Student Competencies

The clinical program offered in Fresno is designed to train students to be competent in nine broad areas:

  • Scientific Psychology (Social and Developmental Psychology, History and Systems, Biological Science, and Cognitive and Affective Bases of Behavior) links the core sciences with contemporary thought, research and practice in psychology
  • Intervention Skills enable students to plan, implement, and evaluate their work within a cultural framework
  • Ethics and Professional Practice proficiency prepares students to effectively and ethically intervene in a variety of settings, using a variety of techniques and modalities
  • Relationship Skills enable students to make interpersonal connections, maintain professional boundaries as appropriate to the multicultural context in which they are operating, and engage in ethical and professional behavior
  • Diversity Competence involves developing awareness of students’ own culture and the cultures of others as mediators of one’s world view;
  • Assessment and Diagnostic Skills (diagnosis, interviewing, testing, and report writing) enable students to engage in an ongoing process of evaluating their practice, research and teaching
  • Lifelong Learning engages students in self-evaluation and life-long learning;
  • Supervision and Management enables students to provide good clinical and professional feedback to others and effectively manage programs, and establish practice settings
  • Research and Evaluation prepares students to critically evaluate the research literature in service of clinical goals and to conduct applied research and program evaluation

Professional Training and Internship Opportunities

The PsyD program emphasizes the integration of academic coursework with clinical practice. In order to integrate clinical skills with material learned in the classroom, students typically participate in a professional training placement beginning in the first year. Clinical training placements completed prior to the full-time predoctoral internship are known as practicum experiences. Students train in diverse settings, gaining experience with different populations in order to ensure a broad base of training.

Students complete a 10-12 hour/week (minimum) practicum in Alliant’s Psychological Services Center (PSC) in the second semester of their first year. Second-year clinical PsyD students spend 20 hours per week in a practicum at the PSC on the Fresno campus. Third-year clinical PsyD students spend 20 hours per week in a community practicum.  Clinical training coursework is graded on a CR/NC basis. Students receive at least one hour of individual supervision each week in all practicum training settings.

Students in field placement are required to meet at least once a week for an hour of individual supervision and to also meet in a group supervision setting that may or may not include their primary supervisor (depending on requirement). Internships also require weekly face-to-face supervision with the assigned primary supervisor as well as the group supervision requirement.

Assignments to the practica are accomplished with guidance from the Office of Professional Training which screens each placement site for quality and appropriateness to our students’ training needs. Each site is evaluated annually by the students and the OPT staff.

Fourth year students are responsible for obtaining an appropriate yearlong, full-time internship (2,000 hours) and are assisted in this process by our faculty and the Office of Professional Training. For many students in the fourth year, the internship stipend covers the costs of tuition and living expenses. The Golden State Psychological Internship Association, a consortium of local APA-accredited internship sites is administrated from the Alliant – Fresno campus.

International students should discuss regulations and issues related to stipends well in advance with the Director of Professional Training.