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freeprozac

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An advisor mentioned a student who was initially very skeptical but was pleasantly surprised by the school, ended up on multiple publications, etc. Any students from the Alliant's California School of Professional Psychology, San Diego campus?
 

PsyNeuro37

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Their APA match rate worries me. It was average last year and below average every year before that. I’m sure it’s possible to be successful there, but I’d rather go to a program that doesn’t carry the professional school stigma.
 

Therapist4Chnge

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I would consider aggregated data over the past 6-10 years as opposed to anecdotal data from a student. That said, there is a stigma (in most cases well earned) associated with professional programs. Some are better than others, though your best bet is to try for university-based programs with a match rate of at least 80-90%.

During the worst years of the internship crunch, 75% was the bare minimum i’d consider acceptable, though now I think that % is low for the 5yr rate bc the overall match rate has trended up.
 
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freeprozac

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Their APA match rate worries me. It was average last year and below average every year before that. I’m sure it’s possible to be successful there, but I’d rather go to a program that doesn’t carry the professional school stigma.
It worried me too so I didn't apply there this year. But now I'm considering it for next year due to a lack of options...
 

psych.meout

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It worried me too so I didn't apply there this year. But now I'm considering it for next year due to a lack of options...
You shouldn't make decisions based on impatience and desperation. You posted another thread about being frustrated that you don't have any publications or posters from your research experience that would make you competitive for good quality, funded programs. The wise option (financially, quality of training, career trajectory, etc.) is to spend the next year or two getting research experience with some kind of productivity before reapplying. It's not a good plan to hastily apply to expensive, poor quality programs, because you want to get into grad school as soon as possible.
 
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erg923

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It worried me too so I didn't apply there this year. But now I'm considering it for next year due to a lack of options...

Nothin sexy about desperation, son.
 
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Justanothergrad

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It worried me too so I didn't apply there this year. But now I'm considering it for next year due to a lack of options...
It seems like you're ignoring a lot of better options (applying geographically broad to less competitive programs, using the time between now and applications to get yourself some products, etc) and acting as if you have none. It also seems like you have not been very planful in getting what you need to be successful in the way you want/expect yourself to be. I described some of this in your other thread about how to obtain products/outcomes from publication. Alliant is a junk program and is a waste of time, money, and effort.
 
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cara susanna

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I know some really awesome graduates from that program, but they also had some concerns about some of their peers. Essentially, the SDN "party line" about professional schools seems to hold true for this program: yes, the cream will rise to the top, but the concern is more about the average student's experiences and general quality control. The rock stars that I know were able to connect to other labs and training experiences that weren't par for the course at that program. That being said, I know some of the faculty and they are top notch. I still don't think it's worth the cost, though.
 
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DynamicDidactic

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Don't do it, man. Trust us, there are better options in life.
 
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freeprozac

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You shouldn't make decisions based on impatience and desperation. You posted another thread about being frustrated that you don't have any publications or posters from your research experience that would make you competitive for good quality, funded programs. The wise option (financially, quality of training, career trajectory, etc.) is to spend the next year or two getting research experience with some kind of productivity before reapplying. It's not a good plan to hastily apply to expensive, poor quality programs, because you want to get into grad school as soon as possible.
Fair point. I am the only RA on a new study rolling out and already talked to the PI about publishing part of the gathered data and doing a poster. I will also be looking for research coordinator type positions, I've been applying to those. How would you define a poor quality program? What is the most important stat to look at, aside from licensure rate?
 

psych.meout

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Fair point. I am the only RA on a new study rolling out and already talked to the PI about publishing part of the gathered data and doing a poster. I will also be looking for research coordinator type positions, I've been applying to those. How would you define a poor quality program? What is the most important stat to look at, aside from licensure rate?
Look at:

-APA-accredited internship match rate
-EPPP pass rate
-licensure rate
-cohort size (ideally <10)
-attrition (any higher than one student every couple years and I'd have serious questions for the program)
-funding (anything less than fully-funded is untenable, at least in my opinion)
-publication rates for students (if available) and faculty
-grant funding for faculty (if they don't have any funding, they're likely not doing as much research, which gives you fewer opportunities to get posters and pubs)
 
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smalltownpsych

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Fair point. I am the only RA on a new study rolling out and already talked to the PI about publishing part of the gathered data and doing a poster. I will also be looking for research coordinator type positions, I've been applying to those. How would you define a poor quality program? What is the most important stat to look at, aside from licensure rate?
Fully-funded. The rest of the stats are probably fine after that one. Since you are talking about some solid research experience, then you are doing what you need to do to get into a funded slot. Research pays the bills for the education.
 

LCat37

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I'm a PsyD student at Alliant going into an APA internship in the fall with a major rotation in neuropsychology. The biggest problem with Alliant for me is the money. Tuition is very high and practicum stipends are low or non existent. You will have very little time for a part time job while going to school as well. That being said, CSPP itself has a fairly good reputation and it's growing. We recently didn't require students to go to APA internships so a lot completed CAPPIC internships because they wanted to stay in San Diego and we're just interested in private practice. If you want a good experience you CAN have it. You need to pick a professor as you would in any other program for mentorship, and pick a good one. If you seek them out there are plenty of research project opportunities. I am doing one at UCSD (unpaid though). There are several opportunities for research experience with UCSD. You can private message me for more questions, I think I have a fairly honest and balanced view of both the PhD and PsyD programs.
 
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You need to pick a professor as you would in any other program for mentorship, and pick a good one.
Just to clarify, in most mentor-model programs, you're basically applying to work with a specific professor, who then selects you for admission. You don't get into the school first and then pick your advisor- it works the other way around.
 
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psych.meout

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Just to clarify, in most mentor-model programs, you're basically applying to work with a specific professor, who then selects you for admission. You don't get into the school first and then pick your advisor- it works the other way around.
Also, most mentor-model programs don't require you as a student to seek out research project opportunities on your own. You can work on research in your mentor's lab and/or expand your focus outside of their expertise by collaborating with other professionals, often utilizing the relationships already established and fostered by your program/mentor.
 

Mellowmish

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I'm a PsyD student at Alliant going into an APA internship in the fall with a major rotation in neuropsychology. The biggest problem with Alliant for me is the money. Tuition is very high and practicum stipends are low or non existent. You will have very little time for a part time job while going to school as well. That being said, CSPP itself has a fairly good reputation and it's growing. We recently didn't require students to go to APA internships so a lot completed CAPPIC internships because they wanted to stay in San Diego and we're just interested in private practice. If you want a good experience you CAN have it. You need to pick a professor as you would in any other program for mentorship, and pick a good one. If you seek them out there are plenty of research project opportunities. I am doing one at UCSD (unpaid though). There are several opportunities for research experience with UCSD. You can private message me for more questions, I think I have a fairly honest and balanced view of both the PhD and PsyD programs.

Would you say the 200k+ in debt would suffice for a young mother. Since its deemed impossible to stay employed while going to school
 

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Would you say the 200k+ in debt would suffice for a young mother. Since its deemed impossible to stay employed while going to school
For $200,000 in student loans at 6.6% interest rate, which is the current rate for federal direct unsubsidized loans, you can expect to pay $1,363 per month on an extended 25-year repayment plan. To comfortably afford repaying this loan, it is estimated that you need to make an annual salary of at least $163,553. The median annual salary for a psychologist in 2015 was $85,000. If you use income-based repayment plans, then the remaining loan amount that is forgiven at the end of the 25-year period is fully taxable, so you may owe IRS several thousands of dollars. Loans forgiven through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program are not reported as taxable income, but the program may not be around by the time you become eligible.
 
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Mellowmish

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For $200,000 in student loans at 6.6% interest rate, which is the current rate for federal direct unsubsidized loans, you can expect to pay $1,363 per month on an extended 25-year repayment plan. To comfortably afford repaying this loan, it is estimated that you need to make an annual salary of at least $163,553. The median annual salary for a psychologist in 2015 was $85,000. If you use income-based repayment plans, then the remaining loan amount that is forgiven at the end of the 25-year period is fully taxable, so you may owe IRS several thousands of dollars. Loans forgiven through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program are not reported as taxable income, but the program may not be around by the time you become eligible.

Yikes, thank you.
 
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cara susanna

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Edit: Whoops, didn't see that this was an old thread and I'd already posted. ;)
 
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Forsakensam

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It is my understanding that match rates will be better for standalone professional schools going forward because of policy change. Before 2017/2018 cycle, non-APA accredited schools could take part in the system. Since 2018, the rules have changed (see below). If you look at outcome measures, most standalone professional schools match rate has significantly increased for 2018/2019 school year.

In 2013, the APA Council of Representatives passed the "Resolution for Programs that Prepare Psychologists to Provide Health Services" (see the FAQs on the resolution here), which stated that doctoral programs that train health service psychologists should be accredited within five years of the resolution. In conjunction with this resolution, APPIC established a policy on Doctoral Program Associates, which states that, effective with the 2018 APPIC Match (i.e., the 2017-18 application cycle) for internship positions beginning in 2018 or after, doctoral programs must meet one of the following criteria:

  1. The doctoral program is accredited by an eligible accrediting organization (as defined here). Regional or state accreditation or designation by any other entity is insufficient to meet this criterion; or
  2. The doctoral program is not accredited but has been granted an initial accreditation site visit. Students enrolled in such programs may only participate in the next two Match / PMVS cycles immediately following the date that the program is notified of the site visit, and are only eligible for placement at APPIC-member internship programs during this period, unless and until the program achieves accreditation; or
  3. Is a re-specialization program in which the underlying doctoral program is accredited by an eligible accrediting organization or in the process of gaining such accreditation, as outlined in the preceding two paragraphs.
 

psych.meout

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It is my understanding that match rates will be better for standalone professional schools going forward because of policy change. Before 2017/2018 cycle, non-APA accredited schools could take part in the system. Since 2018, the rules have changed (see below). If you look at outcome measures, most standalone professional schools match rate has significantly increased for 2018/2019 school year.

In 2013, the APA Council of Representatives passed the "Resolution for Programs that Prepare Psychologists to Provide Health Services" (see the FAQs on the resolution here), which stated that doctoral programs that train health service psychologists should be accredited within five years of the resolution. In conjunction with this resolution, APPIC established a policy on Doctoral Program Associates, which states that, effective with the 2018 APPIC Match (i.e., the 2017-18 application cycle) for internship positions beginning in 2018 or after, doctoral programs must meet one of the following criteria:
Most students from non-accredited programs were already not competitive for APA-accredited internship sites, even compared to professional schools and diploma mills, so barring them from the match really wouldn't change things much.

Yes, some professional schools' match rates have increased, but it's important to not attribute it to programmatic changes or improvements to these programs. Instead, it's more likely a function of two phenomena:

1. significantly increased number of accredited internship sites, which decreases the competition.
2. increased use of captive internship sites by professional schools and other poor quality programs to game the internship match statistics, specifically so that they don't have to make changes to their programs (e.g., reducing cohort sizes, exercising more discernment in selecting applicants, improving the quality of didactic and experiential training, increasing research milestone requirements)
 
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Forsakensam

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Most students from non-accredited programs were already not competitive for APA-accredited internship sites, even compared to professional schools and diploma mills, so barring them from the match really wouldn't change things much.

Yes, some professional schools' match rates have increased, but it's important to not attribute it to programmatic changes or improvements to these programs. Instead, it's more likely a function of two phenomena:

1. significantly increased number of accredited internship sites, which decreases the competition.
2. increased use of captive internship sites by professional schools and other poor quality programs to game the internship match statistics, specifically so that they don't have to make changes to their programs (e.g., reducing cohort sizes, exercising more discernment in selecting applicants, improving the quality of didactic and experiential training, increasing research milestone requirements)

Can you shed light on captive internship? I am not familiar with the phrase.
 

psych.meout

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Can you shed light on captive internship? I am not familiar with the phrase.
It means that a doctoral program established its own APA-accredited internship site (often a consortium of clinics geographically located around the institution) that only accepts its own students (i.e., captive"). Doing this allows them to inflate their internship match rate, because they have a guaranteed site for some or all of their students. These students don't have to compete against students from other programs and are basically guaranteed to have an internship regardless of their own readiness and qualifications to be at the internship level.

Normally, the internship match rate is a good metric for the quality of the program and the students it accepts and trains. Using a captive site means that it looks like the program has improved, but all it's really done is game the system to anyone not savvy enough to realize what is going on. They're removing one of the few incentives to improve the program and not admit any applicant with a pulse. It also allows people who aren't and may not ever be ready to be a psychologist to get one step closer to licensure by removing the program and internship as safeguards from harming the public.
 
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Forsakensam

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It means that a doctoral program established its own APA-accredited internship site (often a consortium of clinics geographically located around the institution) that only accepts its own students (i.e., captive"). Doing this allows them to inflate their internship match rate, because they have a guaranteed site for some or all of their students. These students don't have to compete against students from other programs and are basically guaranteed to have an internship regardless of their own readiness and qualifications to be at the internship level.

Normally, the internship match rate is a good metric for the quality of the program and the students it accepts and trains. Using a captive site means that it looks like the program has improved, but all it's really done is game the system to anyone not savvy enough to realize what is going on. They're removing one of the few incentives to improve the program and not admit any applicant with a pulse. It also allows people who aren't and may not ever be ready to be a psychologist to get one step closer to licensure by removing the program and internship as safeguards from harming the public.

Thank for taking the time to explain the concept to me.
 

msc545

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If anyone knows, what school are using captive internship sites?
 

foreverbull

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It means that a doctoral program established its own APA-accredited internship site (often a consortium of clinics geographically located around the institution) that only accepts its own students (i.e., captive"). Doing this allows them to inflate their internship match rate, because they have a guaranteed site for some or all of their students. These students don't have to compete against students from other programs and are basically guaranteed to have an internship regardless of their own readiness and qualifications to be at the internship level.

Normally, the internship match rate is a good metric for the quality of the program and the students it accepts and trains. Using a captive site means that it looks like the program has improved, but all it's really done is game the system to anyone not savvy enough to realize what is going on. They're removing one of the few incentives to improve the program and not admit any applicant with a pulse. It also allows people who aren't and may not ever be ready to be a psychologist to get one step closer to licensure by removing the program and internship as safeguards from harming the public.

I was about to ask the same thing, so thanks for the info. My next question would be why does APA accept this as legitimate and equal to other sites if only a program’s own students can possibly get in and not anyone from across the country? This seems to be very blatant manipulation of the system.
 
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MiniLop

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I was about to ask the same thing, so thanks for the info. My next question would be why does APA accept this as legitimate and equal to other sites if only a program’s own students can possibly get in and not anyone from across the country? This seems to be very blatant manipulation of the system.

The APA giving a pass to questionable training practices? That's a shocker.
 
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PsyDuck90

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I was about to ask the same thing, so thanks for the info. My next question would be why does APA accept this as legitimate and equal to other sites if only a program’s own students can possibly get in and not anyone from across the country? This seems to be very blatant manipulation of the system.

I believe they open up phase 2 spots to anyone, so that may be why it's passable, since any positions available later on are open to everyone?
 

psych.meout

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I believe they open up phase 2 spots to anyone, so that may be why it's passable, since any positions available later on are open to everyone?
That's been my understanding as well, though I've not seen anything official about this. Others have claimed that they are officially open to anyone to get acceptance from the APA, but in practice only accept students from that particular program, making them de facto captive internships.
 

msc545

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Not sure,. but I think that the APA evaluates Internship sites on the basis of a lot of things that supposedly relate to the quality of supervision, population served, etc., so if a site meets their criteria even though it only accepts students from a school connected to it, that would still count as an APA post-doc. I might be wrong about all of this, and additionally, I have no faith in the APA being honest about much of anything.
 
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