2022-23 University Bulletin 
    Dec 01, 2022  
2022-23 University Bulletin

Clinical Psychology, Ph.D.

NY State Program Code: 04165
HEGIS Code: 2003.00
CIP Code: 42.2801

(106.5 credits)


The Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology at The Derner School of Psychology at Adelphi University is fully accredited by the American Psychological Association and has been continuously accredited since 04/01/1957 (American Psychological Association, Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation, Commission on Accreditation, 750 First Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242; 202-336-5979; apaaccred@apa.org). Full information pertaining to the accreditation status of the Derner School of Psychology PhD Program at Adelphi University is available at the APA’s website, www.apa.org/ed/accreditation.

The Doctor of Philosophy in clinical psychology is a full-time program consisting of 106.5 credits. The doctoral program in clinical psychology prepares students who have a primary career goal of community and clinical practice. This may be combined with an academic or research career.  

The Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology offers students the opportunity to complete a Child and Family Concentration. The aim of the concentration is to train doctoral students in the delivery of psychological services, under close supervision, to children and their families in a variety of settings including medical centers, hospitals, and community clinics.  As well, the concentration will train doctoral students to produce research that can be applied to important clinical problems that pertain to children and their families.  The total number of credits for graduation is 106.5. All students in the Ph.D. program complete 106.5 credits. 

Required courses include:

Foundations of psychology including:

  • Biological and social bases of behavior
  • Developmental psychology
  • History and systems of psychology
  • Cognition and affect
  • Diversity and difference

Didactic and experiential training in:

  • Assessment and intervention
  • Relationship skills and cultural competence
  • Professional conduct and ethics
  • Supervision and consultation
  • Research methods and statistics

Extensive clinical field experience accompanies the academic core where students are placed in externships and in our Psychological Services Center accompanied by intensive supervision and case conferences. Completion of a dissertation and a one-year full-time internship is required for the degree. The clinical psychology program has been APA-accredited continuously since 1957. Students who complete the program are eligible to apply for a New York State psychology license.

Adelphi’s clinical psychology doctoral program uses the scholar-practitioner model for its philosophy of training. Accordingly, a clinical psychology program should adhere to the following general principles: the clinical psychologist should have a core of knowledge and training common to all psychologists; the program should be of at least four years’ duration, combining academic and clinical training, including an internship; preparation should be broadly directed toward both research and professional goals rather than simply technical skills; courses should be developed in sequence and be complementary rather than overlapping; the faculty should be neither over-dominated by the academic nor simply practical; continued contact throughout the training with clinical material is necessary, with the range extending from the normal to the abnormal population; a sense of professional responsibility and professional obligation must be instilled; cooperative work with persons of related disciplines is encouraged and sensitivity to the social implications of the psychologists’ activities is essential; and throughout, research issues are to be emphasized. Thus, the program should hold fast to those principles that suggest that the psychologist will be a professional, trained in a scientific tradition. These principles guide the core curricula of the doctoral program to be divided into the following major areas of instruction: foundational psychology, research design and analysis, diagnostic methods, clinical theory and practice, as well as professional ethics and cultural competence. Significant attention is given to the study of psychodynamics, including consideration of the empirical evidence and integration with cognitive-behavioral and humanistic theories of behavior and change.

Doctoral Curriculum

The doctoral curriculum includes foundational, research and clinical courses that meet the requirements of the New York State Department of Education and the American Psychological Association, as well as a structure which provides for content that continues the distinctly Derner tradition. At least two elective courses in CAF.  It is required that at least one elective should focus on intervention with CAF.  The total number of credits for graduation is 106.5. All students in the Ph.D. program complete 106.5 credits.

The Foundational Courses include the following 6 (18 credits): Human Development, Social Bases of Behavior, Biological Bases of Behavior, Cognition & Affect, History & Systems, Individual & Cultural Differences & Identity.

The Research Sequence (4 courses plus 8 practica, 36 credits) includes Research Methods (including Psychometric Theory), Graduate Statistics (including Lab), & Applied Research (including Intervention Evaluation). Students are also required to choose one of the following 2 electives: Advanced Quantitative Analyses (Multivariate Statistics) or Qualitative Methods. Practica include Psychological Research I-IV (cover research ethics), Dissertation Thesis I-III, and Ongoing Dissertation Supervision.

The Clinical Sequence: Assessment & Diagnosis (5 courses plus 4 practica, 21 credits) includes 3 core courses on psychopathology (9 credits): Adult Psychopathology I-II and Child Psychopathology; plus, the following 2 core courses: Diagnostic Testing I: Cognitive/LD (including Lab) and Diagnostic Testing II: Personality (including Lab). (There is also an elective Diagnostic Testing III: Neuropsychology.) Practica consist of Intake & Interviewing Seminar I-II (1.5 credits per, cover DSM & professional conduct) and Clinical Practice I-II: Diagnostic Practicum (1.5 credits per), which are conducted in small group supervision sections on campus (and cover consultation).

The Clinical Sequence: Conceptualization & Intervention (4 courses and 8 practica, 24 credits): includes the following core courses (15 credits): Theory & Practice I-II, Group or Therapy, and Cognitive Behavioral Therapies. Practica (12 credits) include Clinical Practice III-IV: Psychotherapy Practicum (1.5 credits per), Case Conference I-IV (1.5 credits per, cover professional development), and Concentration Case Seminar I-II (1.5 credits per, cover supervision). Additionally, externship requirements include an 8-hour placement in an inpatient setting during the 2nd year and a 16-hour placement in the 3rd year. Clinic training begins in the 1st year for intake evaluation and in 2nd year for psychotherapy, continuing through the 4th year.

The Clinical Sequence: Electives (6 courses, 18 credits) includes other offerings in psychopathology and practice, in addition to the previously mentioned elective in neuropsychological assessment (Diagnostic Testing III).

“Examining the empirical evidence,” “Understanding individual & cultural differences & identity,” and “Professional ethics & conduct” are themes considered and developed throughout the curriculum (see course syllabi).

Degree Completion Requirement

Four years full-time on campus, including an externship, plus one year full-time internship for clinical psychology. A second year research project and a doctoral level dissertation are required. A written comprehensive exam or an oral comprehensive exam is not required: Rather a portfolio review is used to determine basic competencies.  5-6 years is the average time to completion of the program.

First Year

Second Year

Third Year



Clinical Practica



Clinical Practica

Research Practicum

Fourth Year



● Elective III (Refer to Special Topics courses listed under 0503-820) Credits: 3.00

● Elective IV (Refer to Special Topics courses listed under 0503-820) Credits: 3.00

Clinical Practica

Dissertation proposal due



● Elective V (Refer to Special Topics courses listed under 0503-820)

● Elective VI (Refer to Special Topics courses listed under 0503-820)

Clinical Practica


Fifth Year

Sixth Year and beyond