Doctoral Internship

Training Model

Competency-Based Approach to Training and Evaluation

Competence is defined as "the habitual and judicious use of communication, knowledge, technical skills, clinical reasoning, emotions, values, and reflection in daily practice for the benefit of the individual and community being served" (Epstein & Hundert, 2002, p 227).  Our conceptualization and implementation of a competency based approach to training is outline in the following bulleted points:

  • Consistent with the profession-wide emphasis on nine competencies, the Internship Program's approach to training is specifically geared to foster professional growth in each competency.
  • USF Counseling Center supervisors and training staff strive to ensure that trainees are able to demonstrate the full range of identified competencies to an acceptable standard by the end of the internship year.
  • Deliberate attention is given to the assessment of the integration of the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that comprise the functioning of a developing psychologist (Kaslow, et. al. 2012).  Multiple information points are used to inform the evaluation of interns: from the trainees (self-assessment of competencies); their clients (clinical outcome measures); and their supervisors (informal and summative evaluation of competencies).
  • Interns are expected to incorporate the attitudes and methods of science that allows for the direct transfer of skills essential to the practice of psychology (Stoltenberg, C. D.,, 2000).  The use of evidence-based interventions as outlined in the psychological scientific literature allows interns to engage in best clinical practice while enhancing their technical skills.
  • USF Counseling Center supervisors and training staff recognize the ever-expanding roles that licensed psychologists are called upon to perform.  Thus, the Internship Program provides opportunities for interns to obtain training in other types of clinical settings (e.g. hospitals, intensive outpatient) during the summer semester to gain additional experience.

Epstein, R. M., & Hundert, E. M. (2002). Defining and assessing professional competence. Journal of the American Medical Association, 287, 226–235. doi:10.1001/jama.287.2.226

Kaslow, N. J., Falender, C. A., & Grus, C. L. (2012). Valuing and practicing competency-based supervision: A transformational leadership perspective. Training And Education In Professional Psychology, 6(1), 47-54. doi:10.1037/a0026704

Kaslow, N. J. and Keilin, W. G. (2006), Internship Training in Clinical Psychology: Looking into Our Crystal Ball. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 13: 242–248. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-2850.2006.00031.x

Stoltenberg, C. D., Pace, T. M., Kashubeck-West, S., Biever, J. L., Patterson, T., & Welch, I. D. (2000).

Training models in counseling psychology: Scientist-practitioner versus practitioner-scholar. The Counseling Psychologist, 28, 622–640. doi:10.1177/0011000000285002