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Counseling and Psychological Services

Training Activities: Supervision, Seminars, Cultural Training


Intake Supervision: Interns are paired with one of their individual psychotherapy supervisors for supervision of intake evaluations. Intake supervision begins as 1.5 hours weekly, and shifts to 1 hour weekly as the intern becomes more proficient with intake and report-writing skills (typically four to six weeks). The intake supervisor discusses intake assessments with the intern, directly observes at least one early intake, and reviews/co-signs written intake reports throughout the year. As each intern shifts to 1 weekly hour with the intake supervisor, the intern will utilize all three individual psychotherapy supervisors for discussion of intake assessment material.

Brief Screening Supervision: Interns receive supervision of brief screening assessments from one of their individual psychotherapy supervisors. The screening supervisor discusses screenings with the intern, directly listens in on at least one early screening, and reviews/co-signs the written screening write-ups. Such supervision shifts to an as-needed basis as the intern becomes more skilled at brief screenings.

Individual Psychotherapy Supervision: Interns are provided three hours per week of individual psychotherapy supervision, at least two of which are with staff psychologists. The selection of supervisors is based upon an assessment of intern interests as well as intern preferences, and is conducted during orientation in consultation with both interns and supervisors. Supervision includes discussion of case material, observation of video recorded sessions, and review/co-signing of clinical documentation.

Group Psychotherapy Supervision: Once groups are successfully underway, interns are provided with 1.5 hours per week of group psychotherapy supervision in a group format. Interns co-facilitating with another staff member also engage in weekly debriefing with that co-facilitator. Supervision includes discussion of group process and co-facilitator dynamics, observation and discussion of video recorded sessions, and review/co-signing of clinical documentation.

Emergency and Consult Service / Night Call Supervision: Interns provide emergency and consult service during day and night hours (see above for details), and supervision is provided by the assigned permanent staff person during those shifts. Supervision includes direct observation of interventions, co-interventions as needed, discussion of client presentations, and review/co-signing of clinical documentation.

Outreach Supervision: Supervision of outreach programming is provided by the permanent staff co-leader of the presentation, by the Assistant Director of Outreach Services, and/or a staff person with pertinent expertise providing guidance on particular outreach activities.

Assessment Supervision: : Interns choosing the SDAC rotation are provided with one hour per week of SDAC assessment supervision, provided by an SDAC staff psychologist. Interns choosing to complete two full batteries during the course of the year rather than a full rotation are provided with supervision by SDAC staff psychologists as needed.

Supervision of Supervision: Interns are provided with 1.5 hours of supervision for supervision provision in a group format.


Psychodynamic Seminar (1.5 hours weekly): This seminar focuses on contemporary psychodynamic concepts as well as attachment and affective neuroscience, directed toward effective psychotherapy treatment with college-age students. The seminar addresses progressive topics include understanding of self, assessment, conceptualization and intervention. Emphasis is on concepts specific to the adolescent developmental stage. Issues of diversity and difference as well as ethical challenges are also discussed. Discussion of all theoretical material is case based.

Brief Psychotherapy Workshop (1st three weeks, 2 hours daily): This intensive workshop addresses the application of contemporary concepts in brief psychotherapy, with particular attention to rapid and comprehensive assessment techniques. Topics progressively include brief dynamic formulation, establishment of foci, transference/ countertransference in brief psychotherapy, and termination. Concepts and techniques are explored through lecture, role-plays, use of audio/visual materials and case discussion.

Group Psychotherapy Seminar ((8 weeks during fall, 1 hour weekly): This seminar aims at developing a theoretical understanding of group process and group psychotherapy technique. The seminar begins with three weeks of didactic instruction focused on group design and formation, and resumes with integrated didactic/experiential curricula once group intakes and therapy are underway. Topics covered include group composition and member selection, creating a group therapy contract, stages of group development, group leadership and co-leadership concerns, understanding group dynamics, and working with process and thematic material. Discussion, lectures, viewing of sessions, and presentations of case material are included.

Special Topics Seminar (fall, 1.25 hours weekly): This seminar provides interns with an opportunity for focused learning regarding a variety of relevant university student topics. Each week a permanent staff person or invited speaker presents according to his or her area of specialization. Topics include but are not limited to suicidality, eating disorders, psychological trauma, psychopharmacological treatment and mindfulness. Each intern also presents one psychotherapy case toward the conclusion of this seminar, related to a particular area of clinical interest or emerging area of expertise.

Special Topics in Cultural Psychology Seminar (spring, 7 weeks, 1.5 hours weekly): This seminar offers an opportunity for interns to explore practical ways of manifesting cultural competencies in their supervision, individual and/or group psychotherapy, and assessment during their training experience in a college counseling center. Interns will address the close-knit relationships between culture and the ways clients and therapists make meaning of what they think, how they behave, and what they feel while working together in therapy. The interns will collaborate with the facilitators and Training Director to select a topic that will become the basis of the seminar, as well as the cultural project the interns will develop throughout the Spring semester. Readings, audio/visual materials, and small group discussion will be used throughout the seminar.

Supervision Seminar (last five weeks of fall, 1.5 hours weekly): This seminar provides interns an introduction to the theory and practice of clinical supervision and address concepts including models of supervision, parallel process, supervisory relationships, diversity issues, ethics, and facilitation of therapeutic skills. It is intended to prepare interns for a beginning level of competence in clinical supervision during the spring semester.

Cultural Training

Cultural training at CAPS is integrated into all aspects of the internship experience, including seminars, supervision and clinical staff meetings such as on-call/disposition and team meetings. Below are specific components of cultural training at CAPS.

Cultural Autobiography: The Psychodynamic Seminar begins with a four-week “understanding of self” process in which each intern creates a Cultural Autobiography. A specific format is provided and interns create the autobiography in consultation with facilitators. Discussion of autobiographical material and its relationship to issues of individual and cultural difference, as well as countertransference and therapist transference occurs during these meetings. Trainees may explore any or all aspects of their narrative at their discretion, and may discuss that material on a voluntary basis with supervisors as it relates to their clinical practice.

Cultural Formulations: Interns are expected to consistently integrate cultural factors that may impact the therapeutic relationship into case conceptualization and treatment provision. That process is formalized through three formulation presentations (see description below).

Cultural Project (18-20 hours): The cultural project enables interns to focus on a diversity topic of specific interest to them. Interns work with a staff mentor to conceptualize a project that integrates either clinical or outreach experience with empirical and theoretical work related to that topic. Interns provide a brief written summary of their project at the end of the internship year, as well as present findings within the Special Topics in Cultural Psychology seminar (see description below).

Special Topics in Cultural Psychology Seminar (spring, 7 weeks, 1.5 hours weekly): See description above.

Diversity & Difference Log: Once per month interns complete this cumulative summary. The purpose of this log is to promote interns' awareness of issues of individual and cultural difference. It is hoped that this will facilitate reflection and increase cultural knowledge and clinical skills to enhance therapeutic effectiveness with a wide spectrum of clients. Areas of difference to consider include but are not limited to race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, age, geographical affiliation, disability status, sexual orientation, religion, partner/marital status, socio-economic status, familial structure and particular values. Interns periodically review their monthly survey with the Training Director and are encouraged to gain clinical experience with those different from themselves in a variety of ways, as well as maintain a diverse caseload in the context of this training site.

Cultural Formulation Description

Case Formulations are opportunities for you to think about how your own cultural identifications and those of your client affect the interactional process in therapy, as well as influence how the initial problem is presented by the client and understood by you. It is also an opportunity to reflect on how diagnosis and course of treatment is affected by issues of similarity and difference within the treatment setting.

A cultural formulation takes into account the intersections of interactive cultural factors between you and the client, individual developmental history and dynamics, and family background in order to present the broadest and most comprehensive understanding of individual’s presenting symptoms and issues. The formulation clarifies therapeutic processes by highlighting the influences of various cultural factors that exist in the therapy relationship, including possible assumptions and biases that affect the outcome.

Over the course of the year you will present three formal case presentations; two during the spring semester of psychodynamic seminar and one in Special Topics. It is expected that you will consider cultural identities and affiliations as broadly defined, and as part of all case conceptualizations, including those during on-call meetings, treatment teams and supervision sessions. Dates for these presentations will be negotiated with seminar supervisor and the training director.

Cultural Project Description

The cultural project is designed with three purposes: 1) to promote intern self-development and professional growth by increasing knowledge, understanding and competence with clients from culturally diverse groups; 2) to enable interns to focus on a diversity-related issue of specific interest to them; and 3) to integrate outreach, clinical, research and theoretical work related to that topic. Over the course of the fall semester, students will designate a specific topic area related to diversity issues. “Specific” is a key term here, in that the project is intended to both be of interest to the individual intern, but is also intended to be an in-depth exploration of issues that might otherwise by covered in training or in academic programs in a more cursory way. In addition, the intern will be able to relate this project experience to other aspects of their CAPS internship, such as the Special Topics in Cultural Psychology Seminar and/or particular clinical cases. For the purposes of this project, “diversity” is defined broadly and can relate to age, gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic class, religious affiliation, or a wide range of other factors. The intern, with the help of a specific staff mentor, will design a project that will enable them to have a linked set of experiences related to that topic area.

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