If you have a couple extra that would be acceptable, but excessive numbers of letters (more than 5) are not helpful. The application system will allow you to designate one or two recommenders beyond the required three. It is not necessary to ask permission to submit extra recommendation letters.

We do not require a certain number of letters from academic, professional, or personal. However, letters from faculty members are most desired. The letters of recommendation should discuss the your research interests, academic ability, written communication skills, professional identification, emotional stability, and interpersonal skills. All of these factors go into predicting overall success in a graduate program.

Letters of recommendation will ONLY be accepted online, as part of the online UW Graduate School application. We are no longer accepting paper letters. While completing your UW Graduate School online application, you will be given the opportunity to designate (or list) who your recommenders will be. Select "System should send email" and not the postal mail option for an online request to be sent. Your recommenders will be notified via email that they have agreed to submit a letter for you. It is your responsibility to ensure the email addresses are correct. Please contact us if you have any difficulty with this step.

The email request may have been identified as spam or bulk mail. Have your recommender add our email address to their addressbook and then re-send the request. You may log into your online UW Graduate School application profile and select the option to re-send any requests. We are also happy to assist you with re-sending the email request. We have, on occasion, accepted an emailed recommendation from the writer directly to our psygrad email account. Due to the volumes of E-mails we receive during admissions this is not recommended as your second chance, instead, only go this route if you have truly exhausted your other options.

Note: Our office has been quite good at notifying applicants that we received a bounced email from a recommender.

The email request is sent immediately, once you enter the information in "Recommendation Detail" and then click "Save and Continue." You do not have to wait until you finish and pay for your application for the recommendation request to be sent nor do you have to wait for all letters to be received before you pay and submit the application.

You do not have to wait until you are done (have submitted your application) to do this step. Please designate your recommenders early, check in with them, and take your time with the rest of your application (while submitting everything by the deadline). You do not have to wait for all letters to be received in order to pay and submit the application either. Recommendations can still be received after our deadline, but could get missed being reviewed along with your other materials. It is your responsibility to ensure that your letters are submitted in a timely manner.

If you have your letters of recommendation stored with a letter service, then the Department of Psychology can accept those via mail or email to psygrad. You are still required to designate the letters in the packet in your online application, just mark the "postal mail" option instead. Once we receive the letter packet, it will be scanned and uploaded to each placeholder you created by designating. Due to the volume of mail we receive, it may not happen very fast. Keep logging into your application to see whether the letters have been uploaded by our office.

If your recommender prefers not to submit an online recommendation, then the letter can be mailed to the Department of Psychology. Please still designate this person as a recommender in the online system and check the "postal mail" option. Once we receive the paper letter and you've submitted your application, it will be scanned and uploaded to the placeholder you created by designating. Due to the volume of mail we receive, it may not happen very fast. Keep logging into your application to see whether the letters have been uploaded by our office.

Recommenders should write your letter of recommendation using word processing software and save it to his/her computer. Upon receiving the email request for the recommendation, s/he is lead to a webpage with 3 brief questions before being able to copy/paste a previously written letter or upload a previously written letter. It is not recommended to type the letter directly into the text box as the individual can 'time out' and lose any information entered, especially if the letter is an original version. Once the recommendation is uploaded, s/he will not be able to review what was submitted, this is why it's very important to inform your writers to save the letter to a computer before uploading.

If your recommender is experiencing difficulty uploading the letter, sometimes switching browsers will help. Otherwise we will be happy to receive an emailed letter to psygrad direct from the writer. We will upload it when we get a chance.

Only those who have retained the right to view the letters AND accepted an admissions offer here are eligible to see letters of recommendation received on their behalf. View full rules in the "Designate Recommendations" step of your online application for more details.

Regarding Transcripts & GPA

U.S. Applicants: No paper transcripts are being accepted during review stage of admissions. One set of unofficial online transcripts from all collegiate institutions from which you earned a Bachelor's degree or higher to the Department of Psychology is required to be uploaded within the online application. This means we do not need transcripts from community colleges or your previous institution if you transferred in. These credits will be reflected on your degree-earning transcript under "transfer" or "outside." If you studied abroad, we do not need that transcript, either. If you have taken additional, relevant coursework since earning your degree, we would like to see that transcript (helpful for those who did not have psychology undergraduate degrees or for those who have been out of school for a few years), but it isn't required.

If you receive an interview invitation, we will ask for an official paper transcript to be mailed or brought along on your visit.

International Applicants: No paper transcripts are being accepted. Please upload a complete set of unofficial online transcripts from all colleges and universities attended to the Department of Psychology. If you receive an offer from the Department of Psychology, you will need to mail transcripts then to Psychology and the UW Graduate School. More information on the materials required of the UW Graduate School will be revealed upon offer notification.

WHEN REQUESTED: Transcripts must arrive SEALED in your institution's envelope. Transcripts that arrive in a personal envelope will not be marked as received because we cannot account for their authenticity. Offers are contingent on receipt of official, sealed transcripts that match the previously-received, unofficial transcripts.

Enter your undergraduate institution twice, one for each degree you earned and its corresponding major GPA.

Under Prior School Detail, #3 School Name, please select "Other U.S. Schools" and then in the next section #4 you can type in your school name.

At this time, most schools do not have official online transcripts, this is not required. However if you are referring to unofficial online transcripts, you can always order a paper copy and scan it yourself. Please know that the application system does not accept image files of your transcripts. It accepts .doc, .pdf or .rtf. The file size limit for uploads is 1 megabyte. You can insert the transcript image into a Word document, but please make sure it can be read. If we cannot read your unofficial online transcript, then we cannot review your application and it will be marked incomplete.

You will still need to upload a transcript, please. If you receive an interview invitation, we will require a paper transcript. If you are admitted to our program, the UW Graduate School will request an official, final transcript showing that you have earned your degree before you join us in the fall.

Yes. You still need to upload an unofficial online transcript even if you are/were a UW student, thanks!

We no longer require paper transcripts during the review stage of admissions. If you receive an interview invitation/offer, we will ask for the paper transcript to be sent to the Department of Psychology. In which case, your institution can mail transcripts directly to us, or you can mail them to us. If you mail us the transcript yourself, it must be sealed in your institution's envelope. You are required to upload an unofficial transcript as part of the online Graduate Application. Unofficial transcripts are typically available in the student portal of your University's website, you can copy and paste the entire page into a Word document, then save the file. Or you can scan a paper transcript and upload the file. Please make sure that your unofficial electronic transcript, if scanned, can actually be read. If we cannot read it, then we cannot use it to evaluate your application.

The UW Graduate School requires a minimum GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) for at the last two years OR last 90 quarter credits OR last 60 semester credits of study where you earned your degree (Bachelor's or higher). Exceptionally strong applicants with a GPA below 3.0 may still be considered. If you have taken classes after graduating but did not earn a degree at this second institution, please do not factor the grades you earned at this second institution. Only use the GPA from the program where you earned your degree (Bachelor's or higher). Later in our application, you will be asked for a major only GPA (optional). If your institution grades by letter, you can estimate your grades by using the scale located here. If you cannot figure out your GPA or your school does not provide grades (letters or numbers), you may skip this step (Mark "I do not have a GPA") because we will just look at your transcript anyway!

The UW Graduate School has provided some guidelines for converting grades which can be found here and here.

Colleges and universities that operate on a semester system award semester credit. The UW awards quarter credit. To convert semester to quarter credits, multiply by 1.5. For example, a student who earns 30 credits in an institution on a semester calendar would have earned 45 quarter credits at the UW.

Note: This is not required of our application process, but we have been asked this a few times. :)

Regarding Reapplication Procedures

We keep application materials for one year. If you are reapplying to our program, please check in with us in the fall when the admissions cycle begins again. We will be able to properly advise you on a reapplication.

Be prepared to know what materials you intend on keeping or replacing for your application. You will have to complete another online UW Graduate School application and submit the application fee. Application materials older than one year are destroyed/purged in the summer (e.g., Materials for entry in 2009-2010, which were received in 2008, were destroyed in August 2010).

Please do not retrieve your application from the previous year and overwrite it with your new materials. You can keep your same login and profile, but then click to "create a new application" from the beginning in order to see the updated materials. We have put dates on the application components so you'll know if you're looking at the current version.

Regarding other Questions or Concerns

We understand that not all materials are easily obtained electronically. Unofficial transcripts can usually be found on the student portal site of your university's website. Copy and paste the entire page into a Word document and save it. Otherwise, you can use a document scanner and scan a paper transcript so that you can upload it into the application.

Exam scores are sent to the University of Washington electronically upon your request to ETS, but a self-reported score entered in your online application will assist us as we begin our reviews.

Although the process of submitting online recommendations may sound complicated, it is no more complicated than having to write a letter in the first place. Receiving materials online is immediate, which benefits everyone by allowing us to make decisions that much sooner. We appreciate your cooperation.

The Psychology Graduate Program Office can offer assistance with online documents. Due to the increased workload during admissions, any documents mailed to us (official paper transcripts or paper recommendation letters from the writers/letter service) or emailed to us will eventually be scanned and uploaded for you. We will attempt to get to these requests as soon as possible, but only after we process those applicants who completed their applications in full. Thanks for your understanding.

It is the applicant's responsibility that letters of recommendation and GRE/TOEFL score reports are sent on-time (or close). Late items will be processed after items received on-time. While we will make every effort to see that the late materials catch-up with their respective applications, applicants will run the risk of missing important selections committee review meetings.

Without knowing what you have tried to do to resolve the issue, here are a few suggestions:

1) If the file is smaller than 1mb, try using a different web browser,

2) Scan each document as a separate file,

3) If you are using a scanner, adjust the settings:

a. scan pages as documents and not images
b. scan pages in black and white
c. save directly as a PDF

Best practices for reducing filesize for transcripts (pdfs specifically):

1) Make your scan in black and white instead of color.

2) Make a paper copy of your original paper transcript, then scan the paper copy to pdf.

3) If the paper copy is dark (from the watermark), lighten resolution before copying to paper. Then scan the lightened paper copy to pdf.

4) With the pdf open 'Save as' a jpg, insert the jpg into a word document, save the document, and upload.

5) If the word document with the jpg is too large, convert the word document to pdf.

If you accidentally uploaded a document/file in one of the optional application fields (most commonly, this happens when the required statement of purpose is uploaded in the optional personal statement field), the only way to 'remove' the document is by placing a period (".") in the textbox provided. Doing so will remove the initial upload. Unfortunately it won't remove the checkmark next to it saying you've completed it, but at least the file has been removed.

You may contact us via email. This is the best (and for you the least expensive) method of communication. As a last resort, you may call the Graduate Program Office at 206-543-8687, and, while we will do our best to be available, we cannot guarantee that your call will be answered. We also cannot return any long distance calls.

During the admissions months of November-January, it is unlikely that we will be able to answer ANY calls, email is recommended at this time. We usually reply within 2 business days.

You may visit PDF Online and use their free and easy PDF converter for your Word Documents and other file types as well.