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Pre-Doctoral Internship in Clinical Psychology

Specialized Options

These training experiences are of varying lengths and times and are to be arranged with staff. They will occur within the framework of a required rotation.

  1. State Forensic Service (This six month rotation may be available for selected interns in lieu of six months of the assessment rotation. This rotation will take place for one day a week)

    The State Forensic Service (SFS) is directly responsible to the Maine Commissioner of Health and Human Services, and functions in an evaluative and educative capacity for the state’s courts in criminal matters. The SFS is mandated to perform pretrial (e.g., pre-dispositional, competency to proceed, and criminal responsibility), pre-sentence, pre-release, and bindover evaluations. The SFS does not act as an advocate for either the defense or the prosecution. Rather, the service applies appropriate legal standards to relevant, well-informed psychological data and reports conclusions as the data indicate. The intern will be supervised by the Chief Forensic Psychologist and will have the opportunity to consult with the Director of Forensic Services.

    Assessment training opportunities at the SFS involve both comprehensive and more targeted evaluations for both juveniles and adults. Comprehensive evaluations may include cognitive, personality, structured interviewing, risk assessment, and extensive collateral contact components. Targeted evaluations typically involve addressing specific referral questions such as competency to proceed and criminal responsibility. These evaluations typically include mental status examinations, collateral contact information, and possible brief cognitive screening and may also involve the use of assessment tools designed specifically to address narrower legal areas.

    Required assessment instruments include intake assessment; MMPI-2; MMPI-A; a brief cognitive assessment tool (Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test or Wechsler Abbreviated Scales of Intelligence); and the MacArthur Competence Assessment Tool – Criminal Adjudication. Opportunities may exist to gain experience with the WAIS-III; the Multiphasic Sex Inventory – Second Edition; and numerous risk assessment instruments such as the Psychopathy Checklist – Revised; Violence Risk Appraisal Guide; Sex Offender Risk Appraisal Guide; Rapid Risk Assessment for Sex Offense Recidivism; HCR-20 – Risk Assessment for Violence – 2; Minnesota Sex Offender Screening Tool; Structured Assessment of Violence Risk in Youth; Estimated Risk of Adolescent Sex Offense Recidivism; Juvenile Sex Offender Assessment Protocol; and the Static 99. Interns may also gain experience with the Substance Abuse Subtle Screening Inventory; the Trauma Symptom Inventory; Structured Interview of Reported Symptoms; Validity Indicator Profile; Test of Memory Malingering; Adolescent Psychopathology Scale; Child Behavior Checklist; and Youth Self Report. Interns will be expected to integrate test data with other sources of data into reports that make recommendations germane to the referral question and that are useful to the court.

    An intern on the SFS rotation will have the opportunity to observe court proceedings where the Chief Forensic Psychologist or Director is called to testify as an expert witness. The intern may conduct literature reviews on assessment instruments considered for use in forensic evaluations or on other relevant forensic issues and communicate the results of these reviews to SFS staff and contract psychologists and psychiatrists. The intern may also gain experience in providing consultation on psychological concepts/instruments to area attorneys. Interns are encouraged to participate in two conferences offered each year by the SFS on topics important to practitioners of forensic psychology. They may engage in scholarly writing on various forensic psychology topics.
  1. ACT Team (may be available for selected interns)
    The Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) Team is a multi-disciplinary group of mental health professionals who work closely to provide a broad range of treatment, rehabilitation and support services to forensic clients with mental illness who are in the community. Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) uses clinical and rehabilitative staff to address symptom stability, relapse prevention, establishment of natural support networks to combat isolation, and the minimization of involvement with the criminal justice system. Case managers provide individual recovery education, coordinate services including client employment, and help to prepare court petitions. The ACT Team psychologist serves as a consultant to the team, participates in rounds and staff meetings, and also provides therapy and case management services for selected clients.

    Interns on this rotation will be the assigned case manager for one to two forensic clients in the community ACT program. Interns will be responsible for treatment planning and assessment, documentation of progress toward goals and the above case management responsibilities. Interns will become familiar with risk assessment and forensic treatment in the community setting. They will have the opportunity to assist in writing the team’s report to the court for increased levels of privileges and to observe court proceedings where psychologists are asked to testify.