Psychology Practicum

All about the psychology practicum

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) will resume the psychology practicum program for the 2024-25 training year. We paused for the 2023-24 training year due to staff shortages. That time allowed us to refocus and re-evaluate our quality training experience. We look forward to reinvigorating our training focus and are confident that the changes we’ve made have created a richer training experience for our psychology practicum students.   

Who can apply

CAPS accepts a limited number of practicum students each year through their doctoral programs. Practicum clinicians are expected to have completed at least two semesters of supervised doctoral-level clinical or counseling practicums before they arrive at CAPS. 

Due to dual role conflicts, anyone who has accessed IU CAPS/SACS services beyond initial consultation/case management is not eligible for training opportunities at CAPS. CAPS staff support and appreciate trainees engaging in their own counseling/therapy work, and we will be pleased to make referrals for students who are interested in such opportunities.  

Learn how to apply

Psychology practicum responsibilities

Although non-IU students may apply and be offered a position, the psychology practicum is structured to meet the guidelines of the Counseling Psychology Department in the School of Education. The practicum is approximately 16 weeks each semester (in addition to any supervision provided by students’ home departments) and follows the IU academic schedule. The week before the fall semester begins, practicum students participate in mandatory orientation activities.  

CAPS provides various training activities and opportunities for our practicum students. Our program is designed to allow trainees to learn and develop knowledge, skills, awareness, and practical experiences related to professional work at a university counseling center. We incorporate individual and group supervision with case consultation, clinical team meetings with interdisciplinary staff, and clinical experiences into weekly training activities. We will also be adding didactic training seminars and outreach opportunities into this upcoming training year.  

Each trainee is expected to be on-site at CAPS for a minimum of 16 hours per week during regular office hours (M-F from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) Schedules are flexible, except for Friday, when trainees are required to be present for group supervision and didactic seminars. Additionally, it is expected as part of the training experience for practicum students to attend their assigned multidisciplinary clinical team meeting. Practicum students are welcome to attend Tuesday morning staff meetings, but it is not a requirement. Practicum students need to be aware that staff meetings are not considered clinical and therefore attendance could impact accrual of direct service hours.  

Outreach is an important and valuable aspect of CAPS. While it is not expected that practicum students participate in outreach programs, if students would like to make that part of their training experience, it can be incorporated through presentations and tabling events. 

The approximate breakdown of a typical week for trainees
Time (hours)Training Experiences
3Intake Sessions
6–8Follow-up Availability
1.5Individual Supervision
1.5Group Supervision
3Case Management
1Multidisciplinary Clinical Teams
TBDGroup counseling
TBDDidactic seminars (may replace some time in group supervision)

If you have no previous group experience, we invite you to first observe a process-oriented group therapy experience. If that interests you, talk to the practicum coordinator and the group coordinator. Options to co-facilitate a support group or a skills group can also be explored. 


IU’s commitment to making IU an environment in which students could feel safe and at home, regardless of race, age, religion, ability, gender, sexual orientation, or socioeconomic status dates back to 1982, with the establishment of The Commission on Multicultural Understanding. The post of The Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Multicultural Affairs was founded as part of a recommitment of the university to selection, recruitment, retention, and graduation of Latino, African American, Native American, and other underrepresented students. CAPS and the training program,likewise,are committed to supporting these goals of the university.

By establishing and developing Let’s Talk and embedded counseling at the cultural centers on campus and other departments that support the diverse student body, CAPS builds bridges to traditionally underserved populations.

Approximately 26% of students on the Bloomington campus identify as African American, Native American Indian, Asian, Pacific Islander, or Hispanic/Latino. Among our CAPS clientele, nearly 38% identify as members of these populations. Approximately 10% of Bloomington students are from outside the United States. Approximately 5% of CAPS clients are international students.

How to apply

CAPS accepts up to three psychology practicum students per year. CAPS begins its search for advanced practicum clinicians in January, with applications being due at the end of the month. Interviews will be conducted in February, with decisions made and offers extended in March. Talk to your program’s Director of Training for more information.