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Clinical Training

Doctor of Clinical Psychology (PsyD) Program

psy d program

The PsyD program is a post-master’s program that requires applicants to complete a graduate-level practicum prior to admission, including working with individuals and/or families in a clinical context. Incoming students must have a beginning understanding of the psychotherapeutic process as evidenced by a basic knowledge of how commonly occurring client problems are helped by different treatment approaches, and demonstrate interest in and readiness for self-reflection in clinical practicum.

Clinical training in the doctoral program includes practicum placements in the second and third years of the program. Full-time internship is completed in the fourth or fifth year; part time internship over a two-year period is also an option based on individual student needs.

Practicum I and II

  • Practicum I consists of 800 hours of training completed in the second year of the program and includes a focus on diagnostic testing and assessment.
  • Practicum II consists of 1,000 hours of training in the third year of the program and builds upon the student’s academic and clinical training to diagnosis and treat clients, further development of the skills necessary to create meaningful therapeutic relationships; focus is placed on evidenced-based psychology and culturally competent psychotherapy interventions.
  • Practicum I (800 hours) and Practicum II (1,000 hours) each require a minimum of 50% of the total practicum hours to be in service-related activities. These are defined as: treatment/intervention, assessment, interviews, report writing, case presentations, and case consultation. 
    • Of those service-related activities a minimum of 25% of the total practicum hours (200 hours for Practicum I and 250 hours for Practicum II) shall be devoted to face-to-face patient/client contact. For example, a student completing a 20-hour per week practicum placement would need to spend at least 10 hours per week completing service-related activities and of those hours, a minimum of 5 must involve face-to-face client contact.
  • Students receive 8 hours of supervision per month; 4 hours are provided by fully-licensed site supervisors and 4 hours by fully-licensed faculty supervisors.
  • Students are required to attend 3 hours of MiSPP didactic training per month.
  • Students develop core competencies in relationship, diversity, assessment, intervention, and professional development.

The Director of Clinical Training guides students through the match and application process for practicum placement. The PsyD Practicum Handbook, located on MiSPP’s Student Resource site, provides detailed information about practicum training requirements. Below are examples of typical practicum placements available to MiSPP students.

Practicum Setting
Description of Services
Cento Multicultural La Familia  Provides families with culturally-competent mental health, substance abuse and support services utilizing a holistic approach to improve overall quality of life 
Jewish Family Services Assessment, psychotherapy and testing for clients of all ages
McLaren Hospital
Behavioral Health Services
Services for individuals, families and children with depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues
University of Michigan (UM) Counseling and Psychological Services Psychological and psychiatric services for currently enrolled UM undergraduate and graduate students



  • 2000 hours of advanced clinical training.
  • Prior to advancing to internship, students are required to pass a Clinical Competency Exam at the end of Practicum II and possess a working knowledge of assessment and interviewing, case formulation, therapeutic alliance dynamics, and empirically-supported treatment formulation.
  • Interns work closely with clinical psychologists in a wide variety of clinical activities to prepare for independent practice.
  • Students receive 8 hours of supervision per month; 4 hours are provided by fully-licensed site supervisors and 4 hours by fully-licensed faculty supervisors.
  • In addition to didactic training at their sites, students are required to attend 3 hours of MiSPP didactic training per month.
  • Students develop advanced competencies in relationship, diversity, assessment, intervention, and professional development. 

Internships may be obtained at the national level through the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral Internship Center (APPIC) , through the Michigan School of Professional Psychology Internship Consortium (MiSPPIC) or locally. Local sites must meet MiSPP’s requirements as indicated in the Internship Agreement. The Internship Handbook, located on MiSPP’s Student Resource site, provides detailed information about internship training requirements.

Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology (MA) Program

masters program in clinical psychology

Clinical training is an integral part of MiSPP’s MA program. Full-time students are placed in practicum under the direction of experienced clinicians for all 3 semesters in which they are enrolled. Part-time MA students complete practicum in year 2 of enrollment. The goal of practicum training is for MA graduate students to acquire the theoretical knowledge, clinical competencies, and self-awareness needed to become competent effective practitioners and to develop a professional identity.

How long is the practicum?

Consistent with MiSPP’s practitioner-scholar model philosophy, full-time students begin practicum at the start of the first semester and finish at the end of the final semester. To maximize learning and skill development, the practicum may not be condensed into a shorter timeframe. Part-time students also complete the practicum in one year, but in year 2 of enrollment. 

How many hours are completed?

A total of 500 hours are completed over the academic year; 25% of those hours must be in direct face-to-face contact with clients. Typically students are at their sites 2 to 3 days, for 12 to 15 hours per week. 

What about supervision?

In accordance with State of Michigan licensing requirements, students receive 8 hours of supervision per month from a licensed psychologist. Four of those hours are provided by a supervisor at the practicum site. The additional 4 hours are provided by the student’s assigned faculty supervisor. Students are provided with information on their faculty supervisors during orientation.

What kinds of sites are available?

A variety of settings are approved for practicum, including community-based clinics, residential facilities, substance abuse settings, schools, and outpatient psychiatric clinics.

How are sites obtained?

Full-time students receive a list of potential practicum sites at the time they accept their admission offers. They are also free to pursue sites that are not on the list; however, all sites must be approved by the Director of Clinical Training to ensure that MiSPP’s training site requirements are met. The Clinical Training staff is available to help students identify and select sites. The MA Practicum Handbook, located on MiSPP’s student resource site, provides detailed information about the master’s practicum and training site requirements.

Handbooks and additional information may be found in the Student Resource area, available to current MiSPP students.  Questions related to clinical training should be directed to the Director of Clinical Training or faculty supervisor.