Office of Student Life

Doctoral Internship in Health Service Psychology

Hello, and thank you for your interest in our Doctoral Internship in Health Service Psychology! I am aware that this is a significant (and stressful) time in your academic career. As you explore our website and our program, keep in mind that I am here to help in any way I can. I know you are looking for an internship site that matches your professional and personal needs; so, please reach out to me if you have any questions or concerns about our program, The Ohio State University, or living in Columbus. I do wish you the best, and please take care of yourself in this process.

Mark G. Sampson, Ph.D.
Associate Director, Director of Training

Overview of Training Program

Interns have the opportunity to practice and develop the multiple roles of a psychologist during the 2,000-hour, 12-month internship. Contracting for specific commitments allows each intern some flexibility for individual emphasis and insures basic competency in required areas. Interns will find that their experience at CCS will be full of rewarding professional work and learning, as well as time and energy demands. Given these demands, it is important to the CCS staff to provide a humanistic and supportive environment in which interns are encouraged to strive for a healthy balance in their personal and professional lives, while realistically meeting the challenges of this intensive training experience.

An integral aspect of our training program involves the active participation of interns in the examination of the interactions that occur in therapy and training experiences. These interactions include an examination of personal reactions to clients, as well as an exploration of the dynamics present in the trainee group. The CCS staff values this self-reflection and supports interns to process such reactions in a manner conducive to professional and personal growth. The emphasis on a growing awareness of "self-in-therapy" is woven into individual supervision discussions, group supervision/case conference, and training sessions. Risk-taking in the level of self-disclosure of interns' personal reactions is respected and encouraged; however, appropriate limits to such disclosures are also respected. Our training program adheres to the APA Ethical Principles in this and every aspect of our training program.

The ultimate goal of a doctoral internship in health service psychology is to prepare interns to serve a diverse public which requires interns to develop the professional competencies to do so. Our internship adheres to the documents, “Preparing Professional Psychologists to serve a Diverse Public: A Core Requirement in Doctoral Education and Training” and "Professional Psychologist Competencies to Serve a Diverse Public" which were developed by the Education Directorate of the American Psychological Association. The intent of these documents is to assist training programs in addressing conflicts between trainees’ worldviews, beliefs, religious values and professional psychology’s commitment to offering culturally responsive psychological services to all members of the public, especially to those from traditionally marginalized groups. We also adhere to a commitment of supporting interns in a developmental process of competency acquisition. Self-reflection is an essential ingredient in competency development and is supported in the various training sessions and during supervision.

* Some doctoral programs require their students to have additional training contracts and evaluations completed by their internship programs. The Ohio State University Counseling and Consultation Service internship does not enter into training contracts with academic programs, and CCS supervisors do not complete evaluations developed by academic programs. As an APA accredited internship, our interns receive comprehensive evaluative feedback throughout the training year using instruments based on APA guidelines and customized to our program. Copies of completed evaluations are provided to academic programs at the mid-point and end of the training year. If you are enrolled in an academic program that requires additional training contracts and evaluations, you are strongly encouraged to consult with your Director of Clinical Training as to whether or not you are eligible to apply to our program.

Expectations for Successful Completion of Internship

For successful completion of the internship, the American Psychological Association, Commission on Accreditation (CoA) expects that programs will require each intern to demonstrate competency in each of the nine professional-wide competencies:

  1. Research
  2. Ethical and Legal Standards
  3. Individual and Cultural Diversity
  4. Professional Values and Attitudes
  5. Communication and Interpersonal Skills
  6. Assessment
  7. Intervention
  8. Supervision
  9. Consultation and Interprofessional/Interdisciplinary Skills

In general, trainees are expected to demonstrate each profession-wide competency with increasing levels of independence and complexity as they progress across levels of training.  

Minimum Level of Achievement (Exit Criteria)

For all competencies, the minimum level of achievement required for successful completion of the internship is: “ready for independent practice.” (To see the full intern evaluation, see the attachment on the “Internship Admissions, Support and Initial Placement Data” page.

The expectation of accumulated hours for successful completion of the accredited internship is acquiring at least 2000 overall internship hours and 500 direct clinical hours (25 percent of total hours).  CCS defines direct clinical hours as contact with clients (individual, group, couples, consultation, triage and urgent counseling). 

Updated - 6-9-2023