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Doctorate in Psychology (PsyD) Course Descriptionsnext

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PSY 700 Psychometrics

This is the first course in the doctoral assessment sequence. Students will learn basic psychometric theory and principles of test construction as well as to gain an understanding of the process, methodology, and application of assessment. Ethical and professional considerations about assessment will be raised. Topics include: theories of psychological measurement, scale development, item analysis, item bias, reliability, validity, and test fairness. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 701 Diagnostic Psychopathology

This course focuses on the description, etiology, and diagnosis of psychological and personality disorders. Relevant clinical research relevant to the course is reviewed and used to enrich the theoretical basis. While the primary focus of this course is the DSM-IV diagnostic system, other systems of understanding may be considered. Discussion of the broad continuum of symptomatology encountered in clinical practice, and the unique personal experience that characterizes every clinical case, are included. This course will focus on the major psychological and personality disorders of the DSM IV-TR . Particular emphasis on the etiology, prevalence, symptoms, and prognosis of these disorders is placed. Empirically validated research is examined with emphasis on the influence of culture has on diagnosis, treatment and prognosis. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 705 Professionalization Group

This course serves as a discussion group for first year students. The scope of the course will include both personal and professional development and preparing for future careers in the psychology field. Professional ethics, including New York State Laws, Rules, and Regulations and the APA Ethical guidelines will be reviewed. The group sessions allow students to become comfortable with interacting with other psychology students in a professional environment. Group work will cover the study of clinical psychology, therapeutic work, and professional development. The group dynamic will be balanced with self-directed learning and personal evaluations; including values and desires leading to the study of psychology, interpersonal relationship, meaning and values, pathways to growth, and a more comprehensive understanding of a psychologist’s role in society. Furthermore, students will gain a solid understanding of the various roles of clinical psychologists. As part of this course, students will be required to complete the NY State Curriculum in Identification and Reporting of Child Abuse. Credits: 0 Prerequisites: None.


PSY 710 Cognitive Assessment

Theories, practices, and the development of cognitive assessment in children and adults provide the framework for this course. Students will familiarize themselves with the various types of assessments, how to identify appropriate assessments, and gain an understanding of the process, methodology, and application of assessment. Students will gain professional development via practice with written and oral reporting. In addition, ethical and professional considerations about cognitive assessment will be raised. The course will improve students’ awareness of how diversity and multiculturalism may affect assessment outcomes. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 711 Projective Personality Assessment (Elective)

This course introduces the Exner Comprehensive System for the Rorschach as well as selected projective tests in both theory and practice. The dual approach allows students to gain competence in administering, scoring, and interpreting projective tests, and master the theoretical fundamentals upon which the tests were developed. Students will further hone their professional skills through report writing, critical evaluation, interviewing, rapport building, and interpretation of data. Ethical and legal considerations within the scope of assessments will also be addressed. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 715 Objective Personality Assessment & PSY 710 Cognitive Assessment.


PSY 715 Objective Personality Assessment

This course familiarizes students with objective personality assessment. Students will gain an understanding of the development and evolution of personality assessment—from its early history to current status. Emphasis on proper procedure, strategies for testing, and validity of testing will be covered. From here students will have the opportunity to practice the assessment process in labs designed to develop familiarity and competence in all aspects of the procedure—from initial stages through testing to evaluation and feedback. Students will develop their professional skills and learn about the variables associated with personality assessment, including demographics such as age, culture, gender, ethnic group, and marital status. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 719 Child and Adolescent Psychopathology (Elective)

This course focuses on the development issues associated with children and adolescents. Students will be introduced to the stages of child and adolescent development as it relates to psychopathology. Students will learn to recognize the risk factors—social, behavioral, and affective—which may lead to psychological disorders. Emphasis will be placed on emotional and behavioral disorders—including risk factors, etiology, treatments, and case descriptions. These disorders will be defined and analyzed in order to suggest effective treatment routes. Credits: 3. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 720 History and Systems of Psychology

Major theories, frameworks, leading figures, and historical influences will be examined in relation to the current theories and practices of clinical psychology. From the early Greek philosophers to the modern debates between pure, scientific, and applied psychology—students will trace a line of progress leading to comprehensive understanding of psychology. The social, political, and scientific contexts that fostered the origins and development of psychology will be considered throughout. Problems in the development of psychology as a discipline will be examined with contrasting viewpoints and alternatives to accepted models and systems. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 727 Psychology of Life Span Development

The stages and transitions in physical, cognitive, emotional, and social development across the lifespan will be studied. An emphasis on cross-cultural, gender, familial, and historical perspectives will be emphasized in relation to life span development. A focus on the interaction between genetic and environmental influences upon human development and an understanding of the development and influences affecting personal and interpersonal development will lend a greater depth to the analysis and understanding of life span development. Content areas include infant perception, attachment behavior, intelligence, cognitive development, moral development, and social interaction. In addition, the application of these topics to the practice of clinical psychology will be introduced throughout the course work. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 731 Cognitive and Affective Processes

This course provides an in-depth appreciation and thorough understanding of the current research models and theoretical frameworks in cognitive science. The curriculum explores both the cognitive and affective processes. Topics covered include; memory, attention, problem-solving, language, emotional states, and decision making. The translation from a theoretical knowledge-base to the clinical application of such information is emphasized. Students will gain not only a rich contextual background of “the cognitive revolution” but the ability to directly apply these theories and framing devices to their real-life, clinical experience. Major figures and key developments in the field will enrich the clinical experience and allow students to further delve into historical progress of Psychology. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 735 Professional Ethics and Conduct

This course aids students in understanding the obligation for the ethical and legal responsibilities, professional conduct, and the necessity to “do good and avoid harm” within the scope of assessment, therapy, forensics, and consultative and supervisory relationships. Using the APA’s Code of Ethics and New York State Law as a framework, this course focuses on understanding and development of the ethical decision making process, client privacy, modeling responsible behavior, and cultivating expertise as a professional psychologist. Attention will be placed on continuing professional development through ongoing supervision and upgrading professional skills. In addition, the unique challenges of group, family, and multi-cultural counseling issues will be addressed in relation to ethical and legal conduct. Credits: 3.0 Prerequisites: PSY 705: Professionalization Group.


PSY 741 Proseminar and Practicum I

The two years (four semesters) of practicum provide supervised clinical field experience. In addition to the required hours working at the assigned training site, students enrolled in practicum meet weekly in a practicum seminar led by a core faculty member. The overall practicum experience may be structured such that either the first year of practicum experience (Practicum I and II) will focus on assessment issues and the second year on psychotherapy (Practicum III and IV), or that both assessment and intervention experience will be intermixed over the two years of practicum. Proseminar and Practicum I will provide students with the opportunity to develop their personal approach to therapy via thorough research and theoretical constructs. Legal, ethical, moral, and professional concerns will be considered. Students will gain valuable professional development —sensitivity & diversity training, consultation skills, interviewing skills, and evaluation methods will be taught and reviewed. Students will also have the opportunity to set and achieve their personal goals for professional development. New York State legislation on confidentiality will be addressed as well. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY705 Professionalization Group, PSY701 Diagnostic Psychopathology, PSY 763 Neuropsychohlogical Assessment, PSY 710 Cognitive Assessment, PSY 715 Objective Personality Assessment, PSY 764 Clinical Interviewing, PSY 727 Psychology of Life Span Development.


PSY 742 Proseminar and Practicum II

The two years (four semesters) of practicum provide supervised clinical field experience. In addition to the required hours working at the assigned training site, students enrolled in practicum meet weekly in a practicum seminar led by a core faculty member. The overall practicum experience may be structured such that either the first year of practicum experience (Practicum I and II) will focus on assessment issues and the second year on psychotherapy (Practicum III and IV), or that both assessment and intervention experience will be intermixed over the two years of practicum Proseminar and Practicum II will build upon the knowledge base from Proseminar and Practicum I. This course will provide more detailed and in-depth theoretical and empirical data. Topics will include evidence-based practices, applying current theory to practice, research methods for yourself and your client, analysis and assessment theory and practice, and assessment writing. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 741: Proseminar and Practicum I.


PSY 743 Proseminar and Practicum III

This practicum provides supervised clinical field experience. In addition to the required hours working at the assigned training site, students enrolled in practicum meet weekly in a seminar led by a core faculty member. The overall practicum experience may be structured such that practicum students will focus on their particular area of interest/specialty as well as their continued personal and professional development as an emerging psychologist. Feedback, group evaluation, and self-evaluation will provide participants with the opportunity to further hone their skills and gain new proficiencies. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 758 Psychodynamic Theory and Therapy, PSY 764 Clinical Interviewing, PSY 735 Professional Ethics and Conduct, PSY 741 Proseminar and Practicum I, PSY 742 Proseminar and Practicum II, PSY 761 Assessment and Treatment of Diverse Populations, PSY 765 Integrative Assessment, PSY 768 Research Methods , PSY 770 Cognitive-Behavioral Theory and Treatment.


PSY 744 Proseminar and Practicum IV

This practicum provides supervised clinical field experience. In addition to the required hours working at the assigned training site, students enrolled in practicum meet weekly in a seminar led by a core faculty member. The overall practicum experience may be structured such that advanced practicum students will focus on their particular area of interest/specialty as well as their continued personal and professional development as an emerging psychologist. Feedback, group evaluation, and self-evaluation will provide participants with the opportunity to further hone their skills and gain new proficiencies. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 743: Proseminar and Practicum III.


PSY 745 Proseminar and Practicum V (Elective)

The advanced practicum provides supervised clinical field experience. In addition to the required hours working at the assigned training site, students enrolled in practicum meet weekly in a practicum seminar led by a core faculty member. The overall practicum experience may be structured such that advanced practicum students will focus on their particular area of interest/specialty as well as their continued personal and professional development as an emerging psychologist. Both theoretical and practical concepts will be explored and used to further hone the specialized skill area of the student. Both personal and professional growth will be highlighted, as well as the continued development of professional policies and effective communication with clients. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 744: Proseminar and Practicum IV.


PSY 746 Proseminar and Practicum VI (Elective)

The advanced practicum provides supervised clinical field experience. In addition to the required hours working at the assigned training site, students enrolled in practicum meet weekly in a practicum seminar led by a core faculty member. The overall practicum experience may be structured such that advanced practicum students will focus on their particular area of interest/specialty as well as their continued personal and professional development as an emerging psychologist. Both theoretical and practical concepts will be explored and used to further hone the specialized skill area of the student. Both personal and professional growth will be highlighted, as well as the continued development of professional policies and effective communication with clients. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 745: Proseminar and Practicum V.


PSY 747 Trauma Throughout the Lifespan (Elective)

This course is designed as an introduction to psychological reaction and adjustment to sexual, physical, and emotional trauma. The various stages of emotional, physical, and social development will be taken into account at they relate to trauma. This course will address theoretical issues, assessment, diagnostic issues, and intervention strategies important for contemporary psychological practice. Some of the topics that will be covered included: assessment and treatment of child maltreatment and sexual abuse, treatment of adult survivors of sexual abuse, false memory controversy, date rape, domestic violence and immigration trauma. The course will address the multi-theoretical models of traumatic syndromes, and students will critique research in the areas of adjustment to trauma, diagnosis of trauma related disorders, and treatment of responses to trauma. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 749 Physiological Psychology

This course introduces students to the gross anatomy and the neurophysiology of the nervous system. Students are presented with updated data and findings regarding neurological functions as the foundations of human behavior. It presents an overview of endocrinological processes, adding more breadth to the purpose of this course, introducing students to the fundamentals of physiology behavior correlates. In addition, this course introduces students to the clinical ramifications of primitive reflexes and developmental undertones. This course provides an introduction to biological aspects of behavior. The topics include: biological bases of behavior, development, learning, memory, and abnormal psychology; the nervous system; processes of brain maturation; genetic influences; psychophysiology. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 758 Psychodynamic Theory and Therapy

The course provides an in-depth study of the major schools of psychodynamic theories including the work of Freud, Melanie Klein, the post-Klienians and Time Limited Dynamic Psychotherapy. Students will familiarize themselves with the methodology of each psychodynamic approach within a clinical setting. Classic psychoanalysis and contemporary theoretical approaches are covered, thus giving the students a historical perspective of the development and changes within the field of psychodynamic theories and therapy. Case formulation with a psychodynamic orientation and the application of psychodynamic interventions in psychotherapy are studied as well. In order for students to gain a hands-on appreciation of the theories, case material is used to increase working skills. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 727 Psychology of Life Span Development.


PSY 761 Assessment and Treatment of Diverse Populations

The effect of diversity issues in the counseling relationship, outcomes, and service delivery will provide the focus of this course. This course is designed to increase student self-awareness of the importance of self-understanding and to explore the biases inherent in our social relationships. Personally and professionally, perceptions of others may affect our interactions with them. As psychologists, it is important to examine our own personal values systems and how these may enter into a counseling relationship. Students will promote culturally sensitive assessment and treatment of minority groups with diverse ethnic and racial populations, as well as, culturally-defined groups, such as: women and men, gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgendered people, people with disabilities, elders, and people with HIV disease. This course will provide students with an attentiveness towards and an appreciation of the diversity in our culture and how to interact in a professional and ethical manner. Students will learn and adhere to the American Psychological Association’s ethical codes. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 762 Substance Abuse (Elective)

This course will provide theoretical and experiential training in the prevention, intervention, and treatment applicable to a heterogeneous substance abuse population. The foundations and psychology of substance abuse will be explored, as well as the clinical aspects of substance abuse. In addition, this course will focus on how substance abuse intersects with cultural and social demographics, as well as the role that gender plays in substance abuse. The various assessment tools and practices will be discussed, as well as the format for the evaluative process. Students will understand the intervention and recovery process for treating patients and their families with substance abuse issues. Finally, students will be able to identify the ethical and legal issues of working with this population. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 763 Neuropsychological Assessment

This course approaches neuropsychology by focusing on the relationship between the human brain and behavior, specifically developmental, systemic, neurological, and/or psychiatric issues. Students will gain in-depth knowledge of the scientific basis of normal and pathological human behavior as it relates to neuropsychology. Students will gain a thorough understanding of the testing and reporting schema of common neurological assessment tools and clinical issues relating to neuropsychological problems. Students will evaluate and suggest treatment options based on their assessments. In addition, special attention is given to the implications of assessment and treatment when working with diverse populations. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 710 Cognitive Assessment.


PSY 764 Clinical Interviewing

Students will develop their self-awareness, interpersonal awareness and critical thinking in order to become more proficient clinical interviewers. They will learn the procedures and techniques for conducting a full clinical interview as part of an initial client assessment. Basic listening, interviewing, and strategic skills will be covered in order to maximize the effectiveness of clinical interviewing. Students will examine directive and nondirective approaches to interviewing. In addition, they will read and analyze theoretical and empirical literature relating to this topic. Demonstrations, role-playing, and structured exercises will allow students to practice and further hone their professional skills. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 701 Diagnostic Psychopathology.


PSY 765 Integrative Assessment

This course provides students with an in-depth study of integrative assessment. The theories behind integrative assessment and specific tests are covered. The course improves the students’ hand-on experience in administering, evaluating, and reporting assessments under supervision from an instructor. Students will begin by learning the nature of assessment in regards to treatment options. From here, professional communication skills will be honed as students learn the appropriate techniques and ethical guidelines for approaching and interviewing patients in order to select an assessment. Students will then learn the proper procedure for assessment, evaluating assessment, provided feed-back and evaluation to both clients and other professionals. Batteries submitted by students will involve integration of interview and assessment data across domains. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 763 Neuropsychological Assessment, PSY 715 Objective Personality Assessment, PSY 710 Cognitive Assessment.


PSY 768 Research Methods

This course is the first in a two-course research sequence.  The course will focus on the problems and procedures of research sciences with emphasis on understanding the basic types of research, the development of sound research design, conducting an appropriate experiment, and utilization of an effective writing style for preparing and reporting research.  The importance and effects of diversity issues in research, and ethical issues in research are also covered. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: Undergraduate Statistics or Research Methods.


PSY 769 Statistics

This course is a continuation of Statistics and Research Methods I. Quantitative, multivariate approaches to systematic inquiry are covered along with additional skills needed for the completion of the proposed Clinical Research Project. These include qualitative approaches and literature review skills with an emphasis on the integration and synthesis of findings appropriate to a proposal that can be the basis of the CRP. The importance and effects of diversity issues in research, and ethical issues in research are also covered. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 768 Research Methods.


PSY 770 Cognitive Behavioral Theory and Treatment

Theoretical foundations and major cognitive-behavioral therapies are reviewed in this course. Professional skill development—including professional ethics, professional characteristics regarding the use of CBT, and value conflicts with clients—will be emphasized. They will also have the opportunity to design appropriate treatment plans. The theories, principles, and techniques of cognitive behavioral theory will be addressed. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 731 Cognitive and Affective Processes.


PSY 771 Treatment and Assessment of Children and Adolescents (Elective)

This course is designed to provide a thorough understanding of commonly used assessment and treatment modalities utilized with children and adolescents who are experiencing social, behavioral or emotional problems. Emphasis on identifying “at risk” children and adolescents, and the development of prevention programs. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 778 Psychology of Women (Elective)

Female development will be studied in depth. Branches of development for the purposes of this course include personality developments, physical growth and change as it relates to psychology, and psychopathologies. Cultural and social distinctions will be explored as they link to the overall study of female development including relationships, pregnancy, health issues, and aging. Special attention will be placed on how gender may interact with issues such as sexual assault and abuse. In addition, students will explore the societal implications of “the feminine” and how such social strictures impact self-image and self-esteem. The class will utilize current and historical readings, lecture and group processes. Issues relevant to clinical practice, such as therapist gender, therapist pregnancy, transference problems and role conflicts are highlighted. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 779 Clinical Geropsychology (Elective)

This course is designed to provide students an introduction to issues and clinical practice with aging clients and their families. Personality and cognitive assessment will be discussed, with attention to particular instruments used with an elderly clientele. Therapeutic models, interventions, and issues relevant to elders and their caregivers will be explored. Relevant public policies will be reviewed in terms of their implications for the aging of the population. Society’s views of the elderly and the experience of minority elders will be explored. Credits: 3.0 Prerequisites: PSY 727 Lifespan Development.


PSY 780 Group Therapy

Operating within an ethical and professional rubric, this course introduces students to the fundamentals of theoretical and practical group psychotherapy sessions. Emphasis will be placed on both concepts and firsthand experiences of group therapy. In terms of theory, students will gain an understanding of the nature, function, major theoretical approaches, and the various stages of group therapy. In practice, students will apply their knowledge and skill set to various stages of client development, client populations, and therapeutic situations in therapy sessions. Students will receive feedback and evaluation from their group therapy practice session. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: PSY 770 Cognitive-Behavioral Theory and Treatment.


PSY 782 Family Therapy

Investigating the fundamentals in the field of family therapy and family systems, this course covers theoretical models and an integrative approach to marriage and family therapy. Students are introduced to family therapy concepts; perspectives of family therapy and its evolution including context and historical data, and basic models of family therapy. Students will learn the intricacies of family therapy and the diverse factors relating to successful therapy sessions. Building upon the theoretical frame-work, students will have the opportunity to gain practical, hands-on experience in therapy sessions developed to test and enrich their skills. Professional development including assessment, treatment plans, intervention & interactions, group dynamics, etc. will be integrated into the working model of family therapy. In addition, multi-cultural and social elements will be discussed in relation to their impact on family therapy. Credits: 3.0.Prerequisites: PSY 727 Psychology of Life Span Development.


PSY 785 Advanced Family Therapy (Elective)

An advanced theoretical and practical foundation for counseling individuals, couples, and families is emphasized. The course provides a survey of current skills and methods in work with individuals, couples, and families with an emphasis on integrating various systemic models of functioning and intervention. The emphasis is on an integration of assessment and therapeutic theory and technique through ongoing couple and family simulations. Supervision skills in family and couples treatment are a second major emphasis of this course. Credits: 3.0 Prerequisites: None.


PSY 787 Social Psychology

Students will be introduced to Social Psychology through a historical overview and the various methods used in its study. Topics covered include social perception, identity, social behavior, attitudes, conformity, discrimination, group dynamics, anger, helpful behaviors, and close relationships. Emphasis is placed on the major theoretical frameworks of social psychology and their application to the clinical population. Concepts from research and theory in social psychology are presented for the understanding of social influence on personality, human interaction, and behavior. Applications of social psychology to clinical settings are emphasized. Credits: 3.0. Prerequisites: None.


PSY 790 Administration, Consultation, and Supervision

The aim of this course is to provide students with an overview of theory, research, and practice models for administration, consultation, and supervision. Models and issues related to mental health and health services delivery, organizational structure and leadership, and clinical supervision and training are described and discussed. Students also discuss common strategies, modalities, issues and dilemmas in the multiple roles of psychologists. Credits: 3.0 Prerequisites: PSY 744 Proseminar and Practicum IV.


PSY 794 Clinical Psychopharmacology

Psychotropic drugs will be studied from a medical and a cultural point of view. Students will learn the history and development in drug taking behaviors and abuses from the nineteenth century to present—including expectations, effects, treatments, and cultural practices and differences. The differences between use, misuse, and abuse will be studied from a physical and psychological standpoint. Furthermore, psychotropic drugs used in the treatment of psychological disorders and their biochemical properties will be studied in-depth. Psychotropic drugs’ effects on the brain, their neurochemical basis and mechanism of action and their clinical application will be discussed. Principles of current use and the current status of psychopharmacology will be covered as well. A theoretical frame-work will be established to enable the student to understand the biochemical properties of psychotropic drugs. Credits: 3.0 Prerequisites: PSY 749: Physiological Psychology.


PSY 851 Clinical Dissertation I

This course is designed to enable students to successfully navigate through the dissertation process. Content areas include the various stages of the dissertation including the proposal, review of literature, methodology, measurement, data collection, selecting a committee and chairperson, and presenting and discussing the results with emphasis on validity and statistical recording. This course also provides feedback for students’ preliminary dissertation work. Credits: 1.0. Prerequisites: PSY 768 Statistics and Research Methods I.


PSY 852/853/854 Clinical Dissertation II, III, Extended

This course is designed to enable students to successfully navigate through the dissertation process. Content areas include the various stages of the dissertation including the proposal, review of literature, methodology, measurement, data collection, and presenting and discussing the results with emphasis on validity and statistical recording. This course also provides feedback for students’ dissertation work. Credits: 1.0. Prerequisites: PSY 850 Clinical Dissertation I.


PSY 900 Clinical Psychology Internship

The internship is an integral component of the doctoral program and the final experience in the clinical training sequence. During the internship, the student is expected to assume significant responsibilities and to perform major professional functions under the supervision of qualified psychologists. Because the internship is typically the last step in the student’s preparation for functioning as an independent professional, the internship experience should provide the student with a variety of appropriate role models, as well as intensive and diverse opportunities to function in the various roles expected of a clinical psychologist. Credits: 0. Prerequisites: Completion of 90 Credit Hours, All required coursework, 18 elective credits, Clinical Competence Examination, Endorsement of the Faculty.