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Course Descriptions

Students entering the PGSP-Stanford Psy.D. Consortium in Fall 2017 and later will complete the curriculum below. All courses are required unless specifically identified as “Elective”.

First Year Courses
Second Year Courses
Third Year Courses
Fourth Year Courses
Fifth Year Courses
Other Courses

First Year Courses

ASMT 700 Psychological Assessment I: Intellectual Assessment 

This course provides an introduction to assessment of adult intellectual and cognitive functioning in a dual lecture and laboratory format.  The course emphasizes the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-IV with administration, scoring, and interpretation covered in lecture and implemented in the laboratory.

ASMT 701 Psychological Assessment II: Personality & Psychopathology
This course provides an overview of personality and personality assessment in a dual lecture and laboratory format.  The course emphasizes objective, self-report measures and provides in-depth coverage of the MMPI-2 in the assessment of emotional functioning and psychopathology. Prerequisite:  ASMT 700.

CLIN 700 Learning Psychotherapy: An Integrated Approach I
Provides a foundation for training beginning psychotherapists in the crucial elements of psychotherapy.  The first module focuses on an introduction to pan-theoretical elements, concepts of listening skills, the therapeutic alliance, verbal response modes and therapist intentions, and cultural and ethical issues affecting psychotherapy.

CLIN 702 Learning Psychotherapy: An Integrated Approach III
The pan-theoretical elements identified by the APA Division 29 task force are studied at in greater depth. Key issues include establishing therapeutic alliance (task/goal/bond), recognizing and repairing ruptures in the therapeutic alliance, transference and countertransference, and effective termination.

CLIN 715 Brief Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
Introduction to brief and long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy, with an emphasis on the potential contribution of empirical research to theory validation and to the identification of efficacious treatment elements. Topics covered include: psychodynamic assumptions about the mechanisms of change in treatment, with a focus on the roles of insight and enactments; definitions of transference and counter-transference as affected by the shift in focus from a one-person to two-person psychology; the role of the unconscious and mechanisms of defense; the technical distinction between expressive and supportive techniques and their relations to the mechanisms of change.

ETHC 700 Foundations of Ethics & Professional Psychological Practice
Introduction to the ethical and professional guidelines, laws, principles, and practices that shape professional psychology in the 21st century.

ETHC 702 Critical Issues in Clinical Psychology
Focuses on practical issues that will face clinical psychologists in 21st century including controversies over empirically supported therapies, practice guidelines, randomized clinical trials, self-evaluation of practices and prescription privileges for clinical psychologists.

PATH 700 Psychopathology Across the Lifespan: Child & Adolescent
Overview of common child and adolescent psychological disorders and developmental psychopathology addressing issues such as ethnicity, SES and gender differences throughout. The course focuses on DSM-IV-TR classifications, adaptive and maladaptive behaviors, risk and protective factors within the child, family and environment and developmental models.

PATH 701 Psychopathology Across the Lifespan: Middle Years & Older Adults
Overview of theory, etiology, base rates and comorbidities of psychopathologies included in DSM-IV-TR. Students learn to use the DSM-IV-TR criteria and multiaxial system to make differential diagnosis and apply diagnostic skills through clinical interviews and diagnostic reports. The benefits and limitations of diagnosis are discussed.

PSYS 700 Foundations of Psychological Science I: Social Aspects of Behavior
This course provides an overview of critical aspects of social psychology and the influence of social processes and context on human behavior.

PSYS 706 Lifespan Development
This course will review the fundamentals of developmental psychology, which is a field of study devoted to understanding both the continuity and change that makes up normal human development throughout the lifespan, from birth to old age.

PSYS 707 History & Systems
Introduction to the historical contexts, social influences, and individuals important to the development of movements within psychology with an emphasis placed on the development of psychology as an empirical science. Recognition of the role of women and people of color in the history of psychology are emphasized.

PSYS 710 Biological Bases of Behavior
Reviews the fundamentals of neuroscience involved in understanding what is currently known about the neurobiological bases for psychiatric disorders. It includes a review of neurotransmitters, second messenger systems, neurotrophic factors and the effect of pharmacologic agents on these different levels of input to the neuron. Connected networks thought to underlie mood and anxiety disorders, data suggesting structural changes in mood disorders and functional abnormalities in a variety of psychiatric illnesses are considered.

PSYS 720 Foundations of Psychological Science II: Cognitive Bases of Behavior
Focus on the basic sciences of human cognition, and how this domain of human functioning can be harnessed to inform us about psychopathology. Course will focus on selected key topics within the areas of attention, memory, decision-making, social cognition, and language. The goal of this course is to expose students to both the classic and recent empirical research in different areas of cognition, and to discuss various theories proposed to account for these findings.

PSYS 722 Foundations of Psychological Science II: Affective Bases of Behavior
This course provides an overview of affective science. It includes a review of key topics, including: defining and measuring emotion, intrapersonal and interpersonal functions of emotion, gender and cultural differences in emotion, emotion across the lifespan, emotion regulation, and emotion and well-being. This course also considers the application of affective science concepts and research findings to clinical psychology theory and practice.

Assessment Elective (Choose one):

ASMT 702 Psychological Assessment III: Integrated Test Batteries, Adult
This course integrates intellectual functioning, cognitive, personality and psychopathology measures into a coherent description of the client in a dual lecture and laboratory format.  The primary focus in this course is on interpretation of psychological test batteries and report writing. Prerequisite: ASMT 701.

CLIN 723 Psychological Assessment III: Integrated Test Batteries, Child and Adolescent 
Provides students with background and practical experience in diagnostic testing of children. This will include readings, observations, and discussion of diagnostic testing of selected subjects as well as practical testing experience. Human diversity issues in the assessment of children (language differences, ethnicity, SES) are addressed throughout the course. Prerequisite: ASMT 701.

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Second Year Courses

CLIN 707 Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Mood Disorders
Focuses on the treatment of mood disorders, including comorbid Axis I and Axis II disorders, with cognitive behavior therapy. It emphasizes the integration of five crucial ingredients of therapeutic success: Assessment, Technique, Emotion, Alliance, and Motivation.

CLIN 710 Nature & Treatment of Anxiety Disorders
Overview of current data regarding prevalence, clinical features, comorbidities, and treatment outcome of anxiety disorders in adults. Etiology and the development and maintenance of anxiety disorders from a biopsychosocial perspective is presented and specific treatment procedures are reviewed for empirically supported treatments for Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, Social and Specific Phobias, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.

CLIN 711 Psychological Treatment for Substance Abuse
Introduction to the theories of substance misuse and the principles and methods of prevention, screening, assessment, and treatment of substance use disorders. The course is structured to meet California licensure requirements for training in alcoholism/chemical dependency detection and treatment.

CLIN 735 Group Psychotherapy
Introduction to the theory and practice of group psychotherapy and includes an historical overview of the development of group psychotherapy, particularly as it pertains to the emergence of the various approaches to group psychotherapy. Basic issues and treatment strategies in conducting group psychotherapy are highlighted. Introduction to basic group dynamics, principles of effective task groups, and the theory and practice of group psychotherapies with an emphasis on interactional group therapy.

CLDV 700 Culturally Competent Counseling
Overview of issues related to multicultural counseling and psychology. The focus is on the interface of divergent identities and cultural experiences and the development of cross-cultural competency for clinicians.

ETHC 703 Advanced Professional Issues: Clinical Emergencies & Crises
Follows the section of clinical emergencies and crises (Section VII) of the APA Division of Clinical Psychology's training guidelines for didactic and clinical training in this essential professional endeavor.

STAT 700 Psychometrics
This course provides an overview of the scientific study of mental measurement, psychological testing and assessment. The course covers several measurement instruments associated with aptitude, interests, personality, and abilities that are used in a variety of settings.  Discussion of statistical underpinnings of instruments, the administration of tests, their “meaningful” (i.e., clinical) utility, and ethical issues surrounding their applications are discussed.  Students are required to review and critique several commonly used instruments during this course, including evaluating computerized- and clinician-generated interpretations of tests.

STAT 704 Statistics & Research Methods I
This course covers basic research methodology and statistics in psychology.  Students will be able to describe characteristics of research studies, explain different research methods, and articulate strengths and limitations of various research designs.  The statistical concepts taught include the ability to identify which data analyses procedures to use, compute simple statistical work problems by hand, correctly perform data entry, data management, and statistical analyses covered in lectures using a statistical program.

STAT 706 Statistics & Research Methods II
This course builds upon the research methods and statistical approaches taught in PSY250.  More advanced research methodology is covered in addition to learning how to critically evaluate an article published in the research literature.  Students will be able to distinguish the nature of designs that permit causal inferences from those that do not, evaluate the appropriateness of conclusions derived from psychological research as well as articulate strengths and limitations of various research designs. The lectures will cover analysis of variance/covariance, regression, and multiple regression.  Students will learn to execute the models within a statistical program as well as the interpretation and explanation of results in APA format.  Prerequisite:  STAT 704.

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Third Year Courses

CLIN 727 Medical Illness & Psychological Symptoms
The purpose of this course is to investigate the appearance of psychiatric illness in medical conditions. Central Nervous System diseases, HIV related psychiatric disorders, and disorders related to hormone dysregulation are reviewed. Neuropsychological testing is covered with an emphasis on the diagnosis of psychiatric conditions in neurological disorders. Students also receive an in depth review of somatoform disorders, with particular focus on non-epileptic seizures.

CLIN 736 Supervision & Consultation
Weekly seminar that introduces students to the theory and methods of consultation psychology in child and adult settings. In addition, the course provides an introduction to the models, methods, and competencies of providing clinical supervision.

DISS 701 Dissertation Preparation I
Weekly seminar focused on the development and facilitation of the dissertation process. Faculty provide individual assistance and discussion, including literature review, hypotheses development, finding a dissertation chair and other committee members, the Institutional Review Board process, proposal preparation, and the proposal defense.

DISS 702 Dissertation Preparation II
Continuation of DISS 701. Weekly seminar focused on the development and facilitation of the dissertation process. Faculty provide individual assistance and discussion, including literature review, hypotheses development, finding a dissertation chair and other committee members, the Institutional Review Board process, proposal preparation, and the proposal defense.

INTR 700 Introduction to Internship Preparation (elective; highly encouraged but not required)
Weekly seminar focused on the internship application, interview, and matching process as well as professional development issues.

PSYS 719 Psychopharmacology for the Psychologist
Overview of psychopharmacology in the treatment of psychopathology, including discussion of various models of disorders and the impact of drug development research.

Third Year Elective Options

ASMT 717 Introduction to the Rorschach: RPAS (elective)
Introduces the use of performance-based measures to assess adult psychopathology. The primary focus of the course will be the Rorschach Performance Assessment System (R-PAS).  The course will cover standardized administration, coding, and interpretation using the R-PAS

CLIN 718 Behavioral Medicine (elective) Overview of various clinical health psychology techniques for working with patients with a variety of behavioral medicine needs. Presenting issues include psychological factors associated a diagnosis of cancer, diabetes or HIV/AIDS, smoking cessation, weight management or exercise, psychosomatic illness, pain management, women's reproductive health issues and genetic testing.   CLIN 745 Clinical Perspectives on Trauma Psychology (elective) This course introduces theoretical and applied issues related to trauma. Special topics including therapeutic and self-care issues for practitioners; and the needs of special populations (e.g., childhood sexual abuse survivors, combat veterans, torture survivors). Risk and protective factors are considered within a bio psychosocial framework.  

CLIN 722 DBT for the Borderline Patient: A Clinical Overview (elective)
A comprehensive overview of DBT, supporting empirical evidence, and applicability to Borderline Personality Disorder in adult and adolescent populations. Applicability to eating disordered and alcoholic populations will also be reviewed. The core theoretical principles are summarized, and treatment targets and strategies are discussed with an emphasis given to the features that differentiate DBT from other cognitive or behavioral treatments.

CLIN 726 Couples & Family Therapy (elective)
Provides students with the basic concepts of systems theory. Initially the major theoretical premises of the family-systems approach to the assessment and treatment of couples and families are reviewed, then the focus shifts to acquiring the tools required for family systems interviewing, assessment, and treatment planning.

CLIN 728 Child/Adolescent III: Child Psychotherapy (elective)
This course introduces empirically-supported treatments for child and adolescent mental health disorders. Child and adolescent development is covered as a broad-based guiding principle for implementation of skills and strategies; however, the course focuses on building skills (e.g., CBT with anxiety) and their application to specific disorders.

CLIN 750  Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (elective) The purpose of this course is to familiarize students with the major theories that underlie ACT, and the practical delivery of ACT in clinical practice.  Conceptualizing patients using an ACT framework, the evidence base for ACT, and using ACT in specific populations will be explored.  A second purpose of this course is to help students apply knowledge of ACT techniques through the use of self-exploration and exercises.   

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Fourth Year Courses

DISS 710 Dissertation Units
This required 10-unit dissertation course is taken by fourth year students during the first three quarters of the fourth year. All students must complete a minimum of 30 dissertation units, even if they complete the proposal defense prior to the fourth year in the program.

INTR 701 Internship Prep I (elective; highly encouraged but not required)
This seminar provides information and guidance about the internship application process covering topics such as site selection, CVs, essays, cover letters, and APPI completion.  Students are also assigned an individual Internship Advisor to provide tailored guidance and support

INTR 702 Internship Prep II (elective; highly encouraged but not required)
This seminar is a continuation of earlier internship preparation seminars and focuses on interviewing and ranking information and guidance.

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Fifth Year Courses

INTR 703 Internship Units (3 units)
Students completing a one year, full time internship will enroll in four consecutive quarters of INTR703, for a total of 12 units. If the internship start date occurs during July, the first quarter of enrollment will be the summer prior to the fifth year. If the start date occurs during August or September, the first quarter of enrollment will be the fall of the fifth year.

INTR 704 Internship Units (1.5 units)
Students completing a two year, part time internship will enroll in eight consecutive quarters of INTR704, for a total of 12 units. If the internship start date occurs during July, the first quarter of enrollment will be the summer prior to the fifth year. If the start date occurs during August or September, the first quarter of enrollment will be the fall of the fifth year.

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Additional Courses

PRAC 701 Clinical Practicum
Depending on the year in the program, students complete a 16-24 hour weekly clinical practicum wherein they attain the core clinical competencies determined by the Consortium. Students are required to register for Clinical Practicum units in every quarter in which they participate in a formal practicum. Registration in PRAC 701 also includes participation in Practicum Forum, which provides a forum for discussion and integration of practicum experiences with content in other elements of the program. Practicum and Practicum Forum requirements vary based on student status (beginning, intermediate or advanced); see the Practicum Handbook for details.

STAT 710 Advanced Statistical & Writing Consultation (elective) This course provides students individualized statistical and writing consultation for research projects. The consultant augments rather than replaces guidance provided by the student’s dissertation chair.

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