Purpose: The core purpose of the MCG-Charlie Norwood VAMC Internship is to produce professional
and racially/ethnically diverse psychologists who are well prepared for and seek out
careers that are directed toward integrated approaches to health care issues, who
have experience with and interest in serving in mental health and medically underserved
areas, who are well prepared to stay abreast if not lead the way in the development
of evidence-based practices in the field of mental health care, and who aspire to
cultural competence in their practice. The Child/Family Track endeavors to provide
additional emphasis training in preparing professional psychologists to provide services
for children and their families who represent diverse populations in regard to socioeconomic,
cultural, racial and ethnic characteristics.
- Medical College of Georgia/Augusta University Hospital and Clinics
- Children’s Hospital of Georgia
- Healthy Grandparents Project of Augusta
Emphasis Track Faculty:
- Alex Mabe, PhD, Director
- Bernard Davidson, PhD
- Catherine Davis, PhD
- Chris Drescher, PhD
- Richard Camino, MD
- Sandra Sexson, MD
Emphasis Goals/Objectives of the Child/Family Track:
- To train Interns to function effectively in Child Psychiatry and Pediatric interdisciplinary
- To train Interns in consultation and psychological assessment strategies in child
psychiatry and pediatric contexts to include developing understandings of the key
patient, family, and system issues. For Interns obtaining emphasis training in child/family
psychology, proficiency in the following assessment instruments must be demonstrated:
One of the following Intellectual Assessment Instruments:
- WISC-V or WPPSI-III or DAS-II
One of the following Academic Achievement Instruments:
One of the following Broadband Symptom/Personality Assessment Instruments:
Screening/Treatment Progress Monitoring Instruments
Specific instrument proficiencies will be determine by the specific site of training
within the Child and Family Track.
- To develop a working knowledge of common child psychiatric and pediatric illnesses
and their associated psychosocial issues.
- To train Interns to become proficient in the assessment of a broad range of patient
populations in child psychiatry and pediatric settings.
- To train Interns to become proficient in the implementation of interventions with
a broad range of patient populations in child psychiatry and pediatric settings. Emphasis
will be placed on family therapy, parenting training, and psychoeducational treatment
approaches to child and adolescent problems.
- To train Interns to provide mental health education involving child-related areas
for consumer and providers in mental health and underserved areas.
Measurable Outcomes for Emphasis Training in the Child/Family Track:
- Interns will work comfortably and professionally as a member of a child psychiatry
service program. This will be determined by ratings of the rotational supervisors.
- Interns will work comfortably and professionally as a consultant to an interdisciplinary
pediatric service. This liaison project must result in a written product that will
increase the opportunities for a sustained benefit from the liaison activity. The
quality of the liaison performance will be determined by ratings of the rotational
- Interns will demonstrate proficiency in consultation strategies by completing a minimum
of ten consultations in pediatric settings. The quality of the consultations will
be judged by the responsible clinical supervisor on the basis of the accuracy of the
consultation and the effectiveness of communication with the consultee.
Interns will demonstrate proficiency in psychological assessments by demonstrating
- Cognitive and Personality Assessment: Proficiency will be demonstrated by the completion
of a minimum of 4 cognitive and/or personality assessment batteries resulting in an integrated psychological assessment report requiring only minimal
corrections by the clinical supervisors. In these integrated reports, the Intern must
provide pertinent data for the purpose of a clear formulation of the case, demonstrates
a thorough conceptualization of the case and the data obtained, and must provide treatment
recommendations that effectively follow from the integration of the data and empirical
support for relevant interventions.
- Interns will demonstrate knowledge of common child psychiatric and pediatric illnesses
and their associated psychosocial issues as determined by the quality of their assessments,
consultations, and associated treatment recommendations.
- Interns must be rated as “competent to implement interventions independently with
supervision/review” in at least four child psychiatric/pediatric disease-related categories
by the completion of the internship.
- Interns will successfully participate in the Healthy Grandparents Project of Augusta
which is a program supported by the Georgia Department of Human Resources Safe and
Stable Families Program and the AU School of Nursing.
Educational Implementation Plan: The Child/Family Track makes use of the following educational components in efforts
to achieve the identified Goals/Objectives of this emphasis track:
- For Child/Family Track Interns, the preponderance of the clinical education experience
throughout the year will be completed in the MCG/AU Outpatient Psychiatry Clinic and
the Children’s Hospital of Georgia providing assessment and treatment services through
the Child, Adolescent, and Family Psychiatry Program. Activities in this program will
include traditional outpatient intakes, assessments, and interventions. Interns will
participate once each month in the Child Psychiatry Interdisciplinary Case Consultation
meeting. This consultation meeting provides an opportunity for psychology and psychiatry
trainees to present assessment/treatment cases from a biopsychosocial perspective
and obtain supervision from an interdisciplinary team consisting of health care professionals
representing education, nursing, psychiatry, psychology, and social work. The Wednesday
Track day provides a continuity of training experiences in child and family throughout
the year that includes consultation services to the Children’s Hospital of Georgia,
and outpatient care services. In addition, a 4-month Track Rotation is provided that
focuses on child and family training experiences in a more intense and diversified
way for that training period.
- The Intern will participate in the Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Program for one 8-session cycle providing and supervising peer friendship skills training
for children ages 7-13 with ADHD. The Intern may also elect to observe and participate
in one cycle of the parent training portion of this program.
- The Intern will participate and co-lead the DBT Skills training for adolescents and
their parents throughout the training year. This program is based on the Dialectical
Behavior Therapy model and includes the following skills: a. Mindfulness – living
in the present & improving attention; b. Distress tolerance – tolerating difficult
situations & emotions; c. Parent-adolescent interaction – balancing discipline & flexibility;
d. Emotion regulation – reducing emotional vulnerability & reactivity; e. Interpersonal
effectiveness - building & maintaining positive relationships.
- Child/Family Track Interns will participate in the Healthy Grandparents Project of
Augusta which is a program supported by the Georgia Department of Human Resources
Safe and Stable Families Program and the AU School of Nursing. This program promotes
health and wellness in grandparent-headed families, assists families to access available
resources, and facilitates maintaining the children in a stable home. The Intern
will provide consultation for the project staff and psychoeducational interventions
for grandparents in this program based on their identified needs.
- Child/Family Track Interns will be assigned to various Child Psychiatry Consultation-Liaison
Services throughout the year. Specifically, the Intern will be on-call for consultation
to the pediatric inpatient services at the Children’s Hospital of Georgia throughout
the year and the Intern will participate in a liaison activity with one of the pediatric
specialty outpatient clinics for a minimum of 4 months.
- For research activities, Child/Family Track Interns are provided the opportunity to
devote a significant portion of their research efforts to working with the Georgia
Prevention Institute in their on-going child research activities.