Clinical Training Area

Program Philosophy and Accreditation

The PhD program in clinical psychology is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of American Psychological Associationa and by the Psychological Clinical Science Accreditation Systemb, and is a member of the Academy of Psychological Clinical Sciencec. Clinical science is defined as "a psychological science directed at the promotion of adaptive functioning; at the assessment, understanding, amelioration, and prevention of human problems in behavior, affect, cognition, or health; and at the application of knowledge in ways consistent with scientific evidence."

In particular, MU's Clinical Training PhD Program is designed to provide

  1. Training in the major substantive areas and methodology of the science of psychology,
  2. Intensive training in the subject matter of clinical psychology as well as in empirically supported assessment and intervention approaches,
  3. Research competence and background in theoretical and applied problem areas of clinical psychology, and
  4. A clinical scientist orientation that embraces both an appreciation of and a commitment to the advancement of clinical psychology as a science.

a Questions related to the program’s APA-accredited status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation:
Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation
American Psychological Association
750 1st Street, NE
Washington, DC 20002
Phone: (202) 336-5979

b Questions related to the program’s PCSAS-accredited status should be directed to the Psychological Clinical Science Accreditation System:
Psychological Clinical Science Accreditation System
Richard M. McFall, Executive Director
1101 East Tenth Street, IU Psychology Building
Bloomington, IN 47405-7007
Phone#: 812-856-2570


Training Experiences

The program seeks to prepare students for careers in clinical science including research, teaching, and service in universities, medical centers, clinics, hospitals, and similar agencies. Students receive training in research skills and in empirically supported approaches to assessment, prevention and intervention. This training occurs via course work, involvement in research labs from the very start of the program, weekly brownbag seminars where faculty and students present research findings, and clinical practica beginning in the second year. Although extensive training in both basic and applied aspects of clinical psychology is emphasized, the major goal is the training of clinical scientists. Therefore, students whose primary interest is applied training would not be a good match with our program.

Clinical faculty have either an emphasis on child psychopathology (child track) or adult psychopathology (adult track). Several adjunct faculty and faculty from other departmental areas (developmental, social/personality, cognition & neuroscience and quantitative) also participate in the training of clinical students.

The Psychological Services Clinic, located in the Psychology Building, is a community-based outpatient facility that serves as the primary clinical practicum training site for the clinical program. A variety of psychological services (assessment, consultation, and individual, group and family therapy) are provided to people and agencies in the University and Columbia communities, largely by students in the program under the close supervision of the clinical faculty and psychologists on staff at the Clinic (currently four doctoral-level clinical psychologists). In addition, clinical training is available at various off-site placements (e.g., Fulton State Hospital).

Admission to the Clinical Program

Our major goal is the training of clinical scientists. Therefore, we admit students who have a strong interest in conducting research and applying this knowledge to clinical problems. Applicants whose primary interest is applied training (i.e., primarily or only interested in seeing clients, but not in research) would not be a good match with our program.

The Clinical program adheres to a mentorship model whereby students are admitted who have research interest that are similar to the research interests of one or more of the Clinical faculty. Therefore, applicants are urged to provide detailed information regarding research background and interests on their application. A formal interview, either in person or by telephone, is required for finalists.

Financial support is available to students in the form of teaching assistantships, research assistantships, and clerkships, which are paid clinical experiences through the University and community agencies.

For statistics on application rates, student activities, internship placement, time to degree, completion rates and program costs, please see the attached Public Disclosure Data.

Dual Emphasis Degree Program in Child Clinical and Developmental Training

Students who wish to pursue a graduate degree with training in both clinical (child track) and developmental psychology may do so through the pursuit of the Dual Emphasis option. Students in this program will be involved in training that bridges the two areas of developmental psychology and child-clinical psychology. This program will be the equivalent of training in the area of developmental psychopathology with the added benefits of training and practice in child-clinical psychology. To pursue the joint program, students must be officially admitted into either the clinical or developmental training areas within the Department of Psychological Sciences. Then, at the end of their first year of study, students must apply to the other training area. Once accepted into both areas, notification of the dual degree must be made to Office of Graduate Studies.

Choosing a Clinical Psychology Program. Information provided by the Council of University Directors of Clinical Psychology.174.88 KB
Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data F15 .pdf750.62 KB

Faculty and Labs

Debora Bell
Youth Anxiety and Depression Lab
Our lab examines cognitive, behavioral and interpersonal experiences that may serve as risk or protective factors anxiety and/or depression in youth.
Charles M. Borduin
Family Assessment Lab
Our lab has several lines of research focusing on youths and their social systems: development & dissemination of family-based treatments for serious juvenile offenders; identification of risk factors for youth criminality; & sequelae of different forms of maltreatment in children and adolescents.
Shawn E. Christ
Clinical Neuropsychology Lab
Research in the CNL lab focuses on neurocognitive development in children with and without neurodevelopmental disorders(e.g, autism, phenylketonuria). Methods utilized include behavioral measures and neuroimaging techniques (fMRI, sMRI, DTI).
Ian Gizer
Gene-Brain-Behavior Relations Lab
Research in the lab focuses on genetic contributions to the development of externalizing spectrum disorders such as substance dependence, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, and antisocial behavior.
Kristin M. Hawley
Child & Adolescent Therapy Research Group
John G. Kerns
Cognitive and Emotional Control Lab
Research on the nature of cognitive and emotional control and their role in schizophrenia
Denis M. McCarthy
Alcohol Cognitions Lab
Thomas M. Piasecki
Drug Motivation Laboratory
Kenneth J. Sher
Alcohol, Health, and Behavior Laboratory
Wendy Slutske
Genetic Epidemiology Laboratory
Timothy Trull
Personality and Emotion Laboratory
Lab Flyer