To educate psychologists who will be proficient in both the scientific and clinical aspects of their profession, and who are capable of working in a variety of settings.
The major Goals of the Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology are as follows: 1. To transmit a breadth of knowledge of the field of Clinical Psychology; 2. To train students in conducting and evaluating empirical research; and 3. To train students to acquire competence in clinical assessment, interviewing and intervention.
The program adheres to a scientist-practitioner model of training with greater emphasis on scientific training. The major aim is not only to transmit existing knowledge, but to develop constructively critical attitudes and creative skills in psychologists who are dedicated to clinical psychology as a scientific profession, so that they will be able to make useful and novel contributions to the solution of problems arising in clinical settings. All functions of clinical psychology are stressed: assessment, treatment, consultation, supervision, and research. Objective methods are preferred in assessment, and the major emphasis in treatment is on empirically-based methods. Instruction emphasizes cognitive-behavioural approaches, although reference is also made to other psychotherapeutic approaches as well as somatic treatment.
The Clinical Program meets these goals by providing instruction in the five core areas of clinical psychology (biological, cognitive-affective, and social bases of behaviour, individual behaviour, and history and systems of psychology), statistical and research methods, and methods of assessment and intervention. Multicultural competence is targeted through inclusion as a topic within each course as well as an independent required course at the PhD level. The Clinical Program meets these goals also by providing in-depth practical experience in assessment and intervention, as well as by requiring directed thesis research, and by providing other collaborative research opportunities.
We have been very successful in meeting our goals. Over the past five years, all of our students in clinical psychology have passed their required and elective core courses and their practicum courses. In addition, all students in the past five years have passed their written and oral comprehensive examinations. All students whose Master’s theses and doctoral dissertations have come to defense have passed. Finally, all students who have applied for internship over the past five years have been successfully matched.
We pride ourselves in accepting the top students in the country to our graduate program. Each year we receive approximately 110 applications to the clinical program, from which we accept 5-6 students, on average. In the past five years, only 3 students have left the program. We have a diverse student body. Our current students range in age from 23-50, approximately 82% are female and 18% are male. These students hail from the top schools in Canada and abroad, and bring with them a diversity of research and clinical backgrounds.
Students who complete our program will be very well-prepared to pursue careers in a variety of settings. Our graduates are currently working as academic researchers in departments of Psychology and Psychiatry, practicing clinical psychologists in academic medical settings, tertiary psychiatric centres, community mental health centres, and private practice.
The Clinical Program has a large variety of training resources at its disposal. We have a very active Psychology Clinic that provides practicum training to all students in the program through supervision by core faculty members. We are also very fortunate to have a large number of diverse practicum settings (PDF, 123 KB) in the community. Our test library is stocked with the most up-to-date assessment tools relevant to the current practice of Psychology, as well as a large historical collection of tests.
Our research facilities are also superior. We have a fully research-dedicated magnetic resonance imaging scanner housed within the affiliated department of Neuroscience. Within the department, students have access to a wide variety of research tools, including equipment for brain electrophysiology, eye tracking, motion capture, behavioural analysis, structured diagnostic assessment, physiological pain assessment, cognitive assessment, and, through outside collaborations, genetic and neurohormonal assessment. Laboratories in the department have dedicated site licenses for a number of software research tools (e.g., SPSS, SAS, ePrime, MatLab, etc.). Each of our core faculty have their own research laboratory spaces.
The Clinical Psychology program is accredited by the Canadian Psychological Association. CPA Head Office, 141 Laurier Avenue West, Suite 702, Ottawa, ON K1P 5J3. The Clinical Psychology Program accreditation was renewed for 5 years in the 2019-20 year. Please click here to see the Public Disclosure Tables (PDF, 738 KB) that were submitted to the CPA in September 2023.
Within our Clinical Psychology Program website you will find info about our faculty, their research, our graduate studies program, and the classes we offer to undergraduate students in Psychology and related disciplines.
If you have questions about applying, please review the Prospective Students Overview.
NOTE: We do not offer a terminal MSc in the Clinical Psychology Program.
Contact the Clinical program chair:
Christopher Bowie, Ph.D., C.Psych. Chair