Psychological Services Clinic
The MU Psychological Services Clinic (PSC) provides a wide array of mental health services. These include individual, relationship, and family therapy, and intellectual and psychological assessment. Clinic staff also consult with school, other clinics, and service agencies.
The PSC provides services to both children and adults. All sessions, including the initial intake appointment, are confidential to the full extent provided by law.
To inquire further about our services, please call 573-882-4677.
The Psychological Services Clinic’s mission is to:
1. Provide high-quality, affordable evidence-based assessment and treatment services to youth, adults, couples, families, and groups in Columbia, MO and the surrounding community,
2. Provide high-quality training for University of Missouri doctoral trainees in clinical psychology and related disciplines in planning, administering, and evaluating empirically-supported assessment and treatment services, and
3. Support research that advances understanding and effective promotion of psychological health.
The PSC serves as a training clinic for Mizzou doctoral students earning their Ph.D. in clinical psychology. Services are typically provided through a team approach in which students work closely with a supervisor who is a Ph.D. level licensed psychologist affiliated with the University of Missouri-Columbia Department of Psychological Sciences. The PSC provides a wide-range of assessment and therapeutic services (see Services Offered).
If you are looking for the Center for Evidence-Based Youth Mental Health, please go to: http://youthmentalhealth.missouri.edu.
If you would like to make a donation to the PSC, please go to: https://donatetomu.missouri.edu/givedirect/Item.aspx?item_id=194
*Note: The PSC is closed when the University of Missouri is closed, including on University Holidays and University closings due to severe weather.
Services Offered and Fees:
Graduate students in clinical psychology, as well as some clinical faculty members, provide year-round services at the clinic. Services include individual therapy for children, adolescents, and adults; family therapy; marital/couples therapy; and group therapy. Assessment services include behavioral assessment, intellectual and psychological testing for children, adolescents, and adults. Ph.D.-level providers and supervisors at the PSC serve on several managed care panels, including the University’s managed care program.
We provide group, couples, family, and individual therapy with children and adults, with an emphasis on evidence-based, goal focused therapy. This means that treatment is typically brief, often 10 session or fewer, using treatment approaches that have been supported by research. Clinicians at the PSC use interventions such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, behavioral activation, motivational interviewing, dialectical behavior therapy, interpersonal therapy, exposure therapy, behavioral parent training, and behavioral couple’s therapy.
Please note we do not provide crisis or immediate (i.e. same day) services. For most of our services, it takes some time before we can schedule an appointment, as we do often have a waitlist. If you need to see someone right away, please go to the Emergencies section for a list of crisis numbers.
Individual and Couples Therapy for Adults
We provide a wide range of psychotherapy services for adults. Adults commonly seek individual therapy at our clinic for academic problems, ADHD, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, posttraumatic stress, tics/Tourette’s, career issues, chronic pain, depression, bipolar, divorce/separation, drug/alcohol use, family problems, grief/loss, sexual problems and a number of other stressors. In addition, we also offer couples therapy for difficulties among couples. We conduct comprehensive, standardized diagnostic interviews with adult clients as part of treatment to ensure that our clients receive the most appropriate treatment for their needs.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy
We also have a dialectical behavior therapy program at the PSC. For more information regarding DBT, see the Dialectical Behavior Therapy section.
We offer specialized assessment and treatment for individuals struggling with alcohol/drug addiction issues.
We also have a psychiatry resident who provides medication management services once per week, typically Thursday afternoons. Clients must also concurrently be in therapy at the PSC in order to utilize this service.
Youth services at the PSC are offered through the Center for Evidence-Based Youth Mental Health. For more information, please see the section on the Center for Evidence-Based Youth Mental Health.
The PSC accepts most insurance and our faculty are on the provider panels of several managed care companies (including health maintenance organizations and preferred provider organizations). Clinic fees are charged at the rate of $200 for the first (intake) session for psychotherapy or psychiatric consultation, and $160 for subsequent sessions. Half-session psychotherapy sessions are also available as deemed appropriate by the clinician and supervisor, and are $80. Psychiatry consults are also $80. Assessments are charged at the standard session fee. Group therapy charges are $10 per week. We also provide fee assistance with appropriate documentation of income to those who cannot afford the standard fees.
Clients who no-show or cancel with less than 24 hours notice of the session are charged a $20 administrative fee.
Center for Evidence Based Youth Mental Health:
We provide evidence-based assessment and treatment for children, adolescents, and their families. Children and adolescents seen at the PSC experience a variety of emotional, behavioral, and academic difficulties. The PSC offers evidence-based assessment and treatment of the following:
- Anxiety, including Specific Fears and Phobias, Social Anxiety Disorder, Separation Anxiety Disorder, and Generalized Anxiety Disorder;
- Depression and mood related problems;
- Disruptive Behavior and noncompliance;
- Family conflict and parent-child relationship problems;
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD and OC spectrum concerns);
- School Refusal;
- Social Concerns and Social Skills deficits;
- Tourettes, tics, and related disorders (e.g., hair-pulling, skin-picking);
The PSC also provides comprehensive, diagnostic assessments with children and caregivers and assistance with locating an appropriate mental health provider if we are unable to provide services.
For more information on the Center for Evidence-Based Youth Mental Health, please visit our website at http://youthmentalhealth.missouri.edu.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy:
The Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) program provides state-of-the art services for individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder. DBT has been shown in numerous controlled research trials to be effective in reducing symptoms and improving quality of life. In our program, we strive to deliver the treatment as it was developed and tested. Thus, we offer all components of DBT treatment: (1) Individual therapy one hour per week; (2) group skill training two hours per week, and (3) telephone coaching. A fourth component of DBT is a two-
hour weekly consultation and supervision meeting for our DBT clinicians. We do not accept applicants who want individual DBT treatment only or those who want group skills training only. Most clients are expected to participate for a full year.
Entry into the DBT program is a big commitment of time and resources for both clients andthe program. To ensure a good fit between client needs and our services, we use the following multi-step evaluation process:
- 1) First, a brief phone interview is conducted by our clinic assistant director to provide an overview of current Borderline Personality symptoms and potential eligibility for the program.
- 2) If the applicant appears to be a good fit for the program, he or she will be invited to come in to the clinic to complete a series of questionnaires to further evaluate eligibility.
- 3) After the questionnaire session, the information provided by the applicant is reviewed and a preliminary determination is made. The applicant will receive a phone call
indicating either (a) that he or she has been placed on the waitlist, or (b) that he or she does not appear to be a good candidate for our program. Alternate treatment options will
be discussed with applicants who are found to be ineligible for the program.
- 4) Once assigned to a DBT therapist, applicants receive a structured diagnostic interview to evaluate more formally for Borderline Personality Disorder. It is our policy to discuss the results of the interview directly with the client, and to give the diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder if we believe it applies. We also give an in-depth orientation to the
program during these initial evaluation sessions, so that prospective clients can decide whether the program is likely to be a good fit for them.
- 5) Applicants are assigned to therapists according to numerous criteria, including the training needs of our clinicians. We do not necessarily take applicants in the order of application.
- 6) Once the evaluation/orientation sessions are complete, a final determination is made between the clinician and the applicant about fit for the program. If both agree that fit is
good, the applicant signs a treatment contract and formal treatment begins.
If you are interested in the DBT program, please call (573) 882-4677 to get more information or set up a phone screening.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What happens when I call the PSC for an appointment?
You will first speak with one of our office staff (Judy, Lynn, Onjenae, or Audrey), who will ask you a series of standard questions we ask of everyone. After this initial phone call, you can expect to be contacted by someone at our clinic within 3 business days to follow-up with you. If you have insurance, your information will be forwarded on to our clinic faculty (our licensed psychologists) at this time. If you do not have insurance, the office staff will ask you if you would like to see one of our graduate clinicians. If so, your information will be passed on to the Assistant Director, who will call you back to ask you additional questions so that we can determine if we can meet your needs and eventually match you with one of our graduate clinicians. At this time, you will be placed on a waiting list and then we will call you when one of our graduate clinicians has an opening.
Please note that it may be a few days to several months before we may have a therapist who can see you. This varies as a result of student and supervisor availability.
If we do not have expertise or ability to meet your needs, we will provide you with the names and number of other agencies or therapists that may be a better fit for you.
What should I expect if I decide to get therapy at the PSC?
At the first session, you'll be asked to fill out standard paperwork and some questionnaire measures before you meet with the therapist. The first few sessions are typically dedicated to getting to know you and figure out how we can best serve your needs. In addition, you'll also meet with another clinician who will conduct comprehensive, diagnostic interviews with you in order to help your therapist formulate the treatment plan.
Typically, therapy sessions are once per week for approximately 50 minutes, but this may be more frequent depending on the concern. Because we focus on brief, research-supported treatment, clients can expect to be asked to do some form of practice or work outside of the therapy session in order to increase therapy benefits. Towards the end of treatment, therapists and clients often decide to "taper" off sessions to either a biweekly or monthly basis.
What should I bring with me to my first appointment?
We recommend bringing a copy of your insurance card (if applicable), a list of your current medications and dosages, and names and contact information for previous treatment providers. This is because the therapist may ask you to sign a release for us to contact your previous provider. In addition, if you (or your child) has had a previous psychological evaluations or testing, such as from the Thompson Center or MU Assessment and Consultation Clinic, we ask that you bring these records.
Everything I tell my therapist is private, right?
Yes, everything is confidential, but with some exceptions, which your therapist will review with you at the first session. The first exception is if we are concerned that you will seriously harm yourself or another person. We are also mandated reports, meaning that we are legally required to report any suspicions of child abuse and neglect, vulnerable adult abuse, and elder abuse. The last exception is if we are ordered by a court of law to disclose information about a client.
Hours and Contact information:
The main office number at the PSC is (573) 882-4677.
We are located at:
211 South 8th Street
Columbia, MO 65211
Psychology Building – 8th Street entrance
Our hours are:
- Monday: 9am-7pm
- Tuesday: 9am-8pm
- Wednesday: 9am-8pm
- Thursday: 9am-8pm
- Friday: 9am-5pm
PSC Closing Policies
The PSC is closed when the University of Missouri is closed, including on University Holidays and University closings due to severe weather.
University Holidays include:
- Martin Luther King Day
- Memorial Day
- Labor Day
- Thanksgiving and the Friday following Thanksgiving
- Christmas Eve*
- Christmas Day
- New Year’s Eve
- New Year’s Day
*Please note that we often close from Christmas through New Year’s.
Debora Bell, PhD
Nicole Karcher, M.A.
This page is under development.
The PSC does not offer crisis services and we do not have staff on call to address these situations. If you are having an emergency, please call one of the services listed below.
For Mizzou students, the Counseling Center has walk-in crisis services available at 119 Parker Hall. You can either call at (573) 882-6601 or just walk-in. For more information, go to http://counseling.missouri.edu/.
If you are not a Mizzou student, you can dial 911 or go to the University Hospital ER (or nearest emergency room).
In addition, the following crisis numbers below are available for anyone:
- Columbia Crisis Line: (573) 445-5035 or 1-800-395-2132
- Missouri Crisis Line: 1-888-761-HELP (1-800-761-4357)
- National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433)
- Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255)
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