Texas Tech University

Clinical Experience

Master's Practicum and Internship

Texas Tech University's Counselor Education Program requires all candidates for the master's degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling to complete a supervised counseling practicum and internship experience. At the master's level, the requirement is a supervised three (3) semester sequence of practicum and internship. Eligibility for enrollment in practicum and internship classes requires admission to the Counselor Education program and completion of all prerequisites. Course prerequisites are listed in the Admitted Student Handbook

The first semester begins with a 100 hour practicum (EPCE 5360) in which practicum students are expected to gain initial experiential familiarity with counseling responsibilities, primarily by way of observation and counseling practice, guided learning of site practices and procedures, and guided participation in site activities. EPCE 5360 requires a minimum of 100 hours in which 40 hours consists of supervised direct client contact and 60 hours consists of indirect services.

The second semester constitutes the first of the two internship classes. EPCE 5094 (Internship) requires 300 hours of supervised counseling and related responsibilities with clients. In the Internship courses, the student must complete 120 hours of direct client contact and 180 hours of indirect contact. The third semester is a continuation of the counseling internship and involves an additional 300 hours of supervised counseling and related activities.

Students who wish to complete a dual major in both Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling must complete two (2) practicum courses – one each in a School site and in a Clinical Mental Health site – and four (4) internship courses – two in School sites and two in Clinical Mental Health sites. Thus, the student will have completed 300 hours in School and 300 hours in Clinical Mental Health.

If you need help locating a practicum or internship site or if you have a site that you are not sure is acceptable, contact Dr. Bret Hendricks, Clinical Coordinator at 806-834-1744 or by email at bret.hendricks@ttu.edu.

A sample syllabus from EPCE 5094 (Internship) is available for you to see the requirements for the clinical courses.

The master's Field Handbooks should be downloaded the semester before you begin practicum. The information in the Handbooks will help you in finding placements and in knowing what is expected of you and your supervisor during the practicum and internship. The forms that you will need for both practicum and internship are in the Field Handbooks.

Doctoral Practicum and Internship

Doctoral students in the Counselor Education program must complete a Clinical rotation of four (4) courses. These courses are Practicum (EPCE 6360), Internship I & II (EPCE 6094), and Counselor Supervision (EPCE 6366). Each of these courses have specific criteria and requirements that aid doctoral students in the development of advanced clinical skills.

EPCE 6360, Advanced Practicum in Counseling, is a course designed to help students with the initial implementation of advanced counseling skills. It requires a minimum 100 hours, of which 40 hours is direct counseling service and 60 hours is indirect client contact, at an approved counseling site under supervision of a licensed, doctoral-level counselor (or a doctoral-level supervisor who is licensed in psychology, clinical social work, marriage and family, or an MD). Students engaged in counseling and accruing counseling hours must meet with their site supervisor for a minimum of one (1) hour weekly. Students who fail to perform adequately in EPCE 6360 may be required to enroll for an additional semester to improve their counseling performance.

EPCE 6094, Doctoral Internship in Counseling, is a two semester course that requires a total of 600 hours (300 hours/semester) in the practice of counseling, consultation, supervision, teaching, research and leadership. Students may not enroll in more than three (3) hours of internship during the semester. Of the 600 hours, a minimum of 240 hours must be direct service to counseling clients. Direct counseling service is defined as face-to-face service in counseling, teaching, supervision, consultation, research and leadership.

  1. Counseling. The content area includes clinical or psychoeducational experiences gained by counseling individuals and/or groups at a designated counseling site. An intern accruing counseling hours must be supervised by a PhD level counselor for a minimum of one (1) hour each week. An intern serving as a group leader of master's degree counseling students will be under the supervision of the counselor education faculty member teaching the group counseling class. (Minimum of 50 direct hours)
  2. Supervision. This content area includes supervision of students enrolled in masters level practicum or internship. Interns will work under the supervision of the counselor education faculty member who is supervising the practicum or internship class. (Minimum of 50 direct hours)
  3. Teaching. This content area includes serving as an assistant to a full time counseling faculty member in teaching a course in counseling. During this experience, the faculty member serves as the doctoral student's supervisor. (Minimum of 50 direct hours)
  4. Consultation. This content area includes providing consultation in a clinical setting to other helping professionals or family members of clients or providing consultation to organizations (e.g., schools and agencies) under the supervision of a counselor education faculty member. (Minimum of 25 direct hours)
  5. Research. This content area includes supervised participation in a faculty research project under the supervision of a counselor education faculty member. The research might include gathering data needed for preparation of a grant application, writing a conference proposal (if accepted presentation of research at conference), or writing an article for publication. (Minimum of 25 hours)
  6. Leadership. This content area includes participation in professional activities (e.g., involvement in professional associations under the auspice of ACA or TCA or counselor education program activities) under the supervision of a counselor education faculty member. (Minimum of 10 hours)

The total for the direct service hours as listed in items 1-6 above is 210 hours. The 30 hours of direct service not explicitly listed above may come from any combination of hours in items 1-6. The remaining 360 hours of the required 600 hours may be obtained in direct or indirect service from the areas listed above.

Students unable to complete the required 600 hours of internship in two semesters may enroll in internship for two (2) semester hours) during three (3) semesters and complete 200 hours of internship each semester. Students who fail to perform adequately in internship may be required to take an additional semester (or more) to achieve mastery in the counseling areas.

EPCE 6366, Advanced Supervision in Counselor Education, is a course designed to help students learn and implement advanced supervision theory and skills into the practice of counseling. Students will learn the principles, processes, and procedures associated with counselor supervision. In addition, students will learn how to implement supervision theory into practice. Students will supervise master's-level counseling students enrolled in EPCE courses (Techniques I and II, Group, Practicum, and Internship) for a minimum of 20 hours/semester under the supervision and direction of an EPCE faculty member.

If you need help locating a practicum or internship site or if you have a site that you are not sure is acceptable, contact Dr. Bret Hendricks, Clinical Coordinator at 806-834-1744 or by email at bret.hendricks@ttu.edu.

A sample syllabus from EPCE 6094 (Doctoral Internship) is available for you to see the requirements for the clinical courses.

The PhD Field Handbook should be downloaded the semester before you begin practicum. The information in the Handbook will help you in finding placements and in knowing what is expected of you and your supervisor during the practicum and internship. The forms that you will need for both practicum and internship are in the Field Handbook.

Insurance

You must have liability insurance before you are permitted to enroll in the techniques courses, practicum, or internship. Some counseling associations offer insurance with student memberships, such as ACA and TCA. You may also contact the Health Providers Service Organization (HPSO) at 800-982-9491.

Supervisor Information

Each semester, we ask that our students' supervisors view a set of videos describing supervision expectations and resources. You may view these short videos by clicking on the following link:

Supervision Training Videos

After viewing the videos, please send a brief email to Dr. Gould (lj.gould@ttu.edu) saying that you have viewed the supervision training videos.