Rehabilitation Psychology Graduate Programs - Application Process

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Main Office

Department of Rehabilitation Psychology & Special Education
School of Education
Education Building
1000 Bascom Mall, Rm. 431
MadisonWI  53706

Tel: 608/263.5970
Fax: 608/263.5970

or by contact form

Application Process

Master's Program in Rehabilitation Counseling and 

Doctoral Program in Rehabilitation Counselor Education

Please read the information on this page carefully. If you have any questions about the application process, please contact the department (see below).  

Application Deadlines 

Master's Program - February 15 for the following fall admission
*The Rehabilitation Psychology (Rehabilitation Counseling) master's program only accepts applications for fall admission. Students who wish to start the program in spring or summer may only do so if they are interested in a part-time program of study. Students interested in part time study should indicate this in the fall application, and if admitted, we will assist students in requesting a change in the program start semester.

Doctoral Program - 
January 1 for the following fall admission 

These deadlines are the assured consideration deadlines. You are strongly encouraged to submit your completed application in advance of the deadlines​. Applications may be considered after the assured consideration deadline if space is available​. 

Application Process

submit the uw-madison graduate school on-line application which includes:
  • Application fee
  • Three Letters of Recommendation written by individuals who know you well and can speak of your work experience and/or academic accomplishments, as well as your potential for successful graduate work.
  • A written essay (Statement of Purpose/Reasons for Graduate Study) which describes your reasons for applying to the program, your academic and professional experience, and your future goals. Include information about your background, training, experience and interests which you believe is relevant to your success in the program at UW-Madison. In addition, if you wish to be considered for the Graduate Training Program: Leadership and Research on Transition for Youth and Young Adults, please indicate this interest in your personal statement/reasons for graduate study. Please also include information about your interest in and experience with transition for youth/young adults with disabilities.
  • Graduate Record Examination and/or the Miller Analogies Test scores (only required for applicants to the PhD program).
  • All transcripts from each post-secondary institution attended. PDF copies of transcripts should be uploaded to the application. Upon admission, applicants must ​submit official transcripts before admission is finalized.
  • A current resume/CV outlining your academic, volunteer, teaching, and/or research experiences.
  • A writing sample of scholarly work - examples include a research paper, article or other sample of academic writing (only required for applicants to the PhD program).

Additional Doctoral Program Admissions Information
Students admitted to the Ph.D. program through the process described above are admitted to begin “advanced graduate study.”

Formal admission to “doctoral study” occurs after the equivalent of one or two semesters of full-time study in the program. This status is based on performance during advanced graduate study, completion of any master’s level deficiencies, a written plan for doctoral study, a writing sample, and recommendations from three faculty members.

Admission to “doctoral candidacy” occurs after satisfactory completion of all required coursework and all four parts of the Ph.D. preliminary examination.

Upon admission to doctoral candidacy, the student is eligible to submit a formal proposal for the dissertation.

Admissions Criteria

The M.S. Rehabilitation Counseling program will consider the following factors in admission:

  • Potential for success in graduate study
  • Career and professional goals
  • Potential for success as a counselor
  • Potential for success as an advocate for inclusion and equity
  • Respect for social and cultural difference
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Personal Statement
  • Work or other related experience

 The Ph.D. Rehabilitation Counselor Education program will consider the following factors in admission:
  • Potential for success in doctoral level study
  • Career and professional goals
  • Previous professional experience
  • Potential for scholarship/leadership/advocacy
  • Oral and written communication skills
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Personal Statement

A phone or in-person interview may also be a part of the application process.

If you have questions about the application process, please contact the Department:

​Kayla Armstrong
Student Services Coordinator
423 Education Building
1000 Bascom Mall
Madison, WI 53706
(608) 263-4608


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