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Philosophy and Aims of the Program

The Clinical Psychology training program offers the Doctor of Philosophy degree through integrated academic, scientific, and professional training. During the course of the PhD program, students also earn a Master of Science degree in Psychology. The program provides students with intensive instruction in the theoretical framework of psychology and broad experience in methods of practice in clinical psychology.

Our program is defined by the scientist-practitioner model. We believe that clinical psychologists should be both scientists – knowledgeable in formulating and solving scientific problems and practitioners – experienced in the use of empirically supported clinical techniques.

Within the context of a general clinical psychology program, the Department of Psychology offers focused training in neuropsychology, health psychology, and psychopathology. The training emphasis of the program involves a biopsychosocial approach to the understanding and treatment of abnormal behavior and an emphasis on training in evidence-based assessment and intervention.. The training tracks prepare students for success in teaching, clinical service, and research within medical, mental health, and academic settings.. Students receive training in a broad range of assessment procedures and intervention approaches, with an emphasis on empirically supported interventions. Students gain experience with a range of medical, psychiatric, and neuropsychiatric populations through clinical and research activities within the greater Chicagoland area. Our graduates are well-prepared clinicians and researchers, thanks to their solid grounding in theory, practice, and research. The training ensures the development of broad-based clinical skills and encourages close, cooperative work with other healthcare specialists in the context of interprofessional teams, such as pediatricians, internists, neurologists, neurosurgeons, geriatricians, and psychiatrists.

The clinical psychology program enjoys full accreditation status by the American Psychological Association (APA). We strive to maintain a balance between academic course work, research training, and supervised clinical practice. In designing the core curriculum, the department follows the recommendations of the Committee on Accreditation. The course curriculum includes a sequence of required courses that expose students to the current body of knowledge in the following areas:

  • Biological aspects of behavior
  • Cognitive and affective aspects of behavior
  • Social aspects of behavior
  • History and systems of psychology
  • Psychological measurement
  • Research methodology
  • Techniques of data analysis

Students in the areas of health psychology, psychopathology, and neuropsychology take additional specialty courses in these areas.  A sequence of clinical practice and participation in research round out the pre-internship years.