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FACULTY ADMITTING STUDENTS FOR THE 2014-15 INCOMING CLASS ARE:
Drs. Keane, Kwapil, Mendez-Smith, Nelson-Gray, Schallhorn, Stein, and Wisco.
The Clinical Psychology Program at UNCG espouses the scientist-practitioner model of training. The program trains individuals to become skilled scientists and competent clinicians who use their expertise to understand, assess, treat, and prevent behavioral disorders, regardless of the setting in which they work (e.g., university psychology department, mental health center, private practice). Graduates of the doctoral program are prepared to work as independent researchers, teachers, consultants, and practitioners.
To achieve this outcome, our students are trained in the scientific method, in broad and general areas within Psychology, in the special content domain of the Clinical Psychologist, and in practical skills appropriate to the professional practice of psychology. Students are trained as clinical generalists, prepared to deal with adults and children, and with individuals, families, and groups. The program provides students with a firm grounding in a broad range of empirically validated techniques in assessment and intervention; students demonstrate competence in all of these areas prior to the receipt of the terminal PhD degree. Although conceptual analyses of clinical phenomena most commonly incorporate a broadly based behavioral perspective, other perspectives are given serious study as well. We admit students for graduate study who will continue to use their research training in academic settings or elsewhere, as graduates.
The Clinical Psychology Area includes eight tenure track faculty members who maintain active research laboratories. These faculty are: Dr. Susan Phillips Keane, Professor and Director of Clinical Training; Dr. Rosemert Nelson-Gray, Professor; Dr. Thomas Kwapil, Professor; Dr. Julia Mendez Smith, Associate Professor; Dr. Kari Eddington, Assistant Professor; Dr. Gabriella Livas-Stein, Assistant Professor, Dr. Suzanne Vrshek-Schallhorn, Assistant Professor and Dr. Blair Wisco, Assistant Professor. Click here for faculty interests and contact information.
Clinical Area Contact Person: Dr. Susan Keane, (336) 256-0569,email@example.com
HIPPA Compliance Officer: Dr. Rosemery Nelson-Gray
Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data
updated September, 2013
Program admissions policies that allow students to enter with credit for prior graduate work, and the expected implications for time to completion:
Please see: http://www.uncg.edu/psy/grad/clinical/##Freq
Or click the link below for our Graduate Handbook:
Frequently Asked Questions:
1. What are the philosophy and goals of the clinical training program?
The Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology is a competency-based, scientist-practitioner model. Consistent with this model, our overarching goal is to foster the development of students as Psychologists first, and secondarily as Clinical Psychologists. Our training is graduated and sequential and students advance through the program as they gain competence in required areas. Other program goals include: To train students in the competent practice of psychology; To train students in the integration of science and practice; To produce professionals who engage in ethically responsible behavior and to foster and develop in our students a sense of professional identity and development. We focus on student’s competence in several domains: broad and general knowledge in psychology, designing and conducting research, providing evidence-based practice, engaging in responsible and ethical behavior, and knowledge of how culture impacts research questions, findings and clinical practice. Also emphasized in our training model is the idea that a complete and thorough understanding of abnormality and psychopathology cannot be achieved in the absence of knowing the normal variations in human behavior that occur across development and in different social contexts. Thus, students in our program receive broad training in other domains of psychology, including the developmental, social, and biological areas, to familiarize themselves with normal processes. Students in our program also learn about individual and cultural diversity through their courses, through their practicum training, and through their interactions with students and faculty from diverse backgrounds.
2. Is the clinical program accredited by the American Psychological Association and what are the implications of accreditation?
The Clinical Psychology program has been continuously accredited by the American Psychological Association since 1983. Our next site visit will be in 2014. In terms of a student's career development, graduation from an APA approved clinical program is often a prerequisite for certain pre-doctoral internship placements and/or job opportunities. This credential also eases the licensure process and entry into some professional organizations.
Questions related to the program’s accreditation status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation:
Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation
American Psychological Association
750 1st Street, NE
Washington, DC 20002
Phone: (202) 336-5979 / E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
3. What is the curriculum of the clinical program?
The Ph.D. curriculum provides a graduated and sequential training experience, which prepares students for careers consistent with the scientist-practitioner training model. The Ph.D. curriculum consists of eight clinical courses and seminars, six courses and seminars in other areas of psychology, two elective courses, three research tool courses such as statistics and research methods, 24 credits of research experiences (including thesis and dissertation credits), and 31 credits covering practicum and internship training. The program is typically completed in six years to seven years. During the first year, clinical students take courses in adult and child psychopathology, in child and adult therapy (including a focus on empirically validate treatments), and in graduate research methods and statistics. They begin their study in other areas of psychology as well and typically take two courses from five core areas in psychology that cover broad and general psychology training (behavioral, psychobiological, cognitive, developmental, and social), During the second year, clinical students typically take courses (combining theory and methodology) in personality and intellectual assessment and begin introductory practicum experiences in the UNCG Psychology Clinic. They also complete two additional core courses and an integrative seminar on history and systems; they also formally begin their Master’s thesis research. The Master's thesis should be completed during the first 2 to 2 1/2 years in the program. During the third year, clinical students take additional courses or seminars in broad and general areas of psychology and/or advanced statistics and complete the Ethics and Multicultural Competence courses. By the end of the 3rd year, they complete 200 client contact hours of supervised practicum training in the UNCG Psychology Clinic. Students continue active research involvement and conduct independent doctoral research upon completion of the thesis requirement. The preliminary examination is taken by the fourth year. During the remaining time at UNCG, clinical students complete any remaining course work and seminars in clinical or in other areas of psychology, complete 350 additional clock hours of advanced practicum in the UNCG Psychology Clinic, and complete the a dissertation project. Students may apply for their pre-doctoral internship training after they have an approved dissertation proposal and a timeline that indicates that the bulk of the dissertation work will be completed before the students leaves for their Internship year. A 2,000 hour block-time APA-approved internship is required for the Ph.D. degree. All students earn a Master’s Degree as part of the requirements of the Ph.D. A complete listing of required courses is found in the Graduate Student Handbook (http://www.uncg.edu/psy/grad/).
4. What are practicum opportunities?
Clinical practicum and internship is required of all clinical students. All required practicum training is completed at the UNCG Psychology Clinic. In the first and second years, students enroll in assessment and intervention courses that include a methodological component. In these courses, basic clinical skills (e.g., interviewing, testing, cognitive therapy, systematic desensitization) are learned. Concurrently, in the second semester of the first year, students participate in weekly clinical group supervision and observe more advanced students serving as therapists in the UNCG Psychology Clinic. In the second year, students carry a small caseload. By the end of their third year, students complete 200 client contact hours of practicum training at the UNCG Psychology Clinic where they are supervised by clinical faculty. The client population at this facility is diverse, both in terms of presenting problems and other demographic variables.
In the 4th year, students complete their advanced practicum training of 350 client contact hours. This training is typically completed in the UNCG Psychology Clinic. The skills learned during advanced practicum are designed to augment those achieved during earlier practicum years. After completing most course requirements and having an approved dissertation proposal, students seek a 2000 hour, block-time internship that is approved by the American Psychological Association. See http://www.apa.org/ed/accreditation/programs/internships-state.aspx. It is expected that students will complete their dissertation data collection and analyses before leaving for internship. Many students have their dissertation defended before the start of internship training.
Since 2002, the program has been awarded a Graduate Psychology Education Program (GPEP) Training grant. This grant provides opportunities for students to gain additional exposure working with underserved populations, including refugee and immigrant populations. Current placements include: Cone Family Practice, Cone In-Patient Behavioral Health Adult and Adolescent Units, Cone Pediatrics, the Teen-Mom Mentor Program, the Newcomer’s School, and Learning Together. The current grant cycle Began July 1, 2013, and extends to June 30, 2016. In this cycle we continue the established placement and added a placement at the Durham VA. The program also sponsors DREAM Camp, a summer day camp for children with Asperger’s Disorder, and the Depression Treatment and Research Program, a specialized practicum and research program providing empirically-based assessment and treatment approaches for clients with mood disorders.
5. How is research training conducted in the clinical program?
Research training in UNCG's clinical program begins during the first year through course work in clinical research methodology and in statistics. Also in the first year students associate themselves with research laboratories. Many students also conduct research as part of a departmental research assistantship responsibility. During the first year, students begin to develop a thesis research project through the clinical research methods course and under the direction of a faculty member. All second year students make a presentation based on their thesis proposal or another first year project at the Graduate Research Conference, scheduled early in the fall term. The thesis is typically completed during the second or third year. An independent doctoral research project, which is usually pilot work for the dissertation, is generally done during the third or fourth years, and the doctoral dissertation during the fourth or fifth years.
Students also have the opportunity to participate in non-required research throughout their training. Students are encouraged to co-author papers for publication and/or presentation at professional meetings. All students are encouraged to focus on problems of fundamental general importance. To this end, the Department supports students who want to develop research programs with both clinical and nonclinical faculty; many on-going collaborations among faculty exist to support students in this endeavor. All clinical students must demonstrate research competence prior to graduation.
6. What is the attrition rate among clinical students?
Attrition rates are presented in the table in the Student Outcomes and Other Data section (http://www.uncg.edu/psy/grad/clinical/#3outcome). We strive to admit students who have carefully evaluated their career goals and are a good fit for our program. Students leave the program for a variety of reasons, most commonly to pursue other degree programs (e.g. Developmental Psychology, Counseling Psychology, Public Policy) or career options. At times, students leave for personal reasons (e.g. to be closer to family). In rare situations, a student will either leave the program due to a personal problem that is interfering with their performance or will be asked to leave the program for not making adequate progress toward competence in coursework, clinical work and/or research.
7. What are the admission requirements?
Minimum standards for graduate admission to the Department of Psychology are:
A minimum overall undergraduate GPA of 3.0
A minimum Psychology GPA of 3.2
Verbal and Quantitative scores on the GRE at or above the 40th percentile
Non-native English speakers must earn TOEFL scores above Graduate School minima (currently, 79 for internet-based test and 550 for paper-based test)
Students applying with an MA must have a GPA of 3.3 or higher.
As indicated in our outcome tables, competitive candidates in Clinical Psychology have credentials exceeding the departmental minimum standards.
For the Clinical Program, applications are considered only once per year (during January and February) for admission in the following fall term. Application deadline: December 15th.
An admissions committee consisting of at least two clinical faculty members reviews applicants to the clinical program. We are seeking applicants who are bright, well prepared, motivated, socially skilled, and whose interests are compatible with our model of training. Successful applicants typically hold undergraduate degrees in Psychology and have excellent grades and GRE scores (Verbal, Quantitative and Writing), outstanding letters of recommendations from faculty who know them well, a true interest in being trained as a scientist –practitioner, career goals that are consistent with scientist-practitioner training, a clearly articulated research statement, and a good fit with a faculty member’s program of research.
We also consider individuals with degrees in related fields. For those students who hold a BA/BS degree in a field other than Psychology, we require a minimum of five Psychology courses (including Introductory Psychology, Abnormal Psychology, Research Methods, and Statistics) and the Advanced GRE. All other requirements stated above apply.
For students holding a BA/BS degree, relevant post baccalaureate experiences are typically viewed very positively in our decision-making process. We also consider students who have earned a Clinical or Research MA degree in Psychology from another institution. The above standards apply.
The top 30-35 applicants each year are invited to campus for interviews, and offers of admission are typically extended to 8-15 students. We seek an incoming class of approximately 6 students.
The clinical program follows and endorses the CUDCP admissions offers and acceptances policy as stated here. The full policy can be found at :http://www.cudcp.us/files/CUDCP%20grad%20offers%20policy_Revised2013.pdf
If an offer of admission is made to a student with a MA degree and the decision to attend UNCG is made, we review coursework, practicum experience and research experiences and determine what, if any, additional coursework is needed at UNCG. The DCT, the advisor, and the relevant course instructor review past coursework. Typically, a student earns credit for approximately one year of past coursework toward their degree from UNCG. However, this is not an automatic year of credit, and is based on careful review of the comparability of courses taken elsewhere. A committee of three individuals reviews the student’s thesis, again determining the comparability of this project with UNCG standards. If the committee deems the thesis is comparable, the student does not need to complete this program requirement. Practicum experiences are reviewed by at least two faculty members in a similar manner. It is not unusual for a student to earn credit for one year of past practicum training toward their UNCG requirements, although again, this decision is dependent on the outcome of the practicum review. For students holding a MA degree in an area outside of Clinical Psychology, we review coursework and research products in the same manner. Students must be in residence at least one year before formal admittance to the Ph.D. program.
It should be noted that, regardless of previous experiences, to obtain a PhD degree from UNCG, we require students to be in residence in our program in our program for a minimum of three years.
Professionals in the Greensboro area wishing to continue their education and pursue a Ph.D. are welcome to apply, but they will be evaluated according to the same rigorous standards as other applicants and must be prepared to do full-time training. Except in extraordinary circumstances, we do not offer clinical retraining of persons with a Ph.D. in another area of psychology. Qualified persons may take specific graduate courses in the department (e.g., Psychological Disorders of Adults or of Children; courses in non-clinical areas of psychology) without admission to the program. Interested students should contact the Graduate School for admission as a non-degree student. The assessment, intervention and practicum courses are open only to clinical psychology graduate students.