Program Overview

Many Clinical Psychology programs have committed themselves to either research or practice. The research-heavy programs are dedicated to the training of future academics who intend to spend the majority of their time in the pursuit of grant funding. The practice-heavy programs are sometimes fairly criticized as neglecting the science base of the profession.

Alliant’s California School of Professional Psychology developed a truly integrated scholar-practitioner model for our APA-accredited clinical psychology PhD program in San Diego.

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Emphasis Areas

All Clinical PhD program students obtain solid generalist education and training in preparation for professional practice. The PhD Clinical program provides advanced doctoral students with the opportunity to concentrate their elective choices in an area of special interest, if they wish to do so. There is no requirement to select an emphasis area, and students are allowed their choice of offered electives to suit their personal interests and aspirations. The Track and Emphasis options prepare one to pursue further specialization at the postdoctoral level. Emphasis elective courses are routinely offered at least once a year for all emphasis areas. The Track and Emphasis options are as follows:

  • Forensic Psychology Emphasis
  • Health Track
  • Family/Child Psychology Emphasis
  • Psychodynamic Emphasis

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Program Information

Students learn from highly regarded and experienced professionals who are able to teach the “how to” of the most empirically supported psychotherapy and assessment techniques. Students also join research groups working closely with established applied researchers who collaborate with them in a supportive and exciting environment.

As they progress through the program, students are able to choose a mentor in an area of interest to them. Well known research experts on the faculty run research groups on a variety of topics.

Research Group Topics

  • Traumatic stress
  • Mind-body disorders
  • Biofeedback
  • Autism
  • Neuropsychological and personality assessment
  • Schizophrenia
  • Mindfulness
  • Acceptance-based therapies
  • Neuroimaging
  • Multicultural psychology

San Diego Program Features

Students in the San Diego PhD in Clinical Psychology program have the opportunity to further direct their studies to suit their personal and professional aspirations by choosing among four emphasis areas, which include:

  • Forensic Psychology
  • Health
  • Family/Child Psychology
  • Psychodynamic

Doctoral students in the San Diego Clinical Psychology PhD and PsyD programs also have the unique opportunity to gain valuable, hands-on experience through a wide variety of training and fieldwork opportunities. Under the supervision of expert staff, students can provide real-world mental health services to a variety of under-served populations in the San Diego community. For more information, visit the San Diego Community Services and Placements page.


The California School of Professional Psychology’s San Diego Clinical Psychology PhD program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association (APA), which requires that we provide data on time to completion, program costs, internships, attrition and licensure. Please follow the link below for that data. We hope this information will help you to make an informed decision regarding your graduate study.

Student Admission, Outcomes, and Other Data (.pdf)

The California School of Professional Psychology’s Clinical Psychology PhD and PsyD programs offered on the Fresno, Sacramento, Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Francisco campuses are individually accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association (APA).

* Please direct program accredited status inquiries 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

Our Campus Location

Alliant International University
10455 Pomerado Rd.
San Diego, CA 92131
Directions to Campus

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Why Alliant

At Alliant, our mission is to prepare students for professional careers of service and leadership and promote the discovery and application of knowledge to improve the lives of people in diverse cultures and communities around the world. Our Vision is an inclusive world empowered by Alliant alumni.

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The California School of Professional Psychology (CSPP) is Alliant’s cornerstone school and was built on a legacy of thought leadership, multicultural competence, and quality of care. CSPP’s programs pair hands-on professional practice with academic rigor in order to prepare the next generation of psychologists and mental health care professionals.

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