Each Adult Track psychology intern will rotate through the adult inpatient psychiatric units (20 hours per week) located at University Medical Center for the entire training year. Inpatient rotations involve varying amounts of psychological assessment, group therapy, individual therapy, and consultation. Interns work within a multidisciplinary treatment team providing services in an acute inpatient hospital setting.
Adult interns will carry four to six adult outpatient psychotherapy cases at the Behavioral Sciences Center (8 hours/week). These cases may be follow‑up treatments of patients previously seen in the inpatient setting, or may come from direct outpatient referrals, and may be year‑long intensive treatments or serial brief therapy cases. When psychology interns want more than the required number of outpatient psychotherapy cases, the number and client mix will be based on the supervisor’s approval, as well as the psychology intern’s experience, interests, training needs, and available time.
In addition to inpatient psychological assessments of adults on the inpatient service, Adult Track psychology interns are required to maintain active assessment cases through the Behavioral Sciences Center-Assessment Clinic and complete outpatient batteries of psychological tests with adults (1-2 cases per month) during the entire psychology internship year. Assessments may include psychological, neuropsychological, and psychoeducation batteries.
Assessment Group Supervision:
This weekly group supervision allows all interns to formally present assessment cases of infants, children, adolescents, and adults evaluated through the outpatient clinics. Fundamentals of psychological testing including test administration, selection of testing instruments, collection of collateral reports, integration of testing data, report writing, recommendations for feedback sessions etc. will be discussed throughout the year. Integration of test data, history, and DSM 5 diagnostic criteria will be emphasized with particular attention placed on differential diagnosis. More advanced levels of diagnostic and treatment issues with various populations are also presented (e.g., the borderline conditions, the spectrum of narcissistic disorders, and the spectrum of depressive disorders).
Topics in Clinical Psychology – Ethics and Various Issues:
This weekly didactic/discussion session consists of various special topics in clinical psychology, ethical decision-making, and personal development as a psychologist. Multidisciplinary core faculty and outside lecturers (e.g. psychologists, psychiatrists, neurologists, lawyers, law enforcement personnel, and social workers) discuss a variety of issues including juvenile violence, licensing issues, job negotiation, cultural diversity, financial issues following graduation, child/adult neuropsychology, and challenging treatment issues. If available, additional topics may be included at the request of the current intern class. The early part of the year will focus on covering Louisiana laws related to the practice of psychology, suicide/homicide assessment, and child/elder abuse reporting. There are quarterly didactics related to supervision and cultural competence as well. In addition, each clinical psychology intern is required to make a formal presentation/job talk on a topic or issue of his/her choice prior to the end of the training year.
Psychotherapy Group Supervision:
Fundamentals of psychotherapy are reviewed in an effort to develop a common language among all the psychology interns, who presumably have been taught how to conceptualize clinical cases from differing theoretical orientations and emphases. This unique, year-long case conference involves presentations of therapy cases seen at the various training settings. Psychology interns formally present cases which are then discussed from varying clinical orientations/schools of thought (i.e., Cognitive-behavioral, Psychodynamic/Psychoanalytic, Family Systems, Multicultural, Narrative perspectives).
Particular attention is paid to the technical and process issues involved in therapeutic alliance building, alliance maintenance, development of a focus, collaborative efforts to translate understanding into behavioral change, and the sensitive handling of termination. Videotapes/audiotapes of actual therapy processes are viewed/discussed. Occasionally, participants present special topics including current literature, empirically-supported treatment approaches, resources for patients/clients, and other topics related to clinical practice.
Other Educational Experiences:
While on the primary rotations, interns will be required to attend in service and other training activities, which are germane to their functioning as members of the multidisciplinary team. For example, Child/Adult interns attend weekly staffing and multidisciplinary didactics at the Algiers Behavioral Health Center
Psychiatry Grand Rounds, including case conferences, are held at LSUHSC three times per month. Departmental, local, national, and international experts give presentations on diagnostic and treatment issues, biological psychiatry, epidemiological findings, socio-political issues, theoretical developments, and philosophical issues in clinical psychiatry.
Interns have an open invitation to attend lectures offered by the New Orleans-Birmingham Psychoanalytic Center. Monthly presentations by the Louisiana Infant Mental Health Association are also open to all interns.
New Orleans is a popular city for continuing education programs and conventions. In the last several years the American Psychological Association, National Training Institute: Zero to Three, the Society for Research in Child Development, the Society for Personality Assessment, the International Neuropsychological Association, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and the Louisiana Psychological Association have held their annual conventions here. Each February, the Louisiana State Psychological Association holds a workshop for psychologists. In recent years, the LPA and local hospitals have sponsored many useful clinical workshops. Some examples are “The MMPI 2 in Clinical Practice” presented by James Butcher; “Diagnosis and Treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder” presented by Otto Kernberg; “Differential Therapeutics” presented by John Clarkin; “Systemic Interventions” presented by Paul Watzlavick, etc. Interns are usually charged a reduced fee or are admitted gratis to these workshops and programs.
Behavioral Sciences Center-Assessment Clinic (BSC-AC)
The BSC Assessment Clinic was established in 2010 to help meet the urgent need for psychological evaluation services to the greater New Orleans area which was heavily impacted by Hurricane Katrina resulting in a decrease of available diagnostic centers and clinicians in the region. The BSC-AC provides interns with more specialized training and experience assessing patients of all ages referred for a variety of psychiatric, medical, and behavioral issues. Psychological/cognitive issues including learning problems, ADHD, depression, anger, anxiety, and memory/cognitive disorders are routinely assessed in the assessment battery which includes the WPPSI/WISC/WAIS, Woodcock-Johnson Tests of Achievement, Trail Making Test, Achenbach Scales, PAI/MMPI, and IVA+ to name a few.
A customized approach is used by the clinician, with the assistance of their clinical supervisor, as indicated by the referral question. Services are available for individuals ages 3 to 89. Under the direction of the BSC-AC Assessment Coordinator, Dr. Kristin Callahan, the psychology intern receives supervision from a licensed psychologist on the core faculty. In addition, all interns attend a weekly Assessment Group Supervision to formally present and discuss cases assessed through their outpatient clinics. All Interns are required to carry an active outpatient assessment case at all times throughout the training year with adjustments made to the caseload depending on complexity of cases assigned (average 1-2 per month). The majority of services completed through the BSC-AC are conducted in two sessions (up to 8 hours total) with additional sessions scheduled as needed. Results with appropriate recommendations are provided in 60-minute feedback session appointments within a month of completion of all aspects of testing including collection of collateral reports from caregivers, teachers, etc.
Behavioral Sciences Center (BSC) Outpatient Psychotherapy Clinic
The Behavioral Sciences Center is located in the Gravier Multi-Specialty Clinic on the 7th Floor at 2025 Gravier Street, New Orleans, in close proximity to the other major training sites. Since 2008, the Behavioral Sciences Center has become the primary outpatient clinic for the entire department, and its various trainees of all disciplines. This clinic is operated by the Department of Psychiatry to provide training experience in outpatient mental health services for psychology interns, psychiatry residents, and social work interns. Referrals to the clinic come from both the public and private sectors, including private practitioners in the community, pediatric clinics at the Medical Center of Louisiana and Children’s Hospital, University Medical Center, community mental health centers, and local schools and universities.
Supervision is provided by the full-time faculty psychologists and by several part-time clinical faculty who are engaged in clinical practice within the community. A variety of theoretical orientations are represented by our supervisors.
University Medical Center
LSUHSC Department of Psychiatry provides psychiatric services on two of the three adult inpatient psychiatric units which will have a capacity for 45 patients at the new University Medical Center. Patients age 18 and older are admitted to the inpatient service through University Medical Center’s Emergency Services. The current inpatient units consist of patients with a variety of mental health issues including mood disorders, psychotic disorders, anxiety disorders, substance use, and personality disorders. Programing for the three units includes group therapies provided by various disciplines including psychology, psychiatry, social work, recreational therapy, and nursing.
Adult Track interns complete a twelve-month (20-hour per week) rotation on the psychiatric inpatient units. The psychology interns, psychiatry residents, medical students, and nursing students rotate through these units as part of their respective training programs. Adult and Child/Adult Track clinical psychology interns are integral members of the multidisciplinary treatment teams taking the role of consultant, diagnostician, and therapist as they provide consultation, group psychotherapy, individual psychotherapy, and psychological testing services for the units.