Doctoral programs: highlights from SoA

A summary of changes from the G&P to the proposed SoA for doctoral programs.

CoA summarized the salient differences between the Guidelines and Principles for Accreditation (G&P) and the proposed SoA for each level of accreditation.

Doctoral programs

What has not changed?
  • General practice areas within the scope of accreditation at the doctoral level (Standard I.A.2).
  • Requirement that the program is in a regionally-accredited institution (Standard I.B.1.a).
  • Standards for education and training of health service psychologists are the same for programs in secular and faith based settings (formerly Footnote 4 — Standard I.B.2).
  • Importance of ongoing direct face-to-face interaction with students over their developmental sequence (Standard I.C.1.c).
  • Flexibility in regard to how competencies are achieved by students and assessed by faculty (Standard II.B., C. and D).
  • Importance of diversity in:
    1. Policies and procedures to ensure nondiscrimination (Standard I.D.1) as a competency (Standard II.B.1.b).
    2. Recruitment and retention of students (Standard III.A.1.b.ii) and faculty (Standard IV.B.5);
    3. Creating an environment that nurtures all students for success (Standard III.B).
  • Internship as part of the doctoral sequence of training (Standard II.C.2).
  • Demonstration by the program that outcomes have been achieved as appropriate for the area, degree and aims — including those that are part of:
    1. SoA competencies.
    2. Program specific competencies.
    3. Broader areas (e.g., licensure — consistent with federal recognition requirements) (Standard II.D.3).
  • Required core faculty (Standard IV.B).
  • Requirements for clear and accurate public information (Standard V.A).
What has changed?
  • Move from “professional psychology” to Health Service Psychology (Standard I.A.1 — defined further in the glossary).
  • Move from program models to practice area and degree type (Standard I.A.2 and Standard I.A.3).
  • Integrate the concepts currently found in Footnote 4 of the G&P into the SoA (Standard I.B.2).
  • Additional requirements for documentation of student records and their retention (Standard I.D.4).
  • Place competencies and their assessment together in the SoA (Standard II).
  • Require discipline specific knowledge and set of profession-wide competencies (Standard II.B.1.b).
    1. Set of profession-wide competencies derived through a multistep process that identified points of consensus across the various sets of competencies in the literature.
    2. Required profession-wide competency areas included in SoA:
      1. Evidence-based practice in intervention.
      2. Evidence-based practice in assessment.
      3. Ethical and legal standards.
      4. Individual and cultural diversity.
      5. Research.
      6. Professional values and attitudes.
      7. Communication and interpersonal skills.
      8. Consultation/interprofessional/interdisciplinary.
      9. Supervision.
      10. Reflective practice.
    3. Specific requirements for each competency area defined within Implementing Regulations to allow for CoA modification/adjustment in response to changes in the field and to differentiate specific competencies by level of training, as appropriate.
  • More specifics re: expected practicum (Standard II.C.1) and internship training (Standard II.C.2) — including expectations if students do not attend accredited internships (Standard II.C.2.b).
  • Require demonstration that program has met its own outcomes and those defined for Health Service Psychology (Standard II.D.3).
  • Describe how demonstrated prior knowledge in psychology can serve as a foundation for advanced “broad and general” education in curriculum (Standard II.B.1.a.i and Standard III.A.2.c.i).
  • Require programs to engage in review of effectiveness of their diversity practices for students (Standard III.1.b) and faculty (Standard IV.B.5).
  • Clarify required communication between doctoral program and internship (Standard V.A.3).