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Post-Doctoral Psychology Residency


CAPS typically has at least one twelve-month, 2000 hour post-doctoral Psychology Resident position available each year. The Psychology Residency program provides supervised advanced clinical training and specialization opportunities to solidify advanced skills and further develop one's professional identity as a psychologist. The Psychology Resident is integrated fully into the CAPS staff.

Program Description

This residency provides a new professional with the opportunity to enhance and refine their skills in preparation for future career goals. This is achieved through mentoring by current permanent staff members in both general clinical services, as well as areas of particular interest. The Resident in this position will participate in a variety of supervised activities, representing a wide breadth of professional psychology in the university counseling center setting, which includes, but is not limited to: therapy through various modalities (individual, couples, and group; brief phone screenings; and crisis assessment), psycho-educational outreach, and consultation. The Resident participates in all staff activities, such as case conference, staff meetings, and professional development offerings. Supervision of direct clinical service is provided in order to accumulate the required number of supervised hours of practice needed for application for licensure as a professional psychologist.


The postdoctoral residency year is used to advance clinical skills and assist in the integration of a professional identity as a member of a multi-disciplinary counseling center staff, culminating in full certification as an independently functioning psychologist. The majority of a Resident's time is spent in the delivery of clinical services to enhance generalist and specialized skills, with expertise in counseling center functioning. A minimum of one hour of supervision per week is provided. Residents also consult with other staff members as needed. A developmental model is used in supervision, assessing the appropriate amount of supervision needed based on the Resident’s level of competence and confidence. Typically in the beginning of the year more guidance is needed as the Resident acclimates to CAPS. Once supervisors have a better understanding of skill level supervision can be individualized to meet the Resident's goals.

CAPS takes a mentorship approach toward expanding on the Resident's existing skill set. This is accomplished by creating areas of concentration based on the Resident's interest and agency need. Each of these concentrations is designed to gradually expose the Resident to administrative duties associated with such areas. Once the Resident's skill and interest level is assessed they begin to combine their skills as a general practitioner with those in their area of concentration to form a career path they would like to follow past the residency year. Joining these skills also aids in the development of a solid professional identity. Toward the end of the year mentorship places more emphasis on job search and licensure preparation.


Goals that a Resident can achieve include:

  • Development of advanced skills in assessment and intervention of substance use and abuse.
  • Provision of individual, couple's, and group psychotherapy within a time-limited model.
  • Enhanced skills in crisis intervention and consultation.
  • Further experience in developing, presenting, and evaluating psycho-educational outreach programming.
  • Attainment of hours required for licensure as an independent practitioner.
  • Continued development and integration of a more defined and nuanced professional identity.
  • Preparation for a career path of the Resident’s choosing.

Direct Clinical Services

Initial Consultation Appointments

Residents will work with the Assistant Director of Clinical Services to determine the number of initial consultation appointments they will conduct each week. The Resident will build their case load of individual therapy clients through these appointments. 

Ongoing Therapy

CAPS provides time-limited therapy to currently enrolled students. Partners of students may be seen in the context of couple's therapy. If during the initial consultation the Resident determines that brief individual therapy is the clinical recommendation for a student, they will tentatively determine the length of treatment in collaboration with the student. It is the responsibility of the Resident to effectively manage their caseload, which can consist of 20 to 25 clients per week.

Group Therapy

CAPS offers a variety of groups: process oriented therapy groups, psycho-educational groups, and support groups. Residents may co-facilitate an existing group with a permanent staff member, or may develop a new group under the supervision of a permanent staff member in consultation with the Groups Coordinator.

Brief Phone Screening/On-call

Residents participate with other staff members in providing brief phone screen and on-call coverage. The goal of this service is immediate assessment, intervention, and case disposition.

Outreach and Consultation

Specific organizations and groups on campus often request outreach programming. Residents develop and provide programs based on agency need. There is also an opportunity to create relationships with different organizations on campus, based on the Resident's desire and availability, in order to provide consultation to a student community. Currently there are teams assigned to specific organizations on campus for the purpose of creating strong relationships with traditionally underserved students. The Resident will also serve as liaison to one of the residence halls on campus.

Areas of Concentration

Alcohol and Other Drug Programming

CAPS provides specialized assessment for students referred through clinicians at CAPS. Clinicians who are part of the AOD team also provide individual and group therapy for students struggling with their relationship with substances. 

Outreach and Consultation

Interacting with and connecting to students throughout campus is an important way of promoting the services that CAPS offers. There are many experiences that a Resident interested in outreach and consultation could gain including helping to coordinate outreach requests. Web-based outreach is a new area that the Resident may choose to develop and oversee.

Indirect Clinical Services

Administrative duties

The Resident is responsible for completing all paperwork, including notes and reports, in a timely fashion. Preparation for direct care and other professional activities is also completed as needed by the Resident.


The Resident is provided with one hour of supervision per week. In addition they are expected to attend weekly case conferences and staff meetings. Residents are also involved in all staff professional development activities.