Applicants to the Postdoctoral Training Program

Program Philosophy

The Clinical Psychology Training Consortium offers advanced training at the postdoctoral level for qualified individuals. The primary purpose of the fellowship is to provide a training program that assures the development of proficiency in a specific area of clinical psychology, with emphasis on clinical research and clinical service.  In order to graduate from the program as a postdoctoral fellow and receive a certificate of completion, the fellow must complete a full calendar year in the fellowship with a doctoral degree.

The exact nature of training (e.g., direct care, exposure to ongoing faculty research, direct research involvement of the postdoctoral fellow, etc.) is decided on an individual basis by each of the trainees and their faculty mentors. It is the philosophy of the Postdoctoral Fellowship Training Program that all postdoctoral fellows in clinical psychology should have both clinical and research exposure during their training. However, the fellowships vary across settings such that in one instance research goals can be primary and clinical goals secondary (as in our Investigator-funded and Institutional-funded fellowship positions), while in another, clinical goals can be primary and research goals secondary (as in our APA-accredited fellowship positions). Allocation of time between research and clinical activities is negotiated in advance of accepting the fellowship. The allocation should be in keeping with the goals of the individual postdoctoral fellow.

The Director of the Training Consortium and the Track Coordinator oversee the fellowships across all the hospitals. All postdoctoral fellows meet with the Director once per year and more often as necessary. The Training Committee sets general policy, but most training issues fall to the individual faculty mentor(s)/supervisor(s) and track (i.e., Adult, Child, Health Psychology/Behavioral Medicine, and Neuropsychology) committees to decide. Each faculty mentor has the role of overseeing the specific goals of the trainee.

Specific individualized training activities are formulated at the beginning of the fellowship with supervisor(s). Evaluation is based on a competency-based format which emphasizes acquisition of special clinical skills and/or research abilities. Training objectives are achieved through an apprenticeship model where the postdoctoral fellow works closely with a faculty member in the provision of clinical services and/or in conducting research. The faculty member serves as primary supervisor and role model, and the close supervisory relationship permits the postdoctoral fellow to develop clinical and/or research skills as well as role identity. The amount of individual and group supervision varies across fellowships. The minimum amount of individual supervision is two hours per week. General guidelines for the research and clinical options are described below.

Research Emphasis. Postdoctoral fellows with a research emphasis spend at least 60% and up to 100% of their time on research. The primary goal of the research track is to develop both the knowledge base and the skills to begin an independent research career within the chosen area of emphasis. This will include: 1) a critical understanding of the literature and the current issues in the field; and 2) the ability to independently develop a specific research project. Postdoctoral fellows whose positions have a primary research focus are most often provided with experience working on grant-funded projects. Close supervision is provided for experimental design, research techniques and grant writing.  Grant writing is a focus of the training in some, but not all, of the fellowships.

Clinical Emphasis. Postdoctoral fellows with a clinical emphasis spend approximately 50-80% time conducting clinical work. The three goals of the Postdoctoral Fellowship Training Program are:  (1) To produce psychologists who demonstrate an advanced competency level with regard to evidence-based practice and the provision of effective psychological services within health service settings; (2) To produce psychologists who exhibit an advanced competency level with regard to professional skills/conduct and ethical standards (consistent with APA principles and local regulations) to function effectively as independent practitioners within health service settings; and (3) To produce psychologists who exhibit an advanced competency level with regard to the basic knowledge and skills of research to function effectively as scientist-practitioners within health service settings.

Questions related to the program's 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 / E-mail: