Training for Geropsychology Supervision and Practice: Perspectives of Geropsychology Program Graduates

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Abstract

Addressing the geropsychology workforce shortage requires ongoing training of psychologists to develop geropsychology competencies, as well as expanding the number of geropsychology supervisors to train them. This study surveyed graduates of geropsychology doctoral and postdoctoral training programs regarding their current geropsychology practice and supervision activities and perceptions of their own training preparation for these activities. One hundred psychologists (87 who had completed all formal training and 13 current postdoctoral fellows) responded to an online survey. Of those who had completed geropsychology training, 82% reported currently engaging in clinical care, and 55% reported providing supervision; more than half of clinical and supervision activities focused on older adults. Participants reported generally strong quality of training to prepare them for providing geropsychology services; areas of more uneven preparation included family and group interventions and select consultation activities. Participants reported quite variable preparation for general supervision practice, and desire for more training and practice in supervisory roles. Geropsychology training programs may use feedback from graduates for ongoing program development, and professional geropsychology may wish to consider forums for enhancing geropsychology supervision skills.

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