Ph.D. Program

Overview of the Degree Program

The Clinical Child Psychology Program at the University of Kansas fulfills the basic and traditional orientations to Clinical Psychology as a practice area in professional psychology with an emphasis in working with children, adolescents, parents, and families. The program has historically adhered to the “scientist-practitioner model” of clinical training (Belar & Perry, 1990; Raimy, 1950).  While this remains accurate in some respects, the CCPP has become increasingly oriented toward the clinical scientist model of training (McFall, 1991), and was recently inducted into the Academy of Psychological Clinical Science (APCS). Our membership in APCS reflects our commitment to and activities in achieving a scientific clinical psychology, and underscores the program’s priority on research training and productivity.

The KU CCPP fulfills its training model through its broad and general requirements and research training integrated with basic and advanced practica as well as in the didactic courses of psychopathology, assessment, and psychotherapeutic treatment. This fulfillment is evident from all aspects of the Program such as in the guiding principles, by its goals and objectives, through modeling by core faculty, via the integrated course requirements and syllabi, and in clinical research projects and clinical activities.

As noted above, the mission of the KU CCPP is to develop leaders in the research, dissemination, and practice of clinical science for children, youths, and their families.  In service of this mission, the program is designed to promote professional competencies in four specific domains (Research, Clinical Practice, Professionalism, and Leadership/Professional Communications) as well as broad and general knowledge across the substantive areas of the science of psychology.  A more complete description of these professional competency domains is available in the program shown as the top link on our Resources page.

We expect that the development of these competencies in our trainees will will produce researchers who examine the causes, correlates, and treatments of the psychological and physical challenges facing children, adolescents, and their families; and clinicians who base their practice on sound scientific principles and the strongest empirical evidence available.

Regardless of the particular professional settings in which our graduates apply their skills, we anticipate that they will be leaders in the field—effective in shaping their work environments and the larger field of clinical science through their research, teaching, supervision, and advocacy. To this end, the CCPP emphasizes the integration of science and practice in all of its endeavors, clinical and research. Prospective applicants to the program should be aware of the Program's valuation of research and empirical dissemination of clinical findings.

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