Process for students applying for the 12-month internship (PSY 904)
The process of applying out for internship has become increasingly competitive in recent years as the demand for internship placements has considerably exceeded the supply. It is extremely important that you carefully consider your readiness to apply out for internship, in consultation with the Director of Clinical Training (DCT) AND your research supervisor, to help maximize the competitiveness of your application. One of the biggest stumbling blocks is dissertation research progress. Nobody wants to be in the position of having to return following internship to resume data collection or to face the arduous task of writing up a dissertation tomb from scratch while trying to find employment; this includes the internship sites that review a very large volume of strong applications. As such, the program requirements outlined below should be viewed as a bare minimum when considering the decision to apply out for internship in a given year.
- Students are required to have all classroom-based coursework and practica completed prior to commencing internship (45 credit units); however, students are strongly encouraged to have all classroom coursework completed by the fall semester in which they apply out. Some placements will not consider applications from students with coursework still in progress.
- Students are required to have made significant advancements in their dissertation progress, which traditionally has been defined as approval of the dissertation proposal by their advisory committee and commencement of data collection. The decision to approve a student's request to apply for internship will be made via consultation between the DCT, CEC, and the student's advisor committee by September 1 in the year they plan to apply out.
Directories of internships:
The directory of Canadian internships published by the Canadian Council of Professional Psychology Programs is available online.
The Directory of the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers is available online.
Starting now students should:
Get the latest AAPI Application for Psychology Internship Form.
Consult the website of the Canadian Council of Professional Psychology Programs and the internship binder (Survival Manual for Internship Applicants).
Request updated brochures from sites you are interested in if these are not already available on their website (most sites have electronic copies of their brochures).
Contact the National Matching Service (NMS) online to request applicant registration materials. Once this material is received, complete the "Applicant Agreement" and return to NMS along with the non-refundable fee (in US Funds).
Our NMS school code is 825 and our APPIC subscriber number is CCPPP.
In late September or early October please submit the following materials electronically to the DCT:
- Complete draft AAPI form (PDF) and your four essays in Word
- Draft CV
- One draft sample covering letter; you can send multiple essays for multiple sites
- Copy of approval of the dissertation proposal by the advisory committee.
- List of programs to which you are applying, giving for each program:
- Indicate whether a letter is required from me or only the verification form (this depends on whether I've supervised the student and on the program's application requirements)
- Anything special I should know about the application or letter needed
- Application deadline for that program
Students for whom the above information is submitted in full by October 15 will receive priority in DCT feedback and letter writing, on a first-come first-served basis.
The DCT's tasks for each student application are as follows:
- Provide feedback to student on draft AAPI, CV, and covering letter.
- Write letters of reference where these are required (not for all students/programs).
- Finish completing the verification form - verifying that the student has met all program requirements to apply out for internship and uploading this to the AAPI website.
Students are encouraged to consider large, well-established and accredited (CPA or APA) internship programs with several intern positions, including those in the USA. It is hard to suggest a "right" number of applications to complete, but a rough guide would be 10 to 15. Do not apply to any program that you are sure you would not attend if matched to it.
If I am asked to recommend a student to any non-accredited site, I will have a lot of questions about number of interns, history of training program, seminars, supervision, structure of rotations, plans for future accreditation, membership in training councils, etc., in order to be satisfied that the program is 'equivalent' to accredited. A draft policy on this matter appears below.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
Director of Clinical Psychology Training
Guidelines for Non-Accredited Internships:
Students in the Graduate Program in Clinical Psychology are required to seek an internship accredited by either CPA or APA. However, a few students are matched with a non-accredited internship or choose it for other reasons. Often, the reason for this decision is that the internship provides a particular experience that is of interest to the student and is not available at any other site (e.g., a special population or treatment modality). In other instances, the student may not be matched to an accreditation during Phase I of the match process and may need to consider a non-accredited placement during Phase II. As well, some placements are also fairly new and have not yet had an accrediation site visit.
In order to assure the quality of training and to protect students from being used as underpaid and overworked staff, the following guidelines serve as minimum standards for non-accredited internship programs.
Students anticipating applying to a non-accredited site should review these guidelines and submit materials about the proposed training program for approval to the DCT outlining the nature of the proposed internship in enough detail to allow us to determine whether these minimal standards are likely to be met.
If the internship program is not a member of APPIC, it must nevertheless meet the criteria for APPIC membership, check the APPIC website.
The student must be clearly designated as a trainee as opposed to being hired as a junior staff member. The program must have a registered/certified/licensed psychologist (PhD) who functions as training director and who is responsible for:
- establishing a contract with the trainee regarding the content of the training program.
- insuring that the trainee's program is evaluated periodically (at least at the mid year mark) so that the training program can be modified, if necessary.
- insuring that mid-year and end-of-year evaluation is made of the trainee's skills and deficits as a clinical psychologist and that it is sent to the Director of Clinical Training.
The trainee's internship experiences must represent a reasonable balance of activities undertaken by a clinical psychologist, including activities such as direct assessment and treatment, group and individual contact, consultation, program development, program evaluation and research. A variety of different treatment approaches and client populations should also be available. However, we recognize that the range of experiences will vary widely. The decision about whether the activities are appropriate will take into account the student's career goals.
The trainee must be supervised by at least two different registered/licensed psychologists for a minimum of two hours per week of scheduled individual supervision. The total amount of regularly scheduled supervision must be at least four hours per week, supplemented by additional unscheduled or group supervision, or supervision by staff who are not registered psychologists (e.g., social workers, psychiatrists, psychological associates).
The internship must have at least one other predoctoral intern in clinical psychology (in addition to any practicum students or trainees in other disciplines). This is to promote peer interaction and learning.
The following will serve as positive evidence of a non-accredited program's commitment to quality in training:
- an application for accreditation underway with either CPA or APA
- membership in the Canadian Council of Professional Psychology Programs
- membership in the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers (APPIC).
Even if the non-accredited internship site meets or is trying to meet the structural requirements above, there may still be questions concerning the quality of the program, and more documentation may be requested before any decision concerning approval of the site. The decision rests with the Director of Clinical Training in consultation with clinical psychology faculty, and a decision with which the student disagrees may be appealed to the Department head.
Guidelines for Communication between Graduate Programs and Internship Programs
Shortly after interns are selected, it is recommended that the graduate program communicate by letter with the internship programs that accepted its students. It is suggested that this letter at a minimum indicate (a) the faculty member in the graduate program with whom the internship program should communicate regarding the intern (the faculty contact person); and (b) any additional information about the training needs of the intern, especially information not covered in the intern's application and letter of recommendation. In addition to the sharing of formal evaluations, it is recommended that the faculty contact person and the internship training director have at least 1-2 informal (telephone or email) contacts about the intern. It is suggested that one of these contacts be initiated by the internship training director shortly after the beginning of the internship. If either party has difficulty contacting someone from the other site, it is recommended that they be persistent in their efforts at contacting someone. It is expected that if there is a change in the contact person at either site, that the other contact person will be notified and provided with a new contact person.
It is recommended that, the internship training director should send formal written evaluations of the intern to the faculty contact person at least semi-annually during the internship. We encourage this communication to occur at the sixth month point and at the completion of the internship. Concurrent with this, internship staff/faculty should meet in person with the intern to provide detailed feedback. Additionally, it is suggested that the internship training director provide the intern a copy of the formal evaluation sent to the intern's graduate program.
Graduate program faculty and internship program staff/faculty are encouraged to share any communications they have about an intern with the intern via face-to-face contacts, emails, telephone contacts, or copies of written correspondence, etc. They are also encouraged to solicit intern input about these communications throughout the internship year. This recommendation is intended to enhance the climate of openness and support for professional development in the training of the intern.
When major changes in the structure of the internship occur (e.g., alterations in rotations or available placements), internship program staff/faculty are encouraged to inform the graduate program faculty contact.
Guidelines for Communication When Problems Arise About an Intern
The following guidelines are recommended to facilitate open communication about intern difficulties and effective problem-solving in response to them. Programs are encouraged to review their Due Process Guidelines and see how these recommendations can be integrated into their Due Process Guidelines.
It is suggested that when significant problems arise that are resolvable and/or resolved at the internship site that the faculty contact be informed.
It is recommended that the internship training director communicate with the faculty contact person in a timely manner when problems arise with an intern that are not readily resolvable at the internship site, that are recurrent, or that may lead to the institution of due process procedures or an alteration in the intern's program. The mode of communication will vary to suit the circumstance, but may include formal letters or emails, phone or conference calls, and on-site visits. It is recommended that the graduate and internship programs keep written records of all communications between them. It is suggested that this communication include: (a) a clear statement of the problem, remediation plan, and expected outcomes needed to resolve the problem; (b) what the internship program's response has been to date; and (c) what role, if any, the internship program would like the graduate program to play in addressing the problem. It is also recommended that the internship training director ask for the graduate program's policies and procedures for identifying and dealing with problem trainees. This will assist in handling and documenting problems that arise in the internship, so as to facilitate graduate program's dealing with the trainee's difficulties.
Once communication about a problem is initiated, it is suggested that the graduate and internship programs maintain ongoing contact until the problem is resolved. It is recommended that this include discussions of the remediation plan and plan for monitoring and evaluating the intern's performance.
The intern may request and should receive copies of all formal communications regarding his or her performance.
Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers
(APPIC) application and acceptance policies and forms
Our program has been placing students in 12-month predoctoral internships in Canada and the USA since 1974-75. For a full list of current and past clinical psychology graduate students along with their thesis titles please see the Clinical Psychology Graduate Student
- Chassidy Carruthers - Chartier, Arnold, Shimp and Associates
- Gabriela Corabian - Edmonton Consortium Clinical Psychology Residency
- Tina Dadgostari - Ontario Shores Mental Health Services Centre
- Kayla Truswell - River Valley Health, Fredericton, New Brunswick
- Rachel Burton - Ottawa General Hospital
- Terri Cordwell - Annapolis Valley Health
- Joseph Enright - London Health Sciences Centre (Neuropsychology Track)
- Neil Hogan - Correctional Service of Canada
- Christina Jones - River Valley Health, Fredericton, New Brunswick
- Lesley Roberts - Saskatoon Health Region
- Laura Scallion - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg
- Larisa Cornelius- Regina-Qu'Appelle Health Region Clinical Psychology
- Tyson Kurtenbach - Correctional Service of Canada
- Lindsay Sewall - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg
- Kristjan Sigurdson - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg
- Ava Agar - Waterloo Region
- Rick Coupland - River Valley Health, Fredericton, New Brunswick
- Katelyn Harker - Regina-Qu'Appelle Health Region Clinical Psychology (Forensic Track)
- Kimberley Makela - Saskatoon Health Region
- Devon Andersen - Vancouver Coastal Health Authority
- Nicole Haugrud - Queen Elizabeth II
- Maegan Sharp - Regina Qu'Appelle Health Region
- Justina Sowden - Regina Qu'Appelle Health Region
- Cailey Strauss - BC Mental Health and Addiction Services
- Agitha Valiakalayil - Calgary Consortium in Clinical Psychology
- Danielle DeSorcy - BC Mental Health and Addiction Services
- Jocelyn Poock - Regina Qu'Appelle Health Region
- Erika Rojas - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg
- Kristen Calverley - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg
- Tara Gokavi - Edmonton Consortium Clinical Psychology Residency
- Jeff Letourneau - Edmonton Consortium Clinical Psychology Residency
- Joe Trainor - Annapolis Valley Health Services, Kentville, Nova Scotia
- Selina Zaluski (Elm) - Royal Ottawa Hospital
- Ashley Barlow - Edmonton Consortium Clinical Psychology Residency
- Kate Pan - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg
- Merete Sommerlund - Annapolis Valley Health Services, Kentville, Nova Scotia
- Matt Burnett - Edmonton Consortium Clinical Psychology Residency
- Rebecca Harriman - Nova Scotia Capital Health District, Halifax.
- Shawnda Lanting - BC Mental Health and Addiction Services, Neuropsychology track
- Michelle Presniak - The Ottawa Hospital, Mental Health track.
- Lindsay Robertson - Edmonton Consortium Clinical Psychology Residency
- Tracey Waskowic - Saskatoon Health Region
- Maxine Holmqvist - University of Manitoba, Clinical Health Psychology, Winnipeg
- Lisa Lejbak - Saskatoon Health Region
- Trevor Olson - University of Ottawa, Centre for Psychological Services
- Shelley Rhyno - University of Manitoba, Clinical Health Psychology, Northern Internship
- Alissa Schactman - Annapolis Valley Health Services, Kentville, Nova Scotia
- Lara Spagrud - Regina Qu'Appelle Health Region
- Cathy Stewart - Edmonton Consortium Clinical Psychology Residency
- Ekaterina Tolstikova - Saskatoon Health Region
- Faizah Visram - Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario, Ottawa
- Leah Hatton - Calgary Consortium, Calgary, Alberta
- Jennifer Mazur - River Valley Health, Fredericton, New Brunswick
- Michael Sheppard - Nova Scotia Hospital & East Coast Forensic Psychiatric Services, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
- Simon Sherry - University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, Washington
- Keira Stockdale - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg
- Patrick Corney - SCO Health Services Internship in Clinical Neuropsychology, Ottawa, Ontario
- Therese Daniels - Annapolis Valley Health Services, Kentville, Nova Scotia
- Tarah Hook - Edmonton Consortium Clinical Psychology Residency
- Dawn Lahti - Millard Health Centre, Edmonton, Alberta
- Melanie Langford - Calgary Consortium, Calgary, Alberta
- Tara Turner - Royal University Hospital, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
- Karen Gilleta - Memorial University of Newfoundland Student Counselling Centre, St. John's
- Abigail Mallillin - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba
- Mark Nicoll - Alberta Hospital Edmonton and Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Internship Consortium
- Cherie Peterson - Calgary Regional Health Authority
- Liesle Young - Alberta Children's Hospital, Calgary
- Shannon Costigan - Alberta Hospital Edmonton and Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Internship Consortium
- Karen Litke - Millard Health Centre, Alberta Workers' Compensation Board, Edmonton
- Thamarai Moorthy -Alberta Hospital Edmonton and Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Internship Consortium
- Donna Torrens - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba (Child and Adolescent stream).
- Rupal Bonli - Alberta Hospital Edmonton and Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Internship Consortium
- Grant Burt - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg (rural mental health)
- Kate Goodall - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg
- Kathy Lewis - Vancouver General Hospital
- Mark Olver - Department of Clinical Health Psychology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg
- Liz Rocha - IWK Health Centre, Halifax
- Tania Safnuk - Valley Regional Hospital, Kentville, NS
- Joel Tourigny - Alberta Children's Hospital, Calgary
- Myrna Willick - Alberta Hospital Edmonton and Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Internship Consortium
- Carrie Hicks - Alberta Hospital Edmonton and Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Internship Consortium
- Marnee Maroes - Chedoke-McMaster, Hamilton, Ontario
- Lorraine Patterson - Calgary Regional Health Authority Consortium
- Stephen Shaw - Alberta Hospital Edmonton and Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Internship Consortium
- Gail Andrew - Hincks Dellcrest Treatment Centre, Toronto
- Jasen Elliott - Calgary Regional Health Authority Consortium
- Kellie Hadden - Memorial University Counselling Centre, St. John's
- Paola Lake - Royal Ottawa Hospital
- Maria Lizak - Calgary Regional Health Authority
- Michelle McCallum - Alberta Children's Hospital, Calgary
- Annalyn Mercado - University of Manitoba Health Sciences Centre - neuropsych/rehab
- Michelle Shaw - Alberta Hospital Edmonton/Glenrose Rehab - brain injury
- Marc Sheckter - U Manitoba Counselling Service
- Diana Alexander - Montreal General Hospital
- Lisa Berg - Alberta Hospital Edmonton/Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Consortium
- Jerry Jellis - University of Manitoba Student Counselling Centre
- Lynn Loutzenhiser - Brown University, Dept of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Providence, RI
- Dawn Phillips - Alberta Hospital Edmonton/Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Consortium
- Theresa Zolner - Alberta Children's Hospital, Calgary
- Terry Levitt - Univ of Manitoba Health Sciences Centre
- Lana Shimp - Calgary Regional Health Authority Consortium
- Sandy Gardner - Alberta Hospital Edmonton/Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Consortium
- Gerald Block - McMaster University Health Sciences Centre
- Philip Carverhill - Memorial University of Newfoundland, Student Counselling Centre
- Jim Nieuwenhuis - Calgary Regional Health Authority Consortium