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Graduate Course Descriptions

Unless otherwise noted, all courses are 3 credit hours

PSYC 500- Human Growth and Development- An analysis of the principles of human development with emphasis on the contributions of biological, social, psychological, and multicultural influences as applied to an understanding of cognitive, emotional, social, and physical development across the life-span. Particular emphasis will be given to the psychobiological nature and social context of development as well as cultural and ethnic variations impacting on developmental processes.

PSYC 501- Principles of Behavior and Cognitive Change- This course will provide a systematic review of key concepts and principles of contemporary behavior and social learning theory. This material serves as a backdrop for an examination of a functional analytic approach to behavioral assessment and cognitive-behavioral therapeutic interventions. The theoretical rationale and empirical basis of traditional and more recently developed cognitive-behavioral interventions will be reviewed. Examples of these interventions include exposure techniques, contingency management, child-parent training, social skills training, cognitive therapy interventions, motivational interviewing, acceptance and commitment therapy, mindfulness, and dialectical behavioral therapy.

PSYC 502- Psychological and Educational Exceptionalities: Children and Adolescents- This course is an overview of child and adolescent educational and behavioral disorders. The course will focus on definition, etiology, epidemiology, diagnosis, and treatment/intervention. Overlap and distinguishing characteristics of educationally and psychiatrically defined disorders (e.g., DSM-IV) will be emphasized.

PSYC 503- Objective Assessment (Prerequisite- Officially admitted into the School Psychology Program)- This course is critical to data collection in the School Psychology program’s data-based problem-solving model. It is an introduction to the administration, scoring, and interpretation of measures of intelligence and visual-motor abilities. The student will have practical experiences in the use of appropriate instruments. Each student must demonstrate proficiency with these instruments with emphasis on utilizing this information within the data-based problem-solving model, particularly the problem definition, problem analysis, and intervention planning stages.

PSYC 504- Special Techniques in Assessment (Prerequisite- PSYC 503)- This course is critical to data collection in the School Psychology program’s data-based problem-solving model. It is an advanced assessment course, building on skills learned in PSYC503, where students gain practical experience with intelligence, achievement, visual-motor measures as well as adaptive behavior and preschool assessment. Emphasis is on integrating information from all sources (i.e., problem analysis) into information utilized in intervention planning within the problem-solving model.

PSYC 505- Personality, Social, and Emotional Assessment (Prerequisite- PSYC 503 & PSYC 504) – Students will have direct experience in assessment and evaluation with a focus on several diagnostic systems and methodologies (e.g., DSM-IV, IDEA, etc.). Emphasis will be on acquiring and interpreting information on behavior tendencies and styles with special attention to school age children and youth. Students will gain practical experience in the use and interpretation of objective, projective, and observational techniques. Practical experiences will be integrated with analysis of the literature relating to legal issues, validity of data, and clinical studies. Emphasis will be on utilization of such information in a model that emphasizes data-based problem solving, planning and interpretation at multiple levels across systems.

PSYC 507- General Psychopathology Assessment and Differential Diagnosis- A study of the major mental illnesses delineated in DSM-IV. The course will have a particular focus on differential and overlapping symptomatology within and across major classes of disorders. Models of assessment will be matched with specific symptom patterns. Continuity and overlap of normal and deviant behavior will be recognized. Additionally, students will examine the etiological and epidemiological factors in psychopathology.

PSYC 508- Counseling and Personality Theories (Prerequisite- PSYC 500) – This course is designed to provide a balanced and systematic study of the major counseling and personality theories. The course will integrate personality theory (including assessment and research techniques), and normal, and abnormal personality with a particular emphasis on therapeutic application of the major theories of counseling intervention.

PSYC 512- Ethics, Roles, and Law – This course will provide a survey of the field of school psychology. The role and function of the school psychologist, legal, ethical and professional issues in school psychology will be topics covered in this course. Field experiences, research methods and contemporary trends in school psychology will also be addressed. Students will be oriented to a data-based problem-solving model of school psychology that is empirically driven and intervention focused with an ecological framework. An important outcome for this course is to foster participant’s dispositions towards appreciating the diverse opportunities for school psychologists to positively impact communities, and to value implementing best practices as a school psychologist.

PSYC 514- Ethics and Mental Health Law- This course is designed to provide the Clinical Counseling student with a broad overview of professional issues related to counseling, including reference to current and historical role issues and emphasis on matters of ethics and mental health law related to the counseling profession. Particular attention will be given to the examination of ethical principles and mental health law relevant to the potential conflict/dilemmas arising in the course of counseling practice (e.g., suicide, homicide, role conflict, multiple relationships, etc.). Issues specific to service delivery to minorities and special populations will be addressed, as well as possible ethical conflicts arising within particular counseling modalities (e.g., marital and family counseling, group counseling).

PSYC 523- Statistics and Research Design- Course will focus on descriptive and inferential statistics as tools for exploration of quantitative research methods. Students will develop competence in generating basic research designs to answer questions in schools, agencies, and practice.

PSYC 525- Basic Counseling Techniques (Prerequisite- PSYC 500, PSYC 501, PSYC 507, PSYC 508) – Course focuses on fundamental skills of interviewing, assessment, case conceptualization, and intervention. These preparatory skills are taught through role-play and other practical approaches. The course is practice-oriented and designed to assist the student in developing professional skills. The student will be involved in analyzing his or her own counseling style and performance.

PSYC 549- Applied Measurement Techniques- This course is designed to prepare students to become intelligent users of assessment information within the clinical decision-making process. The primary focus is on understanding the philosophical and statistical properties of measurement instruments, developing an understanding of the advantages and limitations of assessment approaches, enhancing sensitivity to social and ethical issues in assessment, and using and integrative approach for applying the results of assessment to diagnosis and the clinical decision-making process.

PSYC 552- Group Counseling Techniques (Prerequisite- must have completed all core courses) – This course provides students with and understanding of the role of the group counseling/ psychotherapy modality in therapeutic settings. Focus is on the major components of group counseling/psychotherapy, including: client selection and preparation for group; attributes and behaviors of effective group counselors, group dynamics and group processes; stages of group development; therapeutic factors associated with groups; and methods/procedures used in group counseling/ psychotherapy.

PSYC 553- Introduction to Family Dynamics (Prerequisite- PSYC 500) – This course is designed to serve as an introduction to the various schools of family therapy. Students will study the historical context and underlying pragmatic assumptions inherent in the diverse schools. Students will survey the major contributors to each theoretical perspective and examine techniques unique to each perspective.

PSYC 555- Special Topics in Psychology- This course is designed to provide service providers and students with information and knowledge regarding contemporary psychological and social problems. Various topics will be offered as the need arises. This course varies across semesters. Students must obtain approval from their advisor to include this course as an elective.

PSYC 557- Counseling and Psychotherapy for Couples (Prerequisite- PSYC 553) - This course is designed to provide an overview of the major theories of relationship psychotherapy and technical interventions utilized within the major approaches to couples counseling, The developmental aspects of family and couples counseling will be reviewed and special course topics will include spouse abuse, divorce mediation and adjustment, and ethical considerations.

PSYC 561- Social-Multicultural Perspectives (Prerequisite- PSYC 500)- This course uses principles of social psychology to examine the influences of cultural, ethnic, minority, gender, and life-styles on psychological, educational, and social development. Particular attention will be focused on variations in experiences and perceptions of individuals from divergent backgrounds as these impact on educational and psychological environments. Students will be provided practical experiences that will enable them to shift focus from their own perspectives.

PSYC 599- Thesis (Prerequisite- PSYC 523) – A supervised applied research project related to a topic or issue in psychology. A prospectus, to be approved by the supervising faculty member, shall detail the nature of the study and methodology to be used. The thesis shall be submitted according to a designed format, and its acceptance (and the award of credit) shall depend upon an oral defense before departmental faculty. The student will also be expected to submit the research presentation at a state, regional, or national psychology association meeting or equivalent.

PSYC 602- Social and Biological Basis of Child and Adolescent Behavior (Prerequisite- PSYC 500) – This course is an advanced course with contemporary focus on the child and adolescent with particular attention to biological and social forces that shape development. Developmental processes will be examined through a review of current research. Part of the course will focus on cultural/technological forces (e.g., computers, television, video games) which are particularly important to today’s youth and which are important forces impacting on development.

PSYC 605- System Theory and Consultation: Prevention and Intervention (Prerequisite- PSYC 512; Corequisites- PSYC 625 & PSYC 617) – This course is critical to the intervention stage of the School Psychology program’s data-based problem-solver model. School psychology students will develop skills in systems theory and intervention, consultation, and alternative delivery services to schools. Traditional test-and-place perceptions will be replaced with perceptions based the principles of prevention, consultation, alternative intervention methods, and intervention progress monitoring. Students will cover systems theories and models of consultation to include mental health consultation, behavioral consultation, organizational change, and collaborative decision-making as well as primary/secondary prevention methods with a focus on learning and psychology of the school age child/ adolescent. Interventions that promote positive school cultures will be examined across classroom, school, family, and community systems.

PSYC 606- Academic Interventions (Corequisites- PSYC 615 & PSYC 617) – This course is critical to the School Psychology program’s data-based problem-solving model and emphasizes a multi-tiered model including primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention ( e.g., Response to Intervention; RTI). It is an applied course for school psychologists in-training designed to develop skills in designing, implementing, and evaluating evidence-based interventions that improve the academic achievement of primary and secondary school students. The course will cover curriculum-based assessment (CBA) and measurement (CBM), collaborative problem-solving, and analysis of student’ academic strengths and needs. Emphasis will be placed on linking assessment data to development of appropriate interventions designed to address specific needs in reading, writing, and mathematics.

PSYC 607- Behavioral and Emotional Interventions (Corequisites- PSYC 616 & PSYC 618) – This course is critical to the School Psychology program’s data-based problem-solving model. It is an applied course for school psychology students designed to develop skills in designing, implementing, and evaluating evidence-based interventions that improve the behavior and emotional well-being of primary and secondary school students. The course will cover behavioral principals and appropriate assessment techniques, including systematic observation of behavioral and functional behavioral assessment. Emphasis will be placed on linking assessment data to development of appropriate interventions designed to target specific needs related to internalizing and externalizing behaviors. Crisis intervention and threat assessment will also be addressed.

PSYC 611- Clinical and Professional Issues in Counseling (Prerequisite- Students must have completed all core courses and passed comprehensive examination) – Counseling does not occur in a vacuum and clinical counselors working within the community must possess basic knowledge of a number of topics that affect the provision of care to clients. This course addresses a number of topics that relate to the practice of counseling. Topics to be addressed include: 1) licensure and professional development; 2) advanced personality theory with a focus on assessment and treatment of personality disorders; 3) psychopharmacology for the non-physician; and 4) use of empirically validated treatments.

PSYC 612- Reading Assessment and Intervention: A Neuropsychological Perspective (Corequisites- PSYC 616 & PSYC 618) – Students will learn how to evaluate the reading ability of children and youth using both qualitative and quantitative assessment techniques. The course will emphasize diagnosis leading to scientifically validated instructional interventions. Reading problems will be couched in a neuropsychological framework and will be consistent with the DSM and IDEA. Students will learn how to incorporate assessment data with existing psychological data on the person served to generate a more complete psychological profile. Students will also learn how to incorporate assessment data within a response to programs and methods of instruction used to prevent reading problems before they occur will also be reviewed.

PSYC 615/616- Practicum in School Psychology: I and II (Prerequisites- PSYC 503, PSYC 504, & PSYC 505; Corequisites- PSYC 617 & PSYC 618) – These practica courses are part of the final “capping off” of students before they begin professional school psychology internships. Applying the data-based problem-solving model, students will engage in the administration and scoring of traditional and alternative measures of intelligence, achievement, adaptive behavior, visual-perceptual, and socio-emotional functioning that are commonly used by school psychologists. Students will apply data to problem analysis and recommend or implement appropriate interventions, monitor the effectiveness of the interventions, and adhere to standards of best practice in school psychology. Students will experience various roles frequently expected of school psychologists in public schools or affiliated agencies with supervision provided by certified/licensed psychologists.

PSYC 617/618- Practicum in Consultation and Intervention: I and II (Prerequisite- PSYC 503, PSYC 504, & PSYC 505; Corequisites PSYC 615 & PSYC 616) – These practica courses involve the application of principles and theories of consultation and intervention through field-based experiences. Students will learn to employ empirically-based treatments and to evaluate innovative treatment programs applied to a variety of children and conditions. Intervention and prevention programs will target multiple levels within the placement site, including the individual student, classroom, school, and/or system. Demonstration of learning and skill will be exhibited in the development of case studies involving children experiencing academic and/or emotional difficulties. Through these case studies, students will combine the scientist-practitioner model with a data-based problem solving approach to intervene with children in need of school psychology intervention.

PSYC 620- Contemporary Issues in School Psychology- This course provides an in-depth study of current issues and research in school psychology. Course content will cover contemporary issues in the field that impact the school psychologist’s ability to competently and effectively deliver services, as well as review methods and procedures involved in assessing institutional programs (i.e., program evaluation, implementation and efficacy).

PSYC 621/622- Internship in School Psychology: I and II (Prerequisite- Completion of all other course work for the Ed. S. degree, including thesis)- A field placement in school psychology utilizing either a clinic setting (for not more than half the internship) and/or public school setting in which the student works under the direct supervision of a certified school psychologist in conjunction with The Citadel Coordinator of School Psychology Practicum and Internships. Internship training represents the cumulative experience and the synthesis of all course work and practice. The goal is to prepare the intern for independent function as a school psychologist, i.e., data-based problem-solver, capable of providing a full range of services with a multiculturally diverse client population. Students are required to complete 1200 clock hours (PSYC 621 & PSYC 622) of supervised internship experience.

PSYC 629- Practicum: Clinical Counseling (Prerequisite- Completion of all prior course work (may take elective with Practicum). Note that permission of advisor is required during the semester prior to enrollment in the course. Registration is contingent upon advisor approval based upon successful completion of coursework and demonstration of readiness to function in a professional role in the community) – This course is a supervised field experience for community counseling students who are at the end of their program. The practicum consists of 150 hours of work within a community agency. In addition to working with clients in the community, students experience individual and group supervision that emphasizes case conceptualization and the use of intervention strategies. The practicum course integrates pervious course experiences with counseling skills. The student will complete a comprehensive case study integrating theory, research, and practical issues in the treatment of a client seen during practicum experience.

PSYC 643- Contemporary Psychological Assessment and Psychotherapy (Prerequisite- Students must have completed all core courses and passed comprehensive examination) - This course integrates clinical assessment, case conceptualization, and treatment planning and evaluation. The emphasis on assessment highlights specific, focused procedures for common clinical problems. Interview methods, self-report instruments, and self-monitoring among others will be considered for their psychometric characteristics, clinical utility, and practicality. Case conceptualization will integrate the results of the assessment process with current conceptual and practical exercises in the assessment, conceptualization, and treatment for the most common clinical problems.

PSYC 644- Advanced Counseling Techniques (Prerequisite- Students must have completed all core courses and passed comprehensive examination) – This course is designed to prepare clinical counseling students for the practicum experience. The student will implement and apply previous learning of theory, techniques, and understanding of the therapeutic process through experiential and didactic methods. The student will develop increased knowledge of the counseling process, including assessment, case conceptualization, diagnostics, and intervention strategies. The student will complete a comprehensive case study integrating theory, research, and practical issues in the “treatment” of a stimulated client.

PSYC 651/652- Internship: Clinical Counseling (Prerequisite- Completion of all prior course work, including Practicum (may take elective with Internship). Note that permission of advisor is required during the semester prior to enrollment in the course. Registration is contingent upon advisor approval based upon successful completion of coursework and demonstration of readiness to function in a professional role in the community) – The internship is a supervised field experience consisting of 600 hours of work in a community agency. It involves continued refinement of counseling skills developed over the course of the student’s program. The student will complete and present a comprehensive case study integrating theory, research, and practical issues on the treatment of a client seen during the internship experience.