APA approved PhD or PsyD programs

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by LordPhoenix, Jan 22, 2012.

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  1. LordPhoenix

    LordPhoenix New Member

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    I have a weird work schedule and am often out of internet range so traditional online classes don't work well for me. I can't make online discussions, I can't guarantee I can check-in with the faculty or even turn in papers and assignments online by a given deadline (unless I have a lot of notice of the deadline and can maybe do things early).

    I work at sea on a set rotation so my time away from internet is predictable (I sometimes have internet at work) but I should be able to read and do assignments while on the boat.

    Does anyone know of an APA approved and accredited PhD, PsyD, or MS program online that might meet these needs? (Preferably from an institution that also has a physical campus and is well respected academically.)

    Additionally, I live near Baltimore, MD and would be willing to do independent study of programs in the DC/Baltimore area. What do people think my chances would be of finding a graduate program that would allow me to do it all without attending classes?
     
  2. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

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    Your prospects are not good at all; the only APA-accredited school that offers any sort of DL component to the program is the Fielding Graduate University;

    Fielding Graduate University - Graduate School, Master's Degrees, Doctoral Degrees

    Even then, assuming you could make the required residencies in CA, you have internships to consider. At the Master's level, I had a 20-hour per week internship I had to complete, for a total of at least 600 hours each academic year, so use that as a baseline in your calculations. You can't really do an internship while you're at sea.

    If you're interested in a licensure-eligible Master's degree (the APA only accredits doctoral programs), there are more options, but keep in mind the internship requirements.

    Sorry to dump a bucket of cold water on you, but it is what it is.
     
  3. LordPhoenix

    LordPhoenix New Member

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    Well, theoretically I could do 40 hours a week of internship while I am home then stop when I go back to work. I could get the same amount of time in a semester that way. How many semesters of internship are there? 600 hours per academic year for the length of a what-length program? Two years?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 22, 2012
  4. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

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    The problem is, in the field of psychology/counseling, you have to have consistency, especially when dealing with clients in a one-on-on situation. My third-year internship was all group counseling, which allowed *some* flexibility as far as scheduling, but the year before was all one-on-one.

    You can't just call a time-out and leave for an extended period; in addition to completely throwing off the client's schedule, you also need actual client contact time. Just putting in 40 hours at an internship site for a week means nothing if you don't have the required number of client contact hours, and you can't dictate when clients are available.

    I'm not saying it's impossible, but I would be extremely surprised (as well as extremely impressed) if you were able to pull it off.
     
  5. LordPhoenix

    LordPhoenix New Member

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    Thanks Bruce. I figured it would be difficult and now know what I am facing. I guess I just need to work a while longer until I can afford to take time off.
     
  6. Hadashi no Gen

    Hadashi no Gen New Member

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    Does your ship have a licensed mental health professional that you could work out an internship with while at-sea? Many people in my counseling program do their internships while working full time jobs. At 300 hours per semester over four of the semesters, it usually ends up being on average 20 hours per week, but some are able to do less by stretching their hours out over breaks, etc. Are you in the Navy? If so, I wonder if you could work an extra 3 or 4 hours per day, 5 days per week. If you did that with your ship's psychologist/counselor before/after duty, you could easily meet your requirements while at sea.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 22, 2012
  7. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

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    The problem with that is the supervisor usually has to be licensed for a certain number of years (in MA it's 10) before they can supervise, and psychologists in the military tend to be on the younger side.
     
  8. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

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    C'mon guys, let's not sugar coat this situation. Our OP (LP) is in trouble. There's not an RA program in the country that is as flexible as he needs. The best he could do would be to enroll in one of the "disertation-only research programs" like at UNISA or some of the Australian universities. Of course, the big problem with that plan is that there's no guarantee of USA licensure, an absolute MUST for that profession. I don't like being the one to say it but our original poster has to either get a different job or get a different goal. Sorry, but it is what it is.
     
  9. Hadashi no Gen

    Hadashi no Gen New Member

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    He is in Maryland, which may or may not have such strict supervision requirements. Even if it did, there would be a commanding officer on land over the "young psychologist" at sea which could sign off on his official supervision.
     
  10. Hadashi no Gen

    Hadashi no Gen New Member

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    1. The OP can complete 600 hours of internship in one semester. It's a lot of work, but I have seen it happen. It would not be the best for clients, correct, but state licensing boards require internship hours by number, not by how long a person saw their clients.

    2. If the OP is in the navy, he/she could be able to complete their internship at sea if it fits with state licensing requirements, and is approved by the ship's commander.

    3. Suggesting that the OP pursue a dissertation only doctorate from UNISA would not being him/her closer to the goal of becoming a mental health practitioner. It would be a waste of time and money in this person's case.
     
  11. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

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    The OP is not in the US Navy. If he was he would have said so. He'd have access to the Navy's assistance in these matters and the whole thing of veterans benefits, etc. woud have come up. He's on a ship. There's LOTS of ships in the world that don't belong to the US Navy. There is no licensed psychologist onboard. Not even one. Let that go. It's gone.

    I did not say that UNISA would solve his problems. If you bother to read my post you'll see that I specifically pointed out that a UNISA degree would pose licensure difficulties. My specific opinion is that this particular poster is not going to get what he wants. He either needs to settle for a different sort of degree (reference: UNISA) or he needs to quit his current job so that he can "attend" a conventional DL program.
     
  12. Hadashi no Gen

    Hadashi no Gen New Member

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    I am going to bring this conversation back onto the topic of helping the OP. However, you are free to continue making strange assumptions about my ability to understand you, if it is working for you.

    LordPhoenix may not be in the navy. It's absolutely true, which is the purpose of the English word "if". Since we have no way of knowing the OP's occupation, it is most helpful to consider all possibilities until we do. What we do know is that the OP is on a set rotation... which in the US Navy is 6 months out, 6 months in.

    There are many ways that a person can receive his/her degree toward becoming a licensed mental health professional through D/L. It is more difficult at the doctorate-level, but as the OP pointed out, he/she is considering Masters degrees as well. It is completely possible to do coursework at sea and internship on land. It is even possible to finish all of the educational requirements first, and do the internships last.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 24, 2012
  13. ITJD

    ITJD New Member

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    Ah to list the possibilities:

    US Military Service.
    US Sealift Command.
    US Merchant Mariner
    Vacation Liner
    Oil Rigger.

    Anyway, the point is the OP needs something he or she can schedule.

    PS. Kizmet's occasional light mood swings are actually quite attractive if you allow yourself to see them as an art form.

    ITJD
     
  14. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

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    It would be the equivalent of a full-time job; I did 624 hours in one academic year (2 semesters), and I was there for more than 20 hours per week most of the time. If one has a full-time job to begin with, 600 hours in one semester is not realistic.

    Additionally, state licensing standards are pretty uniform, and I know Massachusetts requires a minimum number of client contact hours, meaning either directly providing therapy, case management, etc. Just being at an internship site and shuffling papers for 600 hours is worthless, both for licensing standards and for developing clinical competence.
     
  15. Hadashi no Gen

    Hadashi no Gen New Member

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    I am only proficient in the standards of the Counseling profession, which vary state to state and are not always uniform.

    Here is an example of how non-uniform the counseling profession is, with regard to field experience in the graduate program.

    MA: 900 total hours of field experience, supervised by a licensed mental health professional with 5 years of experience who has passed the NCMHCE. There is no minimum for direct clinical hours.

    MD: 600 total hours of field experience, supervised by a licensed mental health professional. There is no minimum for direct clinical hours.

    *Most states, according to the "ACA Licensure Requirements for Professional Counselors" pub, only require a certain amount of clinical hours for post graduate licensure. In my case, my graduate program specifies how many hours are required as far as total hours ("paper filing", billing, trainings, supervision, consultation, etc) and face-to-face during the internship. These are 1,200 total hours on site and at least 480 direct clinical hours.

    And yes, it would be a full-time job to do 600 hours in one semester. At 15 weeks, that is 40 hours per week. It's difficult, but not impossible. An intern that I know pulled this off while pregnant (and single), so that she could have her child and still graduate on time.

    If the OP is looking for something more reciprocal at the Masters-level, he/she may want to look at MSWs or other Social Work Masters degrees. There are many good schools with CSWE-accredited MSW programs that are online. Ones that come immediately to mind are University of New England and University of Southern California.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 24, 2012
  16. Hadashi no Gen

    Hadashi no Gen New Member

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    Also... @LordPhoenix, APA does not accredit Masters programs, only docs. Although there are other masters degree tracks that lead to licensure as an independent, bill-able mental health professional (Mental Health Counseling, Social Work, & MFT). In some states, a Masters degree in Clinical Psychology might fit the requirements for one of the masters-level licenses, but there is generally not an independant license for clinical psychology at the masters level. If you were to go that route, however, most states would allow you to practice under supervision as a LPA (Licensed Psychological Asociate - TX), LLP (Limited Licensed Psychologist - MI), etc.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 24, 2012
  17. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

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    Hey, wait a minute, I don't think that . . . art form? Really? Oh now you've completely messed me up!
     
  18. Hadashi no Gen

    Hadashi no Gen New Member

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    A lot of art IS accidental!
     
  19. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

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    That's very surprising to me; I had to do 2 internships, 300 hours (150 client contact) for the first and 600 hours (300 client contact) the second. It seems absolutely pointless to not have a minimum number of client contact hours; if you spend your internships filing paperwork, what are you going to do when you have to actually sit-down with a client face-to-face?
     
  20. Hadashi no Gen

    Hadashi no Gen New Member

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    I am pretty sure that the programs themselves have internship guidelines... because at the least, it would not serve their reputations if students were just all "filing paperwork."

    That must have been difficult to do exactly half or more of your hours face-to-face as an intern. How were you able to write notes, bill, have supervision, consultation, go to trainings, plan, make calls and do all of that fun stuff in only half of your internship hours? It must have been difficult for someone learning the ropes. I am at my placement on average 25 hours per week, with 10 or so clients, and in my fourth semester of internship am just barely keeping up.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 24, 2012

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