Counseling Psychology – Ph.D. – School of Education & Human Development

Counseling Psychology – Ph.D.

Educational and Psychological Studies

Counseling PsychologyPh.D.

Welcome to our Website!

We are pleased that you are interested in learning more about our doctoral program in Counseling Psychology. On this page you will find general information about our program as well as two important links. These allow you to see data about our admissions and other student outcomes for the past 7 years, and to download our e-packet. The e-packet is a document that provides more detail about the program, such as admissions criteria, required courses, financial aid, and program faculty. I invite you to visit our links, review the e-packet, and contact me for any additional information you may need to make an informed decision about applying to our program.

Lydia P. Buki, Ph.D.
Director of Training

Vision: We are dedicated to excellence in the development of multiculturally competent reflective researchers and practitioners in Counseling Psychology.

Mission: To nurture the development of counseling psychology graduate students and faculty as reflective researchers and scientist-practitioners committed to promoting psychological well-being in a multiculturally complex world.

Program Description

The Counseling Psychology Doctoral Program at the University of Miami has been accredited by The American Psychological Association since 1989 and has a proud tradition of preparing students as scholars and clinicians. Firmly committed to the foundational values of the discipline of counseling psychology, including its emphasis on prevention, optimal human development and the promotion of individual, family and community well-being, our program strives to prepare students who will make a difference in the world through research, scholarship and reflective practice.

The Program advocates the scientist-practitioner model of training in which students receive extensive grounding in the scientific underpinnings of the discipline. In turn, students use this knowledge en route to becoming highly skilled scholars and clinicians. Although a degree from our program prepares students to be licensed as practicing psychologists, it is important to keep in mind that the Ph.D. is a research degree; our priority is to cultivate scholars who are capable of developing original lines of research and of playing leadership roles in both academic and applied settings. Applicants who are exclusively or primarily interested in psychotherapy practice are encouraged to consider more practitioner-oriented training programs like those offering a Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) degree.

Our program values diversity in many senses of the word and we are firmly committed to the development of multicultural competence in each of our students. We adopt the philosophy that cultural competence is not a static achievement, but one of continual striving for excellence in the inclusion and affirmation of diverse populations. The University of Miami prides itself on being a “global university in a global city,” and this context offers students a unique opportunity to explore issues of diversity in all aspects of their lives. In the academic setting, such opportunities include: being involved in clinical training opportunities with diverse underserved populations; participating as research assistants in grant-funded projects addressing the health-related needs of these populations; pursuing original diversity-related dissertation projects; and, for those fluent in Spanish, practicing bilingual counseling skills in supervised practicum experiences. The training we offer on multicultural issues is consistent with the APA Guidelines on Multicultural Education, Training, Research, Practice, and Organizational Change for Psychologists.

Our Program does not adhere to any one theory of human functioning or any one theory of counseling and development. Faculty members work from a variety of theoretical orientations including psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, family systems and humanistic perspectives. We place a high value on students developing a firm grounding in theory and being able to clearly integrate theory in all of their research and clinical work. Diversity is also reflected in the areas of expertise of our faculty. Content areas of expertise include multicultural training, health psychology, social justice, systems and community intervention, and theoretical psychology. Please consult our faculty listings within the e-packet for a more thorough overview of faculty research interests.

The Counseling Doctoral Program is the current “home” for The Counseling Psychologist, one of the top professional journals in the field, and the official journal of the Society of Counseling Psychology, which is edited by Dr. Lydia P. Buki.

For the most up-to-date information about our program, we recommend that prospective students use our most recent web materials as a guide. Information about our program published by others on the web can be inaccurate and misleading.

Requirements For Admission

The Counseling Psychology Program typically receives over 100 applications each year and usually admits a class of five doctoral students. We employ a number of criteria to select students for admission including:

  • the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Verbal, Quantitative, and Writing scores
  • official transcripts showing undergraduate and graduate grade point averages
  • the relevance of the applicant’s academic background
  • previous experience in research
  • previous experience in counseling
  • a personal statement, and
  • three letters of recommendation.

In recent years, successful applicants have had an average combined (Verbal + Quantitative) GRE score of approximately 310. Their average undergraduate GPA was 3.55. In addition to students from the majority cultural group, we actively seek to admit students from a variety of racial, ethnic, and lifestyle groups. Forty-eight percent of the current doctoral student body is composed of members of nonmajority groups. The present student body has more women (74%) than men, with a wide range of ages, and represent a diversity of sexual orientation identities and religious preferences.

The deadline for receiving completed applications is December 1st for the following Fall semester. Students are admitted only for the Fall semester. International applicants are strongly recommended to submit application materials no later than October 15, to allow sufficient time for document evaluation prior to the Program’s December 1st deadline.

Required Coursework

EPS 667 Professional, Legal and Ethical Issues in Counseling
EPS 675 Therapeutic Group Procedures
EPS 676 Counseling Process and Practice
EPS 679 Lifespan Human Development
EPS 683 Practicum Laboratory I
EPS 700 Quantitative Methods I
EPS 705 Measurement and Psychometric Theory

Students entering with a master’s degree in the mental health field are expected to have taken the equivalent of the graduate level courses listed above as a part of their master’s degree, or they will be required to complete these courses during the doctoral program. Students entering without a master’s degree will be required to complete these courses as a part of the doctoral program.

EPS 767 Counseling Psychology: Theory, Research and Practice I
EPS 768 Counseling Psychology: Theory, Research and Practice II
EPS 770 Psychological Appraisal I
EPS 771 Psychological Appraisal II
EPS 775 Doctoral Practicum I
EPS 776 Doctoral Practicum II
EPS 779 Vocational Psychology and Career Development
EPS 780 Cultural Diversity and Mental Health
EPS 782 Supervision in Counseling Psychology
EPS 785 Preparing Future Faculty Seminar
EPS 803 Internship in Counseling Psychology
PSY 604 Cognition and Emotion
PSY 605 Cognitive Neuroscience
PSY 640 Adult Psychopathology
EPS 781 The Social Bases Of Human Activity And Flourishing
EPS 701 Introduction to Research Methods
EPS 702 Quantitative Methods II
EPS 703 Applied Multivariate Statistics
EPS XXX Elective
EPS XXX Elective
EPS 830 Pre-Candidacy Dissertation Research
EPS 840 Post-Candidacy Dissertation Research


Lydia P. Buki

Associate Professor & Program Director

305 284 2230

Office: Merrick Building 312-E

Blaine Fowers


305 284 5261

Office: Merrick Building 319 D

Debbiesiu Lee

Associate Professor

305 284 6160

Office: Merrick Building 310 C

Robert McMahon


305 284 5064

Office: Merrick Building 311 F

Guerda Nicolas


305 284 9124

Office: Merrick Building 308 B

Lissette M. Perez-Lima

Clinical Assistant Professor

305 284 6949

Office: Max Orovitz Building Suite 201

Accreditation Information

The Counseling Psychology Program was first accredited by the American Psychological Association in 1989 and has been continuously accredited since then.

Questions related to the program's accreditation status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation:

Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation
American Psychological Association
750 1st Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002
Phone: (202) 336-5979 / E-mail:


What is the scientist-practitioner model?
The scientist-practitioner model is based upon the concept that psychologists should be well versed both in research and clinical practice. If a psychologist is not conducting research but practicing in the field, it remains important to be able to critically evaluate published literature in order to continue to provide empirically supported services. Similarly, researchers function best when they are aware of the clinical utility of the research they conduct so that it may be reasonably applied in the field. Thus, an integration of the understanding of both research and clinical practice is vital to the advancement of the field of psychology.
How much emphasis is placed on research versus clinical training?
The Counseling Psychology Program adheres to the scientist-practitioner model. The Program aims to devote approximately equal effort to research and clinical training, and to integrating the two pursuits.
Is financial aid available/How do I finance my continued education?
Doctoral students typically obtain a graduate assistantship. The assistantship requires approximately 20 hours of work per week. It carries both a stipend and a tuition remission benefit. The monthly stipend for this varies, but the current stipend for a graduate assistant in the School of Education who works 20 hs./week for 9 months is $20,250. This funding includes a full tuition waiver for required courses. Additional funding in smaller amounts is also available through scholarships, the Graduate Student Association, and a variety of other funding sources. Students can also apply for loans through the Office of Financial Aid.
What is the application deadline?
December 1st of the year prior to entrance; however, it is recommended that materials are submitted as soon as possible to ensure the file is complete in advance of review. Applications are only considered once a year for the program beginning in the Fall semester. International applicants should send their completed application to the EPS Graduate Admissions office by October 15 of the year prior to entrance.
Is there a minimum GPA or GRE score to be considered for the program?
There are no absolute minimum scores required for admission. There are seven admissions criteria including: (a) the Graduate Record Examination Verbal and Quantitative scores, (b) undergraduate and graduate grade point averages, (c) the relevance of the applicant’s academic background, (d) previous experience in counseling, (e) previous experience in research, (f) a personal statement, and (g) three letters of recommendation. Individual applications are considered as a whole and applicants may be able to compensate for relative weakness in one area with strengths in other areas. The more strengths the applicant has, the better are the chances for acceptance.
Must I have a Master’s degree in counseling or a related field to be admitted?
A master’s degree is not required for admission. Keep in mind, however, that a master’s degree in counseling or a closely related field is a valuable asset for admission. Applicants who do not have such a degree will need to have other strengths to compensate for the absence of training in counseling. We frequently accept students without a master’s in counseling degree who are otherwise highly qualified.
Can I enroll in the program part time?
No. This program is quite demanding and thus part-time enrollment is not possible. Our philosophy is that training in a professional discipline involves a significant degree of socialization into the profession. In other words, students learn a great deal from spending significant amounts of time with faculty and with other psychologists on campus in classes, research settings, and practicum. This can only be accomplished in a full-time program.
Will I have the opportunity to co-author professional presentations and papers?
Yes! The Program strongly encourages students’ participation in presentations and publications. Many students present papers with the faculty leader of their research group. Most students have already co-authored publications by the time they graduate from our Program.
How many years does it take to complete the program?
As our program is individualized for each student, this will vary. However, if you enter the program with all the prerequisites and work at the typical pace, you will complete the coursework in 4 years followed by a 1 year internship. Students complete their dissertations on varying schedules depending on the topic, their ability to focus their efforts, their motivation, and other contingencies. It is not unusual for students to complete their dissertations before they complete their internships, which results in completing the degree in 5 years. The average length of time for obtaining the degree is 6 years.
What kinds of jobs do people who graduate from the program get?
Graduates from the Program work in a variety of settings. These settings include academic positions, clinical research positions, private practice, Veteran’s Affairs Medical Centers, hospitals, college counseling centers, business positions, and others.
What kind of license does the Program prepare me for?
The program prepares you to obtain licensure as a doctoral-level Psychologist. However, every state has different requirements in terms of exams and years of postdoctoral experience required for licensure. Postdoctoral experience required is usually 1 -2 years. All states require that applicants take a national licensing exam, and most require a state exam as well.

Let's Get Started With Your Application

Start the application process by clicking on the icon on the left.

Program Contact

Blaine Fowers

Professor, Department of Educational and Psychological Studies


MB 319 D