The admissions criteria include:
a. Honours Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, Social Sciences or Health Sciences from a recognized university with at least a B+ average (equivalent to a McMaster 8.5 GPA out of 12) in the final year of study. This requirement is consistent with the School of Graduate Studies’ admissions requirements.
b. For applicants whose first language is not English and who did not attend an English-speaking University for their undergraduate degree, a test of English language proficiency is required. Minimal scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): written score (600) or computer (250), or internet-based test (iBT = 92; reading = 22, speaking = 24, listening = 24 and writing = 22).
c. Applicants will also be asked to submit the following documents with their application
i. A current Curriculum Vitae.
ii. A personal statement (maximum 750 words) that identifies reasons for wishing to join the program and relevant work or volunteer experiences that will contribute to their success in the program.
iii. Two letters of reference: At least one from academic referee (i.e., professors or research supervisors). One letter may be from a professional referee (i.e., employer who can provide a professional reference).
iv. Official transcript(s) of academic work completed to date at all post-secondary institutions attended, sent directly from the issuing institution(s). Non-English transcripts must be translated and notarized. Applicants may apply during the fourth year of their degree. In such cases, the pre-admission GPA for eligibility purposes is calculated using the most recent 10 courses towards their degree. Should an applicant in this category be offered admission to the program, the offer is “conditional” upon successful completion of their four-year degree by June 30 in that year, and maintenance of a B+ average in their final year of study.
Interview. The admissions committee will review every application to the program to ensure that prospective students have the necessary academic background, proficiency in English, and relevant experience to enroll in the Psychotherapy Program. Those students who are short-listed based on this review will be offered an interview. Interviews will be conducted in person or over the telephone.
Admission selections will be based on academic achievement as well as personal qualities and experiences that are evaluated during the Admissions Interview.
The program has a limited number of available spots for students each year, therefore meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee entry into the program.
Students are required to complete 11 courses, which include 7 mandatory courses, 2 elective courses and two practicum courses. All courses are half-courses (3 units) with the exception of the Applied Psychotherapy Skills Course (6 units) and the Practicum II Course (6 units), which span over two terms. Students must achieve at least a B- standing in all mandatory and elective courses and pass the 2 clinical practicum to complete the program.
All classroom-based courses are offered in person and will be primarily held at St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton, West 5th Campus.
First Year Fall Term Mandatory Courses:
- Principles of Evidence-Based Psychotherapy
- Introduction to Mental Health and Wellness
- Assessment and Case Formulation
First Year Winter Term Mandatory Courses:
- Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
- Ethical Standards and Professional Practice
First Year Summer Term Mandatory Course:
Second Year Fall Term Mandatory Courses:
- Clinical Research Methods
- Applied Psychotherapy Skills (a)
- Practicum II (a)
Second Year Winter Term Mandatory Courses:
- Applied Psychotherapy Skills (b)
- Practicum II (b)
Students are required to complete 2 elective courses. Elective courses can be completed during any term. The elective courses will be offered on a rotating basis and therefore, not all elective courses will be offered each year. Elective courses will be scheduled 1 year in advance.
Practicum will be conducted in various locations including community hospitals, community-based counselling centres, university wellness centres, family health teams, and private practices. Practicum may occur outside of Hamilton. Students are responsible for their own transportation and all associated costs in order to meet this program requirement. The program may defer a student’s clinical practicum under special circumstances (e.g., the student has not met academic requirements).
Students will receive a mid-point and final evaluation from their supervisor that will inform whether all clinical activities associated with the placement were successfully achieved for attainment of a passing grade in the course. Students will also be required to submit an integration paper relevant to their clinical experience while on practicum (e.g., case study, literature review). Unsatisfactory evaluations or poor professional conduct when interacting with patients/clients, staff and supervisors while on practicum may result in the termination of the practicum. If a practicum is terminated, in most situations this will result in the student receiving a failing grade for the practicum and subsequently lead to a dismissal from the program. Additional detail is included in the Program Handbook (Graduate Calendar represents the official policy).
Required Online Modules
Online modules must also be completed by all graduate students in the first month of study.
- SGS 101/Academic Research Integrity and Ethics
- SGS201/Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA)