Psy.D. Degree

Practicum Training in the Place of Employment

Clinical training may not be done in the student's place of employment. This restriction recognizes that training most optimally occurs in settings uncomplicated by dual relationships, employment pressures, and financial demands. Students also profit from training in diverse organizational "cultures" or structures.

Occasionally, the interpretation of what constitutes "place of employment" is unclear. For example, a large corporation may own several smaller corporations which operate at different sites, managed by different supervisors, serving different populations. A student may request the opportunity to train at a subsidiary of the parent organization in which the student works. Students are required to consult with the Director of Clinical Training (DCT) and may be required to submit a formal proposal for review by the DCT and Clincial Training Committee. In order to identify what constitutes a student's "place of employment", the Office of Clinical Training has developed the following guidelines.

Place of Employment Guidelines

Dual Relationships

The field training supervisor periodically evaluates the student's progress in training and submits reports to the Director of Clinical Training. These reports must be objective, fair, and candid. Therefore, someone who is a co-worker, work supervisor, or employer should not evaluate the student. The Clinical Training Committee will evaluate the student's training request to ensure that no dual relationship exists.

Multiple Identities

A student should enter a training site with a single identity: a professional-in-training. Students attempting to train in their place of employment continue to be identified as employees. This identity can place competing demands on students and thus compromise the training that they receive.

Financial Relationships

Students enter a clinical field placement as a student, not as an employee, private practitioner, or independent contractor. Ideally, financial matters do not impinge upon clinical training/education.  Students may receive a modest fellowship to support involvement in clinical field training. A student may not receive a "salary" as this identifies the student as an employee, rather than a professional-in-training. The educative and training mission of the clinical practicum should not be compromised by financial considerations, such as compensation based on "productivity" or "collections".

Geographical Relationships

Occasionally, health organizations, like other corporations, merge with or acquire other companies that are at some geographical distance from one another. In these circumstances, the corporations continue to operate independently of one another and are united "in name only". Under these circumstances, a student may train at the separate corporation, so long as the other criteria are met.

Power in Relationships

Students enter training programs to be the recipients of educative, professional training experiences. This arrangement places students in a role in which they depend upon their supervisors and the agency for successful training experiences. Students may not hire their supervisors, nor pay the agency for their training experiences. Such arrangements remove the professional-in-training from the student role and elevate the student to the status of business partner in the training process.