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Clinical Practica

Clinical training is an integral part of our clinical counselor training program. The clinical Internship/Practicum experience is organized to correspond with the sequencing of the curriculum. Clinical practicum and internship training play an important role in the integration of theory, research and practice. Clinical practice provides opportunities for students to integrate critical thinking and hypotheses testing into their clinical activities and to assimilate an empirical, scientifically informed approach to clinical practice.

The department works collaboratively with a number of training sites in the area to ensure appropriate training opportunities exist for the students. Training generally occurs in a community mental health center setting. During their practicum and internship training experiences, students gain experience in general therapy and assessment skills. The general focus of the training program is to ensure that the student receives a broad-based, foundational training experience in therapy and/or assessment techniques. Students generally work in general outpatient mental health settings but sometimes work in more focused units that treat addiction, children and adolescents, severely mentally ill, etc. Although the department primarily has a cognitive-behavioral orientation, students are often exposed to multiple theoretical orientations and intervention techniques during their practicum/internship experience.

Students begin applying to training sites toward the end of their first year of full-time study and begins the practicum/internship experience at the beginning of their second year of full-time studies. The student will accumulate a minimum of 700 hours clinical experience by the conclusion of their graduate studies. The student's advisor will work closely with the student and program director to facilitate placements that are consistent with the student's training needs and, where possible, areas of interest. Students are only placed at department pre-approved clinical sites. The Program Director ensures that practicum experiences are appropriately supervised and structured to meet the training needs of students.