Practicum in Psychology

Placement of Counseling Psychology Practicum Students at Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)

Acceptance of Practicum Students

Students seeking practicum placement at CAPS in the clinical service must commit to a year-long placement.

Acceptance of qualified practicum students for CAPS placement will be influenced by the fit between CAPS and student needs and interests. The number of students accepted will be on the basis of space and availability of supervisors. At this time we can accept four students.

Application Procedure

In general, CAPS will require students seeking a practicum placement to provide the CAPS training director with a vita or resume, a copy of their evaluation from their first year practicum supervisor, and a copy of the practicum placement application completed for their academic department. An interview of approximately 30 minutes with the training director and another senior staff member will be scheduled prior to acceptance of a student for placement. All students accepting an offer of a CAPS placement will be expected to attend the weekly all clinical staff meeting held currently from 8:15-9:20 AM each Thursday morning. In addition, a 2 day orientation will be scheduled a few days prior to the beginning of the Fall semester. These dates will be reviewed with the applicant at the time of his or her application for placement.

Assignment of Space and Time

The weekly time commitment to complete a practicum at CAPS is 15 hours. Practicum students will be assigned an office at least 10 hours each week during which to see a total of five individual clients and work on supporting records, reports and review of case materials. It is expected that the student clinician would be in the office at those times regardless of whether or not a client is scheduled. Typically, two hours of individual supervision will be scheduled as part of that time, with two different supervisors. These hours are separate from the hours of scheduled office time. In addition, students are expected to attend the weekly staff clinical staff meeting. Practicum students are also encouraged to avail themselves of outreach opportunities over the course of the year. Practicum students are invited to attend the weekly intern professional issues seminar according to their interests and schedule.

Assignment of Supervisor

During the initial pre-placement interview, the training director will discuss with the applicant his or her training goals for this practicum. Once accepted for placement, individual clinical supervisors will be assigned to practicum students bearing in mind issues of theoretical and experiential fit and student needs for training experiences. Close, on-going communication between student and supervisor regarding the supervision process is seen as essential to a successful experience and is strongly encouraged. Two-way evaluation of the supervision experience will be conducted in written and oral form near the end of each semester.

Doctoral interns at CAPS are expected to supervise a practicum student on clinical cases under supervision of supervision offered by a senior staff psychologist. Practicum students assigned an intern supervisor will also be assigned a senior staff supervisor, since generally, intern supervisors will supervise just one of the practicum student's cases at a time. Thus they will receive two separate hours of supervision per week with two separate supervisors. Not all practicum students may experience this arrangement. This issue will be discussed with practicum students at the time of their application. This discussion is for the purpose of identifying any potential problems which may arise from possible dual relationship issues when both practicum and intern are students at KU. Practicum students at CAPS are expected to record all client sessions (via webcame) as well as the supervision session with their intern supervisor. The purpose of recording the intern supervision session is for the intern to then receive supervision in a group supervision-of-supervision setting.

Students enrolled in practicum often review cases with their instructors in class for consultation and the purpose of academic evaluation. This does not constitute clinical supervision of those cases since legal and ethical standards for supervision require an on-site supervisor with access to CAPS resources and records. Final responsibility for all cases lies with the CAPS supervisor.

Students enrolled in PRE 949 may carry a requirement for group therapy experience during that placement. CAPS will make strong efforts to assign the student a group to co-lead with a senior staff member for at least one semester but cannot guarantee group experience. Group time, preparation and supervision are scheduled separately from the regular 10 hours for individual clients and does not reduce the individual client load expected of the practicum student.

Clinical Expectations

  • Course Requirements Completed

    • counseling theory, lab
    • psychopathology or advanced personality
    • group counseling theory, career theory
    • at least two previous semesters of clinical practicum
    • psychodiagnostic assessment (completed or concurrent)


  • Clinical Focus

    • diagnostic skills
    • growing choice in theoretical orientation for conceptualization and intervention
    • growing awareness of self in therapist/client and therapist/supervisor relationships