Developmental Psychology (Ph.D.)

Developmental Psychology (Ph.D.) | Graduate

We train developmental psychologists, practitioners, research scientists, and faculty who advance meaningful research on development among children, adolescents, and adults from underserved communities. Our students are exposed to different phases of the lifespan from infancy through childhood and adolescence to adulthood and aging.

The APA-accredited Ph.D. program in Psychology (specialization in Developmental Psychology) at Howard's Graduate School provides rigorous training in the empirical study of the processes and mechanisms of developmental change across the lifespan from infancy through childhood and adolescence to adulthood and aging, including the biological, behavioral, cognitive, social, and affective bases of human development. Our Ph.D. program prepares graduates for careers as developmental psychologists, clinical practitioners, research scientists, administrators, and university and college faculty who produce and advance meaningful social science research with a particular emphasis on development among children and adolescents from historically underserved communities. You'll gain a solid foundation in contemporary theoretical frameworks in developmental psychology and methodological approaches, including direct observation, behavioral assessment, longitudinal analyses, and psychometrics. You'll also be part of an active research culture at Howard and collaborate with faculty on research projects across a range of knowledge domains in the developmental psychology field. You'll benefit from numerous opportunities your present your research findings at key meetings in Washington, D.C., and benefit from the close mentorship of faculty with wide-ranging research interests that span cognitive, emotional, and social development areas, including investigations of children's cognitive and affective development as shaped by psychosocial environments, language-learning patterns, and emotion regulation and risk-taking behavior among adolescents.

Program Snapshot

      ❱  72 credit hours 

      ❱  Full-time

      ❱  On-campus format

      ❱  Degree: Ph.D. 

Application Deadlines

Spring 2024 entry: 

      ❱  No spring entry

Fall 2024 entry: 

      ❱  Dec. 1, 2023 (priority deadline)

      ❱  Mar. 1, 2024 (final deadline)

Applicants should submit their applications as early as possible for earlier consideration of departmental funding opportunities. Applicants have until the final deadline to apply. However, applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis throughout the admissions cycle. 

Transfer credits accepted (reviewed by committee)


Dr. Alfonso Campbell Jr.

Director of Graduate Studies

Dr. Debra Roberts

Department Chair

Oluwadamilola Adeboyeku

Program Administrative Assistant

Lorena Daniels

Clinical Administrative Assistant

Program Details

  • Degree Classification: Graduate
  • Related Degrees: Ph.D.

Admission Requirements

Application for Admission 

  • Online PSYCAS application
  • Statement of purpose/ Statement of academic interest (500-1,000 words)
  • GRE scores not required
  • Official transcripts sent to PSYCAS
  • 3 letters of recommendation
  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university or the international equivalent 
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae
  • Autobiographical statement (500-750 words)

GRE Required?

  • No

GRE Preferred Minimums

  • GRE Verbal Reasoning: N/A
  • GRE Quantitative Reasoning: N/A
  • GRE Analytical Writing: N/A

GPA Required Minimums

  • Overall GPA minimum: 3.0
  • Undergrad GPA minimum: 3.0

Reference Requirements

Evaluator type accepted:

  • Professor (Required)
  • Supervisor/Manager

Evaluator type not accepted:

  • Clergy
  • Friend
  • Family Member
  • Coworker
  • Other

Personal Statement Guidance

Statement of purpose/statement of academic interest should highlight why you wish to pursue a degree in developmental psychology and address the following:

  • Describe your academic and research interests, identifying specific faculty member(s) with whom you want to work.
  • Describe your personal, professional, and educational goals related to the Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology.
  • How will obtaining your Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology enhance you in your current position and/or future career?

Letter of Recommendation Guidance

Provide three (3) letters of recommendation from individuals who are familiar with your ability and/or potential for rigorous graduate study, clinical work, and/or research. Whenever possible, Howard University recommends seeking recommendations from faculty members in psychology or practicing professionals in psychology or other mental health disciplines. Letters of recommendation should be submitted through the PSYCAS system.