I read one thread on this already that was extremely helpful, but I have a few different questions to pose - I have my B.A. in Psych, & while I did pretty well (wrote an undergrad thesis that's in the process of getting published, graduated with departmental honors, have three-ish years research background), my gpa was low for a PhD applicant (3.21 overall, 3.32 in major) so I didn't even try getting into any PhD programs & am taking time off from school to get my ducks in a row. Given that I don't have the best gpa, it was advised that I try going into a Masters program then apply to PhD wherever (I know that credits may not transfer, most states don't have licensure, etc.). I'd mostly be going to prove I'm capable of grad work, not to amp my research background (although that'd be a plus). Questions: 1) I want to go into Clinical Psych for a PhD. Given this, should I strictly look for MA/MS in Clinical, or would General also be acceptable? Some of the MA programs in General Psych don't sound bad, from what I've found (examples: I like that SUNY Buffalo and The New School have heavy research tracks), but I wasn't sure if it would put me at a disadvantage. 2) If I do an MA wherever, should I be looking at their faculty for similar research interests, or is that more of a PhD thing? 3) Are Masters programs extremely difficult to get into? I have a list of 11 right now that I'm gradually narrowing down (both Clinical & General), but I wasn't sure how many I need to be applying to. I'm trying to go with "better" schools who have good rankings for their Clinical PhD programs in the hopes I'll get some of that same quality of education. 4) Does the prestige of a school matter when applying from a Masters to a PhD for Clinical? (example: I want to apply for Columbia's MA program, partially because I'd love to say I went there & I'm assuming they have a great faculty, but another post said they're easier to get into so I wasn't sure if when applying to a PhD somewhere it could hurt my application) 5) What exactly is a "terminal" program? & is this a better option than trying to go to separate schools for a MA/MS and PhD? 6) Any school suggestions? I'm looking in Ohio & Massachusetts with potential for NY, IN, or other New England states. Thank you for the help!! Anything is greatly appreciated!