The goal of the PhD in Counseling Psychology program is to educate counseling psychologists who have a solid foundation in both science and practice. The scientist portion of the scientist-practitioner model is reflected in applied research on topics that relate to the practice of counseling psychology and other research that addresses the public good more broadly. Another goal is to train our students to think critically and to be appropriately skeptical about theories, research findings, and clinical practices. The practitioner portion of the model is reflected in the many opportunities for our students to develop skills as practitioners with a wide range of clients and in a variety of settings. Providing students with a solid foundation in both science and practice provides students with the skills to work in a marketplace that continues to evolve and change. In addition, students develop skills in intellectual, vocational, and personality assessment, and acquaint themselves with the needs and issues of specific groups, including but not limited to issues of gender, race, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, and disabilities. Areas of specialization which have a particularly strong emphasis in the Counseling Psychology program are multicultural counseling, ethics, health psychology, group dynamics, and addictions. Seminars are offered in several of these areas.
The faculty encourages students to develop individualized programs of study commensurate with their career goals. Practicum settings and internships may be arranged to further intensify training in particular areas. Students whose goals include college teaching are encouraged to be teaching assistants with faculty members, teach one of two undergraduate classes that are in the counseling psychology curriculum, or pursue teaching experience available at several areas colleges. Students are also required to complete a research project prior to their dissertation. In addition to the traditional counseling venues for employment, many of our graduates work in a variety of settings after graduation, including integrative care, Veterans Administration hospitals, mental health centers, and settings that conduct program evaluations, research, and provide supervision, among others.
Successful completion of the PhD program in Counseling Psychology will allow you to apply for licensure as a psychologist in Colorado and other states, assuming post-doctoral requirements are met.