Program Aims, Competencies, and Elements

The Ph.D. Program has adopted a series of three aims, nine competencies and related elements designed to implement its philosophy and meet the overall program aims. The competencies are met operationally through various academic and training activities that include courses, practicum and internship placements, and supervised research experiences. Multiple data sources are used to assess outcomes relative to these competencies. These competencies specify attitudes, knowledge, and skills that students are expected to achieve by the time they graduate from the program and perceptions, feelings, and professional achievements alumni are expected to report as they pursue their profession. The elements are the expected specific outcomes for each of the respective competencies.

AIM 1: To educate students to conduct applied research and to be grounded in, and contribute to, the knowledge base of psychology.

AIM 2: To prepare students to be effective professional psychologists skilled at evaluating theoretical and scientific knowledge, psychological functioning and providing efficacious interventions with diverse clients across a range of settings. We define diversity in keeping with Principle E of the 2010 amended version of the 2002 “Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct”, as reflecting individual, role, and cultural differences, including those based on age, gender, gender identity, race, ethnicity, culture, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, language, socioeconomic status, and other differences.

AIM 3
: To prepare ethical and responsible professional psychologists who are able to work collaboratively with other professionals, as well as take on multiple roles, in varied settings and develop attitudes and skills essential for lifelong learning and productivity.

Competency 1: Research

1a: Demonstrate the substantially independent ability to formulate research or other scholarly activities that are of sufficient quality and rigor to contribute to the scientific, psychological or professional knowledge base.
1b: Conduct research or other scholarly activities.
1c: Critically evaluate and disseminate research or other scholarly activities via professional presentations and publications at the local, regional, and national level.

Competency 2: Ethical and Legal Standards

2a: Be knowledgeable of and act in accordance with the current version of APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct.
2b: Be knowledgeable of and act in accordance with relevant laws, regulations, rules, and policies governing health service psychology at the organizational, state, regional, and federal levels.
2c: Be knowledgeable of and act in accordance with relevant professional standards and guidelines.
2d: Conduct self in an ethical manner in all professional activities.

Competency 3: Individual and Cultural Diversity

3a: An understanding of how their own personal/cultural history may affect how they understand and interact with people different from themselves.
3b: Knowledge of the current theoretical and empirical knowledge base as it relates to addressing diversity, including research, training, supervision/consultation, and service.
3c: Ability to integrate awareness and knowledge of individual and cultural differences in the conduct of professional roles (e.g., research, services, and other professional activities).

Competency 4: Professional Values and Attitudes

4a: Behave in ways that reflect the values and attitudes of psychology, including integrity, deportment, professional identity, accountability, lifelong learning, and concern for the welfare of others.
4b: Engage in self-reflection; engage in activities to maintain and improve performance, well-being and professional effectiveness.
4c: Actively seek and demonstrate openness and responsiveness to feedback and supervision.
4d: Respond professionally in increasingly complex situations with an increasingly greater degree of independence as they progress through levels of training.

Competency 5: Communication and Interpersonal Skills

5a: Develop and maintain effective relationships with a wide range of individuals, including colleagues, communities, organizations, supervisors, and those receiving professional services.
5b: Produce and comprehend oral, nonverbal, and written communications; demonstrate a grasp of professional language and concepts.
5c: Demonstrate effective interpersonal skills and the ability to manage difficult communication well.

Competency 6: Assessment

6a: Select and apply assessment methods that draw from empirical literature; collect relevant data using multiple sources and methods.
6b: Interpret assessment results to inform case conceptualization, classification, and recommendations.
6c: Communicate, orally and in written documentation, the findings and implications of an assessment in an accurate and effective manner sensitive to a diverse range of clients and audiences.

Competency 7: Intervention

7a: Establish and maintain effective relationships with the recipients of psychological services.
7b: Develop evidence-based intervention plans specific to the service delivery goals.
7c: Implement interventions informed by the current scientific literature.
7d: Apply the relevant research literature to critical decision-making.
7e: Evaluate intervention effectiveness and adapt intervention goals and methods consistent with ongoing evaluation.
7f: Evaluate intervention effectiveness.

Competency 8: Supervision

8a: Demonstrate knowledge of supervision models and practices.
8b: Demonstrate the ability to integrate supervisor feedback into professional practice

Competency 9: Consultation, Interprofessional Interdisciplinary skills

9a: Demonstrate knowledge and respect for the roles and perspectives of other professions.
9b: Demonstrate knowledge of consultation models and practices.

In addition to specific aims, competencies, and elements, the program also aims to instruct all students on domain-specific knowledge, that is the basic content areas that comprise the field of clinical psychology. Consistent with APA Accreditation standards, the program considers it critically important to train and evaluate student effectiveness in the following areas:

Domain-Specific Knowledge

Category 1: History & Systems of Psychology and Basic Content Areas in Scientific Psychology

1a: History & Systems of Psychology
1b: Affective Aspects of Behavior
1c: Biological Aspects of Behavior
1d: Cognitive Aspects of Behavior
1e: Developmental Aspects of Behavior
1f: Social Aspects of Behavior

Category 2: Research and Quantitative Methods and Advanced Integrative Knowledge in Scientific Psychology

2a: Advanced Integrative Knowledge of Basic Discipline-Specific Content Issues
2b: Research Methods
2c: Quantitative Methods
2e: Psychometrics