Clinical-Counseling Track

The Clinical Counseling track follows the scientist-practitioner model of training through its emphasis on current, empirically-based diagnostic and intervention methods and opportunities for students to conduct independent projects. Students will be prepared to work as successful mental health service providers with diverse populations in a variety of settings or continue on to doctoral level graduate studies. The curriculum was designed to provide the required coursework and skills training for graduates to be eligible for licensure as Licensed Professional Clinical Counselors through the Minnesota Board of Behavioral Health and Therapy. Clinical Counseling track cohort positions are limited (6 per year) to ensure each student will receive the level of supervision and mentorship needed to succeed in the rigorous coursework and applied experiences. During Practicum and Internship, students receive a minimum of 3 hours of supervision weekly. The clinic rooms on campus, where practicum is completed, are equipped with state-of-the-art video recording capabilities, including live feedback, for better supervision opportunities. To date, 100% of students who have applied to doctoral programs have been accepted.

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Admission Requirements

In addition to the general admission requirements for all applicants to our program, applicants to the Clinical Counseling track must also demonstrate successful completion of an undergraduate Abnormal Psychology course. The strongest applicants will be invited to a phone interview before the admission decision. Students applying to this track should also know, per university policy, criminal background checks will be required before enrolling in internships.

Course of Study

Please view the Clinical Counseling curriculum below to learn more about the courses students in this track take. Courses in this track are strongly focused on empirically validated aspects of clinical theory and application.

It is expected that students will complete the program in two years. To maintain good standing in the program, students must maintain a GPA of 3.0 or better, earn a grade of B or better in each course, and not have more than 8 credits (or two courses) with an incomplete for longer than two semesters.

The Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) for the MAPS program advises newly admitted students during their first semester in the program. Students are assigned a faculty advisor within their own track by the end of the first semester.

As part of the Clinical Counseling program, students will be required to complete 700 hours of applied/field work experience through practicum and internship placements. Approximately 250 of these hours will be completed during the first year through assessment coursework and practica experiences. The remaining hours will be completed during the second year through community-based internship placements (see below). These may include working in outpatient, residential mental health, or medical settings working with a variety of clinical populations including children, adolescents, adults, or medical patients with mental health concerns. Because of the number of credits required in the Clinical Counseling track, courses during May or summer term may be required.

As part of their coursework, students in the Clinical Counseling track  have the option of completing a thesis-like research project (Plan B) or additional coursework (Plan C).  The Plan B Research Project in Psychology involves conducting an empirical research project or meta-analysis under the direction of a faculty advisor. The project must be designed and conducted by the individual student; the topic, however, may be based upon the research program of the faculty advisor. Alternatively, students may select Plan C, which involves completion of six additional course credits instead of the research project. 

Clinical Counseling Class

Clinical Counseling Track Faculty

The following faculty are available as advisors to the Clinical Counseling students.  Click each name for more information on research interests and areas of expertise for advising students.

Clinical Counseling Curriculum

PSY 5021 - Advanced Developmental Psychology (3.0 cr) Course format involved reading and discussion of reviews and journal articles about theories, research methodology, and topics central to the scientific study of human development from conception through adulthood. The role of theory as a guide for research and practice, and classical as well as contemporary theories will be examined. Normative changes and individual differences will be examined. Theoretical frameworks in the domains of social, cognitive, language, and temperament/personality development will be examined.

PSY 5052 - Advanced Statistics I (3.0 cr) Advanced statistics used for experimental and correlational research in psychology; analyze data from simple and complex research designs analysis of variance and linear regression techniques; hypothesis testing; nonparametric statistics; assumptions of tests and diagnosis of assumption violations; interpretations of results; use of common statistical software (e.g., SPSS or R).

PSY 5120 - Career and Lifestyle Development (2.0 cr) Overview of career development and decision theories related to life planning and career choices. Methods and techniques involved in the career counseling process.

PSY 5121 - Psychopathology Over the Lifespan (3.0 cr) Psychopathology from integrative biopsychosocial and developmental psychopathology perspectives; adult and child psychopathologies including symptomatology, prevalence, etiological evidence, typical course and prognosis, associated features, cultural and social considerations, comorbidity and differential diagnosis.

PSY 8021 - Research Methods and Evaluation (3.0 cr) Examination of quasi-experimental and experimental designs within psychological science. The course will provide comprehensive coverage of the assessment of reliability and validity of measures, methods, and research designs to facilitate the development of a research proposal. A wide variety of quantitative and qualitative research designs, measurement techniques, and methods will be described and evaluated in terms of internal, external, construct, and statistical conclusion validity.

PSY 8097 - Clinical Counseling Practicum (3.0 cr) Supervised counseling practice experience within the University setting. Emphasis is on developing individual and group counseling skills.

PSY 8103 - Introduction to Graduate Studies (0.0 cr) This course will orient new students to key facets of graduate studies in the Master's in Psychological Science Program. Program expectations, requirements, and timelines will be clarified to enable students to make progress in formulating goals in their chosen tracks. This course will provide students with a basis for academic collaboration and professional development by facilitating student interactions with peers and the faculty in psychology.

PSY 8221 - Individual Adult and Group Therapy/Counseling (3.0 cr) This course provides an overview of a variety of individual and group therapy models and techniques utilized with adults. Evidence-based techniques and empirically supported treatments will be emphasized along with their application to specific psychological diagnoses.

PSY 8223 - Child, Adolescent, and Family Therapy (3.0 cr) Individual child and adolescent psychological intervention models and techniques as well as a variety of family therapy models and techniques will be reviewed, emphasizing those with demonstrated empirical effectiveness. Students will be introduced to the provision of effective youth and family counseling approaches in preparation for practicum experience.

PSY 8224 - Clinical Treatment Planning (3.0 cr) This course provides an overview of methods and strategies of evidence-based clinical treatment planning. Identification and evaluation of measurable process and outcome goals are emphasized. Treatment planning will target specific psychological diagnoses for adults and children, and various modalities, as well as crisis intervention/counseling.

PSY 8231 - Assessment I: Foundations and Cognitive Assessment (3.0 cr) This course provides an overview of basic psychometric issues, test administration, and cognitive assessment. It covers fundamental issues in evidence-based assessment and the development of competent administration and interpretation skills of common cognitive assessments.

PSY 8232 - Assessment II (3.0 cr) Building on content from Assessment I, this course applies concepts of psychological testing and measurement to the assessment of specific clinical syndromes and personality through objective personality tests, behavioral observations, symptom checklists, rating forms and structured diagnostic interviewing. Students will learn to appropriately use and interpret results from such measures in the course of clinical/counseling practice. Issue of clinical judgment and controversies concerning common assessment approaches will be covered.

PSY 8301 - Multicultural Foundations in Clinical/Counseling Psychology (3.0 cr) This course explores the complexities of culture in practice. The focus is on becoming culturally responsive counselors and therapists. Within evidence-based practice, this course provides guidelines for integrating cultural considerations into the theory and practice of assessment, diagnosis, and therapeutic interventions.

PSY 8302 - Ethical and Legal Issues in Therapy and Counseling (3.0 cr) This course covers approaches to ethical decision making of relevance to work as a psychologist. Codes of ethical conduct, as well as legal issues related to research and practice are foci. Students will learn about important historical cases illustrating ethical and legal issues in the field.

PSY 8197 - Clinical Counseling Internship (6.0 cr) Supervised clinical work in a professional psychological services setting. Psychological assessment and clinical intervention are emphasized.

Example Schedule
8103 Introduction to Graduate Studies in Psychology (0)
5052 Advanced Statistics 1 (3)
8231 Assessment I: Foundations and Cognitive Assessment (3)
5120 Career and Lifestyle Development (2)
5121 Psychopathology (3)

8021 Research Methods and Evaluation (3)
8232 Assessment II: Personality and Diagnostic Assessment (3)
8221 Individual Adult and Group Therapy/Counseling (3)
8097 Clinical Counseling Practicum (3)

8302 Ethical and Legal issues in Therapy and Counseling (3)

8301 Multicultural Foundations in Clinical-Counseling Psychology (3)
8223 Child, Adolescent and Family Therapy (3)
8197 Clinical Counseling Internship (3)
Elective or Plan B (3)

5021 Advanced Developmental Psychology (3)
8224 Clinical Treatment Planning (3)
8197 Clinical Counseling Internship (3)
Elective or Plan B (3)

Examples of Electives:

PSY 5111 Advanced Personality, PSY 5155  Forensic Psychology, PSY 5401 Advanced Social Psychology, PSY 5500 Behavioral Approaches to Worker Wellbeing, PSY 5631 Biological Bases of Behavior, PSY 8052 Advanced Statistics II, SW 5215 Trauma-Informed Practice, SW 5144 Grief, Loss and Coping, SW 5280 Substance Use Trends and Interventions

External Internship Sites

Each clinical counseling psychology student completes  a two-semester, 450 hour internship at an agency in the community. Based on student interest and skills, the supervising faculty identifies existing internship sites or seeks new sites that are appropriate for the students' training.  The student then applies to internship sites of interest and is usually invited for an interview.
Below is a list of current internship sites.  If students are interested in a different type of experience, agreements with other agencies can be explored.  The sites listed below may or may not be available each year.

Birch Tree Center

  • Agency description: Birch Tree Center is a community and regional collaboration providing mobile crisis services and residential crisis stabilization to adults experiencing a mental health crisis or emergency. This includes programming designed to enhance psychiatric stability, personal and emotional adjustment, and the necessary skills to return to a more independent setting.
  • Description of Field Activities: Students will be involved with our community Mobile Crisis Response Team. They will be involved in all phases of crisis response services- assessment, community intervention, and treatment planning. They will evaluate client strengths and limitations, support network and functioning. They may make recommendations, referrals and answer mental health crisis phone calls. 
Birch Tree Center

Duluth Family Medicine Clinic

  • Agency Description: A primary care clinic affiliated with the Duluth Family Medicine Residency Program. The Family Medicine Residents provide full service primary health care including obstetrics. The clinic also uses an integrated behavioral health model to provide mental health services to patients.
  • Description of Field Activities: Students will be able to provide mental health services using an integrated model. This typically includes consulting with resident physicians, doing warm hand-offs as well as brief psychotherapy following a primary care format (up to 4, 20-30 minute sessions). Treatment is provided as part of a primary care team that would include the physician and possibly a psychiatrist, pharmacist, RN or other clinic staff. There is also opportunity for completing diagnostic assessments, doing group therapy, and providing lectures on behavioral health topics. 
Duluth Family Medicine Center

Duluth School District - ISD 709

  • Agency Mission: At Duluth Public Schools, we will build on our shared beliefs and values of unity, high achievement and responsible use of resources to create Duluth Public Schools and classrooms that are safe, supportive and inclusive.  We will work to inspire every student to achieve their potential, and prepare students to lead productive, fulfilling lives as citizens of Duluth and the wider world.
  • Description of Field Activities: Field experiences can include, but are not limited to, the following: individual counseling and small group work, parent teacher consultation, assisting with special education assessments, and working with all students as needed, including students who may have a DSM-5 diagnosis. Field experiences may also include working with staff and students on community projects during the school year, assisting with experiential and outdoor activities, observing and participating in numerous multi-disciplinary teams, and planning and client advocacy. Please see the agency application for more specific duties. 
    Duluth Public Schools

Essentia Health Mental/Behavioral Health Clinic

  • Agency Description: Outpatient mental health services to patients within the Essentia Health system.
  • Description of Field Activities: Health psychology treats people with various medical and mental health concerns. Patients learn through therapy how physical health and mental health affect each other.  A Health Psychology Intern will assist a psychologist with evaluations and therapy related to various medical and mental health concerns including (but not limited to) insomnia, neurological concerns, bariatric evaluations, chronic pain, and cardiac rehabilitation therapy services. Other duties include attending meetings and consulting with supervisors on cases.

MAP Behavioral Health Center / Kartta Group

  • Agency Description: This is a consortium-style internship, with training hours shared between MAP Behavioral Health Center (MAPBHC) (psychotherapy track) and Kartta Group (assessment track). Both agencies are located in the Medical Arts Building in downtown Duluth, Minnesota. Trainees who participate in these shared training opportunities will enhance their skills in the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders, with a focus on diversity and multicultural issues.
  • MAPBHC - Psychotherapy Track: MAPBHC is an outpatient mental health center dedicated to providing individual and family counseling in a warm, welcoming environment. The internship track at MAPBHC focuses on helping students enhance their clinical skills through individual therapy, diagnostic interviewing, individual and group supervision, and case consultation. The providers at MAPBHC have varied experience, including clinical counseling, psychology, social work, and marriage and family therapy.
  • Kartta Group - Assessment Track: Kartta Group specializes in psychological assessment in clinical, forensic, and professional settings. The internship track at Kartta Group helps students become more efficient in psychological test administration, scoring, interpreting, and diagnostic interviewing. Trainees will receive individualized supervision and peer mentorship, as well as obtain training in frequently used psychological and cognitive tests.
waiting area for MAP Behavioral Health Center with couches, soft lamp lights, and plants on two end tables

Northwood Children’s Services

  • Agency Description: Located in Duluth, Minnesota, Northwood Children's Services provides holistic and professional care, education, and treatment for children with severe emotional, behavioral, and learning disabilities. Established more than 130 years ago, we are the oldest and largest organization of our kind in Minnesota. Northwood is a private, nonprofit, tax-exempt agency committed to building positive change in children's lives. Our mission is to build brighter futures for children and families by providing a full continuum of quality mental health treatment programs delivered by passionate, professional, and highly trained staff.
  • Description of Field Activities: Students will be involved at one of the residential treatment center campuses or day treatment programs. They will be involved in all phases of treatment - milieu therapy, group counseling, individual counseling, case management, and family work. They may also be involved in diagnostic evaluations and psychological testing. 
    Northwood Childrens Services

Nystrom & Associates, Ltd.

  • Agency Description: Nystrom & Associates, Ltd offers Community Based services, an intensive outpatient chemical dependency program, DBT, Adult Day Treatment, psychological testing and medication management services.   Other Professional Experiences Available to Students:  CEUs, shadowing other departments within Nystrom (CD, Testing, ADT, DBT), shadowing current employees in the program, attending the intern cohort meeting consisting of presentations from guest speakers and case consultation.
  • This site has 4 possible internship opportunities:
    • Adult Rehabilitative Mental Health Services (ARMHS)
      • Program Overview: Our ARMHS program provides community based services to Adult clients ages 18+ who have a mental health diagnosis, the program is designed to work with clients on four functioning areas: Basic Living and Social Skills, Community Intervention, Medication Education, and Transitioning to Community Living, as well as working on skills to help them lead an independent life in their home or place of residence.
      • Individual Experience: Face to Face client contact with Adults using a variety of interventions and psycho educational tools, the intern will be completing treatment plans, functional assessments, and progress notes. Intern will have the opportunity to shadow/conduct a diagnostic assessment with a Licensed Mental Health Professional present. Some couples/family therapy experience. 
    • Children’s Therapeutic Supports and Services (CTSS)
      • Program Overview: The CTSS  program provides community based rehabilitation services to children and adolescents, ages 3-21, who have a mental illness, the intern meets with the child and/or family at least two times per week, meeting them in their homes, client’s school, daycare, or other appropriate community location.
      • Individual experience: Individual and family mental health skills work with children and adolescents, maintaining a caseload of 3-5 clients.
    • Adult Day Treatment (ADT)
      • Program Overview: ADT is group day treatment for clients who have chronic mental illness such as depression, anxiety, and bipolar, acute mental health concerns, and/or clients who are in need of more intensive or structure support throughout the week without needing inpatient hospitalization.
      • Therapeutic Orientations: Cognitive Behavioral, DBT, Educational, learn health coping skills, decrease mental health symptoms
    • Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) Program 
      Nystrom & Associates

St. Luke’s Mental Health (Outpatient)

  • Agency Description: Outpatient mental health clinic within the St. Luke’s hospital and clinic system.
  • Description of Field Activities: Psychological Testing and Diagnostic Assessment.  Group psychotherapy.  Hospital consultations may occasionally be an opportunity.  Weekly team supervision/case review occurs Wednesdays from 10 to 12 and it is expected that students attend. An intern at this site might assist with assessment interviews and co-facilitate therapy groups. 
    St. Luke's Mental Health