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Academic Catalog

    Argosy University
   
 
  Sep 24, 2017
 
 
    
2017-2018 Argosy University Academic Catalog—Graduate Programs | Volume 8, Issue 1

Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology Degree Program—Argosy University, Twin Cities


Program Overview


The Master of Arts (MA) in Clinical Psychology degree program offered at Argosy University, Twin Cities is designed to meet the needs of those students seeking a terminal degree at the master’s level. Responding to the needs of those in the community who wish to pursue a career as a counselor, Argosy University, Twin Cities offers a MA in Clinical Psychology degree program. This program is designed to present students with the opportunity for training as professionals in the fields of mental health and addiction.

This program introduces students to basic clinical skills that enable them to serve the mental health and addiction treatment needs of populations with diverse backgrounds. Students who complete the master of Arts in Clinical Psychology degree program receive theoretical background and professional training under the supervision of a qualified, practitioner-oriented faculty. The graduates of this program then have the opportunity to apply theoretical and clinical knowledge to individuals and groups in need of mental health and addiction care.

Eligibility for Licensure


Graduates of the MA in Clinical Psychology degree program may wish to pursue licensure in Minnesota as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC), Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), and a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor (LADC) provided they complete all requirements outlined by the Minnesota Board of Behavioral Health and Therapy. The program curriculum includes courses in each area of study required by the Minnesota Board of Behavioral Health and Therapy for LPCC, LPC, and LADC licensure in Minnesota. In addition to the educational requirements, the Minnesota Board of Behavioral Health and Therapy lists additional requirements needed, post-graduation, for each license including passing a national exam and supervised clinical work after receiving the master’s degree. For more information and application materials to apply for licensure in the state of Minnesota, see the Minnesota Board of Behavioral Health and Therapy at http://www.bbht.state.mn.us. Master’s-level licensure varies from state to state. It is the student’s responsibility to determine the requirements for professional licensure in the state they wish to practice. Students interested in pursuing licensure in a state other than Minnesota should contact that state’s department of professional regulation for information. The American Counseling Association frequently publishes information on professional issues of importance to professional counselors, including licensure, on their Web page: www.counseling.org.

Foundation Courses


Fifteen credit hours of undergraduate courses in psychology, at least 3 of which must be earned in statistics, are required and must be completed prior to enrolling in the MA in Clinical Psychology degree program. This coursework serves as a foundation for graduate courses in clinical psychology. Any graduate course used to fulfill the foundation course requirements may not be used to transfer graduate course credit hours in the clinical psychology program at Argosy University, Twin Cities.

The undergraduate foundation courses must be completed before the student formally begins the graduate program in clinical psychology. It is the student’s responsibility to provide an updated transcript to document the fulfillment of the foundation course requirements.

Additional Requirements for Academic Progress


Core clinical courses must be completed with a grade of “B-” or above. Students receiving a grade of “C” or above may continue forward in sequenced courses if applicable. However, students must repeat the course in which they received a grade below a “B-.”

Students must complete the program within five years after matriculation. The continuous enrollment policy will be enforced for all students who have completed all coursework, including the practicum experiences.  Extensions allowing enrollment beyond the five-year limit may only be granted by the department chair. Such extensions will only be granted under extenuating circumstances to allow completion of all degree requirements within a short period of time.

Additional Academic Standards and Student Evaluation


Academic performance and competence is assessed and evaluated by successful completion of coursework and by successful completion of specific requirements. Student’s performance and competence will be evaluated across a number of dimensions. In addition to performance on traditional academic tasks and requirements, students cognitive, emotional, psychological and interpersonal functioning and development will be reviewed and evaluated.

Students are also required to conform to ethical standards which govern the behavior of professional psychologists.

Graduation Requirements


To be eligible for graduation, students must meet the following requirements:

  • The satisfactory completion of 48 semester credit hours by the end of the fifth year of matriculation. The total credit hours must include:
    • 37 credit hours of core courses
    • 4 credit hours of elective courses
    • 6 credit hours (minimum of two semesters) of practicum and practicum seminar
    • 1 credit hour of Professionalization Group
  • A GPA of at least 3.0 (on a scale of 4.0)
  • A completed Petition to Graduate submitted to campus administration

Writing Skills


The ability to communicate clearly, effectively and professionally in writing is essential for the competent practice of clinical psychology. In order to ensure that students possess adequate writing skills, all entering students are required to participate in an assessment of writing skills. If the assessment indicates deficiencies in writing skills, remediation will be required. Remediation may include taking one or more writing courses and/or working with a writing mentor or professor. Required remedial writing courses will not count toward graduation requirements. Writing skills will also be assessed across the clinical psychology curriculum.

Program Requirements


Student progress through the MA in Clinical Psychology degree program at  Argosy University, Twin Cities is intended to be sequential. Certain courses are offered to first-year students, which provide a theoretical and practical foundation for courses that will follow in subsequent years. In addition, certain advanced courses require the student to have the background of more basic courses in order to benefit fully from the course experience.

In addition to specific course prerequisites, certain courses are required before certain program requirements can be undertaken. Students should carefully note the courses which are required for practicum. Students should not expect that exceptions will be made to these prerequisite requirements. Prerequisites for practicum are listed in the following section.

The MA in Clinical Psychology degree program requires the successful completion of 48 semester credit hours distributed as follows: core course requirements, 37 credit hours; elective requirements, 4 credit hours; professionalization group requirements, 1 credit hour; and practicum and practicum seminar requirements, 6 credit hours.

Core Course Requirements


Students enrolled in the MA in Clinical Psychology degree program are required to complete the courses listed below to fulfill the core course requirements (37 credit hours).

Elective Requirements


Students enrolled in the MA in Clinical Psychology degree program are required to complete one of the two course sequences listed below to fulfill the elective requirements (4 credit hours).

Elective Requirements–4 Credit Hours


Professionalization Group Requirements


Students enrolled in the MA in Clinical Psychology degree program are required to complete one semester of professionalization group as listed below (1 credit hour).

Professionalization Group Requirements—Students Are Required to Take the Following


Professionalization Group Requirements—1 Credit Hour


Practicum Requirements


Students enrolled in the MA in Clinical Psychology degree program are required to complete the practicum sequence listed below (6 credit hours).

Practicum and Practicum Seminar Requirements—Students Are Required to Take the Following


Practicum and Practicum Seminar Requirements—6 Credit Hours


Professionalization Group Requirements


The Professionalization Group is a required experience for students in the second year of attendance. The Professionalization Group meets once a week for an hour for 15 weeks. The Professionalization Group is designed to provide:

  • An orientation to the profession of psychology
  • Guidance to assist students with the Practicum application process
  • An introduction to ethical and legal issues necessary for students to begin their training experiences

Professionalization Groups are led by a core faculty, who will provide a syllabus for the class.

Practicum and Practicum Seminar Requirements


Students in the MA in Clinical Psychology degree program are required to complete 6 credit hours (minimum of two semesters) of practicum and practicum seminar. All students who enter the practicum application process must be in good academic standing, have a minimum GPA of 3.0 (on a scale of 4.0) and have completed all the practicum prerequisite courses prior to the beginning of the practicum. Argosy University, Twin Cities faculty review all practicum applicants to determine their academic and clinical suitability. Student readiness for practicum is determined by the department chair.

Students will not be allowed to apply for practicum if there is concern about their ability to function competently and professionally at the training site. Students who are on probation are not permitted to apply for practicum. Exceptions to this policy may be granted by the department chair. Students who have received a grade below a “B-” in any course may not begin practicum until the course(s) have been retaken and a satisfactory grade has been earned. The departmental Student Professional Development Committee may stipulate that a student delay application for practicum as part of an overall remediation plan for the student.

The practicum experience must meet each of the following requirements:

  • The practicum must include 700 hours of documented clinical experience. For students completing the Addiction Studies courses the practicum must total 880 hours of mental health and addiction clinical experience.
  • Students will spend approximately 20-25 hours per week on practicum duties.
  • The practicum must extend over a minimum period of two semesters.
  • Students must enroll in two  3 credit hour courses PP6201 - Master’s Practicum I  and PP6202 - Master’s Practicum II  while in the Practicum.
  • Students must attend a practicum seminar during enrollment in PP6201 - Master’s Practicum I  and PP6202 - Master’s Practicum II . Practicum seminars meet weekly while classes are in session.

All students on practicum are covered by professional liability insurance purchased through the school. This coverage is mandatory, even if the student is otherwise insured.

All practicum sites must be approved by the department chair, and students must work with the program officials throughout the practicum process. The program will provide students with a list of potential practicum sites to which they may apply. However, students must be accepted by the site for training at that site. Argosy University, Twin Cities does not guarantee practicum placement. While there are some practicum sites located in the Twin Cities metropolitan area, in some cases the student may need to travel outside of the Twin Cities metropolitan area to obtain practicum training.

Practicum Training Sites


In assisting students in their search for a practicum site, the program attempts to match student needs and interests. If a student is interested in a particular clinical area, the department chair, in collaboration with the student, will attempt to find such a site. The department chair welcomes student and faculty input on the development of practicum sites. The practicum’s experience will extend throughout the two semesters.

Students are expected to receive at least one hour of supervision per week on site. These supervisory hours should be regularly scheduled and continue throughout the practicum. A practicum may not be done in a student’s place of employment without approval from the department chair clearly defining the scope of the practicum as outside of the scope of employment.

Practicum Application Process


Detailed procedures for the practicum application process are provided in the Practicum Policies and Procedures handouts which are distributed to students as they begin the application process.

Students may only apply to practicum sites approved by the program. Practicum site supervisors expect that applicants have been referred to them by the program and that all clinical training is coordinated through the program. Students who do not follow these guidelines can expect disciplinary action.

Practicum sites vary considerably in how and when they interview and select students. Students at Argosy University, Twin Cities compete with students from other graduate programs for practicum sites. Students should apply, conduct interviews, and accept/decline practicum positions with the utmost professionalism.

When students receive an offer, they may ask that site supervisor for a reasonable period of time to complete interviewing at other sites; reasonable means several days to two weeks. Once a student accepts an offer, that acceptance is binding. By accepting a practicum site, a student makes a professional and ethical commitment to a site; students must conduct themselves accordingly. The student should then notify other sites of his or her withdrawal from candidacy and thank them for their consideration. Students should inform the department chair immediately after accepting a practicum site and complete the Practicum Placement Agreement and the Training Release of Information. The Practicum Placement Agreement form identifies the student, the site, the supervisor, and the days and times the student will be on site. The student is responsible for completing the forms and returning it to the department chair. Practicum placements are not officially approved until these forms have been completed and accepted by the department chair.

Practicum Seminar Requirements


All practicum students are required to attend a practicum seminar. This seminar meets regularly during the student’s enrollment in PP6201 - Master’s Practicum I   and PP6202 - Master’s Practicum II . Attendance at the practicum seminar is required. Students regularly present tapes and diagnostic reports.

Evaluation of Student Progress in Practicum


Student performance in the practicum is assessed in basic areas of clinical functioning, including:

  • Theoretical knowledge base
  • Clinical skills
  • Professional/ethical attitudes and behavior

Performance at the practicum site is evaluated each semester by the assigned practicum site supervisor. Performance in the practicum seminar is evaluated each semester by the seminar leader. These evaluations must be completed using the approved forms, and will review both strengths and weaknesses. If students are having practicum problems, they should consult with the seminar leader or the department chair. Practicum supervisors are also encouraged to immediately contact the department chair with any concerns about their student.

All practicums are graded on a “Credit” (“CR”) or “No Credit” (“NC”) basis. Students are initially assigned a grade of “Progressing” (“PR”) for their practicum work each semester.

The final grade of “CR” or “NC” is assigned by the department chair when all documentation in support of the student’s practicum experience has been received and reviewed. Required documentation includes:

  • Practicum Supervisor evaluations
  • Practicum Student evaluations
  • Faculty seminar leader evaluations

Unsatisfactory ratings on any of these evaluations may be grounds for granting a grade of “NC” for the practicum. Students may not receive partial credit hours for a practicum. If a student receives a grade of “NC” for a practicum the entire practicum must be repeated.

Student-at-Large


Students may take up to three courses as a student-at-large (SAL) prior to matriculation in the MA in Clinical Psychology degree program at Argosy University, Twin Cities. Any exceptions to this policy must be approved by the department chair.

Grades for courses taken as a SAL will be treated the same as grades received for courses taken as a matriculated student. This means that upon admission, SAL grades will be counted as part of the student’s GPA, and that grades of “C” or below received as a SAL will count toward academic/financial aid probation.