|Professional Psychology: Research and Practice||© 1997 by the American Psychological Association|
|August 1997 Vol. 28,
No. 4, 373-386
||Reproduced with permission|
The National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology Educational Model
Roger L Peterson
Antioch New England Graduate School
Donald R Peterson
Jules C Abrams
Beginning with its historical context, the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology's model for education and training in professional psychology is summarized in 5 areas: (a) broadened view of psychology with a flexible epistemology, multiple ways of knowing, and how practitioners doing practice remain local clinical scientists doing disciplined inquiry; (b) integrative pedagogy; (c) competency-based core curriculum integrating practical and scientific knowledge, skills, and attitudes; (d) elements of practice-including multiple roles, the self of the psychologist and reflective practice-practicum and internship training, and systematic evaluation; and (e) the social nature of professional psychology and its social responsibility, including ethnic and racial diversity and gender.
OGER L. P ETERSON D ONALD R. P ETERSON J ULES C. A BRAMS G EORGE S TRICKER
Correspondence may be addressed to Roger L Peterson, Department of Clinical Psychology, Antioch New England Graduate School, 40 Avon Street, Keene, New Hampshire, 03431.
Electronic mail may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Received: May 9, 1996
Revised: December 20, 1996
Accepted: January 23, 1997
Over the past 20 years, the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology (NCSPP) has devoted itself to the deliberate, systematic, reflective examination of standards for the education and training of professional psychologists by means of a series of annual conferences. 1Each of the conferences had a particular focus, and each was responding to changes in the profession and in society. In a process initiated in 1993, NCSPP explicitly determined to bring together two decades of work in an integrated statement on education and training that would influence these critical processes both within and beyond the boundaries of the organization and help advance the profession into the century that lies before us. The full report of the results of that effort will appear in a single volume titled Standards for Education in Professional Psychology ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, & Abrams, in press ).
Founded in 1976, NCSPP is an organization of professional schools and programs in psychology whose central mission is progressive improvement, enhancement, and enrichment of professional psychology education and training. Currently, NCSPP consists of 33 members with full accreditation by the American Psychological Association (APA) and 12 associate members who are at various stages of the accreditation process. 2The first section of this article briefly describes the historical context and development of the NCSPP model. The second section summarizes NCSPP's philosophy or model of education in professional psychology as distilled from the more detailed integrated resolutions, which will be referred to as "Standards" throughout this article ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ), and identifies their implications for professional psychology. This statement is responsive to a study of issues of importance to members of the APA ( Oakland, 1994 ) that identified "standards for curriculum and program quality for education and training at the doctoral level" (p. 884) as the most important issue of the 32 included in the survey. Definition of this model is consistent with the requirement by APA's Committee on Accreditation ( APA Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation, 1996 ) that programs have a "clearly specified philosophy of education and training . . . appropriate to the science and practice of psychology" (p. 5); it "may be one identified through a national conference of psychologists, from which guidelines for professional education and training have been approved by the delegates" (p. 6; cf. Belar & Perry, 1991 ).
Historical Context and Development of the NCSPP Educational Model
The intellectual agenda and institutional sanction for professional schools were set in 1973 by the conference held in Vail, CO (known as the Vail conference), on levels and patterns of training in professional psychology ( Korman, 1976 ). By that time, the doctor of psychology (PsyD) degree-the degree that made it possible to expand training beyond the major research universities-had achieved credibility. Adelphi University had shown that it was possible for a program to develop in a small college setting, and Nicholas Cummings and his associates had implemented the notion of the free-standing professional school in California. Following the Vail conference, many professional schools either were founded or were in the process of being founded, each operating more or less independently. An organization of professional schools to provide mutual support and coordination of effort was clearly needed.
Cummings, who had recently resigned as president of the California School of Professional Psychology and who had more recently become president of APA, was instrumental in the initial formation of the organization, soon to be known as the National Council of Schools of Professional Psychology (NCSPP; later called the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology). Cummings contacted all of the professional schools that he considered to be serious and then scheduled an all-day meeting the day before the APA convention in Toronto began in August 1976; this meeting established a membership of 19 professional schools. Elected acting president this first year, Gordon Derner was elected as president the following year when the organization met for a second time. The original name reflected the original notion that membership was to be of schools of professional psychology, not, as it is today, programs with similar professional education philosophies. Membership in the organization then, as now, was by school or program, not by individual, and each school or program was initially entitled to send two representatives to the annual meeting.
In the early NCSPP meetings, task continuity beyond conversation was difficult. The meetings were attended by a changing membership of executive officers from each of the programs, usually White men, who spent much of the time describing developments in their programs and their accomplishments and defying the powers that be at APA. The two major initial topics of debate continue in one form or another to this day. The first asked whether the PhD or the PsyD was the preferred degree designation for professional programs ( Callan, 1994 ; Callan, D. R. Peterson, & Stricker, 1986 ; D. R. Peterson, 1968b , 1976; Stricker, 1975 ). Although there remains no agreement regarding degree, and opinions are intense, attention to this topic has declined over the years for three reasons: (a) arguments on both sides appear to be strong and intractable; (b) local and historical circumstances influenced which degree came to be offered at particular institutions; and (c) the shared professional perspective on education along with the development of an explicit model are more important than differences regarding degree. The majority of NCSPP programs now offer the PsyD degree, though the organization does not support the retrospective award of a PsyD for all practitioners ( Shapiro & Wiggins, 1994 ). The second debate concerned whether free-standing or university-affiliated programs were better, and NCSPP continues to affirm the viability of doctoral programs in professional psychology in both settings.
Development of the NCSPP model can be understood by considering the relevant conferences NCSPP has conducted. The first major national conference sponsored by NCSPP was "Quality in Professional Psychology Training" in 1981, referred to as the first LaJolla conference ( Callan, 1994 ); it resulted in the initial NCSPP volume ( Callan et al., 1986 ). Moving from conversation to action, the focus of the organization turned toward self-study and the improvement of educational quality. The conference focused on a number of issues ( Callan, 1994 ) that foreshadowed the educational model summarized in this article: (a) structure, setting, and organization of professional programs; (b) the role and extent of research training and the PsyD versus the PhD as the preferred degree; (c) initial conversations about the professional core curriculum; (d) philosophy and values of professional program faculties; and (e) commitment to empirical self-study, with results as reported in Callan et al. (1986) . The success of this conference gave impetus to the series of conferences that have defined NCSPP and developed its particular perspective.
The pivotal conference on "Standards and Evaluation in the Education and Training of Professional Psychologists" of 1986, the Mission Bay conference as it came to be known, was the first conference systematically designed to articulate a blueprint for professional psychology education and training models ( Bourg, Bent, McHolland, & Stricker, 1989 ); it resulted in the second NCSPP volume ( Bourg et al., 1987 ). Resolutions of the Mission Bay conference that influenced the model's development included the following: (a) a statement that "education and training in professional psychology should be carried out by programs that have an explicit, primary commitment to practitioner training" ( Bourg et al., 1989 , p. 67); (b) a statement that "professional applications of psychology should be related to an evolving and developing knowledge base that includes disciplines other than psychology" ( Bourg et al., 1989 , p. 67); (c) a strong commitment to diversity; (d) an articulation of particular knowledge, skills, and attitudes for the education of professional psychologists; (e) identification and definition of the six professional core competency areas; and (f) a declaration of continuing commitment to evaluation, including clinical competency examinations for all graduates. The Mission Bay conference was followed by a series of conferences that explicated various components of the professional program model.
The 1989 conference on "Ethnic Diversification in Psychology Education and Training," held in Puerto Rico, worked to raise the consciousness of the many White male administrators of professional programs to the need for ethnic diversification in all aspects of professional psychology education, training, and practice. From this conference came the third book in the NCSPP series ( Stricker et al., 1990 ), which included detailed plans for implementation of the general values of diversity ( Davis-Russell, 1994 ). This ethnic diversification conference and, two years later, the 1991 conference on women's issues indelibly changed NCSPP as an organization. Before the 1989 conference on ethnic diversification, typically one or two top administrators, the great majority of whom were men, represented each program. After that conference, a third institutional delegate, and later, in 1991, a fourth, could come provided that each one brought ethnic or gender diversity to the delegation. NCSPP formed standing committees in parallel areas whose respective chairs sit on the NCSPP Executive Committee and set aside money to fund the attendance of ethnically and racially diverse delegates at the midwinter conferences.
The 1990 conference on "The Core Curriculum in Professional Psychology" in San Antonio, TX, continued the work of articulating professional psychology models of education and training begun at the Mission Bay conference ( R. L. Peterson et al., 1994 ) and led to the fourth book in the NCSPP series (R. L. Peterson et al., 1992 ). Reaffirming and expanding on the Mission Bay conferences's outline of the educational model, the San Antonio conferees discussed and articulated the following: (a) each of the six professional core curriculum areas in substantial detail; (b) the social nature of professional psychology; (c) the multiple ways of knowing that are necessary in the discipline; (d) the practitioner as local clinical scientist; (e) personal development, or "self," of the professional psychologist in reflective practice; and (f) preparation for multiple roles in the practice of psychology. Material relevant to ethnic diversification and gender was seen as appropriate throughout every aspect of the curriculum.
The conference on "Women's Issues in Professional Psychology" (1991) in Tucson, AZ, immersed the still primarily male leadership of professional programs in the issues of women in society and the feminization of the psychology profession. The conference ( Magidson, Edwall, Kenkel, & Jackson, 1994 ) focused on the following: (a) an expanded understanding of research methods and the local clinical scientist toward methods sometimes identified as feminist (Edwall & R. L. Peterson, 1991 ; D. R. Peterson & R. L. Peterson, in press ); (b) the problem of the glass ceiling, the underrepresentation of women in leadership positions in psychology in the context of public policy; (c) women's issues in curriculum and training; (d) empowerment and inclusion of women of color; (e) faculty-student relationships; and (f) women as consumers of professional psychology.
The 1992 conference on "Evaluation in Professional Psychology" in the Bahamas was designed to work toward developing new ways to evaluate the professional competency of students ( Grip, 1994 ). It foreshadowed the APA Committee on Accreditation's current focus on the evaluation of outcomes ( APA Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation, 1996 ). Next, the conference on "Clinical Training in Professional Psychology" (1993), referred to as the second LaJolla conference, articulated NCSPP's position on the practicum and internship and endorsed maintaining the internship as a predoctoral experience ( Forbes, Dutton, Farber, Polite, & Tan, 1994 ). During this same period, the name of the organization was changed to the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology, although the acronym NCSPP was retained. The name change reflected the inclusion of programs as members, regardless of the programs' organizational structure, as long as they subscribe to the philosophy and model of professional education that NCSPP stands for. When APA restructured its Committee on Accreditation, two seats were designated for representatives from NCSPP.
At this point, NCSPP members decided to review and bring coherence into the wide-ranging array of issues and resolutions considered in the preceding seven conferences by planning a metaconference. Summaries of prior conferences and a new set of preconference papers, designed to focus attention on the social responsibilities of psychology as a profession, were developed. The 1994 conference on "Standards for Education in Professional Psychology I: Reflection and Integration" in Cancun, Mexico, resulted (in part) in a draft of the second portion of this article and the initiation of a more comprehensive volume with a similar title as the Cancun conference ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, & Abrams, in press ).
In conjunction with the draft comprehensive articulation of NCSPP's education and training model, a second empirical self-study of NCSPP programs was undertaken as a central element of the conference entitled "Standards for Education in Professional Psychology II: Where Are We?, Where Are We Going?, and How Do We Let People Know?" (held in 1995) in New Orleans, LA. The study included a survey of graduates, conversations with program leaders, and an examination of curricula and the extent to which the resolutions of earlier conferences were actually implemented in the respective programs.
In developing the educational paradigm endorsed by NCSPP Standards, in this article we discuss the following five areas: (a) a broadened view of psychology, with a flexible epistemology, multiple ways of knowing, a delineation of how practitioners doing practice remain local clinical scientists doing disciplined inquiry; (b) a description of the pedagogy of integrative experiences; (c) the requirement of a competency-based core curriculum in which practical and scientific knowledge, skills, and attitudes are integrated; (d) elements of practice-including multiple roles, the self of the professional psychologist and reflective practice-practicum and internship training, and systematic evaluation; and (e) the social nature of professional psychology and the public responsibility of the profession to serve the larger society, with special consideration of issues related to ethnic and racial diversity and gender. We also discuss the model's implications for professional psychology.
Psychological Science and Education for Professional Psychology
Over the years, the most serious controversies and misunderstandings surrounding the NCSPP model have concerned the role of science in the education of professional psychologists (e.g., Dawes, 1994 ; Hays, 1986 ; Hoshmand & Polkinghorne, 1992 ; McFall, 1991 , 1996; D. R. Peterson, 1985 , 1991, 1996a, 1996b; Stricker, 1992 ; Trierweiler, 1987 ; Trierweiler & Stricker, in press ). In the Standards themselves ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ), many of the positions included in this section are presented as a part of the research and evaluation competency. In light of the enormous importance and widespread discussion of the science-practice issues throughout the psychological community, the NCSPP perspective merits detailed presentation. Rigorous professional activity has traditionally been conceived as the application of scientific knowledge developed through laboratory experiments or controlled field research to the understanding and solution of human problems. In the view put forward by NCSPP, practitioners engage the challenge of the human condition directly, starting with the needs of each client and bringing the best available theoretical conceptions, the most useful available research, along with individual and collective professional experience to bear in studying and improving the functional condition of the client. Professional activity is not the application of knowledge derived from scientific research, it is a form of science and, indeed, a form of research. The process of professional work has been described as "reflection-in-action" by Schön (1983 , 1987) and as "disciplined inquiry" by D. R. Peterson (1991 , 1995, 1996b). The role of the professional psychologist is that of the "local clinical scientist" ( Stricker & Trierweiler, 1995 ; Trierweiler & Stricker, 1992 , in press). The properly trained professional psychologist is a scientist in the sense that the skilled physician is a local clinical, biological scientist and the skilled engineer a local physical scientist.
Nevertheless, according to the Standards, education for professional psychologists continues to include the following:
(a) designing and critiquing approaches to systematic inquiry, using qualitative and quantitative methods; (b) analyzing data, using statistics, both descriptive and inferential, univariate and multivariate as well as methods appropriate to qualitative data; (c) conducting a scholarly project on a meaningful problem, typically associated with professional practice in psychology, with a strategy of disciplined inquiry appropriate to the problem. ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press )
This shift in viewpoint toward the local clinical scientist model carries profound implications for the education of professional psychologists. Instead of mandating nomothetic dissertation research that necessarily contributes to general scientific knowledge as the central requirement of scientific education and training for all practitioners, many situations and issues of the kinds encountered by professional psychologists throughout their careers are examined in the course of graduate study as exercises in disciplined inquiry.
An exercise in disciplined inquiry might focus on the following situation: A small group of psychologists began with their observation that parenting training has been underdeveloped in their semi-rural community, and it could coordinate well with the therapy of a number of clients and with other community programs. What's in the literature about such training-what are programs like, are they effective, and do they apply to our situation? What populations will this serve-lower-middle, middle, upper-middle class? What ethnicities? Which kind of programs should be directed to which groups? How do subgroup expectations and outcomes differ? Which current clients could attend? Would attendance be in addition to or instead of therapy? Who can or will pay-insurance, hospitals, big HMOs, clients, community funds? What do the potential psychoeducational group leaders need to do to prepare themselves? How can the program get the support of different, often competing agencies, practitioners, and professions? Have there been particular events in the community that make these services appropriate now (a suicide in the high school, crimes by juveniles)? Of the necessary information, what is not available and therefore must be collected in a disciplined though inexpensive way? In a way that parallels what professional psychologists do in such situations, students would engage in conversations over time that cycle through presenting, discussing, reading the literature, speaking with members of the community, receiving feedback, and presenting further iterations.
Within NCSPP, programs have taken an array of positions regarding the importance of scholarly products for scientific education, ranging from requiring relatively small, clinically oriented doctoral projects to dissertations of the level and quality that might be found in traditional programs. Those programs that require dissertations usually emphasize an applied focus as compared to the more traditional models. These kinds of dissertations embody a broader array of investigative approaches and a wider range of dissertation topics, which have in common an omnipresent emphasis on disciplined inquiry as basic to clinical education. Types of dissertations may include the following:
Examples include the integration of cognitive-behavioral and physiological theory and research on obesity that led to the development of a model treatment program ( Goodwin, 1989 ), " Nice Guy, Kept to Himself": Psychodynamic Theory and Serial Murder ( Keenan, 1994 ); an integration of research and theory about job burnout and professional self-efficacy ( LoSchiavo, 1995 ); or an examination of the victim-to-offender phenomenon in sexually abused males ( Ballantyne, 1993 ).
For example, Vermont mental health clinicians were surveyed about their own history of sexual abuse as it related to the treatment of their clients with similar experiences ( Little, 1992 ).
Analyses of archival data
Examples include studies of the characteristics of religious priests and brothers referred for evaluation of sexual issues in a church-supported treatment program ( Mendola, 1996 ) or the use of the database information accumulated by a training clinic.
Typical examples focus on effectiveness in real clinical settings (e.g., Hickey, 1996 ).
Systematic qualitative investigations
Examples include studies of women's experiences in resolving infertility ( Morley, 1994 ) or how psychologists respond to religious issues in therapy and the reasons they give for their actions ( Reilly Goldstein, 1993 ).
Public policy issues
Examples include studies of (a) custody evaluations and the role of the guardian ad litem ( Halikias, 1989 ) or (b) women in leadership in psychology, drawing on interviews about their experiences ( Trainor, 1996 ).
Such studies systematically bring all the relevant literature to bear on the material in an individual client's case.
Group-based nomothetic investigations
These studies are similar to traditional dissertations.
Following graduation, all practitioners are expected to retain a pervasive, deeply ingrained scientific outlook throughout their careers. Beyond that, a substantial number will take on the sorts of applied research just listed, some will do professionally relevant, generalizable applied research, and a few will devote themselves to the traditional forms of research that preoccupy the faculties of most research universities. In a general way, these outcomes are not substantially different from those produced by traditional training models. The difference is that career expectations and educational experiences in the NCSPP model are designed to match the realities of professional work in communities-as closely as they are now known and as clearly as they can be foreseen for the years ahead-not arise from traditional versions of the disciplinary core or from preparation for careers in academic research that are unlikely to be available to the great majority of graduates.
The practitioner as local clinical scientist
The Standards delineate the ways in which practitioners doing practice remain scientific:
Professional psychologists systematically acquire and organize information about psychological phenomena and often engage in the general practice of science. This requires selection, modification, and construction of the most rigorous attainable methods for investigating the local conditions with which each inquiry is concerned. Nonetheless, it is recognized that, because of the particular conditions that frequently limit inquiry in the local contexts of professional psychological practice (e.g., nonrepeatability of phenomena in time, privacy, etc.), the scientific goals of consensual verifiability, replicability, and universal communicability are attainable more in principle than in practice. (R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press)
NCSPP adopted Trierweiler and Stricker's (1992; Stricker & Trierweiler, 1995; Trierweiler & Stricker, in press) vision of local clinical scientists, who are
critical investigators of local (as opposed to universal) realities (a) who are knowledgeable of research, scholarship, personal experience, and scientific methodology; and (b) who are able to develop plausible, communicable formulations for understanding essentially local phenomena using theory, general world knowledge including scientific research, and most important, their own abilities as skeptical scientific observers. (Trierweiler & Stricker, 1992, p. 104)
"Therefore, research training in professional psychology should be viewed as essential for developing and enhancing critical thinking in students, and it should be integrated throughout the curriculum" ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ). "Skills in local investigation and in problem solving (thinking on one's feet) assume unusual importance" ( Trierweiler, 1992 , p. 10). According to Trierweiler (1992) ,
The guiding metaphor becomes a Sherlock Holmes or a Jane Marple standing in direct confrontation with the constraints, mysteries, banalities, and surprises of unique realities, rather than the distant, conservative, skeptical, and abstractly speculative university-based scientist most of us have struggled with in our professional identities. (pp. 10-11)
The clinical supervision of the local clinical scientist should be marked by the repeated use of two questions. The first question, "How do you know?" directs the student to examine assumptions, to think beyond absolute received truths, and to seek evidence. The second question, "Does it apply?" emphasizes the need to apply generalizations to the local situation in a thoughtful and discriminating way. Both questions emphasize the tension between aggregate findings and individual exemplars. The careful weighing of evidence from various sources and the considerations inherent in applying the general to the unique are the hallmarks of the local clinical scientist. Though the goals and forms of scientific training in professional programs differ from those in traditional programs, rigorous scientific training is equally important in both models of education.
Following is a composite clinical vignette, which, for brevity, reports little of the usual inquiry about personal and family history and the length, depth, and breadth of the concerns and symptoms that brought the client to the psychologist (for much more detailed examples, see D. R. Peterson's 1968a classic The Clinical Study of Social Behavior ):
Marie is a 48-year-old divorced woman of French Canadian ethnicity experiencing depression and anxiety across many areas of her life. "Worrying, worrying, always worrying," she says. She gets angry at small things and physically "doesn't feel right." Everything seems to have some sort of problem connected with it. Marie manages a small family-owned grocery store in semi-rural New Hampshire, taken over from and for her partially retired parents, who still call her Marie-Claire. Her parents don't have much for retirement beyond their house, the store, and Social Security. Her Dad has type II diabetes and seems to have some serious symptoms, though Marie does not yet understand their potential consequences. Both parents "drink more wine than they should." She is worried for the store's future because a huge, big-city chain grocery store is coming to town within a few miles. Divorced for a decade, Marie is beginning to "date" her ex-husband, Jacques, who at 56 has said that he is now too old for the "wandering ways I used to have." He runs a small sawmill that Marie thinks "does OK." His old friends and coworkers call him Frenchy not because he has an accent, but because his dad had a bit of one and they called him Frenchy. Recently, Marie has found herself going back to Catholic church, the same parish she left when she "threw Jacques out" a few years before the divorce. Their 19-year-old son, John (only the family calls him Jack), is a sophomore attending the local state college and living at home. Marie thinks he, too, is depressed and is just barely staying above academic disaster. Referred after being convinced by an acquaintance, Marie has no one in her family or close friends who have ever seen a psychologist. She's not quite clear about what she and the clinician are supposed to do. Questions about her current psychological state and how she did over the past 10 years indicate that Marie seems to be dealing with things reasonably well, although she worries that she is nearing her "breaking point."
No doubt, any scientifically trained clinician would immediately think about the established, effective cognitive and interpersonal treatments for depression, along with those for anxiety. In addition, possible issues surrounding menopause merit further discussion. If Marie had a family doctor she trusted, there probably should be an immediate referral to this doctor for examination (if a gynecologist were not available) and perhaps for antidepressant medication. (Yet, what should the clinician do when Marie says, "But I don't like him, he doesn't listen, spends almost no time with me, and has to remind himself of my name by looking at the chart. I don't have any other doctors. My HMO is awful."?) Already in the vignette are manifestations of the Holmes-Marple metaphor. The clinician's general knowledge (and perhaps intuition or orientation?) supplies the initial leads that move toward the world rather than an intrapsychic material: From the local newspapers, the clinician knows that many big, new grocery stores have come into southern New Hampshire, and the result has been to force out of business small family markets that have been located for years in tiny New England villages. Does this information apply? If so, Marie's economic worries are likely to be real, perhaps even more serious than she thinks. From the clinician's knowledge of local history comes information about the French-Canadian immigrants' movement to New Hampshire. Some came to work in the then thriving New Hampshire mills, as a result of the economic situation in Canada about the time when Marie's grandparents were young adults. Given that history, does the potential economic failure of the store have special family meaning, given that such a business was likely to have been the essence of security earlier in the century? Or is this inappropriately applying a stereotype? What needs to be known about Catholicism, particularly Marie's version, and the meaning of her divorce in this context and, again in the context, apparently, of Jacques' affairs, and what does it mean to her to be going back to her church? What about the possibility of her renewing the relationship with Jacques-Is this a beneficial reconciliation, loneliness, wishful thinking? Are gender issues relevant? What is happening to John: Is he experiencing a minor identity crisis, only a sophomore slump, or something more serious? How much of this is Marie's depressed point of view? What is it like for students like John who live at home some 25 miles away to attend this particular college? What psychological resources for referrals for John are available in the community or at the college? What about the health of Marie's parents: Is her dad in medical danger from the complications of diabetes; are the parents alcoholics; and what health care resources are available to them? What role regarding her parents' health does Marie feel she wants to play or feel obliged to play? Is this really a family or couples case? If so, who among the many possibilities are the people who should meet with one another? If an adult development perspective is applied, how does it change the clinician's conclusions? There are the usual practical concerns as well: What will her health insurance pay for? Given her financial situation, what can she afford? What other supportive or psychoeducational community resources are available? Given her lack of experience with psychotherap
Of course, the list of issues and concerns to be addressed by the local clinical scientist is much longer and would be clearer if a comparable report of the initial conversation about symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and relevant data had been portrayed here. Not only does this broadened line of inquiry help psychologists understand Marie more deeply and richly, it strongly encourages a treatment plan that includes a greater emphasis on a stress-coping approach and that literature. To conduct even this initial interview in a meaningful fashion, the local clinical scientist needs to know and systematically include a substantial amount of relevant local knowledge, in addition to that associated primarily with professional psychology.
Multiple ways of knowing
According to the Standards,
Psychological science is a systematic mode of inquiry involving problem identification and the acquisition, organization, and interpretation of information pertaining to psychological phenomena. It strives to make that information consensually verifiable, replicable, and universally communicable. In this context, science is defined by its broad-based array of continually-developing methods, not its content. (R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press)
Going further, to paraphrase the Standards, the broadened educational domain of professional psychology (e.g., its theories, research methods, and applications) is characterized by scholarly, disciplined thought that is grounded in science, the humanities, and personal and professional experience and is enhanced by interdisciplinary perspectives. Reflexive professional psychology requires critical analysis of the theories that guide disciplined inquiry and the methods through which investigations are conducted. Study of the philosophical foundations of inquiry (including, for example, epistemological and theoretical assumptions and implicit values) and the associated ethical issues are therefore important in the education of professional psychologists.
The epistemological basis of disciplined inquiry in psychology must be comprehensive; responsive to wide-ranging, diverse, and fluid social contexts; and cognizant of the invariably embedded values. This condition requires multiple ways of knowing that inform and enrich each other and that are appropriate and sensitive to the diverse populations to which they are applied. These ways of knowing include an enhanced array of methods drawn from related fields of inquiry-quantitative and qualitative, objective and subjective. In this context, research methods and theoretical formulations that increase understanding of women's issues and of diversity are stressed more strongly than they have been in the past.
As shown in the vignette, to get a more complete clinical view of Marie, the necessary multiple ways of knowing require integrating material from the traditional scientific psychology knowledge base (including psychopathology, treatment approaches and outcomes, development, gender issues) with some basic medical information about menopause and diabetes, the local economic circumstances and available resources (as drawn from regional newspapers as well as general conversations and experiences), some history and relevant local historical narratives, knowledge about a local ethnic culture, a reasonably sophisticated understanding of a particular religion, and, of course, the economic and service delivery issues surrounding managed care, all working together in the context of a psychologist-client relationship. Though any particular list differs from situation to situation and client to client, the work of professional psychologists inevitably requires an array of multiple ways of knowing.
Professional psychologists, in their roles as researchers, need explicit educational experiences to become self-critical with respect to the methodological, sociopolitical, and philosophical implications of inquiry. The integrative, reflective, educational experiences, described next as a central element of the NCSPP pedagogy, are just as relevant for the role of researcher as they are for the role of clinician. Conclusions should be carefully consistent with the limits of research designs, and particular consideration should be given to the likelihood of negative impact on underserved populations.
These positions, which may seem on the surface to be no more than bland ecumenical clichés, have general and well as clinical consequences. The areas of knowledge seen as relevant to professional psychology are greatly expanded. There is a strong movement away from narrow and doctrinaire conceptualizations of psychological science toward perspectives that oblige methodological multiplicity. Epistemology and critical thinking become more central to professional psychology training. An appropriate scientific basis for professional psychology demands an openness to the other groups and disciplines who share psychologists' concerns in a manner that emerges as an enlarged argument for ecological relevance. These issues are explored by D. R. Peterson and R. L. Peterson (in press ; R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, & Abrams, in press ) in much greater detail.
Integrative Pedagogy of the NCSPP Educational Model
Even at this point in the portrayal of the NCSPP model, it is clear that the model necessitates a pedagogy of integrative experiences that are designed to educate students as local clinical scientists. To be more explicit, in this section we characterize the educational experiences and the contexts in which a conversation about a case like Marie's becomes part of a student's learning. Though not a focus of the resolutions, pedagogical commonalties are implicit in many of NCSPP's writings, in conversations at meetings over the years, and in examples initially collected for this article. This pedagogy can be seen as having the following seven aspects:
Academic-scientific materials, both research and theory, including general, relevant information
The academic-scientific materials are used along with concepts and a process that facilitates local application ( Trierweiler & Stricker, in press ). In a single learning experience, for example, materials might include critical discussions of information on a certain disorder, on possible treatments, on multiproblem clients and families, on ethical issues, on relevant issues of diversity, and on the economic realities of treatment, including the differences and contradictions that regularly appear in the literature.
Real examples and real experiences
These include the instructor's cases, cases seen under supervision, and live demonstrations and videos of the students, instructor, and other practitioners. Students have the opportunity to engage in the real phenomena of professional psychology practice, so that disciplined inquiry can arise initially out of attention to the phenomena, not to a research problem.
The development of each individual student as a professional psychologist, his or her professional self, in a reflective process
This is described later in detail.
Explicit discussion of the relevant social issues, marginalization, power, and authority
This is also described later in detail.
The local, unique elements relevant to a particular client or professional situation
This is exemplified in the case of Marie ( D. R. Peterson & R. L. Peterson, in press ; Trierweiler & Stricker, in press ).
Faculty and supervisory role models
Role models enthusiastically engage in activities of the sorts that students will confront after graduation.
Appropriate attitudes, including explicit ways of thinking like a psychologist
Thinking like a psychologist is portrayed such that it will permeate all professional work.
Of course, depending on the program and the nature of the experience (whether, for example, a basic course with 25 students, a professional seminar of 8, or a supervision group of 3), different aspects of the pedagogy are emphasized. To take an example typical of many professional programs, an advanced student in a small group situation might present a diagnostic, conceptual, therapeutic, or ethical issue in a practicum case in light of the psychological literature and subject to the feedback of the faculty leader and student colleagues. In such situations, the faculty person, and ultimately the students, should continually ask, "What have you observed?" "Why did you do that?" "What were the client's reactions?" "What is it like for you to sit with this client?" "How are these issues viewed by people of the same gender, ethnicity, and culture as the client?" "What, therefore, does this mean?" "What are your assumptions?" "How does this fit with your deeply held beliefs?" and, of course, "What is the evidence for your position?" As a presented case continues to unfold over time, different psychological literature may become relevant along with focusing the practice dilemmas that arise when a client situation goes beyond the available readings. In doing so, participants become attuned to reflection and disciplined inquiry.
Each of the us has led educational experiences within this framework and knows of many similar experiences occurring across the country. To provide a specific example, it would be useful to focus on a course taught by one of the authors 3on the assessment and modification of interpersonal behavior. This course requires mastery of the best available research and theory in the social psychology of interpersonal relationships as well as the most promising clinical procedures for interpersonal psychotherapy. Each student works clinically with a couple or family throughout the course, and the instructor demonstrates his approach with tapes from his own practice. Class periods are divided about evenly between group supervision of individual cases and discussion of the general issues in the psychology of close relationships that the cases represent. There is time for speculating; for exploring issues insufficiently covered in the literature, particularly when a client's situation calls attention to them; for asking the instructor what he does under conditions of uncertainty; and for seeing possible dissertation topics.
Many more specific questions develop in other educational contexts, for example: In one setting, and at least in some programs' clinical orals, students may be asked to discuss the differences between an assessment case and an intervention case. Faculty regularly ask how a client's cultural context affected the self-presentation and his or her complaints and how a racial difference between therapist and client affected the client's experience of treatment.
These integrative pedagogies have developed in an interesting variety of ways. All are designed to provide the best attainable professional service for each individual, group, or organizational case with which the students and faculty are concerned. Also, all are designed to be firmly embedded in the relevant scholarly knowledge, to reflexively educate the professional psychology graduate student, and to open doors that should lead to improved technologies and generalizable knowledge of relevance to the profession.
Core Curriculum and the Professional Core Competency Areas
NCSPP members developed an innovative way of thinking about the professional psychology core curriculum that emphasizes competency over particular content. They have identified six core professional competency areas: relationship, assessment, intervention, research and evaluation, consultation and education, and management and supervision ( Bent, 1992 ; Bourg et al., 1987 ; Bourg et al., 1989 ; R. L. Peterson et al., 1992 ; Weiss, 1992 ). Similar lists of competency areas appear in a number of training models and in the Committee on Accreditation's current materials ( APA Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation, 1996 ). These professional core competencies areas represent key, related clusters of activities derived from and organized around an analysis of the social circumstances, needs, and demands of psychological practice-characteristics of what professional psychologists actually do. In the context of an evolving knowledge base, NCSPP members recognized that specific, identifiable knowledge, skills, and attitudes are important parts of the training experience and are conceptually and pragmatically joined in the competencies. Evolving curricula are designed to combine practical and scientific knowledge with professional skills and attitudes to produce the outcome goal of a particular competency. As in the Standards, in this article each competency area is conceptualized and described separately for heuristic purposes. In practice, however, the competencies develop together and often remain inextricably intertwined. The descriptions that follow are condensed and paraphrased. In the broadest sense, the clients served by professional psychologists include individuals, couples, families, groups, organizations, communities, and sociopolitical structures.
According to the Standards,
Relationship is the capacity to develop and maintain a constructive working alliance with clients and includes the ability to work in collaboration with others such as peers, colleagues, students, supervisors, and members of other disciplines, consumers of services, and community organizations . . . The relationship competency is the foundation and prerequisite of the other competencies. ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press )
Curriculum design and implementation involve education and training in attitudes essential for the relationship competency, including, but not limited to (a) intellectual curiosity and flexibility, (b) open-mindedness, (c) belief in the capacity for change in human attitudes and behavior, (d) appreciation of individual and cultural diversity, (e) personal integrity and honesty, and (f) belief in the value of self-awareness. These attitudes can be seen as embedded in the pedagogy of integrative experiences described earlier. Training for the development of interpersonal skills includes training in empathy, respect for others, and personal relatedness-experiential learning with self-reflection and direct observation of behavior and feedback by peers and experts. Programs typically require basic clinical skills courses that provide the fundamentals of these critical elements of professional psychology education, and they are encouraged in more depth in a variety of professional seminars, case conferences, and supervisory experiences with interpersonal and reflective elements that occur throughout the programs.
The Standards define assessment as
an ongoing, interactive, and inclusive process that serves to describe, conceptualize, characterize, and predict relevant aspects of a client. The assessment process uses a multimethod and multitheory approach that takes into account the sociocultural context and that focuses not only on limitations and dysfunctions but also on competencies, strengths, and areas of effectiveness. Assessment is a fundamental process that is involved and interwoven with all other aspects of professional practice. In recent years the emphasis of assessment appropriately has shifted from a narrow focus on tests, individuals, and psychopathology to a more comprehensive approach addressing a broader range of clients and client functions. ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press )
The assessment curriculum is not limited to individual content courses but is included in a sequenced pattern of experiences covering general principles as well as specific techniques. These principles include, at minimum, psychological measurement theory and the logic of clinical inference, in conjunction with supervised skill training. The stages of assessment "include identification of the client, formulation of questions, selection of methods, gathering of information, arriving at interpretations and conclusions, verification and cross-validation of findings, and dissemination of findings" ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ). In all stages, assessment training demands awareness of ethical, sociocultural and diversity, legal, and administrative issues.
Of the competencies, intervention, along with assessment and a version of research, has traditionally received the most intensive focus. In the Standards, it "is conceptualized as activities that promote, restore, sustain, and/or enhance positive functioning and a sense of well-being in clients through preventive, developmental, and/or remedial services" ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ). Curricula should address all of these levels and should do so with a greater consideration of the diversity of clients than has historically been true in professional psychology. "Along with the information derived from psychotherapy research, the knowledge and methods appropriate to the understanding of self and the self-other relationship, as well as to the significance of power and authority, are particularly relevant" ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ).
Research and evaluation
To give the NCSPP position on science and practice issues particular emphasis, the material on the research and evaluation competency has been presented earlier in the section titled Psychological Science and Education for Professional Psychology.
Consultation and education
According to the Standards,
Consultation refers to the planned collaborative interaction between the professional psychologist and one or more clients or colleagues, in relation to an identified problem area or program. Psychological consultation is an explicit intervention process that is based on principles and procedures found within psychology and related disciplines, in which the professional psychologist has no direct control of the actual change process. Psychological consultation focuses on the needs of individuals, groups, programs, or organizations. Education is the directed facilitation by the professional psychologist of the growth of knowledge, skills, and attitudes in the learner. ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press )
In many traditional programs, students have had some training in consultation and a bit of experience with education but very little when compared to the actual importance of these activities in their careers. For successful preparation, students should complete experiential tasks in consultative and educational activities in classes, practicums, and internships. For example, in a number of programs, advanced students are used as teaching assistants-under faculty supervision-in several courses for beginning students, with duties including leadership of discussion groups. This task gives them an experience in teaching and also helps to solidify their own mastery of the material.
Management and supervision
The Standards define management and supervision as follows:
Management consists of those activities that direct, organize, or control the services of psychologists and others offered or rendered to the public. It includes knowledge about the business aspects of psychological practice and the laws, standards, and regulations affecting practice . . . Supervision is a form of management blended with teaching in the context of relationship directed to the enhancement of competence in the supervisee. ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press )
Because the majority of graduates of professional psychology programs are ultimately employed in positions requiring management and supervisory skills, NCSPP is convinced that these competencies should occupy an enhanced status in the core curriculum. Going further, professional psychology programs should support advanced preparation for leadership, advocacy, and public and social policy planning roles. Many programs have required courses in supervision, with appropriate readings. Some programs have a second level of experience that may include a practicum in supervision or the experience of supervising beginning graduate students-all, of course, under faculty supervision. At least one program regularly asks one student to supervise another, with direct observation and feedback from faculty and peers in an advanced seminar. Some programs have required courses that explicitly include coverage of topics such as management, public policy, health care delivery systems, and administration. A few have joint degrees with management departments, have executive tracks, or offer a small sequence of courses in this area. Elective practicum experiences in these areas are beginning to emerge.
Core competencies: conclusion. The major philosophical change in this perspective is that it identifies the development of professional competencies as the goal of education in contrast to the traditional emphasis on the accumulation of knowledge in particular content areas ( Weiss, 1992 ). Historically, the core curriculum reflected the discipline, traditional areas, and research findings of university psychological science, which were thought to be narrowly applied by professional psychologists ( R. L. Peterson, 1992a , 1992b). This view now seems outdated, oversimplified, and, in several important ways, inaccurate ( D. R. Peterson, 1991 , 1995, 1996b; D. R. Peterson & R. L. Peterson, in press ). Schön (1983) argued convincingly that this concept of professional activity as applied science does not accurately represent the way experts in any of the fields he examined (architecture, engineering, business management, and town planning as well as psychotherapy) actually function in practice. For this reason, he replaced the idea of applied science with his concept of reflection in action-something NCSPP sees as an element of a competency and an aspect of its pedagogy.
In this reorganized context, professional education is more inclusive but is, in fact, no less scientific. The Standards indicate that professional competencies continue to be related to an evolving and developing knowledge base that should include the following areas: (a) biological bases of behavior, (b) cognitive-affective bases of behavior, (c) cultural bases of behavior, (d) dysfunctional behavior and psychopathology, (e) the historical and philosophical context of psychology, (f) life span development, (g) professional ethics and standards, (h) psychological measurement, (i) social bases of behavior, and (j) theories of individual and systems functioning and change ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ).
A number of groups and programs have thought about professional psychology in terms of the core competencies, either explicitly or implicitly. Seeing that the competencies can easily be operationally defined at basic, advanced, and specialized training levels and therefore at basic, advanced, and specialty levels of practice, the American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP) incorporated the competency approach in defining current and emerging specialties ( ABPP, 1993 ) as well as in directing the organization of the examination process. The APA Committee on Accreditation ( APA Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation, 1996 ) incorporated a version of the NCSPP core competencies as part of the required curriculum in the new accreditation guidelines, though the committee, perhaps shortsightedly, omitted management from the supervision competency and did not put education with the consultation competency (p. 8). At least one program organized its entire curriculum around different levels of the competencies and had specific faculty represent each competency during the curriculum redesign process ( Bent, 1994 ). Another program organized its curriculum so it can be seen both from the perspectives of the APA (1996) accreditation guidelines for required knowledge areas and through the core competency model.
Elements of Practice
In a context that reflects (a) the core competencies, (b) the wide range of activities in which professional psychologists are currently engaged and will be in the future, and (c) the likelihood of an expanded scope of practice in the future, NCSPP has long emphasized the need to prepare psychologists for multiple roles. The educational process is not seen as one in which the student is pumped full of knowledge and skills that are then dispensed to the public for a price, but as an experience through which the personal and professional self of each student is systematically developed, consistent with Schön's (1983) ideas of reflective practice. In keeping with these conceptions, NCSPP supports a wide variety of practicum and internship models along with a strong emphasis on systematic evaluation of students, programs, and the NCSPP member programs as a group.
Multiple and expanding roles
"The primary task of education in professional psychology is preparation for effective functioning in the multiple roles graduates will fill during the course of their careers" ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ). Conceptually, the idea of competencies is closely related to the idea of professional roles. Preparation for the wide array of roles evident in professional life is dependent on an education with a very broad understanding of each of the professional competencies. Consistent with the rapidly changing face of practice, professional training programs need to greatly enhance, not ignore or minimize, education for the final two competencies: (a) consultation and education and (b) management and supervision. Many programs have struggled with and ultimately expanded their offerings in these areas. For the future, the expansion of psychology's scope of practice is critical. Education, training, and credentialing should be sufficiently flexible to prepare for, permit, and promote new and expanding roles in new settings so as to be responsive to emerging social issues. This flexibility should lead to interdisciplinary training programs, joint degree programs, and partnerships in service delivery.
The self of the professional psychologist and reflective practice
"Preparation in professional psychology involves the education of the personal and professional selves of students" ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ) so as to develop the habits of reflective practice and life-long learning. Awareness of self and self-other relatedness is central.
As educators, the creation and nurturance of respectful, collegial, and empowering relationships with students are of central importance . . . Professional socialization experiences should be designed to foster student awareness of how students' personal and professional selves affect and are affected by their professional relationships, their profession, their training, the culture of their programs, and their clinical work. The knowledge of how inequalities of power and authority determine the nature of relationships, and the promotion of responsible use of power and authority, are critical elements of this experience. ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press )
Both academic and interpersonal material relevant to inequalities of power and authority appear in a variety of educational topics. These issues occur academically in the study of ethics and the roles and responsibilities of professional psychologists, in the study of racism and diversity, in some interpretations of gender issues, in the issues surrounding the feminization of psychology, and in critiques of traditional epistemologies. More personal, informal conversations about inequalities of power and authority occur when there is discussion about the following types of incidents and situations: a semipublic dispute between a faculty person and a student, an interpersonal incident that may have racist or sexist overtones, the plight of a particular client, and the politics of organized psychology and health care delivery systems.
All of these issues underscore the importance of training in both reflective practice and person-focused social and interpersonal sorts of educational experiences that provide a context in which such conversations can occur (D. R. Peterson, 1985 , 1995; Singer, R. L. Peterson, & Magidson, 1992 ). Different aspects of self and different ethical principles become relevant as professional psychologists move through multiple roles. Programs that educate professional psychologists carry an obligation to systematically attend to, develop, and evaluate the personal and interpersonal fitness of graduates.
Practicum and internship training
Recognizing that, for supervised practice in psychology, there is no one correct training model, the NCSPP strongly supported a diversity of practicum and internship models within professional psychology. The desirability of integrative service, inquiry, and teaching models in clinical training was reaffirmed.
Models that encourage a strong relationship between educational coursework and field training are particularly valued. Professional psychology programs should promote a variety of education and training opportunities beyond the doctorate, ranging from formal postdoctoral residencies to other less formal continuing education experiences. ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press )
In 1993, at the time the conversation about formal postdoctoral experiences was just moving to the foreground, NCSPP believed that "licensure should require a supervised post-doctoral year, but a formal, accredited post-doctoral residency should not be a requirement for licensure" ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ). The conferees had a clear concern arising from some of the changes that have occurred in the health care marketplace, such as routine third-party reimbursement for master's-level providers and declining fees. Many believe that psychologists in their postdoctoral year should be fully employable, and that it is not in the interests of psychology to systematically increase the number of years of required education beyond that now necessary to obtain licensure.
Professional psychology programs should continue to require an organized predoctoral internship, within the bounds of the programs and maintained as a component of their integrated sequences of training, as a requirement for graduation. These experiences may be organized in various time frames and settings. We reaffirm the historical partnership between degree-granting programs and independent internships in the predoctoral preparation of professional psychologists. ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press )
NCSPP delegates recognized that, in contrast to the psychology doctorate, the MD is awarded before internship and licensure, a situation that leads to the perception of lower status for psychology interns in medical settings. Nevertheless, conferees were convinced overall that not requiring the predoctoral internship would weaken the quality of education in professional psychology. NCSPP encouraged the use of training models that use traditional internships, have internship training integrated with the curriculum, or have captive internships. NCSPP endorsed the exploration of more flexible accreditation criteria for internships that would encourage innovation and be responsive to concerns of diverse groups and women. Systematic evaluation
NCSPP professional psychology educators have committed themselves to outcome and evaluation research to assess traditional and alternative models of training and service. There was general affirmation of the need for systematic evaluation of students, programs (including faculty and supervisors), and services. The institutional and organizational self-studies in which NCSPP has been engaged are important manifestations of this affirmation. "Students should be evaluated on their mastery of the psychological knowledge related to professional practice and its ongoing development as well as their understanding of the relationship between that knowledge and professional practice" ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ). Evaluation of professional competence in field experiences is to be based on a three-way learning contract among the student, the practicum or internship center staff, and the program faculty. Critical aspects of the evaluation process involve supervision; direct observation; and instruments and procedures incorporating self-evaluation, student peer evaluation, and program field faculty evaluation. Critical to an institution's ability to vouch for the quality of its graduates, competency-based examinations were endorsed by NCSPP delegates. Such examinations should assess competence relevant to professional practice using multimethod evaluation techniques (that might include live evaluation or other direct scrutiny of students' work by means of audiotapes and videotapes, written case presentations, examinations by faculty, and presentations to peers) as generally exemplified in the ABPP exam. Professional psychology programs should not attend only to academic progress but are also responsible for evaluating students with regard to those personal attitudes, aptitudes, and values that appear likely to predict future professional competence.
NCSPP has made a strong commitment to the systematic evaluation of its member programs. This commitment is exemplified both by the initial volume produced by the organization ( Callan et al., 1986 ) and by the systematic NCSPP self-study along a variety of program dimensions, which was a central element of the 1995 conference (report in preparation).
Social Responsibility, Diversity, and Gender
NCSPP has taken leadership in emphasizing the social nature of professional psychology and the social responsibilities of both programs and graduates. Against the backdrop of the history of education and training in psychology, NCSPP has believed that issues related to diversity and gender needed additional, particular attention.
Social nature of professional psychology
A profession of psychology can be justified only if it meets the fundamental needs of the larger society (D. R. Peterson, 1996a , 1996b). Professional practice in psychology and the education for that practice are fundamentally social. This social vision and understanding is apparent in a number of areas: (a) an examination of the importance of the socially situated role of psychologists, (b) the basic and underlying aspect of the relationship competency, (c) historical analyses of the social influences on the core curriculum in professional psychology (R. L. Peterson, 1992a , 1992b; Weiss, 1992 ), (d) the development of the competency areas, (e) the attention to diversity, (f) the necessity of directing explicit attention to the organizational contexts and cultures in which education occurs, (g) the interpersonal nature of reflective education, and (h) the development of a broad-based definition of social responsibility. Education must be socially responsive and responsible.
Diversity and gender
Concerns of diversity-including gender, physical status, spirituality and religion, sexual orientation, race and ethnicity, socioeconomic status, ability and disability, and age-are fundamental elements of human experience and should be integrated throughout the education and training of professional psychologists, the science itself, and the organizations in which the education and training occur. The issues relevant to ethnic and racial diversity ( Davis-Russell, Forbes, Bascuas, & Duran, 1992 ; Davis-Russell, 1994 ; Stricker et al., 1990 ) and to women ( Edwall, 1992 ; Edwall & Newton, 1992 ; Magidson et al., 1994 ) demand systematic focus and attention, as in the case of Marie. Inherent in these concerns is the necessity of the responsible use of and education about power, oppression, authority, and sociopolitical structures. "Professional psychology values the sharing of power, equal access to opportunity, social justice, affirmation of differences and the prevention of marginalization as primary goals" ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ).
The Standards derived from the meetings on ethnic diversification and on women go into explicit detail about what steps should be taken in these respective areas. "Curricular innovations with regard to diversity require particular attention and reinforcement" ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ). For example, the implementation of diversity training is seen as the responsibility of all faculty, administration, and staff across the entire educational process, not just a dean or an individual faculty person. A number of programs not only have a single diversity course in their curricula, but also have mandated the inclusion of diversity issues in readings and discussions in every course in a way that is relevant to the material (e.g., in statistics, the use of population means to characterize a group that includes subcultures; in intervention, the degree to which outcome studies are culturally dependent and biased toward or away from a particular group; and so on). In some programs, students are required during one of their practicums to work with a marginalized population. Going further, diversity is a concept that conveys a philosophical stance and attitude toward others, but it is empty unless there is local implementation beyond affirmative action. The presence of a diverse faculty and student body is essential to support the value of diversity, and the presence of such local diversity demonstrates its value in a manner that never can be approximated through academic experiences or practicums alone.
In current times, most (if not all) psychological organizations have statements a few paragraphs long espousing values regarding diversity and gender. The work at NCSPP went far deeper. One measure is, of course, that two annual conferences were spent on these topics, and detailed resolutions were developed. Important themes of both meetings were critiques of American psychology as overly influenced by the perspectives of White men. Many believe that professional psychology education and practice has been changed forever as a result of these conferences.
Implications for Professional Psychology
The NCSPP model has a number of implications for the training and practice of professional psychologists:
The six competencies as a heuristic
The six competencies and the competency model can be seen as a heuristic for the field. For those who think in terms of learning theory, the competencies suggest a much clearer way of thinking about educational goals. It has and will continue to help psychology to understand the growth of competencies from the beginning student to the ABPP. In pragmatic formulations that can be developed and enhanced over the years, the competency model organizes conversations about both current and expanded roles for the future, educational experiences leading to those roles, and credentialing for them.
Broad professional psychology education
Students are being educated in the broadest sense to be professional psychologists, not, to mention some stereotypes, psychotherapists with a few science courses or researchers with a few clinical courses. Perhaps we psychologists can hope for better and more respectful professional communication among us.
Preparation for actual roles as practitioners
Graduates explicitly educated to become practitioners are likely to be better prepared to do what they actually do after graduation, as clearly as the realities can be known or the future foreseen. Often, practitioners trained in earlier times with narrower models had much to learn on their own about the professional world after receiving their doctorates.
Education for service delivery
Students who seek a career in psychology as a helping profession are educated in a model that is committed to service delivery as a primary value. Graduates are less likely to feel that they have become second-class citizens by entering practice or by not living up to their program's espoused but often unrealistic goals. Practitioners may be more likely to retain connections with their programs and institutions in a way that will facilitate continuing education and enhance mutual respect.
Education relevant to social issues, diversity, and gender
Beyond the problems of individuals, the NCSPP model provides the focus and background for dealing with social issues, with both sensitivity to and education about diversity and gender. Though attention to these areas has certainly been an important part of NCSPP's vision, NCSPP recognizes that people in other disciplines and in other walks of life have also addressed these issues.
More attention to consultation and education and to supervision and management
Expanded curricular attention to consultation and education and to supervision and management reinforces that these activities are critical aspects of professional psychology practice. If it can be said that some of psychology was asleep, or at least napping, as the changes in health care of the past several years developed, then this training should help the graduate have the versatility and the flexibility to adjust to the future and take a leadership role in the challenges that lie ahead.
Attitudes critical to professional development
This model values attention to attitudes as a critical aspect of professional development and systematically articulates how the self of the student professional psychologist should be involved in reflective professional education and practice. Without substituting self for science, this reflexive model is consistent with, not divergent from, mainstream professional values: Education and practice involve the person of the professional psychologist, not only the narrow technical application of some scientific knowledge.
There necessarily is a much greater emphasis on professional psychology pedagogy.
Science as implemented in psychological practice
Over the long term, on the basis of concepts like the local clinical scientist and disciplined inquiry, the most significant impact of this model may be to focus attention on how science is actually-and could be more effectively-applied in psychological practice. Psychology is dichotomized along many dimensions: science versus practice, empirical versus clinical, American Psychological Society versus APA, cognitive-behavioral versus psychodynamic, clinical versus actuarial, scientist-practitioner versus professional, and so forth. Though some of these conceptual pairs do denote bona fide and important differences, the practice of psychology as characterized in the concepts and examples of the local clinical scientist may bring these groups together because they identify common, desirable processes for practice that are based on disciplined inquiry and are in a language that is familiar across subcultures. Though there are ways in which solutions to this problem seem straightforward, it is also evident that this problem is much more complex than meets the eye, and answers are not obvious, easy, or fully developed (e.g., D. R. Peterson, 1991 ; D. R. Peterson & R. L. Peterson, in press ; Schön, 1983 ; Trierweiler & Stricker, 1992 , in press).
In many ways, one could conclude that there is a great degree of overlap between the NCSPP model and the scientist-practitioner model. In best examples of each, there might be little disagreement, if there were agreement on which are the best examples. In less ideal cases, practitioner model advocates still might say that the Boulder model includes too much emphasis on the examination and production of career-irrelevant research whereas the scientist-practitioner advocates might say that the science disappears in the focus on clinical work. At bottom, though, there is a common interest; psychological science is an integrative, disciplined, reflexive way of thinking that helps all psychologists to work together to solve great and important human problems.
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The actual text of Standards for Education in Professional Psychology was produced by members and participants in NCSPP conferences over a span of 20 years. Words and phrases in the resolutions and in this summary were drawn from many individual papers, reports of meetings, formulations by subgroups, and deliberations in plenary sessions. Roger L. Peterson took primary responsibility for editing and integrating the Standards themselves ( R. L. Peterson, D. R. Peterson, Abrams, & Stricker, in press ). He also was primarily responsible for drafting this summary statement with advisory, editorial, and textual contributions from Donald R. Peterson, Jules C. Abrams, and George Stricker. A draft version of this article was circulated widely at and following the NCSPP midwinter conference in January 1995. The current version incorporates feedback and responds to questions that came from many quarters, both within and beyond NCSPP.
A major step in the growth of NCSPP occurred in 1985, when the organization was legally incorporated. At that time, membership in NCSPP became reserved for programs that were accredited by APA, with regionally accredited schools seeking APA accreditation designated as associate members, and developing programs granted observer status.
Donald R. Peterson