Indiana University
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Training Overview

The internship training program at Indiana University School of Medicine emphasizes the development of sound conceptual and technical skills in psychotherapy, psychological assessment, and other related activities specific to each rotation. The program utilizes a scientist-practitioner model of training and reflects contemporary trends in the theory and practice of clinical psychology, while also including more traditional approaches. The members of the training faculty represent a wide range of theoretical orientations and specific clinical and research interests. The philosophy of the training program is theoretically eclectic, emphasizing the need for each intern to develop and expand his or her capacity to describe, understand, manage and treat a wide variety of clinical problems. Opportunities are available to obtain experience in a range of psychotherapeutic approaches including cognitive-behavioral, behavioral, as well as family therapy, consultation and crisis intervention.

The primary goal of the training program is the continued development of clinical sophistication and expertise. The structure of the program allows for reasonable flexibility and the internship requirements are relatively broad. The trainee is encouraged to involve him or herself in a rich and extensive clinical experience with a variety of patient populations, with attention to increased conceptual acumen as well as the expansion of specific clinical skills.

The Clinical Psychology Pre-Doctoral Internship Program at IU School of Medicine is a generalist program, meaning that each intern gains experience and supervision with a wide variety of populations and settings. Each intern is required to work with both inpatients and outpatients, as well as engage therapeutically with a range of ages, specifically children/adolescents and adults. Each intern receives supervision from a variety of supervisors and each intern completes three approved and assigned core rotations. Every intern is offered the opportunity to complete up to three pre-approved elective specialty rotations that relate to his or her specific interests and personal goals. Each intern is assisted in developing an individualized set of rotations, negotiated with and approved by the director that addresses his or her particular career and training goals.

All interns are appointed as house staff, with identical stipends and benefits. All interns attend Director’s Conference and Didactics on Wednesday afternoon. All interns participate in a variety of other training experiences during the year, such as case conferences and Quarterly Educational Seminars designed by the interns. One intern is selected by peers to be chief intern and that individual participates as the intern representative on the Internship Executive Committee.

Six positions are offered. Three interns apply for and are accepted in the generalist positions with open emphasis, while three interns apply for and are accepted in generalist positions with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) emphasis. The internship program offers two different selection numbers for candidates to use for application, one to apply for the generalist position with open emphasis, and the other to apply for the generalist position with ASD emphasis. These two categories are outlined as follows.

The generalist internship with open emphasis includes three four-month core rotations, with each intern completing at least one core rotation with an inpatient population at Carter Hospital and at least one outpatient population core rotation. Optional specialty rotations each extend up to four months in duration, up to one day per week, in an approved setting that best fits the intern’s career goals. The intern must complete at least one core or specialty rotation with an adult population and at least one core or specialty rotation with a child/adolescent population. The training director works collaboratively with each intern in the open emphasis positions to determine a set of rotations (core and specialty) that meet the needs and desires of the particular intern while attending to the requirements, expectations, and logistical capabilities of the internship program as a whole.  For purposes of describing the internship to external entities, the intern in an open emphasis position may specify the emphasis chosen (e.g., generalist position with pediatric psychology emphasis; generalist position with consultation-liaison emphasis) in the title of the position, provided that this description is approved by the training director.

The generalist internship with ASD emphasis includes three four-month core rotations, two of which take place (and are typically contiguous) in the Christian Sarkine Autism Treatment Center. The other core rotation is at Carter Hospital with an inpatient population.  Optional specialty rotations each extend up to four months in duration, up to one day per week, in an approved setting that best fits the intern’s career goals. The intern must complete at least one core or specialty rotation with an adult population and at least one core or specialty rotation with a child/adolescent population.  The training director works collaboratively with each intern in the ASD emphasis positions to determine a set of rotations (core and specialty) that meet the needs and desires of the particular intern while attending to the requirements, expectations and logistical capabilities of the internship program as a whole.

Intensive supervision is provided in all areas of the trainee's functioning. Each trainee's needs and level of competence determine the amount and kind of supervision that he or she receives. Primary supervision is provided by experienced doctoral-level clinical psychologists, but additional supervision is available from psychiatrists, social workers, and other professionals. Some supervision is provided through joint collaboration in which a trainee and a staff clinician function as co-therapists or co-evaluators. The trainee ordinarily functions as an integral part of the training unit and carries clinical responsibilities commensurate with his or her training needs and experience level.

A wide variety of formal didactic training is provided on a weekly basis.  The didactic topics include assessment, interventions, empirically-supported treatments, consultation, program evaluation, supervision, scholarly inquiry and professional development, cultural diversity, and ethics. Based on specific interests, up to four additional day long workshops in other areas can be arranged throughout the year. These special workshops are developed by the interns with assistance from the training director.