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Counseling and Psychological Services

About the Internship

UVa CAPS’ American Psychological Association accredited program provides doctoral internship training in Health Service Psychology (HSP) within a multidisciplinary university counseling center context, and in a manner consistent with Professional Psychology in Health Care Services: A Blueprint for Education and Training (APA, 2013). Accordingly, psychologists such as those functioning within university counseling centers are recognized as Health Service Providers if they are duly trained and experienced in the delivery of preventive, assessment, diagnostic and therapeutic intervention services relative to the psychological and physical health of consumers. The internship program offers three full-time, 12 month positions.

Our internship program provides a structured and progressive training experience with the explicit goals of fostering the development of core clinical and counseling skills, as well as professional attitudes and behavior. It is the intention of the training program to develop compassionate and authentic professionals prepared for general health service psychology practice in a wide range of clinical settings, with a focus on individual and group psychotherapy, crisis intervention, supervision provision, and outreach and university consultation. CAPS also nurtures the development of individual interests and beginning specialties, and particularly values an affirming attitude towards all forms of diversity. We fully support the training of psychologists who are competent to serve all members of the public as described in Preparing Professional Psychologists to Serve a Diverse Public (APA, 2013) as an essential component of our profession.

Our training is based on a developmental-practitioner approach, which builds on the knowledge and skills that interns acquire during doctoral training and prepares them for entry level positions as health service psychologists. Training activities primarily focus on experiential components, supported by didactic material, to facilitate learning in the provision of clinical services to students, outreach and consultation with University community members, utilization of research and scholarly material to support evidenced-based practice, and provision of supervision. Interns further develop knowledge, skills and attitudes to support professional functioning in the areas of ethics, cultural and individual difference, use and provision of supervision, inter-professional and interdisciplinary clinical consultation, communication/ interpersonal skills, and overall professional values and attitudes. Our individual psychotherapy training focuses upon the application of contemporary attachment and emotion informed brief therapy models, and group therapy is predominately informed by process and psycho-educational models of treatment.

Noted strengths of our program include training in contemporary brief relational psychotherapies, group therapy, outreach and community consultation, risk assessment and crisis intervention, supervision provision, as well as integration of cultural training into all aspects of the program. In addition, as members of multidisciplinary treatment teams, interns benefit from the opportunity to hone clinical skills in a collegial atmosphere that recognizes the complexity of human experience and values multiple clinical perspectives.

The activities listed are the core training activities required of all interns. Interns are expected to work 40-50 hours per week.

(The American Psychological Association can be contacted by mail at 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002, and by phone at (202) 336-5979.)

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