Evaluating training needs in clinical psychology doctoral programs

Julia S. Yarrington, Catherine Montgomery, Keanan J. Joyner, Mary Frances O'Connor, Kate Wolitzky-Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: Advances in clinical psychology must be accompanied by advances in training. This study assessed training content, quality, and needs during clinical psychology doctoral programs among current or past doctoral students. Methods: Current or past clinical psychology doctoral students (N = 343) completed an anonymous survey assessing training experiences and needs. A descriptive-focused exploratory factor analysis (EFA) also examined whether common subgroups of academic interests emerged. Results: Most participants reported that they sought training beyond required coursework, primarily in clinical training, cultural competency, and professional development, and reported having taken one or more unhelpful course, including discipline-specific knowledge requirements. Descriptive results from the EFA demonstrated common training areas of interest: diversity topics, biological sciences, clinical practice, and research methods. Discussion: This study demonstrates that trainees and early career psychologists are aware of their nuanced and in some cases, unmet training needs. Conclusion: This work foregrounds the need to adapt extant training opportunities to support the next generation of clinical psychologists.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2304-2316
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Clinical Psychology
Volume79
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2023

Keywords

  • clinical psychology
  • doctoral training
  • training needs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology

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