Clinical Training

Clinical training is a vital element of the masters and doctoral degrees offered at Forest because it provides structured, meaningful, "hands-on” experience in actual clinical settings.

Coursework required for beginning the practicum sequence facilitates development of entry-level knowledge, skills and attitudes; while subsequent courses are designed to sharpen and expand on students' expertise and experience in areas addressed in the remaining practica rotations.

Both masters and doctoral students enroll in Practicum to gain applied, supervised experience in the field concurrent with enrollment in other academic coursework. Similar terms in the mental health field include ‘field experience’ and ‘internship’. In the field of clinical psychology, however, internship, has a very specific meaning and trainees do not complete internship at the master’s level.

Students in Forest’s degree programs complete practicum experiences in variety of settings. Some are within our own Robert J Murney Clinic and its associated outreach sites, others are located in hospitals, correctional facilities, educational institutions and private practice settings (to name a few) within the community at large. 

Doctoral students complete their first practicum rotation at our Clinic under the supervision of faculty practitioners. Our programs also offer a broad range of training experiences to complement elective content areas (e.g. marriage and family therapy, forensic psychology, neuropsychology, work with children and adolescents, applied behavioral analysis).

The required pre-doctoral Internship is a one-year training program, which is completed subsequent to all coursework and practicum for students in the PsyD program. Placement for Internship is a nationwide competitive process, with students matching to various Internship sites across the country.

About our Clinic

The Robert J Murney Clinic is dedicated to providing low-cost mental health services to the underserved populations in the southwest Missouri area. The Clinic functions as a community mental health center with a basic mission of training students. In addition, Forest offers an APA approved Clinical Internship Program located at the Robert J Murney Clinic.

Oversight for Forest’s clinical training programs is provided through the Clinical Training Department, administered by the Director of Clinical Training. A full time Practicum Coordinator serves as a training advisor for students and assists in arranging experiences that match the student's areas of interest and level of competency. The Practicum Coordinator also serves as a liaison with external sites and adjunct supervisors to ensure quality in all training environments.