Clinical Training Sequence - PhD

The CCAP sequence of clinical training follows a developmental trajectory aimed intentionally to increase core competencies from basic to advanced levels throughout the program.

PhD first year

In the first semester of the PhD program, students are introduced to psychotherapy by taking Foundations in Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy (PSYC*6580). This course emphasizes major systems of psychotherapy including cognitive, behavioural, psychodynamic, client-centred play therapy, group therapy and family systems therapy. Students are also introduced to and practice basic therapy skills. In the first year of the PhD, students also take a two semester CBT Practicum (PSYC*7994) with didactic, practice and supervision components within the CPS. Students are expected to have engaged with a minimum of one therapy case by course cessation.  Students also enroll in PSYC*7991 at CPS at some point during their PhD 1 year and carry at least one additional therapy case as well as have substantive involvement in one assessment across the year.

PhD second year

Advanced Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy, PSYC*6610 builds on basic intervention skills in PSYC*6580 with an emphasis on intervention in complex circumstances (e.g., developmental trauma, continued discussion of diversity considerations) and a broadened introduction to third wave cognitive therapies (e.g., DBT and ACT) as well as other systems of intervention (e.g., Emotionally Focused Family Therapy). In this year, students are also typically enrolled in PSYC*7993, a two-day per week, 400-hour external practicum in a child and adolescent mental health facility (typically hospital or community clinic based). Typically, this practicum will have a mixed intervention and assessment focus. In the Spring term, students complete the written and oral components of the PhD Qualifying Exam, one goal of which is to establish clinical competence commensurate with the PhD.

PhD third year

In the third year of the PhD program, students complete the Professional Development, Supervision, and Consultation course (PSYC*7996) with a focus on the Supervisory Relationship, Models of Supervision, Supervision Skills as well as broader focus on professional development at this stage of training including a focus on consultation, preparation for internship and eventual registration as a psychologist. Students will become familiar with the professional literature relevant to supervision, gain competency with ethical, culturally-competent clinical supervision, and explore their own development as a supervisor. Senior PhD students also return to CPS for PSYC*7991. Students are expected to carry 1-2 therapy cases and have involvement in at least one assessment case per year. (The unique balance of assessment and therapy activities will vary depending on the given student’s training goals/gaps/needs which are closely monitored by the Clinic Director and DCT). Leadership on IPIT Team is an expectation for at least two semesters during PhD 3 and/or 4 as is involvement in supervised supervision of junior colleagues in assessment, intake or therapy. Professional skills by the end of PhD 3 or 4 should be rated as, “ready for internship”. Students who do not achieve this level of competence will be required to complete remedial clinical work until this level of professional competency is acquired.  

PhD fourth/fifth year

Clinical Internship (PSYC*8000) a full year internship in a CPA accredited site is completed in the fourth or fifth year of the PhD program. Students are expected to apply to CPA or APA accredited internship sites through the APPIC match process. In order to be determined to be ready to apply for internship, a student must consult with the DCT to ensure that they have the necessary clinical and academic preparation and are in good standing in the program. As well, students are expected to have completed all required academic courses and have their dissertation data collected by the end of October in the Fall semester before applying. Any application outside of these expectations (e.g., in rare instances where a student does not match or is unable, because of extenuating circumstances to participate in the APPIC match as expected) must be discussed and approved by the DCT. The Program has a detailed and explicit policy regarding applications to non-accredited internship sites to determine if the internship meets the quality standards needed to approve it as an internship for a student in the CCAP program.