Clinical Mental Health Program: Application

Application Process

Our application deadline is February 1st. (We are no longer accepting applications for Fall 2024.) Applicants are required to submit ALL materials (see required application materials below) to the Graduate School. The Graduate School will determine which applicants are eligible for admission and forward the applicant files to the Psychology Department. An admissions committee within the Department will then conduct an initial review of the applications and select individuals to invite for personal interviews. Interviews take place in early to mid-March, and final admission decisions are usually made by the end of the month. We typically recommend six students for admission to the program each year.

Prerequisites: Prior to applying to the program, applicants must have successfully completed a course on research methods in psychology. We also strongly recommend applicants complete the following psychology courses: abnormal or personality; developmental or social; and cognition or neuroscience.

Evaluation: Applicants are evaluated based on GPA, psychology background, letters of recommendation, personal preparation, experience, and motivation. For further information contact the Psychology Graduate program coordinator at 360-650-3184.

Application information is available on Western's graduate school FAQ page. If you have any questions or difficulties with the application process, please contact the Graduate School at or call them at 360-650-3170.

Application materials

Required application materials (to be submitted directly to the Graduate School; not to the Psychology department):

  • Graduate School application form and application fee
  • 3 letters of reference, no more than 1 year old. Must include at least one from a professor who can comment on academic abilities
  • 1 unofficial transcript from each university/college attended
  • Resume or curriculum vitae, including all work and volunteer experiences relevant to counseling.
  • Statement of Purpose: The WWU Counseling Program faculty and students are guided by a mission statement and program objectives that reflect our values and goals for training counselors. As you begin the application process, please take time to review the WWU mission and objectives and reflect upon your interest in and match with our program. Use this reflection and write an essay of about 1000 words to address the following:
  1. Describe the academic, professional, personal, and volunteer experiences that make you a strong candidate for graduate training in the WWU Counseling Program.
  2. Describe an experience you had working to promote equity, social justice, and/or access in your personal or professional life.
  3. Explain why you have chosen clinical mental health counseling as a professional path.
  • For the 2021-2022 academic year and beyond, the GRE test will NOT be required as part of our School Counseling and Clinical Mental Health Counseling application process. This change was made to address some of the known inequities inherent with using the GRE for graduate admissions.

If you would like to be considered for a Graduate School Assistantship, follow the instructions online at the Graduate School. Currently, teaching assistants in the Department of Psychology are usually assigned to the undergraduate experimental psychology and statistics courses, or occasionally to the introduction to psychology course. Responsibilities include but are not limited to the following: teaching laboratory classes where relevant, helping students understand the conceptual and computational components of statistics, helping students understand research methodology and design, and helping students become more competent scientific writers.