Dec 9, 2009
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T4C
Hello... I was reviewing the ABPP certification application and it is really long and a bit intimidating. I was wondering if you had any suggestions on how to tackle the process to make it less daunting. The sample tapes also are somewhat confusing (I didn't really read in depth) since I'm trying to understand if we test a patient as we tape them throughout the whole evaluation.... Any thoughts regarding the app process would be appreciated :rolleyes:
 

Therapist4Chnge

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MOD NOTE: I split this out from another thread because I thought it was important to talk about boarding in more depth. -t4c

I don't have information in front of me at the moment, but I'm hoping to get the Powerpoint slides from the presentation I attended last month (given by ABPP Board members). If I can get that info, it'd be a lot easier to explain everything.

For now, I'll give you my 2 cents....

I'm not sure where you are in your training, but I STRONGLY recommend looking at the Early Application ($25) if you are eligible (pre-licensure only). They also have a "Senior" option for people 15+ years post-licensure, which can also be found at the link above.

The application process involves 2 sets of review (General) and (Specific), and will realistically take 1.5-2.0 years. It sounds like a long time, but there is a lot of back and forth and "review" time. The case studies take the most time, though sometimes it can take awhile to organize the oral defense, etc.

The "General" review is mostly about checking credentials and making sure you meet the regular standards. The main ABPP office handles these things. If you already are on file with the National Register or CPQ, this part should be pretty easy. Expect at least a couple of calls to follow-up on things, as they will be thorough.

The "Specific" review can vary by speciality. Generally there is a required written/case studies section and a required oral section. Neuro requires a written exam in addition to the case studies, though most other specialities do not have an exam.

Once you are cleared by the ABPP office, you are elligible to start your application for the specific boarding. The specific board evaluation is meant to address a set of specific competency goals, in addition to a certain number of other related goals. Through the case study submissions and oral defense you will cover all of the areas. In rehab, you have to submit 2 case studies (max 50 pages) for review, though this may vary by specific board. Any areas you do not cover in your case studies will be covered in your oral defense.

Typically a person submits the case studies and then they get kicked back with feedback, and then you submit again. You either get a pass or not pass, as there is no "grade" associated with this section. Your question about the tapes come in here. There is an option to submit tapes, but it seems that most people just submit supportive documents about the case (case notes, etc). This may be different for other boards, but at least for rehab and neuro, a tape is not required.

There are mentors available in certain specialities (rehab started it, and I think neuro may offer it now too), and they help you with your case studies. It is strongly recommended that you select a mentor....ABPP will provide you with a list. They also recommend consulting other ABPP people during the process. Anyone you consult will not be elligible to be on your review board, though it isn't always a bad thing to have people inelligible for your review board.

If you get through the case study section (a good % of people fail their first time), then you go on to the oral defense. The oral defense involves 2 main areas: your case studies and also some additional vignettes. You'll be questioned about your case studies, and then you'll tackle the vignettes. The vignettes are divided by topic (so you can't just pick all of 1 type of case), and you'll be given time to review them that day, and then be questions about case conceptualization, treatment, etc. Once you do this, then the board deliberates on your application as a whole.

1. It is long and purposefully thorough....but for good reason. The ABPP people really seem willing to work with people, but they will not bend on their requirements, so it will require a commit of time and effort to get through.

2. Consultation with people who have gone through the process can be very helpful. One of my mentors has helped me understand the process, and it has been invaluable because I have a much better idea of what I am dealing with and how to best approach the process.

3. Don't expect to get through everything the first time. It often takes people multiple times to get through, and a lot of that depends on case selection and being able to provide what they want. Mentorship can help, but even great applicants can take multiple attempts. Failure during the case studies or oral mean you will have to do it again, you can't just re-defend on your oral section...because much of it relates to your case studies.
 
Dec 9, 2009
61
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Florida
Status
Psychology Student
Thank you so much for breaking it down T4C! That was really helpful and encouraging since I was wondering how anyone could complete the process in less that a year. I am clinical and will be starting an APA approved internship at a hospital. I can't imagine how much harder the neuro one must be.... The certification seems definitely worth pursuing and I will make it a long term goal! Other than what you mentioned, do you suggest getting involved in any other organizations (other than APA, my state association)??? I attend continuing education workshops and seminars regularly and I am wondering what else I can do meanwhile to improve my chances and "beef up" my C.V? Thank you so much for your time and suggestions!! :p
 

Therapist4Chnge

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Thank you so much for breaking it down T4C! That was really helpful and encouraging since I was wondering how anyone could complete the process in less that a year. I am clinical and will be starting an APA approved internship at a hospital. I can't imagine how much harder the neuro one must be.... The certification seems definitely worth pursuing and I will make it a long term goal! Other than what you mentioned, do you suggest getting involved in any other organizations (other than APA, my state association)??? I attend continuing education workshops and seminars regularly and I am wondering what else I can do meanwhile to improve my chances and "beef up" my C.V? Thank you so much for your time and suggestions!! :p
Div 40 has a listserv and other information that may be worth reading. I actually don't belong to it (I should probably fix that), though I am part of Div 22, which is rehabilitation psychology. The best thing you can do for yourself is be an active member of the community. Read the journals, attend the conferences, research/publish in the area, etc. More training is almost always helpful, and stay up to date on the issues/challenges facing the field.