Inside the World of Corrections Practica: Findings From a National Survey

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Correctional settings host numerous practicum students and provide them with a variety of training experiences. Yet data on the core setting, clinical, and supervisory features of this training remain sparse and the topic warrants further exploration. The present study addresses this need by presenting findings on setting, clinical, and supervisory features drawn from interviews with supervisors of 52 unique corrections practicum where doctoral psychology students are trained. Results on setting features indicate that training opportunities are most frequently offered at the high security level settings and that correctional facilities communicate regularly with graduate programs whose students are trained at the site. Clinical feature findings include intervention as the most frequent focus of clinical work, followed by assessment and a strong emphasis on consultative experiences. The majority of supervisors reported that having students on site to receive training and deliver services was helpful to department morale and workload, and beneficial to the inmates served. Implications for education, training, and development of the correctional mental health workforce are offered based on these findings.

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