Jul 19, 2024  
2022-2023 University Catalog & Student Handbook 
2022-2023 University Catalog & Student Handbook [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology

Program Options


The mission of the Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology (PsyD) program at KCU-Kansas City is to offer students broad and general training in preparation for careers in the practice of health service psychology as clinical psychologists both as individuals and as part of an integrated health care team. We are committed to the scientific foundations of psychology, the recognition that science informs practice and practice informs science, and a deep respect and understanding of cultural and individual differences.


The PsyD program has four program aims:

  1. Students demonstrate a comprehensive knowledge base in the theoretical and scientific foundations of psychology and are prepared to use this knowledge as health service providers in clinical psychology.
  2. Students develop and demonstrate competency in the use of a strong set of clinical skills, behaviors and attitudes in order to be proficient in evidence-based assessment, intervention and outcome evaluation while working with diverse populations.
  3. Students demonstrate knowledge of psychological research and scientific inquiry and can integrate such scientific knowledge into clinical practice.
  4. Students demonstrate knowledge and skill in integrated health care and are able to function as part of an integrated health care team.


The PsyD program at KCU-Kansas City provides evidence-based opportunities for all students to demonstrate the profession-wide competencies required by the American Psychological Association (APA). Graduates are required to meet the following profession-wide competencies:

Competency 1: Research
Students will demonstrate the substantially independent ability to formulate research or other scholarly activities that are of sufficient quality and rigor to have the potential to contribute to the scientific, psychological or professional knowledge base. Students will conduct research or other scholarly activities. Students will critically evaluate and disseminate research or other scholarly activity via professional publication and presentation at the local, regional or national level.

Competency 2: Ethical & Legal Standards
Students are expected to respond professionally in increasingly complex situations with a greater degree of independence across levels of training. Students will demonstrate knowledge of and act in accordance with the current version of the APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct; the relevant laws, regulations, rules, and policies governing health service psychology at the organizational, local, state, regional, and federal levels; and the relevant professional standards and guidelines. Students will recognize ethical dilemmas as they arise and apply ethical decision-making processes in order to resolve the dilemmas effectively. Students will conduct themselves in an ethical manner in all professional activities.

Competency 3: Individual & Cultural Diversity
Students must demonstrate knowledge, awareness, sensitivity, and skills when working with diverse individuals and communities who embody a variety of cultural and personal background characteristics. Students will demonstrate the requisite knowledge base, ability to articulate an approach to working effectively with diverse individuals and groups, and apply this approach effectively in their professional work. Students will demonstrate an understanding of how their own personal/cultural history, attitudes and biases may affect how they understand and interact with people different from themselves. Students will demonstrate knowledge of the current theoretical and empirical knowledge base as it relates to addressing diversity in all professional activities including research, training, supervision/consultation and service. Students will demonstrate the ability to integrate awareness and knowledge of individual and cultural differences in the conduct of professional roles (e.g., research, services, other professional activities). This includes the ability to apply a framework for working effectively with areas of individual and cultural diversity not previously encountered over the course of their careers. Students will demonstrate the ability to work effectively with individuals whose group membership, demographic characteristics or worldly views conflict with their own.

Competency 4: Professional Values and Attitudes
Students must demonstrate behavior that reflects the values and attitudes of psychology, including integrity, deportment, professional identity, accountability, lifelong learning and concern for the welfare of others. Students will demonstrate the ability to engage in self-reflection regarding one’s personal and professional functioning as well as engages in activities to maintain and improve their own performance, wellbeing and professional effectiveness. Students will actively seek and demonstrate openness and responsiveness to feedback and supervision. Students will respond professionally in increasingly complex situations with a greater degree of independence as they progress across levels of training.

Competency 5: Communication and Interpersonal Skills
Students will demonstrate the ability to develop and maintain effective relationships with a wide range of individuals, including colleagues, communities, organizations, supervisors, supervisees and those receiving professional services. Students will demonstrate the ability to produce and comprehend oral, nonverbal and written communications that are informative and well-integrated as well as demonstrate a thorough grasp of professional language and concepts. Students will demonstrate effective interpersonal skills and the ability to manage difficult communication well.

Competency 6: Assessment
Students will demonstrate competence in conducting evidence-based assessment consistent with the scope of health service psychology. Students will demonstrate the ability to select and apply assessment methods that draw from the best available empirical literature and that reflect the science of measurement and psychometrics; collect relevant data using multiple sources and methods appropriate to the identified goals and questions of the assessment as well as relevant diversity characteristics of the service recipient. Students will demonstrate the ability to interpret assessment results, following current research and professional standards and guidelines, to inform case conceptualization, classification, and recommendations, while guarding against decision making biases, distinguishing the aspects of assessment that are subjective from those that are objective. Students will demonstrate the ability to communicate orally and in written documents the findings and implications of the assessment in an accurate and effective manner sensitive to a range of audiences.

Competency 7: Intervention
Students will demonstrate the ability to establish and maintain effective relationships with the recipients of psychological services. Students will demonstrate the ability to develop evidence-based intervention plans specific to the service delivery goals as well as the ability to implement interventions informed by the current scientific literature, assessment findings, diversity characteristics, and contextual variables. Students will demonstrate the ability to apply the relevant research literature to clinical decision-making and be able to modify and adapt evidence-based approaches effectively when a clear evidence-base is lacking. Students will demonstrate the ability to evaluate intervention effectiveness and adapt intervention goals and methods consistent with ongoing evaluation.

Competency 8: Supervision
Students will demonstrate knowledge of supervision models and practices.

Competency 9: Consultation & Inter-Professional/Interdisciplinary Skills
Students will demonstrate knowledge and respect for the roles and perspectives of other professions. Students will demonstrate knowledge of consultation models and practices.

College of Biosciences Honor Code

Upon matriculation at Kansas City University, I have become a member of the medical and biosciences community. I understand that I will be expected to maintain and promote the ethical standards that my profession embodies.

I will enter into a relationship of mutual respect with my teachers and my colleagues to enhance the learning environment and gain the knowledge, skills and attitudes of an exemplary member of the medical profession. I will adhere to the highest standards of integrity, honesty and personal conduct at all times off and on campus. I will recognize my strengths and my weaknesses and strive to develop those qualities that will earn the respect of my patients, my colleagues, my family and myself.

Tuition & Fees

Please see the 2022-2023 COB Tuition & Fees  section for information on tuition and fees.

Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid Consideration

Federal regulations require schools to monitor the academic progress of Title IV financial aid recipients. KCU must certify that students are making satisfactory academic progress (SAP) toward the completion of their KCU degree. KCU follows the regulations set forth by the U.S. Department of Education that students are meeting the three required measurements to determine SAP: qualitative (GPA) , quantitative (pace progression) and time frame. The policy applies to students who are receiving federal aid; however, these standards are cumulative so this includes all periods of the students enrollment, which may include times when the student did not receive federal aid. The academic standards set forth by the academic program may vary from the financial aid policy for academic progress.

Qualitative Measure: GPA

Students are considered in good academic standing when they complete each term with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Students with a cumulative GPA lower than 3.0 will be placed on financial aid warning for the next academic term. PsyD students must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 in order to graduate from the program. The GPA cannot be rounded up to meet minimum SAP standards.

Quantitative Measure: Attempted vs. Completed

In order for students to progress through the program to graduate within the maximum time frame, Financial Aid requires all PsyD students to complete at least 67 percent of credit hours attempted. This is determined by reviewing the total number of courses attempted and the total number of courses completed in a term. In determining pace progression, the Financial Aid office calculates a completion rate for each student. The completion rate is the total number of credit hours successfully completed divided by the total number of credit hours attempted. Credit hours cannot be rounded up to meet the minimum SAP standards.

Attempted hours not earned include any grade of Fail (F), Incomplete (I), In Progress (IP), Withdrawal (W), Administrative Withdrawal (AW), or Administrative Drop (AD).

Time Frame: Pace Progression

Program Typical Time Frame Maximum Time Frame
PsyD 5 years to graduate 7 years to graduate
PsyD Advanced Standing 4 years to graduate 6 years to graduate

Students are expected to complete their program within the time fram outlined above before ineligibility for financial aid becomes effective. Students who do not complete their degree the stated time frame will not be eligible for financial aid without an approved financial aid appeal.

Transfer Credits

KCU Office of Admissions may grant credit for courses successfully completed at a student’s prior college or university. Credits accepted for degree at KCU will count as completed for the pace calculation.

Repeated Coursework

Courses in which a student has received a grade of “F” may be repeated and eligible for financial aid. However, a student may receive aid for repeating a previously passed course only once with prior approval from the PsyD-SPC. Repeated courses are counted as credits attempted and either earned or unearned, but only the most recent grade earned is used to calculate GPA.

SAP Review

SAP will be reviewed at the end of each academic term for all PsyD students. The Financial Aid office will review all students enrolled for the term to determine a student’s SAP status regardless of financial aid received.

Students will be notified via email if they fail to meet the minimum standards outlined above, this email communication will include an explanation of the standards evaluated and instructions on how to proceed.

SAP Warning

SAP is reviewed at the end of each academic term to ensure a student is making satisfactory academic progress toward their degree. If it is determined that a student has not met the minimum SAP requirements at the end of the term, the student will be placed on financial aid warning during their next period of enrollment.

Students on warning have one additional academic term in order to resolve the deficiency and meet the minimum SAP requirements. Students not meeting the minimum SAP standards after the warning term will no longer be eligible to receive federal aid without a successful appeal.

Appeal Process

Financial Aid will notify the student via email if an appeal needs to be submitted to continue receiving federal aid at KCU. Students will be asked to submit an appeal form to the Financial Aid office. The form will require the student to complete the information listed below:

  • A written statement documenting the reasons for failure to meet the standards of academic progress for financial aid eligibility. The statement should be concise but long enough to address the students mitigating circumstances. There is no school-defined length. Examples can be serious illness of student or family member, death of relative or disruptive personal issue.
  • A written statement explaining what has changed in the student’s situation that would allow the student to bring his/her academic progress up to the satisfactory standards.
  • If requested, supporting documentation may be required to process the appeal.
  • A written academic plan, after the appeal is submitted.

Appeals will be reviewed and completed within two to four weeks of receipt. Students who submit appeals will be notified via email regarding the decision of their appeal. Students with approved appeals will regain federal financial aid eligibility. Students with denied appeals will be ineligible for federal financial aid until they meet the minimum SAP requirements. Appeal decisions are final.

Academic Plan

All students who fail to make SAP and file an appeal with the Financial Aid office are required, as part of the appeal process, to complete an academic plan form. The form can be obtained from the Financial Aid office and must be submitted after the appeal process is completed. The academic plan must ensure that the student is able to meet SAP standards by a specific point in time. The student will need to work with Student Services to develop a written academic plan to help improve academic performance.

Financial Aid Probation

Students who have approved appeals will be placed on financial aid probation and have their federal financial aid reinstated.

Students who are able to meet the SAP standards by the end of the next payment period will be placed on probation without an academic plan. The student’s academic progress will be reviewed at the end of the next payment period. Students who meet the minimum standards at the end of the probationary period are no longer on probation. Students failing to meet the minimum eligibility requirements at the end of the probationary period are considered ineligible to receive additional funds.

Students who are not able to meet SAP standards by the end of the next payment period will be placed on probation with an academic plan. Students will need to successfully follow the academic plan while in this status. The student’s academic progress will be reviewed at the end of each payment period while on the academic plan. Students who meet the criteria outlined in their academic plan will remain in that plan until it expires or the student meets the minimum SAP eligibility requirements. Students must appeal to change their academic plan. Students who do not meet the academic plan criteria outlined in their plan will be placed back into suspension and will be ineligible for federal aid.

Without Approved Appeal

Students who are not making satisfactory academic progress and do not submit an appeal or have their appeal request denied, may regain eligibility only by taking action that brings them into compliance with KCU’s SAP standards.

Academic Policies & Procedures

Responsibility of the Student

Students are required to become familiar with the academic policies, curriculum requirements and associated deadlines as posted in this catalog and handbook. Student Services will aid students in understanding the academic program requirements, if necessary. It is ultimately the student’s responsibility to know and comply with all University policies and procedures and to meet all stated requirements for the degree. It is also the student’s responsibility to monitor daily their campus email, Workday account, Canvas account, the University website, and KCU’s intranet.

Academic Advising/Coaching

The academic advising/coaching program promotes student learning, development, and personal growth to encourage self-sufficiency. PsyD students are assigned to a faculty member within the department. Advising/coaching placements are made by the assistant vice provost for Advising & Learning Enhancement.

Academic Load

For PsyD students, full-time enrollment is defined as six or more semester credits.  Half-time enrollment is three or more semester credits.

For students who have passed the candidacy exam and are enrolled only for doctoral internship and/or dissertation hours, full-time is three semester credits and half-time is 1.5 semester credits.

Academic Standing

Students are considered to be in good academic standing to meet the minimum criteria for continued enrollment. Good academic standing is defined as obtaining at least a grade of B- or Pass in each class, as well as maintaining a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.

If a student’s GPA falls below 3.0, he/she must remediate within one semester. Failure to bring GPA within academic standards may result in dismissal.

Academic Probation

Academic probation is an official status from the University, stating that the student is under the most sensitive academic monitoring and improvement plan for the period of time they are on probation, which becomes a part of the student’s academic record. This status is typically applied when one of more of the following occur:

  • One or more course failures.
  • Student’s cumulative KCU GPA is below 3.0.

Students placed on academic probation will have their status monitored by a University faculty or staff member. In addition students on probation must attend all classes. Academic probation may also include the suspension of the student’s normal rights to participate in extracurricular, co-curricular and other nonacademic activities, including but not limited to the student not being allowed to hold a leadership position in a student organization. Academic probation may also result in suspension or termination of the student’s employment with the University.

Typically, students who are placed on academic probation cannot fail any other course, section, clerkship, shelf exam and/or national examination. The typical length of the academic probation is one year, unless otherwise specified, from the time the student is formally notified of being placed on this status.

Academic probation status is not tied to a student’s SAP, as defined by Title IV. It is wholly separate and unrelated to SAP.

Academic Warning

Academic warning is a state of warning from KCU to the student indicating that the University is concerned about the student’s academic performance. This status is typically applied when one of more of the following occur:

  • Current cumulative KCU GPA below 3.0.
  • Behavioral cues by the student that may indicate academic or personal distress.

Students placed on academic warning may be required to take actions deemed necessary to help improve academic performance. These actions may include, but are not limited to: regular meetings with Learning Enhancement staff, sessions with KCU psychologists, required course attendance, meetings with tutors and/or faculty members, temporary loss of student leadership privileges, and providing frequent status updates to key faculty/administrators.

Academic warning is not tied to a student’s SAP, as defined by Title IV. It is wholly separate and unrelated to SAP.


Unlike traditional undergraduate and graduate institutions where students individually register for courses, KCU engages in block registration for each student cohort. The student’s respective department sends enrollment information to the Office of the Registrar every term. Students are responsible for reviewing their enrollment in Workday prior to each semester to ensure they are enrolled correctly.

The last day to add a class is seven business days after the published first day of classes in the Academic Calendar. The first day of classes varies by program.

PsyD students are required to report on the orientation or registration date as specified in the Academic Calendar .

All outstanding financial obligations to the University or University-affiliated clinical sites must be cleared in order for a student to register. Students who are not in University compliance may not attend classes or participate in clinicals.

Attendance Policy

The PsyD program is dedicated to providing an environment in which students demonstrate the profession-wide competency of communication and interpersonal skills. Much of this is provided by way of lecture, presentation, and in-class activities where instructors have the ability to determine if students can demonstrate effective interpersonal skills and the ability to manage difficult communication. Therefore, the PsyD program requires that all students attend all classes for the full duration of the class period. Students arriving for class more than 20 minutes after the start of the class or leaving more than 20 minutes before the end of class will be marked as absent. Students who arrive or depart within the 20-minute window will be considered tardy, which will result in:

  • discussion with the instructor for one tardy;
  • referral to the advisor for two tardies;
  • and referral to the Psy-D SPC for more than two tardies.

Under extraordinary circumstances, a student may have the opportunity to teleconference in for an in-person class. Given the differences between course content and required in-class assignments during a specific week, approval of teleconferencing is at the discretion of the instructor. If teleconferencing is approved, the student must maintain a stable internet signal, have video on, and be ready to engage in class activities, as well as maintain a professional environment throughout the class session (e.g., teleconferencing from a car is not appropriate).  An approved Excused Absence Form must be submitted prior to soliciting an instructor for the use of teleconferencing.

If a student misses a class, will be late or must leave early, it is their responsibility to:

  1. Inform the instructor prior to the class (each instructor will note in their syllabus the best way to contact them).
  2. Acquire the lecture notes and/or handouts from their classmates or Canvas (the instructor is not responsible for getting this information to the student).
  3. Write a summary of the course content of the class, per the instructor’s direction, and have the paper to the instructor of the course the following week. Repeated absences or tardiness may warrant referral to the PSYD-Student Progress Committee (SPC) (see the Student Conduct & Responsibilities  section for more information).

Excused Absences

It is the student’s responsibility to obtain an approved, signed Excused Absence Form (located on the Program’s Essentials Canvas Page) with supporting documentation from the PsyD Program Director and to follow the steps outlined above when missing a class. 

Policies for missing an exam are in each syllabus. The following policy outlines the criteria for excused absences:

• Civic Responsibilities: Students who are required to be physically present at citizenship hearings, court hearings or jury duty on the date of an examination, quiz and/or required presentation will be granted an excused absence. Students should contact the PsyD Program Director and their instructors with supporting documentation to discuss such circumstances prior to the occurrence.

• Academic Conflict: Students may request an excused absence for academic or training related activities (e.g., a KCU supported conference, practicum orientation). Only students in good academic standing will be considered.

• Death in the Family/Family Illness: Any student applying for an excused absence due to a death in their family must provide a copy of the death certificate or obituary program. Consideration will be given for deaths and illnesses of spouse, life partner, parents, siblings, children, in-laws or grandparents.

• Religious Holiday: Students may request an excused absence for a holiday of their faith. Such holidays should be considered a significant observance recognized by a majority of the faith.

• Illness: The excused absence form must be submitted in the case of missing class for an illness. Any student who misses more than one class due to illness must be seen by a health care provider in order to have such illness documented. Students will be expected to provide documentation from a physician noting the date, time, diagnosis and any other details pertinent to the absence.

• Other: Additional extenuating circumstances, not covered by these guidelines, may be brought to the PsyD Program Director for consideration. However, excused absences should not be requested for weddings, vacations, birthdays, or special events, etc.

As professionals, students are expected to adhere to the KCU attendance and absenteeism policy with diligence. Any student requesting more than two absences, make-up examinations, quizzes, make-up labs or presentations, or assignment extensions will be referred to the PSYD-SPC.

Course Drops & Withdrawals

Students who wish to drop/withdraw from a single or multiple courses, but not withdraw completely from the University, must adhere to the following procedures.

The deadline to drop a course is end of business the day of the first class meeting. For night classes, the deadline to drop is end of business the next day following the first class meeting. For intersession courses, the deadline to drop the courses is prior to the first class meeting. Students who wish to drop a course must officially communicate their request to their department and/or the Office of the Registrar within the prescribed time requirements. A student who drops a course within the prescribed time requirements will have no record of the course on their transcript.

Students may withdraw from certain courses with the permission of the program director after the drop deadline and up to the withdrawal date. The withdrawal date is the Friday of the eighth week of each block. Course withdrawals are recorded as a W on the student’s academic transcript. Students may not withdraw from a course with a W after the withdrawal date. Students who withdraw from courses after the withdrawal date will receive a failing grade. Students are not eligible to withdraw from a course after the course has ended.

Course withdrawal may have financial aid implications. Students are advised to talk with Financial Aid prior to withdrawing from a course.

Exceptions to this policy may be granted based on extenuating circumstances only. Appeals to the withdrawal deadline are only granted following submission of a written petition, with the concurrence of the course director and the approval of the dean of COB.

Disciplinary Situations

In cases where the administrative officers deem it necessary, a disciplinary situation may be referred to the PsyD-SPC. Please review the Student Conduct  section for more information.

Grades & Assessment Policies

Grades & Quality Points

Grade % Range Quality Points
A 93-100% 4.00
A- 90-92% 3.67
B+ 87-89% 3.33
B 83-86% 3.0
B- 80-82% 2.67
F <80% 0.00/Fail
P - Pass
I - Incomplete
W - Withdrawal
AW - Administrative Withdrawal
AD - Administrative Drop

A student enrolled in the PsyD program must pass all courses with a minimum grade of B- or P, and maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or higher to continue in the program.

Testing & Grading

The academic year is divided into fall and spring semesters. Courses are offered in 10-week blocks. Each semester will consist of two 10-week blocks. The number of semester hours is calculated by the Registrar.

Testing during a course may consist of:

  • In-class quizzes
  • Written exam(s)
  • Papers
  • Presentations

Evaluation of clinical skills will occur on practicum and internship experiences. The Practicum Evaluation Form and the Advanced Practicum Evaluation Form will be used to evaluate each student and their progress in demonstrating the profession-wide competencies on practicum.  Internship sites will utilize their own Internship Evaluation Forms to evaluate each student and their progress in demonstrating the profession-wide competencies on internship. Practicum and internship grades will be graded Pass/Fail (P/F).

Students will receive a letter grade for each course except those designated Pass/Fail.

  1. A percentage of the total point score possible for the course will be calculated based on points earned.
  2. The course director will assign a letter grade of A, A-, B+, B, B-, or F, generally based on the scale above.
  3. Students who earn a failing course average (less than 80 percent) at the end of the course may be eligible for re-examination of their lowest exam grade or a re-examination of all course content in the form of a cumulative exam or equivalent assessment. See Individual Course Failure & Re-Examination policy.
  4. Students who do not qualify for a re-examination or fail to earn a passing grade following re-examination may be placed on an Academic Suspension until the failed course is offered again.
  5. The Registrar will calculate an overall GPA each semester. This information will then be reported to students in Workday.

Incomplete Grades

A course director may assign a grade of I if he/she believes that a student has been unable to complete the course/section on time because of extenuating circumstances beyond the student’s control. An Incomplete Grade Contract should be completed that clearly details the requirements for completion of the course/section. The grade contract form is available on the Registrar page of the intranet.

The student’s signature is not required for the incomplete grade contract to be valid. In the event an I grade is being assigned, the dean of COB must be notified before the contract is presented to the student. Upon receipt, the Office of the Registrar will provide a copy of the contract to the student’s KCU email address. The student will have three business days to decline the incomplete grade and receive the current earned grade with all missing assignments calculated as a zero.

Any student receiving a grade of I must coordinate with the course director to satisfy all outstanding coursework for the course/section. Once outstanding requirements for the course are satisfied, the course director will process a change of grade form converting the I to a letter grade. The grade change must be submitted prior to the first day of classes of the next academic year. Once this deadline has passed, the I becomes an F. Once converted to an F, this grade cannot be subsequently changed due to coursework completion.

Should a student decide to withdraw or if he/she is otherwise separated from the University prior to completing coursework for an incomplete grade, the grade will be updated to reflect a failure (F).

A degree cannot be awarded to a student with an Incomplete grade on his/her record.

Grade Changes & Corrections

Grades may be changed or corrected by the course director, upon certification in writing that an error occurred in computing or recording the grade, or a student has successfully completed re-examination. The change of grade must be documented on a grade change form, approved by the dean of COB and submitted to the Office of the Registrar for processing. The deadline to initiate a grade change is one calendar year after the end date of the term in which the grade was assigned.

Grade Appeals

Grade appeals should only be made when a student contends that the final course grade assigned by the course director is arbitrary or capricious. It is not to be used to challenge grades on individual assignments. “Arbitrary or capricious” implies at least one of the following:

  • The student has been assigned a grade on the basis of something other than his/her performance in the course.
  • Standards utilized in the determination of the student’s grade are more exacting or demanding than those applied to other students in the course.
  • The grade is based upon standards that are significant, unannounced and unreasonable departures from those articulated in the course description distributed at the beginning of the course.

The assessment of the quality of the student’s academic performance is one of the major responsibilities of University faculty members and is solely and properly their responsibility. A grade appeal is not appropriate when a student simply disagrees with the faculty member’s judgment about the quality of the student’s work. A student who is uncertain about whether a grade should be appealed or who needs additional information about the grade appeals process can contact the dean of COB. Appeals must be in written form and submitted to the instructor within 48 time hours of the grade being posted. The student can appeal the instructor’s decision to the Program Director. The decision rendered by the Program Director is final. If the Program Director is the instructor for a course, then the appeal will go to the dean of COB.

Some examples of the basis for legitimate disagreement could include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Students are not informed of the basis for grade calculation in the syllabus, on Canvas, or prior to the assignment.
  • The student’s grade was not calculated in accordance with the stated policy in the syllabus, on Canvas or as provided prior to the assignment.
  • Significant and unwarranted deviation from grading procedures and course syllabi set at the beginning of the course or a grade assigned arbitrarily and capriciously on the basis of whim or impulse.
  • There is an error in the computation of the grade that was not corrected.
  • The student, through no fault of his/her own, was not provided with the same opportunity to complete the requirements for the course in terms, for example, of time, access to materials, or access to the course director as the other students.

Student Standing

The Registrar will calculate an overall GPA for PsyD students for each semester in the program.

Academic Assessment, Status & Promotion

The PsyD program at KCU is a full-time program and the expectation is that didactic and clinical training will take precedence over employment or volunteer work. Once students have matriculated, they must be enrolled in the program continuously until graduation. Students receive grades in all courses. The course grades assist the program director and the student to monitor progress and mastery of the material that has been deemed necessary by the program to become proficient and competent psychologists. The clinical psychology curriculum has been approved by the COB Curriculum Committee.

At the conclusion of each academic year, the faculty will meet to assess student progress in the PsyD program. Students must demonstrate satisfactory achievement levels in all the education and training competency areas. Following the annual student review meeting, faculty advisors will meet with students to discuss whether their progress meets expectations set by the program. Advisors will provide feedback about their academic, clinical and professional progress. The Program Director will provide students with written feedback of their overall academic progress relative to their year in the program. Problems with progress through the program may lead to referral to PsyD-SPC. See Academic Standing and Dismissal for more information.

Students will be provided notification of any problems, and will have an opportunity to represent themselves before PsyD-SPC. PsyD-SPC renders decisions for additional action if a student fails to achieve satisfactory progress. Furthermore, if a student violates the KCU Code of Professional Conduct , the student will be referred to Student Services for further action.

Students are provided oral and written feedback about their progress periodically throughout the year through quarterly meetings with their individual faculty advisor. During these meetings, students will be asked to complete a self-evaluation of their progress before receiving feedback from the program review. Advisors and students will maintain an ongoing record of the self-review and feedback from the PsyD-SPC to identify strengths and areas for improvement. Students may be asked to meet with the program director to review feedback from PsyD-SPC and consider the student’s self-review. Students receive an annual written indication of their progress from the program director via a formal letter.

Students are required to complete all program requirements for graduation within a maximum of seven years from the date of matriculation. If a student does not complete the program within this time requirement, they will be dropped from the program. If a student has not completed the program within seven years, the student may petition the program director and PsyD-SPC for special consideration. Petitions will be considered on an individual basis. When petitioning the student must provide rationale to be considered for further review.

Promotion to the Next Year

To progress to the next 10-week session, a student must satisfactorily complete all academic requirements for the preceding 10-week session. Students who have not satisfactorily completed all academic requirements in order to progress in the program will be referred to the PsyD-SPC. The PsyD-SPC will review the student’s academic record according to the COB academic policies and make a recommendation to the dean of COB. Recommendations may include an academic suspension until the student can successfully complete the necessary program requirements, or other academic consequences.

Promotion to Doctoral Candidacy

During the course of the PsyD program, students who initially enter the program without advanced standing (i.e., having already earned a Master’s degree) will earn a non-terminal Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology degree. The degree will be added as a notation on the student’s transcript. The degree is awarded when all the following criteria have been met:

  1. Successful completion of all coursework in the first two years.
  2. Successful completion of the Qualifying Examination.
  3. Student is in good academic standing. See Academic Standing.

Re-Examination & Remediation Policy


Students who earn a failing course grade (less than 80 percent) at the end of the semester may be eligible for re-examination of their lowest exam grade or a re-examination of all course content in the form of a cumulative exam or equivalent assessment. The course director will stipulate in the course syllabus which re-examination method (lowest exam grade or cumulative exam/equivalent assessment) will be utilized. Re-examination will only be allowed if a replacement of their lowest grade or successful re-examination would permit the student to pass the course. The maximum grade for the course is 80.

Faculty members are available to answer specific questions, but no formal review sessions will be conducted. Preparation for re-examination is largely an independent study endeavor. Students may take only one re-examination in a course. The maximum number of re-examinations in the PsyD program is two, which may be completed in one block. Re-examinations will be scheduled by the course director and must be completed prior to the start of the next 10-week session.

Any student failing to sit for the exam on the scheduled date will receive a grade of zero for the re-examination attempt and fail the course. If reexamination still results in failure, the student is considered to have not satisfactorily completed all academic requirements in order to progress in the program and may therefore be placed on an academic suspension as determined by the PsyD-SPC and the dean of COB.

Practicum & Internships

A student is assigned a grade of Pass or Fail in their assessment, therapy, or advanced practicum course, based on the attainment and demonstration of expected competencies within each training setting. Each block, a student’s primary site supervisor is asked to complete an evaluation of the student’s performance on appropriate Profession-Wide Competencies (see Appendices entitled “Therapy and Practicum Evaluation Form” and “Advanced Practicum Evaluation Form”).  The minimum level of achievement expected of students is a score of (3) Demonstrates expected behavioral anchor on each item.  Scores of (2) Inadequately performs behavioral anchor will result in remediation of the behavioral anchor in question and referral to the Student Progress Committee.  Scores of (1) Failure to perform behavioral anchor will result in failure of the practicum and referral to the Student Progress Committee. The DCT has the authority to delay any student from applying for or beginning a practicum or internship due to academic insufficiency, verified clinical unsuitability, or an inability to meet the required health and technical standards.

If a student earns a failing grade while on practicum or internship, the student may be eligible for remediation. The Site Supervisor, the Program Director, and Director of Clinical Training (DCT) will evaluate the failure to determine if a remediation plan is necessary, reasonable, and would benefit the student. The terms of the remediation plan will be set by the DCT and site supervisor who have several options including, but not limited to, additional training and supervision, a verbal warning, written acknowledgment, written warning, schedule modification, probation, suspension of direct service activities, and termination from the site. Students will remediate through a specific, time-limited, appropriate plan that will allow the student trainee sufficient time to demonstrate required changes, learning and progress in areas of deficiency. The plan will be created by the DCT, and other KCU faculty and the site supervisor as is appropriate to the situation. Student trainees may be relocated to a new training site, if appropriate and in the best interest of the student as determined by the DCT, program director, and site supervisor.

Grade Assessments for Reinstated Students

Reinstated students are held accountable to all previously earned grades and they remain part of the permanent student record. If, upon returning, a student is required to retake a previously failed section, the retake will replace the entire remediation process for that section and will supersede the remediation process described for academic failures of continuously matriculated students. If the returning student fails the section a second time, the student will be dismissed from the program.


The University, by recommendation of PsyD-SPC and/or the action of the administrative officers, reserves the right to place on conditional or stipulated status, suspend or dismiss a student who has:

  1. Received two or more course failures in any PsyD course. This will result in automatic dismissal and does not require action by the PsyD-SPC or administrative officers, other than the dean of COB.
  2. Earned a cumulative GPA less than 3.0.
  3. Failure of Qualifying Examination re-exam.
  4. Second failure of dissertation proposal.
  5. Not maintained acceptable standards of academic performance.
  6. Not maintained acceptable ethical, moral, personal, or professional conduct.
  7. Not abided by the University’s or program’s policies, rules, and regulations.
  8. Not fulfilled legal or financial obligations to the University.
  9. Not shown professional promise, including mental and emotional fitness in the field of health service psychology.
  10. Not completed all of the required curriculum elements within seven years of matriculation date.

Candidacy Requirements

The candidacy for the PsyD will be awarded following the successful completion of:

  • All PsyD coursework.
  • All practicum experiences.
  • Comprehensive examination.
  • Dissertation proposal and defense.
  • Internship.

An average GPA of 3.00 is necessary for candidacy.

PsyD Latin Honors

The criteria for graduating with Latin honors are as follows:

  • Summa cum laude: Top 2 percent of class.
  • Magna cum laude: Next 5 percent of class (3 -7 percent).
  • Cum laude: Next 5 percent of class (8-12 percent).