Carnegie Mellon University

2021-2022 Doctoral Psychology Practicum and Psychiatric Externship Program at CMU CaPS


Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon is a global research university with more than 12,000 students and 5,000 faculty and staff. Recognized for its world-class arts and technology programs, collaboration across disciplines, and innovative leadership of education in the fields of Business Administration, Computer Science, Engineering, Fine Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Public Policy & Information Systems, and Science, Carnegie Mellon is consistently ranked among the top 25 universities in the United States.

The Carnegie Mellon University Counseling and Psychological Services Center (CaPS) operates within the Division of Student Affairs (DOSA) in a university setting which offers significant supports for students beyond that of the counseling center.  Collaborating with the greater university community affords a trainee exposure to the multidisciplinary aspects of working in a university counseling center.   CaPS provides comprehensive psychological services to the campus community; both graduate and undergraduate students receive services through CaPS. While direct clinical service is a significant focus of CaPS, the center also provides other services to the university community including consultation and outreach programming.

Training Opportunity

The doctoral practicum and psychiatric externship starts at the end of August 2021 and ends mid-May 2022. This program is an advanced practicum training opportunity that requires a minimum of 16 total hours per week, consisting of the following training activities: 9-10 hours direct service, 1-2 hours individual supervision (1 hour by clinical staff with additional opportunity to be supervised by a doctoral psychology intern or a postdoc), 3 hours didactic training, and 1 hour paperwork.  Seminars and formal training activities take place Thursday mornings from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. and attendance is mandatory.  In order to be consistent with APA requirements, we require videotaping of all therapy sessions; these will be reviewed in supervision. 

The doctoral practicum at CMU CaPS  provides students with an intensive clinical therapy experience. It also provides exposure to the nature of university counseling center work. This includes clinical and support services provided by a typical university counseling center. In addition to our focus on developing clinical therapy skills, CaPS offers a range of supports and learning opportunities, including didactic seminars and professional development activities throughout the training year. In addition to 1 hour of individual supervision, students participate in the Decolonizing Critical Consciousness seminar, the trainee clinical discussion group, case conference, the trauma seminar, and other training activities throughout the training year. 

Program Training Resources

CaPS office is located at 1060 Morewood Avenue, Morewood Garden E-Tower, Room 236; Pittsburgh PA 15213.  Each practicum student is assigned an office (which might be a shared space) within the center equipped with a desk, computer, chairs, and lamps. Interns have access to administrative support, a copier/printer/scanner, and standard office supplies.

Training Philosophy

The doctoral practicum experience is an opportunity to build upon developing psychotherapeutic skills via supportive reflection on clinical, personal and professional development.  Our training model emphasizes 1): attending to and supporting the trainee’s developmental needs; 2): beginning development of one’s professional and personal identity and self-awareness; and 3) integrating practice and clinical theory. 

Our training program is developmental in nature and as such is sensitive to the individual needs of trainees with varying levels and breaths of knowledge and expertise.  Training experiences build gradually throughout the year and are based upon the trainee’s readiness as gauged by their supervisor and the Practicum Program Coordinator.