Applied Social Psychology

PhD in Psychology

The PhD in Applied Social Psychology trains you to conduct research that advances and applies scientific knowledge to address pressing societal issues that include social identity, group conflict, health behavior, and influence and social change.

CGU’s program in Applied Social Psychology provides a comprehensive grounding in social psychology that surveys the field’s theoretical foundations within interactive seminar-style classes. Curriculum and research projects emphasize in-depth examination of the field’s core areas, including attitudes and persuasion, group processes/intergroup relations, interpersonal processes, and motivation, affect, and cognition. Research is the foundation of the PhD program, with much of it conducted in faculty labs and faculty-led or -mentored research groups.

Program Highlights
  • The program emphasizes the development of methodological and statistical skills early on, which quickly positions students to excel as researchers.
  • Research activity is diverse and includes attitudes, persuasion, and social change; self, social identity, culture, and community; group processes and intergroup relations; pro-social behavior; interpersonal and close relationships; and influence and persuasion.
  • Our graduate students are encouraged to gain practical experience through projects, internships, or jobs, often at CGU’s research centers and affiliates, such as the Claremont Evaluation Center or the Health Psychology and Prevention Science Institute.
  • All students who request financial aid receive fellowships. The Division of Behavioral & Organizational Sciences (DBOS) also regularly hires students for paid teaching assistantships.
Colloquia and Conference Series

The social psychology program hosts several colloquia and conference series, including:

Program At-a-glance

  • 72 units

    required units

  • PhD in Psychology

    degree awarded

  • Spring, Fall

    program start

  • 5-7 years | full time*

    estimated completion time

Request info Apply now

Regina Burch

Assistant Director of Admissions


Where You Can Find Our Alumni


  • Eusebio Alvaro

    Eusebio Alvaro

    Full Research Professor

    Research Interests

    Social Influence Processes, Health Promotion, Disease Prevention & Medicine

  • Portrait of William Crano

    William Crano

    Stuart Oskamp Chair of Psychology

    Research Interests

    Social Influence, Effects of persuasive information on drug addiction and HIV/AIDS, Minority and majority relationships to health information

  • Portrait of Michael Hogg

    Michael Hogg

    Professor of Social Psychology

    Research Interests

    Self and Social Identity; Intergroup Relations and Group Processes; Influence and Leadership; Uncertainty, Radicalization and Extremism

  • P Wesley Schultz

    P. Wesley Schultz

    Full Research Professor

    Research Interests

    Environmental psychology, social psychology, conservation, sustainability, social influence, quantitative methods, big data

  • Jason Siegel

    Jason T. Siegel

    Professor of Psychology

    Research Interests

    Social Psychology, Health Psychology, Persuasion, Survey Research

  • Anna Woodcock

    Anna Woodcock

    Senior Research Fellow

    Research Interests

    Identity, Identity balance, Stereotypes, Diversity, STEM, Prejudice, Longitudinal Research, Quasi-Experimental Research, Intervention Evaluation, Theory-driven Interventions, Implicit Bias, Implicit identities

Extended Faculty

  • Mark Costanzo

    Claremont McKenna College

    Research Interests

    Death penalty, expert testimony, non-verbal communication, social psychology

  • Jennifer Feitosa

    Claremont McKenna College

    Research Interests

    Culture, Diversity, Organizational Psychology, Statistics, Teams, Teamwork, Workplace Issues and Trends

  • Steffanie Guillermo

    Pitzer College

    Research Interests

    Racial/ethnic stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination, Threat perceptions, Bias against immigrants, Racial/ethnic health disparities

  • Shana Levin

    Claremont McKenna College

    Research Interests

    Social psychology

  • Allen Omoto

    Pitzer College

    Research Interests

    Social psychology; volunteerism and prosocial action; environmental concerns; lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender issues; sense of community; civic engagement and civil society

  • Adam Pearson

    Pomona College

    Research Interests

    Social psychology of sustainability and climate change, social cognition, intergroup relations, disparities, stereotyping and prejudice

  • Piercarlo Valdesolo

    Claremont McKenna College

    Research Interests

    Social psychology, moral judgment and behavior

  • Robin Vallacher

    Florida Atlantic University

    Research Interests

    Dynamical social psychology, action identification, social judgment, self-concept, interpersonal dynamics, conflict and social justice


Social Psychology Core Courses (20 units)
Directed Research: Social Psychology (4 units across fall and spring)
Overview of Social Psychology (4 units)
At least three courses (12 units) from the following:

  • Attitudes & Social Influence (4 units)
  • Group Processes & Intergroup Relations (4 units)
  • Interpersonal Processes (4 units)
  • Motivation, Cognition & Affect (4 units)

Social Psychology & Related Electives (28 units)
Students are encouraged to take elective courses in social psychology and across the Division of Behavioral and Organizational Sciences. They also can take relevant elective courses that are offered by Claremont Graduate University’s other schools and departments.

Statistics & Methodology (16 units)
Research Methods (4 units)
Intermediate Statistics (2 units)
Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) (2 units)
Applied Multiple Regression (2 units)
Categorical Data Analysis (2 units)
PSYCH 315 Sequence: 4 additional units of Advanced Methodology

Field/Teaching Experience (4 units)
Supervised Teaching Seminar (4 units)
Field Placement (4 units)

Transdisciplinary Core Course (4 units)
All PhD students are required to enroll in a transdisciplinary core course from Claremont Graduate University’s “TNDY” course sequence.

In addition to 72 units of coursework, all students must complete a portfolio that represents a cohesive set of experiences balancing training in their area of specialization.PhD Completion

  • PhD qualifying exam
  • Dissertation proposal
  • Dissertation and oral defense

In the Field Opportunities
Under the supervision of professionals with expertise in your particular areas of interest, you can participate in fieldwork, research, and paid internships at a range of corporations and organizations, including:

  • Southern California Edison Company
  • Kaiser Permanente
  • Orange County Rapid Transit District
  • Riverside County Department of Mental Health
  • Claremont Evaluation Center
  • Institute for Research on Social Issues

Application Guidelines

Requirements Summary

Item Description
Application Fee $80
Official Transcripts Yes
Letters of Recommendation 2
Statement of Purpose Yes
Resume Yes
Standardized Test Scores Optional
Other Requirements English proficiency exam

Key Dates and Deadlines

CGU operates on a priority deadline cycle. Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit complete applications by the priority dates in order to assure maximum consideration for both admission and fellowships.

Once the priority deadlines have passed, the University will continue to review applications for qualified candidates on a competitive, space-available basis. The final deadlines listed are the last date the University can accept an application in order to allow sufficient time to complete the admissions, financial aid, and other enrollment processes.

Spring 2024
Priority Deadline – November 1, 2023
Final Deadline (International) – November 15, 2023
Final Deadline (Domestic) – December 1, 2023
Classes begin – January 16, 2024

Summer 2024
Priority Deadline – February 1, 2024
Final Deadline (International) – March 1, 2024
Final Deadline (Domestic) – April 1, 2024
Classes begin – May 13, 2024

Fall 2024
Priority Deadline – February 1, 2024
Final Deadline (International) – July 5, 2024
Final Deadline (Domestic) – August 1, 2024
Classes begin – August 26, 2024

Review General Guidelines

Cost & Aid

Program 72 units
Tuition per unit* $2,020

*Based on 2023-2024 tuition rates.


$245 Student Fee
$150 Technology Fee
International Student Services Fee*: $661 fall semester, $776 spring semester
**Applies to all international students (F-1 visa only) who are registered in coursework, doctoral study, or continuous registration. The fee is assessed each fall and spring semester for annual ISO accident and sickness plans and administrative fees. Subject to change.

For estimates of room & board, books, etc., please download CGU’s Cost of Attendance 2022-2023 .

Review General Costs

Back to the tabs
Apply now

Request More Info

Contact us for more information


While waiting for our answer, take a look at our FAQ

Maybe you'll find some answers to your questions