We equip you with critical knowledge and skills to conduct rigorous psychological research.

We have a group of professors who are top scholars with international reputations. They jointly provide a diverse range of expertise in the research areas mentioned in the box above.

Our programme, which emphasises interactive learning and integrative evaluation of diverse perspectives, prepares our graduates for psychology-related careers in academia and industry.

Programme Structure

This PhD in Psychology programme equips students with doctoral-level knowledge in content areas in psychology and research methodology, with a focus on areas in experimental, social, personality and organisational psychology.

Students will learn, from both coursework and hands-on research experiences, to link psychological theory, study design, measurement, and data analysis in order to make substantive inferences and evidence-based recommendations to theory and practice that are scientifically defensible. Students in the programme have presented their work at international conferences and published their research in top journals in psychology. Graduates of the programme will be well-prepared for careers in universities, research institutes and industry.

A PhD student will typically focus on coursework in the first one to two years, followed by a Master’s thesis and the dissertation research in subsequent years.

The PhD framework is as follows:

  • 6 Foundation Courses (6 Course Units)
  • 2 Electives (2 Course Units)
  • Empirical Research Project (1 Course Unit)
  • Master’s Thesis (12 Course Units)
  • 3 Advanced Research Topics (ART) Courses (3 Course Units)
  • PhD Dissertation (28 Course Units)

The coursework is intended to lay the groundwork in preparation for the dissertation research. A student in the programme will be required to finish a Master’s thesis by submitting the written thesis and orally defending it. The student will then have to sit for a PhD Qualifying Examination (QE), which will assess his or her mastery of the foundation required for the next stage of the PhD programme – the dissertation. The dissertation is a student’s original work in his or her specialised area through independent research. The dissertation is marked by two major milestones listed below.

Oral Defence of the Dissertation Proposal
This is an oral presentation of the proposed topic to a Dissertation Committee. A written dissertation proposal will have to be submitted before the presentation. A supervisor, with the expertise in the chosen topic, will be appointed. He or she guides and mentors the student throughout the dissertation work.

Oral Defence and Completion of the PhD Dissertation
This is an oral presentation of the written dissertation report to the Committee. After possible revision(s) to the report and upon fulfillment of all necessary requirements, the Committee will recommend to the University to award the PhD degree. Students will also attain an MSc degree upon completion of the PhD programme.

Admission Requirements
  • Good Bachelor’s degree in Psychology or relevant training/experience
  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) results
    • The GRE General test is required for all applicants except those graduating with a bachelor degree (in any discipline) from SMU, NUS, NTU & SUTD (i.e., Singapore autonomous universities). Applicants from these universities will be considered without GRE scores. However, they are encouraged to submit their scores, if available.The GRE Psychology Subject test is not required. However, applicants without a bachelor degree in psychology are strongly encouraged to take it and submit their results so that their knowledge in basic psychology can be taken into consideration when their applications are reviewed.
Dates & Fees

For more information on Application Dates, click here.

For more information on Fee, Scholarships and Finance matters, click here.

Contact Details

Office of Postgraduate Research Programmes
Administration Building, Level 12
81 Victoria Street
Singapore 188065

Tel: (65) 6828 0100