Doctoral Program

Why study Counseling Psychology at TWU?

Two students studying in the TWU library

TWU's counseling psychology doctoral program is the only program with an explicitly feminist orientation in the nation. Our dedicated faculty are committed to developing practitioners with a strong understanding of individuals within their gendered and sociocultural contexts. Social justice and advocacy are highly valued and practiced.

After graduation, our program alumni have advanced into careers as mental health practitioners, social justice advocates, professional leaders and researchers. They also have been consistently recognized for excellence in the local, regional, national and international communities they serve.

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Admission to the PhD in Counseling Psychology

Program Contact

Debra Mollen, PhD
Program director

Application Deadline

November 30 - Students admitted start at the beginning of the following Fall semester.

Admission Requirements

  • A bachelor's degree.
  • At least 18 semester hours in psychology, including:
    • Introduction to Psychology/General Psychology
    • Developmental Psychology (Life Span)
    • Statistics
    • Experimental Psychology/Research Design/Research Methods
    • Cognitive Psychology/Psychology of Learning
    • Psychology Elective
  • A minimum GPA of 3.5 on all courses in psychology and a 3.0 overall average for the last 60 semester credit hours of undergraduate work. If graduate master’s work has been completed, a 3.5 is desirable.
  • Applying for Fall of 2024 submit documents through the application process  Online Graduate Application Portal:
    • Counseling Psychology Program Application: Complete, and submit into the application under "Other." Counseling Psychology Doctoral Program application form.
    • Counseling Psychology Curriculum Vitae (CV): Use the Curriculum Vitae Template to organize your academic, professional, scholarship, and service experiences. Print and submit a PDF of your CV.  Sample Vita for reference.
    • Essays: Respond to the following five questions and upload into the Application under Writing/Video. Each response should NOT exceed 250 words in length.
      • What incident or major life event most influenced your desire to pursue an advanced degree in counseling psychology?
      • Describe an event in your life marked by growth in your understanding of people or cultures different from your own. What were the outcomes of this shift in understanding that stay with you today?
      • Please review our program’s Mission, Philosophy, and Aims Statement ( Based on your understanding of our program’s training model, mission, philosophy and aims, please describe how our training model would align with your career goals and how you might contribute to our program’s mission and goals. Please note that our program trains students to work primarily with adults.
      • What are your future career goals? How do you anticipate your experience in the Counseling Psychology program at TWU would help you prepare for your future career goals?
      • What are your major research interests?
  • Letters of recommendation for three individuals familiar with your academic capabilities.
  • A virtual interview is required. The admissions coordinator will contact those applicants the program invites to interview. The date for the doctoral interviews for 2024 is Jan. 26.
  • Should an acceptance offer be extended, the applicant must reply by emailing, on or before April 15, pursuant with the policy of the American Psychological Association.

Visit the Frequently Asked Questions page for more information about the graduate counseling psychology admissions criteria and application process.

Graduate Admission

Begin by reviewing your program's website to see if there are additional admission requirements and application deadlines prior to applying.  

  1. Apply online.
    Apply to Graduate Programs  via the TWU Online Graduate Application Portal following instructions below.  
  2. Submit transcripts to TWU.
    • Domestic Applicants must submit official transcripts for each college or university attended, both undergraduate and graduate. See the Information on Transcripts website for more details.
    • International Applicants are now required to provide an evaluation prepared by a NACES or AICE member evaluation service. International transcripts should not be sent directly to TWU. See the International Admissions website for more details.
  3. Submit Recommendation Requests
    If your program requires you to submit names for recommendations you will need to do it in the application.
  4. Pay the application fee.
    The $50 fee ($75 fee for International applicants), which applies to all new and returning applicants, can be paid by:
    1. Credit card - Pay Online through the application as the last step before submitting the application. The second portion of the application will not be available until the application fee has been received.
    2. Certified check or money order by mail or electronically - Payable to TWU, sent by mail to:
      TWU Admissions Processing, 304 Administration Drive, Suite 102, Denton, Texas 76204
      (include your full name and ID number).
    3. Cash (no personal checks) - Pay at the Bursar's Office. After paying, bring the receipt to Admissions Processing (down the hall in ACT).
    4. Fee Waivers - Graduate applicants who are certified McNair Scholars are eligible for a McNair Scholar Application Fee Waiver. TWU Alumni may be eligible for the Alumni Advantage Fee Waiver. Check your eligibility here: If eligible submit the request using the Application Fee Waiver Submission
    5. Following fee payment return to the application dashboard where supplemental application documents can be uploaded. The online application will list which documents are needed to fulfill the program admission requirements. You can also check the program's website.

For more information or assistance with the application or graduate admissions, visit the Graduate Admissions website.

Students who wish to apply for a Graduate Assistantship must meet the General Criteria for Appointment of Graduate Assistants

Alumni spotlight: Megha Pulianda, PhD

Megha Pulianda

“My career path presents me with new challenges, yet I feel both prepared and excited for my future thanks to the knowledge I gained at TWU. The doctoral program’s feminist-multicultural values positively impacted me personally and professionally, enriching my skills in meaningful ways. From teaching and research opportunities to unique clinical experiences, TWU s a fantastic place to grow."

Megha Pulianda, PhD, Dr. Pulianda & Associates

Advice to current and future students: "A PhD requires commitment, passion and perseverance, but it was building connections with TWU’s faculty and community which helped me thrive."

About Megha Pulianda

Megha Pulianda, PhD, graduated from the TWU Division of Psychology and Philosophy in 2020 with her degree in counseling psychology. She is a licensed psychologist in Texas and is credentialed with PSYPACT. She is the owner of Dr. Pulianda & Associates, a private practice based in Southlake. Her professional pursuits include psychotherapy, writing and teaching as an adjunct faculty member. Her background is in family of origin trauma, interpersonal violence and crisis intervention. As an Asian American clinician who researched help-seeking behaviors in South Asian communities, she often helps her diverse clients navigate complex multicultural concerns. When she is not deeply immersed in the world of psychology, Pulianda enjoys spending time with her family, cooking new recipes, and watching independent films.


For admissions questions, please contact Sanaa Ali:

For all other program questions, please contact Debra Mollen, PhD, Program Director


APA Accredited: June 1995

For information on accreditation, contact the APA at:

Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation
American Psychological Association
750 First Street, NE
Washington, DC 20002-4242
Phone: (202) 336-5979
Fax: (202) 336-5978

Page last updated 4:52 PM, June 11, 2024