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 CHILD/ADOLESCENT PSYCHOLOGY FELLOWSHIP OVERVIEW

The goal of the child/adolescent psychology fellowship is to enhance the fellow's skills in the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with a wide range of emotional and behavioral problems. 

This fellowship fits best for a psychology graduate who has previous child clinical psychology training, or solid generalist skills in assessment and psychotherapy, with a background in child development and behavioral interventions. It is anticipated that psychologists completing this training program intend to work with children and adolescents as a major emphasis of their careers.

Overview

The fellow provides services in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health , the Child Development Center and the Department of Pediatrics. Training on these services is guided by the observable practice activities (OPAs). The attending psychologist assesses the fellows' performance on the OPAs and provides formative feedback. OPA performance contributes to the semiannual Clinical Competency Committee (CCC) summative evaluation of the fellow with respect to the core competencies and their essential components.

The fellow receives three hours per week of scheduled individual supervision and conducts approximately 22-24 clinical hours per week, which includes specialty clinic services.  Fellows participate in the weekly fellowship seminar, the bi-weekly case consultation staffing, the monthly professionalism/leadership seminar and quarterly patient safety/quality improvement forums.

Although the child/adolescent psychology fellow is encouraged to use a variety of therapeutic approaches, the prevailing approaches among the faculty are behavioral and cognitive-behavioral, embedded in a developmental understanding of the child. Interventions include individual therapy, parent guidance and family therapy. Our graduates in this fellowship go on to community settings working with medical, school and social service systems. As a result, fellows will become involved with systems in-services and presentations to the community.

Training Opportunities

Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health
Psychological Testing Clinic

Through the psychological testing service, fellows will administer and interpret comprehensive psychoeducational and psychological evaluations to assess for anxiety, depression, thought disorders, personality traits, atypical behaviors, ADHD, and learning disorders. Fellows will become proficient at administering and interpreting cognitive, academic, executive functioning, projective, and personality measures. They will learn to combine testing data and relevant background information into an integrative report. Fellows will become skilled at communicating the results to children and families, the child's psychotherapist, medical professionals, school personnel, social service agencies, and other community agencies.

Individual Psychotherapy

The fellow works with children and adolescents exhibiting a wide range of emotional and behavioral problems, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, somatization disorders and behavior disorders. Assessment includes interview, collateral contacts with family and other professionals, and psychological tests and behavioral questionnaires. The fellow conducts diagnostic assessments, conceptualizes the cases, devises treatment plans, and implements interventions

Child/adolescent psychology fellows are trained in short-term therapy involving relatively rapid assessment of patients' problems and the formulation of interventions lasting five to ten sessions. In addition, efforts are made to provide experience in longer-term therapy particularly for children and adolescents with persistent psychological problems and/or trauma.

Pediatric Psychiatry and Behavioral Health ADHD Clinic

Through the Pediatric Psychiatry and Behavioral Health ADHD Clinic, the fellow will participate with child psychiatrists in the assessment of mood and behavioral concerns with special emphasis on ADHD.  Fellows will become proficient at interpreting cognitive, academic, executive functioning, emotional/behavioral measures and personality measures related to this specialty service. They will learn to combine testing data and relevant background information into an integrative report. Fellows will become skilled at communicating the results to children and families, the child psychiatrist, medical professionals, school personnel, social service agencies, and other community agencies. Fellows are involved with the ADHD Clinic throughout their fellowship.

Autism Clinic

Through the Child Development Center's Autism Clinic, the fellow will participate on a multidisciplinary team, which includes pediatric neurologists, developmental pediatricians, pediatric neuropsychologists, occupational therapists, and speech-language pathologists, in the assessment of developmental disorders with special emphasis on autism spectrum disorders. Fellows will learn formal and informal assessment procedures, with an emphasis on conducting parent interviews reviewing DSM 5 criteria for an autism spectrum disorder and administering, scoring and interpreting the Autism Diagnostic Observation Scale-2.  Fellows will also learn interventions for children and their families related to this specialty service. Fellows are involved with the Autism Clinic throughout their fellowship. Here is information on CDC including the Autism Clinic.

Bardet-Biedl Syndrome (BBS) Clinic:

The fellow will participate on the only multidisciplinary team in the nation that provides comprehension care for children, teenagers, and adults with BBS. The treatment team consists of various providers throughout the MCHS.  Services that the fellow will provide include: (a) an evaluation of the patient and/or family's presenting concerns, strengths and areas of growth, (b) individual and/or family treatment goals that focus on coping and adjusting to their diagnostic symptoms while supporting generalization of skills to improve daily functioning, (c) communicating with team members and patient providers to foster coordination of care and services. Here is information about the BBS Clinic.

Center for Community Heath Advancement (CCHA) – Youth Net Program:

The fellow will have the opportunity to participate in an after-school social emotional learning group through the Youth Net program called Life Tools. The Life Tools program serves children in grades 2nd through 8th. There are four groups that consist of 8 sessions per group throughout the academic year. The group is one hour long and is held at the local YMCA. The fellow will work alongside Youth Net staff, AmeriCorps members, and the lead psychologist. There are opportunities for program facilitation, program development, and collaboration among other school districts implementing the Life Tools program. Here is information about CCHA and the Youth Net Program.

 

A Fellow's Perspective

Dr. Kelsi Offenwanger was our most recent child/adolescent psychology fellow. Upon graduation she took a position here at MCHS working with CCHA, Autism Clinic, BBS Clinic and outpatient behavioral health. Here is her perspective on the fellowship experience and activities at MCHS..