M.A./Ed.S. Admission Requirements

A four-year undergraduate degree is required for acceptance as a graduate student. A GPA of 3.0 or better in psychology undergraduate courses as well as a 3.0 overall undergraduate GPA are typically minimal expectations for successful applicants.

Those who earned a BA or BS in degrees other than psychology are admitted but must complete the undergraduate course prerequisites before admission.

Acceptance into our graduate programs is based on multiple criteria and there are no absolute cutoff scores for admission.

In addition to previous coursework, applicants are evaluated with respect to:

  1. GRE (and CBEST for Ed. S. applicants) scores
  2. Essays submitted in the application process
  3. Letters of recommendation
  4. Interview performance

High previous grade point averages are preferred. We evaluate essays, letters and interview performance for motivation and ability to complete an advanced degree in psychology, and good fit between the applicant and the strengths of our faculty and department.

See below for more details about the various admission requirements.

Graduate Record Exam

All students are required to take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) for admission to California State University, Fresno. Students must submit scores for the General Test only; not the Subject Test in Psychology. The GRE General Test is considered an opportunity for applicants to demonstrate their potential for future academic success. However, acceptance into the graduate programs in the Psychology Department is based on multiple criteria and there are no absolute cutoff scores for admission.

Students should access the ETS website at www.gre.org for testing dates, deadlines, and registration. The General GRE is a computer-based exam and is offered every month. Students should register and take the exam well in advance in order to receive scores on time. Graduate applications will not be reviewed if GRE scores are missing.

Original GRE test scores from ETS must be submitted directly to the Graduate Admissions Office. In addition, you must send a copy of your scores to the Psychology department directly in order to ensure consideration. Scores must be received in the Psychology Department office by the application deadline.

Letters of Recommendation

Three letters of recommendation are required from individuals familiar with the applicant’s previous academic work. Letters of recommendation for applicants to the School Psychology program should also include comments related to the applicant’s ability to work closely with people in the human services area.

Letters are submitted through the department's Program Application. Applicants to the program will be asked to list the names and email addresses of three letter writers. Each of the letter writers will then be contacted via email with instructions for logging in and submitting a letter of recommendation. 

Personal Interviews

Complete application packages are screened by the Psychology Graduate Committee. Selected applicants are invited to participate in either personal or telephone interviews before final selection of candidates is complete. Interviews are held on campus, or by telephone if an on-campus interview is not convenient for candidates. Selected applicants will be interviewed by at least two faculty members approximately one month after materials are reviewed by the Psychology Graduate Committee.

Additional Requirements (by Program)

Additional Requirements for School Psychology (Ed. S.)

CBEST Scores

Students applying to the School Psychology Program must also take the California Basic Educational Skills Test (CBEST). Scores are to be sent directly to the Department of Psychology by February 1st. Passing scores must accompany application materials in order for a student to be considered for the School Psychology Program. Information on the CBEST test can be obtained at


or by writing:

CBEST Program 
National Evaluation Systems, Inc 
P.O. Box 340880 
Sacramento, CA 95834-0880

Students may also contact the Testing Office at (559) 278-2457, located in the Family and Food Sciences Building Room 110 for test dates and deadlines.

Additional Requirements for International Students

In addition to fulfilling the above requirements, International Students must possess the equivalent of a four year U.S. degree, must present TOEFL scores of at least 79-80 (paper-based=550), and must have adequate financial support. Please refer to the webpage http://www.fresnostate.edu/academics/issp/ for more information.

How to Apply

Details about application procedures can be found here.