Social Psychology (Ph.D.)

Social Psychology (Ph.D.) | Graduate

We train social psychologists who produce and advance the scientific study of social psychological theories, including the affective, cognitive, sociocultural, motivational, neural, and physiological underpinnings of social behavior. Our students seek to understand how these processes are shaped by political, societal, organizational, and other factors.

The APA-accredited Ph.D. program in Psychology (specialization in Social Psychology) at Howard's Graduate School provides rigorous training in the scientific study of affective, cognitive, sociocultural, motivational, neural, and physiological underpinnings of social behavior. Our scholars seek to understand how these processes are shaped by political, societal, organizational, and other factors. Our program prepares graduates for careers as psychologists, social scientists, practitioners, and university and college faculty who advance the use of social psychological theories (i.e., attitudes, social cognition, judgment, and decision-making) and methods (i.e., quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods research) to understand how individuals perceive themselves and others and how people relate to one another. Our Ph.D. program emphasizes a firm grounding in contemporary theoretical orientations and multi-method approaches that combine assessment, self-report and direct behavioral observation, experience, correlational, longitudinal, and dyadic sampling methods, survey and field research design, EEG/ERP, eye-tracking, and peripheral psychophysiology. As a doctoral student in the Social Psychology graduate program, you'll be part of an active research culture at Howard and collaborate with faculty in research labs on projects across various knowledge domains in the social psychology field. You'll have numerous opportunities to present your research findings at key meetings in Washington, DC, and benefit from the close mentorship of faculty with wide-ranging research interests, including social cognition, self-knowledge, social identification, judgment and decision-making, intergroup relations, and prejudice and stereotyping.

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 (early deadline)

      ❱  Feb. 15, 2024 (priority deadline)

      ❱  Apr. 15, 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. Lloyd Sloan

Director of Graduate Studies

Dr. Debra Roberts

Department Chair

Oluwadamilola Adeboyeku

Program Coordinator

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 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?

  • Yes

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 social 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 Social Psychology.
  • How will obtaining your Ph.D. in Social 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.