Counseling & Psychological Services

(805) 893-4411 - M-F 8:30am to 4:30pm

Psychology Practicum Program

Counseling Practicum Program Overview

CAPS Overview
Counseling is the personal growth and mental health component of Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS). The services are designed to assist students with their personal development and assist the University in improving the quality of campus life. Services include individual and group counseling, crisis intervention, workshops, self-help resources, consultation with campus agencies, testing, and training of psychology doctoral students and peer advisors.

Training Program
The counseling practicum is designed to provide an introduction to the psychological services within a university counseling center and the development of clinical skills required for these services. Practicum students will gain experience in individual and group counseling (subject to interest and availability) under the supervision of staff psychologists and doctoral psychology interns.

- Second year doctoral-level student in UCSB's Counseling Psychology Program (minimum).
- Two years experience in a counselor role (at least one of which was in a supervised setting in a graduate program).
- Course work in assessment and groups.

Time Requirements
A minimum of 12 hours per week for one academic year (three consecutive quarters).

Application Requirements - Deadline is April 20, 2018
- A letter describing interest, special skills, and a statement of personal and professional goals for this training experience
- Most recent resume

Please mail these two items to:
Juan R. Riker, Ph.D.
Training Director
Counseling and Psychological Services
University of California, Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-7030

For more information, please email Juan Riker or call at 805-893-4411.
Description of CAPS Practicum Training

During the practicum experience, developing counselors begin to formulate their own counseling style, refine their therapeutic and assessment skills, and grow in personal and professional areas.

The training program is designed to support both the skills and abilities the practicum student possesses and to challenge the student's awareness of self and how it impacts the therapeutic process.

The practicum experience is a time for clinical skills to be integrated with conceptual/theoretical knowledge. This involves developing a sense of one's personal style, and blending that style with the counseling process and with the skills of assessment and conceptualization.

Training Program
The practicum training program provides clinical experience with a student population through CAPS. Over the course of the year, practicum students will be expected to develop their skills on both a personal and professional level through individual supervision, discussing clinical cases and professional issues in the training seminar, and working with clients individually and in groups.

Practicum students will be developing a sense of the ongoing therapy process, including building rapport with clients, assessing and setting counseling goals, and continuing through the process to termination. By the end of the year, students will be expected to demonstrate:
- Conceptual skills - being able to generate an overview of client dynamics within the context of therapy and the client's world.
- Assessment skills - being able to accurately evaluate the client's primary conflict areas, personality dynamics, and background.
- Treatment plans - utilizing assessment and conceptual skills to formulate appropriate goals and a time frame for counseling.
- Group skills (if applicable) - develop a beginning level of understanding of group dynamics and develop the ability to function as a group co-leader.

Personal growth will also be a primary area of emphasis, with students expected to demonstrate:
- Affective/cognitive components of self in relating to the client and understanding the counseling process.
- Knowledge of self dynamics and how these impact oneself, the client, and the process.

Professional development is the final area of emphasis. Students will be expected to demonstrate:
- Ethical awareness of client/therapy issues, including one's own limitations with clients, and how to make appropriate referrals.
- Articulation of professional knowledge and presentation of case material with one's colleagues.

Training Activities

1. Individual Counseling/Psychotherapy
a. Brief Therapy
b. Longer Term Therapy
c. Weekly Individual Supervision
d. Quarterly Case Presentations

2. Group Counseling/Psychotherapy
a. Co-leading (optional, dependent upon availability)
b. Weekly Supervision with group leaders
c. Final Group Presentation

3. Intake Interviewing and Write-ups

4. Report Writing
a. Record Keeping
b. Treatment Plans
c. Treatment Summaries

5. Training Seminar

6. Case Assignment Team (CAT) Meetings

In addition to seeing clients, the practicum student will have one hour of individual supervision and two hours of training seminar per week. At the beginning of the year, and before students begin carrying individual clients, the practicum student will sit in on intake interviews with staff members and participate in an overview of the group training experience. Practicum students will be expected to successfully complete the role of Process Observer during the academic year. The opportunity to work as an Assistant Leader will be provided based on availability, interest, and skill level.


Practicum students will be required to produce video recordings of their counseling sessions for use by their individual supervisors. Recorded case presentations will be required during the Winter and Spring quarters as part of the seminar case presentation.

Evaluation forms will be completed each quarter by the practicum student and the individual supervisor. Based on the practicum student's final evaluation and participation in the seminar, satisfactory performance will be given a Pass. Informal evaluations in the form of feedback will be an ongoing part of the process both in supervision and in seminar.
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