Clinical Psychology

Master of Arts

Graduate study in psychology is based on a commitment to intellectual freedom and personal integrity and the important role they play to all people. The Clinical Psychology Master of Arts program offers a unique, integrated curriculum of study in one of the field’s most popular career paths and offers the widest opportunities to mental health professionals.

AIC’s clinical psychology program has been developed in accordance with the highest national standards of excellent in its respective field. It is designed to develop educational depth, as well as the skills and creative independence that prepare graduates to practice and contribute to their profession.

Candidates to our clinical psychology program have the option of two concentrations:

  • Mental Health Concentration (60 credits): This concentration is designed to meet the educational requirements for a licensed mental health counselor (LMHC) in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and similar professional designations in other states. The 60-credit mental health concentration includes coursework in research, assessment, counseling, psychopathology, human development, and ethics. A pre-internship clinical practicum is required and is followed by a 600- hour clinical internship.
  • Forensic Psychology Concentration (66 credits): This concentration is also designed to meet the educational requirements for an LMHC. The program requires the completion of 66 credits and incorporates courses from the mental health concentration. Additionally, it includes six credits of forensic psychology coursework, along with a pre-internship practicum and a 600-hour forensic internship. Students are responsible for ensuring that they meet all state licensing requirements.

In the classroom. In the workforce.

What You'll Learn

What You'll Learn

This program will provide theory, research, and clinical training for the student who is truly concerned with the well-being of people and their quality of life, and the two concentrations ensure you’ll gain valuable, specialized skills.

Future Studies

Future Studies

Often, our graduates elect to continue their education by pursuing a doctorate (Ph.D., Ed.D, or Psychology). Our students have been very successful in pursuing doctoral education and we are proud of our exceptionally high acceptance rate.


Career Opportunities

Career Opportunities

Many of our graduates obtain licensure and go on to become successful clinicians in mental health and social service agencies, hospitals, clinics, and schools. They are engaged in counseling, testing, research, administration, and other healthcare careers.

  • PSY5205: Applied Research Methodology
  • PSY5215: Counseling Theory and Practice
  • PSY5305: Occupational Information
  • PSY5338: Diagnostic Assessment I: WISC and WAIS
  • PSY5418: Diagnostic Assessment II: Diagnostics and Projectives
  • PSY5315: Group Counseling
  • PSY5355: Systems and Theories in Psychology
  • PSY5325: Psychology of Learning
  • PSY5345: Advanced Abnormal Psychology
  • PSY6505: Issues and Ethics in Psychology
  • PSY5225: Family Counseling
  • PSY5408: Pre-clinical Practicum (2 semesters, 6 credits)
  • PSY6515: Psychopharmacology and Substance Abuse
  • PSY6808: Clinical Internship (6 credits)
  • PSY6809: Clinical Internship (3 credits)
  • PSY6605: Therapeutic Techniques and Consultation
  • PSY5415: Psychology of Development
  • PSY6615: Social Bases of Behavior and Cultural Diversity
  • PSY5316: Principles in Forensic Psychology *
  • PSY5430: Assessment Techniques in Forensic Psychology *

An abbreviated 48 semester hour program is available for those who do not wish to pursue licensure. With this option, students are exempt from taking PSY5305, PSY5315, PSY6505, PSY6615.

* Forensic Concentration only.

All Courses

This course links statistical analysis and research methodology in order that the student may become a sophisticated research consumer as well as research producer. The student must learn to understand the logic of the research enterprise and have a basic grasp of the conceptual base on which the statistical tests of significance rest. Understanding research strategy and the logic behind the statistical tests is the underlying theme of the course. This will allow students to understand the nature of empirical research in developing education interventions and therapeutic strategies. Students are also required to learn the SPSS computer program.

This course will examine in some detail the influence of psychoanalytic, interpersonal/social, cognitive, and behavioristic theories on present therapeutic techniques. Each style of counseling is evaluated and the relationship between the nature of the disturbance and the effectiveness of each approach is discussed. The response to counseling of those from various racial and cultural groups will be considered. Classroom discussion will be used in conjunction with film and audio tape presentations to translate theoretical understanding into effective counseling behavior.

This course is designed to acquaint the student with vocational counseling practices. Sources of career information, lifestyle development, advantages and disadvantages of each source, and methods of storing and disseminating information will be explored. An understanding of career development assessment and career counseling techniques will be explored. Current issues in college planning and school-to-work transition programming will be explored.

Provides a thorough understanding of the administration, scoring, and interpretation of both the WISC and WAIS. Subject analysis stresses an understanding of cognitive strengths and weaknesses. Scoring analysis covers comprehensive personality descriptions. Differential diagnosis is also integrated in the course from a treatment-planning perspective. A major emphasis will be placed on the proper administration, scoring, interpretation, and preparation of a written report based on the Wechsler Scales. In addition, direct and indirect assessment techniques will be covered.

A continuation of PSY5338. In this course, the student will be encouraged to develop a personal frame of reference around personality assessment. Specifics include an examination of several traditional and non-traditional diagnostic instruments such as the TAT and Rorschach. Problems involved in assessing dysfunction will be included, as well as the application of assessment and diagnoses to the selection of treatment modalities.

The emphasis in this course will be on human growth and the counseling process within the group setting. Among the concepts included are curative factors, interpersonal learning, group composition, and tasks and techniques for change. Drug addictions, poverty, and education will be explored in understanding the individual response to group counseling. The class itself will experience these concepts by both participating in a personal growth group and reviewing appropriate literature.

This course traces the history of the major theoretical positions in psychology (structuralism, functionalism, behaviorism, gestalt, and psychoanalysis) from their epistemological, both rationalistic and empirical, and philosophical roots, dating from ancient Greece to the present time. Coverage will include discussions of the scientific method and the philosophy of science. Finally, contemporary positions, especially those involved in the cognitive revolution, will be covered from both the psychological and physiological points of view. Throughout these latter discussions, emphasis will be placed on the developmental aspects of human growth.

Intensive coverage of the major learning theories in psychology, and their epistemological roots in philosophy, both from the point of view of rationalism and empiricism. Emphasis, however, will be on the twentieth century and will include Pavlov, Thorndike, Watson, Guthrie, Hull and Skinner as behaviorist-associationists, and Wertheimer, Kohler, Lewin, and Bruner on the cognitive gestalt side. Bandura’s social modeling theory will be stressed, including discussions of racial prejudice and attitude change. Piagets cognitive model will be stressed, including discussion of qualitative differences in learning according to developmental stage. Coverage will also include processing models, cognitive acquisition theories, and the basic models concerning the physiology of learning and memory.

This course examines disorders in adulthood, adolescence, and childhood with consideration of the relationship between biological, social, psychological, and environmental factors, as well as problems in classification and potential behavior systems. The concepts of normal and abnormal will be explored especially when attempting to understand the behaviors of culturally diverse groups. The symptomatological disorders, including borderline personalities, and various phobic and obsessive-compulsive syndromes will be studied. Also covered will be dis-compensation, stress, anxiety, and defense.

The purpose of this course is to acquaint the student with the major issues in the practice of psychology. The course will involve an intense analysis of the philosophical, technical, and consultative issues contributing to the professional identity and function of the psychologist in a public school or clinical setting. Emphasis will be placed on the setting, the practical application of theory, and the demands placed on the setting, the practical application of theory, and the demands placed on the practicing school psychologist. This course stresses professional ethics and general standards of conduct. The guide for this section of the course is the American Psychological Associations Code of Ethics.

This course will provide students with a solid basis in General Systems Theory. Coverage will include theories and techniques that could be used by the psychologist in dealing with the family. Topics will include initial interview skills, therapeutic intervention techniques, and the application of systems theory to the family setting. Included will be usefulness and application of theory to culturally diverse groups, single parent, and blended families.

This course provides students with a yearlong opportunity (100 hours) to put their acquired academic knowledge of psychology and counseling into clinical practice prior to their final years internship, when they actually work with clients. This course is normally undertaken in the second year of the program and after PSY5215. The practicum is utilized, in part, to meet the requirements for certification as a mental health counselor. In addition to developing counseling skills through the readings and exercises in the textbook, students also role-play counseling in the classroom and on audio and videotapes. Students explore their specific career interests and search for sites for the following year’s internship experiences.

This course covers the fundamental principles of pharmacology, drug actions, tolerance, addiction, clinical use of psychotic medications, substance abuse, and addiction treatment. Research that explores the efficacy of medications taken during treatment, specific treatment programs, and the degree of recidivism is presented.

This course is primarily an off-campus, supervised work experience, extending from September to May and involving 16-20 hours per week. Practica are undertaken in the final year of the program, with approval of the clinical faculty. On-campus weekly meetings are required and are an integral part of the necessary supervision. All aspects of clinical experience from intake to discharge are acceptable with primary emphasis on face-to-face counseling interaction. May be repeated for up to nine credits.

This course will provide students with techniques to integrate the theories of treatment into specific situations that the counselor or psychologist will confront in actual practice. Topics will range from working with clients in multiple system membership to consultation around behavioral/emotional issues in schools as well as clinics. The consultation model will be considered as it relates to counselors and psychologists within a multicultural model.

This course addresses the physical, cognitive, and social-emotional development of children, adolescents, adults, and the elderly, including a description of behaviors that are present at the various stages, and explanations for those behaviors in terms of relative contributions of heredity and environment. The sociocultural and social economic factors that may contribute to a development outcome are considered.

This course covers a number of advanced topics in the general area of social psychology, including cultural, ethnic, and group processes, sex roles, organizational behavior, group dynamics, status and role, attribution theory, and leadership. Special emphasis will also be placed on cultural diversity, including those issues related to racial and ethnic bases of behavior, with a focus on people of color.

This course will provide students with information about the various forensic activities in which psychologists and other related professionals currently participate. Activities may include competency evaluations, assessment of violent behavior and dangerousness, child abuse/neglect, treatment issues, court testimony, police psychology, and consultation to judges, attorneys, and other law enforcement personnel. Students will obtain information about the numerous roles of professionals in the field of forensic psychology and will develop the skills and knowledge base that will prepare them to continue with specialized training in this area.

This course will familiarize students with the particulars of forensic assessment and test administration and will deal with techniques of synthesizing and integrating psychological and practical information into an effective forensic report. Emphasis will be placed on formal and informal assessment techniques, presenting problems, presentation of reports, and collaboration with other professionals. Students will develop skills in the assessment and diagnosis of disorders commonly found in forensic settings.

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