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Training Sites
Practicum trainees may be placed in one of a variety of settings throughout Cambridge Health Alliance. Placements include inpatient settings for adolescents or children, and outpatient specialty clinics that focus on behavioral medicine, victims of violence, couples and family treatment, or the cultural/linguistic clinics. Descriptions of settings are listed below, though some program components may be subject to change.

Accepting applications for the following training sites for the 2015-2016 training year. (Application portal opens 12/1/14)



Adolescent Assessment Unit (AAU)
The Psychology Practicum offered by CHA’s Adolescent Assessment Unit provides experience in assessment of and psychotherapeutic intervention with acutely distressed teenagers, ages 13 to 19, in an inpatient setting. Diagnoses of patients on the unit include psychoses, affective disorders, anxiety disorders, and trauma-spectrum illnesses. The training experience occurs in the context of multidisciplinary care involving psychiatry, psychology, social work, nursing, occupational therapy and other forms of intervention. Clinical interventions include extended evaluation, individual psychosocially-oriented treatment, family meetings, CBT/DBT group therapy, and psychological testing. Trainees also develop skills in the negotiation of complex social systems (e.g., schools, social service agencies) that interface in the lives of adolescents. Team meetings and case conferences enhance understanding of the diagnosis and stabilization process with these acutely distressed patients. For more information on this practicum, click here.

Child Assessment Unit (CAU)

The Psychology Practicum offered by CHA’s Child Assessment Unit provides experience in assessment of and psychotherapeutic intervention with acutely distressed children, ages 3 to 12, in an inpatient setting. Diagnoses of patients on the unit include psychoses, affective disorders, anxiety disorders, and trauma-spectrum illnesses. The training experience occurs in the context of multidisciplinary care involving psychiatry, psychology, social work, nursing, occupational therapy and other forms of intervention. Clinical interventions include extended evaluation, individual psychosocially oriented treatment, play therapy assessment, family meetings, group therapy, and psychological testing. Trainees also develop skills in the negotiation of complex social systems (e.g., schools, social service agencies) that interface in the lives of children. Team meetings and case conferences enhance understanding of the diagnosis and stabilization process with these acutely distressed patients. For more information on this practicum, click here.

Geriatric Psychiatry Outpatient Program
At Central Street Health Center in Somerville, the Geri Practicum Trainee gains experience providing individual, family/systems, and possibly group treatment utilizing an integrative approach (e.g., short-term/problem-focused psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, and supportive strategies) in treating older adults (ages 60 years and over) who suffer from a range of anxiety and mood disorders, as well as cognitive dysfunction (mild to moderate dementia, executive disorders, etc.), psychotic-spectrum, substance abuse, and personality disorders, as well as co-morbidities of physical health problems. As a member of a multidisciplinary treatment team representing psychiatry, psychology, clinical nursing, and social work, the trainee conducts psychological evaluations, treatment planning, and psychotherapy services in outpatient clinic as well as assisted living settings in Somerville. The trainee attends team meetings, weekly seminars, monthly geriatric inpatient case conferences, and individual supervision. Opportunities exist to shadow neuropsychological assessments of geriatric patients. For more information on this practicum, click here.

Latino Mental Health Clinic
The Latino Mental Health Clinic provides a full range of outpatient services to Spanish-speaking persons, including evaluations, psychological testing, and individual, group, child/adolescent, couples, and family therapy. The community is comprised of persons who emigrated from Central and South American Countries, and from the Caribbean. Many patients have been traumatized. Trainees work as part of a multidisciplinary team and conduct initial evaluations and individual psychotherapy. Group therapy offerings are in development and the trainee may possibly be able to co-lead a group. The examination of cross-cultural issues is an ongoing part of the training. Applicants must be fluent in Spanish. For more information on this practicum, click here.

Neuropsychological and Psychological Assessment Service (NAPA)
NAPA offers a neuropsychology practicum comprised of intensive training in neuropsychological and psychological assessment. Fourteen-to-twenty hours per week (depending on the trainee’s interest and availability) are devoted to testing, supervision, and seminars. The NAPA Service provides neuropsychological assessments to a range of adult patients typically presenting with psychiatric conditions (e.g., mood, anxiety, personality, complex trauma, psychotic, and substance abuse disorders), as well as possible primary medical (e.g., vascular, metabolic, sleep, headache, and movement disorders) and neurological conditions (e.g., head trauma, dementia, and seizure disorders). Patients with neurodevelopmental disorders such as learning disabilities, attention-deficit disorder, and Asperger's disorders are also evaluated. All trainees receive training in both neuropsychological and psychological testing, the balance of which may be guided by the trainee’s interests and goals. For more information on this practicum, click here.

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Please note that applications are not being accepted to the following sites for the 2015 - 2016 training year:

Behavioral Medicine
Trainees provide consultation and liaison with medical services as well as assessment, individual, and group treatments in the Malden Family Medicine Center. Trainees gain experience providing short-term, symptom focused treatment utilizing cognitive, behavioral, and physiological techniques in treating adults who suffer from a range of anxiety and mood disorders, as well as pain, sleep, and psychological co-morbidities of physical health problems. Instruction is provided in the clinical applications of behavioral medicine, fundamentals of cognitive-behavioral therapy, and self-care, with the option of specific training in hypnosis or biofeedback.

Victims of Violence Program
In this setting, trainees gain experience in the assessment and provision of short- term, longer-term, individual and group psychotherapy to an adult population that has experienced significant trauma. Patients in this setting may present with histories of recent or remote trauma, and may have suffered single incident trauma or may have been multiply traumatized throughout their lives. The treatment program is guided by Dr. Judith Herman's stage model of trauma recovery. Psychodynamic and cognitive behavioral perspectives are integrated within appropriate phases of treatment.

Couples and Family Program
In this setting, trainees gain experience in the assessment and treatment of couples and families. Family systems, contextual, and narrative approaches are used to understand and intervene with families that present to the Program. Opportunities are available for live supervision using a one-way mirror. In addition, there are opportunities to consult on family issues to a primary-care center, thereby combining Health Psychology concerns with family treatment.

Cultural/Linguistic Specialty Clinics
In accord with its mission to provide comprehensive and culturally sensitive care, Cambridge Health Alliance has four specialized outpatient clinics that provide service to patients from particular cultural and linguistic communities. In general, staff and trainees working in these clinics must be fluent in the appropriate language.

Portuguese Mental Health Clinic
Part of Cambridge Health Alliance's Adult Psychiatry Ambulatory Service, the Portuguese Mental Health Clinic provides a full range of outpatient services to monolingual Portuguese-speaking persons, including evaluation, psychological testing, and individual, child/adolescent, and family therapy. The community is comprised of persons who emigrated from Portuguese-speaking countries around the world, with the majority of persons coming from Brazil and the Azores. Trainees work as part of a multidisciplinary team, and carry a varied caseload. The consideration of cross-cultural issues is an ongoing part of the weekly supervision and team meetings.

Asian Mental Health Clinic
The Asian Clinic offers multilingual outpatient psychological and psychiatric services to Asian individuals and families in the greater Boston area. The Asian Clinic draws on a philosophy that appreciates a wide range of Asian backgrounds, experiences and conflicts. Treatment attempts to address the individual's emotional and spiritual well being in a safe and culturally sensitive environment. Special attention is devoted to trauma survivors. Primary services include outpatient short- and long-term individual, family and group psychotherapy, psychodiagnostic testing and evaluation, psychopharmacology, crisis intervention, case management and community outreach. The clinic also provides consultation to other branches of Cambridge Health Alliance, and serves as a liaison to community-based social agencies that serve the Asian community. Proficiency in an Asian language is preferred.

Haitian Mental Health Clinic
The Haitian Mental Health Clinic provides culturally and linguistically competent care to Haitian residents of the greater Boston area, and to French-speaking immigrants from the Caribbean and Africa. Treatment attempts to reduce the severity of psychosocial dysfunction in a variety of adult and child patients, and to provide these patients with additional coping mechanisms to better handle stressors triggered by the experience of migration. Primary services include child and adult individual psychotherapy, family psychotherapy, psychodiagnostic evaluations, psychopharmacology and crisis intervention. The Clinic also acts as a liaison with community and social agencies that interface with Haitian patients. French or Haitian Creole proficiency is preferred.