Mission Statement

Consonant with the concept that Clinical Psychology is an integral component of the Health Sciences, the Clinical Psychology Program at Ponce School of Medicine aims to develop a new generation of Professional Psychologists with a strong foundation on the biological bases of behavior, a broad understanding of the psychological processes and of the socio-cultural dimension of normal and abnormal behavior. The students are immersed into a rich scientifically-based curriculum harmonized by a multidisciplinary faculty from the fields of Psychology, Biomedical Sciences, Clinical Medicine, and other disciplines of the health and social sciences, in order to provide a broad understanding of human behavior and to develop clinical skills applicable in multiple socio-cultural contexts.


The PSY.D. in Clinical Psychology Program is fully accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association
The next APA accreditation site visit for the Psy.D. program is scheduled for the Fall of 2020 and will include de San Juan Center.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, 2020 APA site visits were scheduled for 2021. The program is currently awaiting the new site visit date.
Questions related to the program’s accredited 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: apaaccred@apa.org
Web: www.apa.org/ed/accreditation

Program Goals

The goals of the PsyD Program are:

  • Develop in our students an in-depth understanding of the psychological (cognitive, affective and motivational), biological and socio-cultural bases of normal and abnormal behavior that serves as the foundation of clinical practice.
  • To prepare clinical psychologists for the ethical delivery of empirically supported psychotherapeutic interventions, assessment, diagnosis, consultation, education, supervision and management when assuming the contemporary roles of the profession while adopting a life- long commitment to professional growth based upon the evolving scientific knowledge and expanding scope of practice.
Goals & Objectives

Reflective Practice-self-assessment Competencies

Program graduates will conduct themselves professionally within the boundaries of competencies, with a commitment to lifelong learning, engagement in scholarly work, critical thinking, and a commitment to the development of the profession.

Interdisciplinary Competencies

Program graduates will demonstrate ability to recognize and engage in opportunities for effective collaboration with other professionals toward shared goals and actively enhance team interdisciplinary functioning.

Scientific knowledge- methods Competencies

Program graduates will demonstrate scientific mindedness and apply scientific methodology in their professional practice.

Assessment & Testing Competencies

Program graduates will demonstrate understanding and solid command of clinical assessment and use of psychometric and personality tests.

Relationship Competencies

Program graduates will demonstrate ability to form and maintain professional relationships with clients, colleagues, supervisors, faculty, other multidisciplinary healthcare team professionals, and community members in accordance with the ethical standards and values of the profession.

Therapeutic Intervention Competencies

Program graduates will be able to appropriately select and implement psychological interventions and document therapeutic progress accurately.

Ethical Competencies

Program graduates will demonstrate independence and confidence in complex ethical reasoning and decision making in their clinical practice.


Program graduates will effectively articulate, implement, and evaluate consultation services/ interventions, applying a variety of intervention models appropriate for a broad range of settings.

Individual- cultural Diversity Competencies

Program graduates will demonstrate awareness, attitudes of respect, and appropriate responses regarding intersecting and complex dimensions of diversity (e.g. gender, socioeconomic status, affectional orientation, ethnicity, physical and mental capacities, religion, spirituality, and age) in their professional practice

Education and Supervision competencies

Program graduates will utilize appropriate supervisory and teaching strategies/skills in enhancing the professional functioning of the more junior colleagues and monitoring the quality of professional services.

Research Competencies

Program graduates will be able to apply current research to their clinical practice, to exercise command of different methods of scientific inquiry and to develop new knowledge on issues relevant to the understanding of the psychological, neurobiological and psychosocial determinants of human behavior.

Management and Administration Competencies

Program graduates will be able to serve as competent managers and administrators by applying a variety of models appropriate to lead direct delivery of professional services in a broad range of settings..

Young woman visiting her psychologist

Program Description

The doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology (PsyD) has its theoretical foundations in the Biopsychosocial model and aims at preparing Health Services Psychologist.  To reach its goals, the program adscribes to the Practitioner/Scholar model of training in professional psychology. The program’s curriculum is competency-based emphasizing on the development of the clinical competencies used by practicing and academically oriented Clinical Psychologist and these are consonant with APA accreditation standards. The curriculum is implemented in a lock-step manner allowing students to acquire these clinical competencies in a graded and sequential manner.  Therefore, the student progresses from an entry level through an intermediate level up to the advanced level of competencies achieved upon completing the academic program and the one-year full-time clinical internship.

  • Bachelor’s degree (BS/BA)
    Present evidence of the successful completion of a bachelor’s degree from a college level institution accredited by the PR Council of Education or by a US accrediting organization with a minimum of 15 credits in psychology including the following courses:
Course Credits
General Psychology 3
Developmental Psychology 3
Abnormal Psychology (Psychopathology) 3
Experimental Psychology (or Scientific Research) 3
Statistics 3
  • GPA – 3.00 or above (on a four-point scale)
  • GRE minimum score of 279 minimum score of 500, no more than five years old. www.ets.org
  • Submit the following documents:
    • Official transcript from all institutions attended (undergraduate and graduate)
    • Three letters of recommendation written by professors or individuals familiar with the applicant’s professional work and skills using the format provided with the application form.
    • Official scores of GRE  www.ets.org
    • Certificate of No Penal Record (Criminal Background Check)
    • A non-refundable USD $85.00 application fee

Applicants with master’s degrees in Psychology, Psychiatric Nursing, Social Work, Counseling or other mental health related fields, are accepted. The same admission requirements still apply. Up to 24 credits may be transferred from other graduate programs or from a master’s degree. The following requirements will guide (but not restrict) the evaluation process of those courses submitted for approval:

  1. Courses need to be relevant to the field of Clinical Psychology
  2. The student must have approved the course with a minimum of a “B” grade.
  3.  The student must demonstrate in an objective manner, or through formal written and/or oral examination, that he/she has the skills expected of such courses.

It is the student’s responsibility to provide the course description from the official catalog of the institution in which the courses were taken.
PHSU has a number of courses and practicum that are not substituted with courses or practicum transferred from other institutions, unless the student demonstrates specific competencies in such areas. However, many of the elective courses may be waived based upon the number of credits transferred. This will allow students who enter with a Master’s degree to complete the academic portion of the program faster, allowing them more time to work on their Dissertation or Case Study and with the internship requirements.
Upon acceptance, all students are required to submit the following:

  • Written confirmation of acceptance and a non-refundable deposit of USD$100.00 to secure the seat in the entering class.
  • Physical Exam (using a form provided by Admissions Office)
  • Health Certificate from the Department of Health of PR
  • Evidence of up to date immunization record (must include Varicella, Td Adult, MMR and three doses of Hepatitis B).
  • Policy on Technical Standards
  • Other documents will be notified as pertinent.

Residency Requirement
The Clinical Psychology Program requires a minimum of 3 full-time academic years of graduate study plus a 2,000 hours internship, prior to receiving the doctoral degree. At least 2 of the 3 academic training years must be completed in the program.

Click Here to see the curriculum

Course Descriptions

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For more details of PHSU tuition and fees please refer to: Cost of Attendance

Ponce Health Sciences University is pleased that you have selected our institution to continue with your academic and professional goals. The Office of Student Financial provides you with the information and tools to assist you in reaching educational goals. Please take your time to navigate through the various links we have provided and feel free to contact the Financial Aid Office if you need more information: psmfinstu@psm.edu
Financial Aid Application Process Links
Important Links (External):

Important Links for PHSU application forms and manual

PHSU Financial Aid Application – click to download the form
– Request for Aid and Loans
– Student Authorization
Click here to download your
– Student Financial Aid Manual
Federal Financial Aid Programs

  • Direct Unsubsidized Loan: students who meet the requirements established by the US Department of Education may receive a Direct Loan, according to the academic program: graduate and professional students are eligible to receive up to $20,500 per academic year. As an institution that previously participated in the HEAL Programs our MD, Doctorate and PhD in Clinical Psychology, as well as certain Master Degree Programs might be eligible for additional amount of loan. The amount is established annually by Federal Regulations. The Financial Aid Office provides orientation about the application process for student loans, the student’s qualifying requirements and the specifics regarding interest rate, orientation fess, repayment process, etc. The student must submit an agreement form known as a Master Promissory Note, and complete electronic entrance counseling, both on-line: www.studentloans.gov.
  • Direct Loan-Plus Graduate Loan: This is a federal fixed-interest loan for graduate and professional students, beyond the DL Unsubsidized award, to cover any additional cost of attendance. The interest rate and origination fee, which is annually fixed by the Federal Government, begins to accrue from the date of the first disbursement. The loan qualifying process requires a credit check verification, on-line entrance counseling and an on-line submission of a Master Promissory Note: www.studentloans.gov
  • Private Loans (Alternative Loans). These are credit-based loans that may be used to supplement other types of financial aid programs. The loan amounts vary according to amount requested and approved for the student. The interest rate is variable, accrued while in school and usually based on the current “Prime Rate” plus a lender’s predetermined interest rate. Repayment may be up to 20 years. These Private Alternative Loans provide funds to complete the remaining need after the student is awarded other financial aid. Due to the high interest rate that these loans represent, the student should consider these loans as a last resource to their financial need. PHSU does not recommend any specific lender, the evaluation and selection is a student’s individualized decision.
  • Historical Private Lender List
    PHSU does not deny or otherwise impede the student’s choice of an alternative lender or cause unnecessary delay in loan certification of these loans. The following is a list of the three private loans that have been most commonly selected by our students during last two previous academic years, however, we reiterate that the student may select any other lender they esteem will meet their financial need.

Other Financial Aid Options:
Military Scholarship Programs: Students interested in a military career may consider apply for one of the scholarships programs for healthcare professions offered by the US Army, the US Air Force, Navy or the National Guard. The students must contact the desired program:

National Health Services Corps Scholarship Program: available for students in the primary health care specialties and committed to serving part or their entire career in federally designated health professional shortage area. Learn more about this program at: nhsc.bhpr.hrsa.gov
Financial Aid Application Process
Direct Loan Application Process
Students interested in applying for a Direct Loan must comply with the federal requirements and following requirements:

      1. Have financial need.
      2. Be an US Citizen or an Eligible Non-Citizen.
      3. Have a valid social security number.
      4. Enroll in an eligible program as a regular student working toward a degree.
      5. Meet satisfactory academic progress standards.
      6. Register (or have registered) with the Selective Service if you are a male between the ages of 18 and 25.
      7. Certify that are not in default on a federal student loan and that do not owe money on a Federal student grant.
      8. Student cannot exceed the aggregate loan limit established by the Department of Education.
      9. Comply with the Entrance Interview/Counseling.
      10. Provide all the documents and information required by the Financial Aid.

Students must fill the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the corresponding academic year, in order to be evaluated to determine eligibility for federal and state funds. It must be submitted on line at www.fafsa.gov no later than last working day of April. The PHSU school code is G24824. Students need a pin number, which can be obtained at www.pin.ed.gov.
Once the student submits the FAFSA, the Department of Education will send an Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR) to the school, which will be used for evaluation and analysis.
Students with a FAFSA application selected for verification by the Department of Education will be required to submit the following documents:

  • Complete a Verification Worksheet (provided by the Financial Aid Office)
  • Copy of the Tax Return (IRS or PR tax return form) or
  • W-2 form(s) (if apply)
  • Evidence of wages, salaries, tips, etc., reported on the FAFSA
  • Others

If the student (student’s parent or spouse) is not required to file income tax return, he/she will be required to complete and sign a Certification of Income, provided by the Financial Aid Office, among other documentation. Note: No loan will be process until the verification process is completed.
As part of the evaluation, the Financial Aid Office will take in consideration the Expected Family Contribution (EFC). The EFC is the amount that the student should contribute towards his/her cost of education, and it is determined by the Federal Government. The need analysis consists of the following basic calculation: Cost of Attendance minus EFC equals Financial Need. As part of the analysis, it will be considered any other expected financial aid (external funds such as Vocational Rehabilitation, Veteran Administration, military scholarships, and any other grant or scholarship). Note: A student cannot receive financial assistance in excess of the determined Financial Need.
Awarding and Notification
The next step is the awarding of financial aid amounts by PHSU and preparing the award notification for the student. Once the awarding process is completed, a Notification of Award is sent to each student.
Return Policy and Requirement for Withdrawal and Return of Federal Financial Aid (see PHSU catalog refund policy section)
Suspension of Eligibility for Drug-Related Offenses
If convicted of any offense involving the possession of a controlled substance, a student’s eligibility for Title IV Financial Student Aid Program will be denied for:

  • One year after the first conviction
  • Two years after the second conviction
  • Indefinitely after the third conviction

Eligibility may be restored if the student partakes of an approved Federal Government Rehabilitation Program.
Please refer to the Student Financial Aid Manual for specific information regarding all the dynamics of financial aid as it applies to new and continuing students.
Financial Aid Contact Information:
Financial Aid Personnel:
Mrs. Myrian Gaud Maitín, MBA
Financial Aid Manager
Mrs. Nicole Vázquez Colon, MSS
Financial Aid Officer
Ms. Mariannette Cruz Rentas, BS
Administrative Assistant
Office Hours
Monday to Thursday: 8:00-11:30 am – 1:00-4:30 pm
Friday: Administrative Work (By appointment only)
Financial Aid Office Contact Information
Phone Number: (787) 840-2575 ext. 2134, 2135 or 2136
E-mail: psmfinstu@psm.edu
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 7004, Ponce. Puerto Rico 00731
Physical Address: 388 Zona Ind. Reparada 2 Ponce PR 00716-2347

How to Apply

Applicants must submit the following documents:

  • Official transcript from all undergraduate and graduate universities attended
  • Letter of Recommendation Format – Written by individuals familiar with the applicant’s professional work and skills
  • Certificate of No Penal Record (Criminal Background check)
  • USD $85.00 Application Processing Fee (check or money order payable to Ponce Health Sciences University)
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Deadline to submit a complete application – May 30
Procedure to Apply
Readmission Application


  • ASSMCA Drug Court
  • Canas Medical Center
  • Casa Belén- Madre Dominga Center
  • Centro de Ayuda Psicológica y Servicios Integrales (CAPSI)
  • Centro de Ayuda Víctimas de Violación (CAVV) (diferentes pueblos de PR: Ponce, Caguas, Arecibo, Fajardo y Mayagüez)
  • Centro de Consejería “El Sendero de la Cruz, Inc.” en Hato Rey
  • Centro de Recuperación del Caribe en Villalba
  • Centro de Salud Deportiva y Ciencias del Ejercicio (SADCE) Albergue Olímpico
  • Centro de Servicios Comunitarios Vida Plena en Cayey
  • Centro de Servicios Psicológicos Raigambre en Guaynabo
  • Centro Interdisciplinario de Salud Mental, CISME Inc.
  • Centro Médico en Salinas
  • Centro Ponceño de Autismo (CEPA)
  • Centro Psicológico y de Desarrollo en Aguadilla
  • Centro Psicoterapéutico Multidisciplinario Inc.
  • Clínica de Servicios Psicológicos, PHSU
  • Coalición de Coaliciones para Personas sin Hogar de PR
  • Cognitive Wellness Center, Mayagüez
  • Correctional Health Service, Cárcel las Cucharas
  • Costa Salud, Rincón
  • Descubriendo Caminos-Centros Sor Isolina Ferré
  • Faro de Esperanza
  • Fundación Forjadores de Esperanza Inc. en Canóvanas
  • Fundación Pediátrica de Diabetes, San Juan
  • Greistar Mental & Physical Health, GF Solutions
  • Grupo de Servicios Especializados en Psicología e Integrativos, Corp. (Grupo SEPI) (diferentes pueblos en PR: Bayamón, Caguas, San Lorenzo, Ponce)
  • Head Start & Early Head Start
  • Health Assessment and Psychological Innovation Gogo Pediatric Institute
  • Hospicio La Guadalupe
  • Hospital Auxilio Mutuo
  • Hospital Damas
  • Hospital del Maestro
  • Hospital Menonita en Aibonito
  • Hospital Psiquiátrico en Aibonito (CIMA)
  • Hospital Psiquiátrico Estatal de Niños y Adolescentes en Bayamón
  • Hospital Psiquiátrico Estatal, Manuel Fernández Marina, San Juan
  • Hospital San Lucas
  • Instituto de Desarrollo Integral, IDIIFCO en Guánica
  • Instituto de Medicina de Familia del Sur
  • Instituto Sexológico Educativo Psicológico (ISEP)
  • InterCede, Ponce
  • Jeshua Community Mental Health Center, Cidra
  • Love Lines
  • National University College
  • New York Foundling Head Start en Coamo
  • Ponce Hematology Oncology/Salud Holística para la Mente
  • Portal de Amor en San German
  • Programa de Re-educación y Orientación a Personas Agresoras (PROPA)
  • Programa de Recuperación, ASSMCA (diferentes pueblos de PR: Ponce, Mayagüez, Cayey, Trujillo Alto, San Patricio y Moca)
  • Programa Psicología Cuidado Primario Clínica de Inmunología
  • Restaurando Portillo
  • San Jorge Children Hospital
  • Universidad Interamericana Guayama
  • UPR Ponce
  • UPR Rio Piedras, Recinto de Ciencias Medica (RCM)
  • Wellness Center PHSU

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