1. Time to Completion
Time to completion must be presented in two ways:
· First, programs must provide the mean and the median number of years that students have taken to complete the program from the time of first matriculation. These data should be provided for all graduates in the past seven (7) years.
· Second, the program should provide the percentage of students completing the program in fewer than five years, five years, six years, seven years, and more than seven years. Where applicable, these measures should be provided separately for students who began the program as bachelor-level graduates and those who began with advanced standing (e.g., after having completed a separate master's program in psychology).
The Radford Psy.D. Program enrolled its first cohort of students in Fall 2008. The program only accepts students who already have a Master’s degree. Thus, currently we have no graduates so we cannot provide a mean or median time to completion. Our goal is for students to complete their coursework, dissertation, and internship – and therefore graduate – within 4 years.
2. Program Costs
Programs are expected to make available the total costs per student for the current first year cohort. This information should include full-time student tuition, tuition per credit hour for part-time students, and any fees or costs required of students beyond tuition costs. For example, if a program requires students to travel to attend a mandatory component of the program, the estimated costs of this travel should be included as well. Programs may also provide information regarding current adjustments to tuition including, but not limited to: financial aid, grants, loans, tuition remission, assistantships, and fellowships. Even if program cost information is provided elsewhere on another university or other site, it must be provided in the doctoral program’s materials as well.
We first list the costs and then explain how the Radford program will offset these costs. The planned curriculum requires students to take 1-13 credits per semester, depending on the particular term. According to the 2011-2012 Graduate Student Handbook (p. 29), tuition and fees for in-state students taking 1-11 hours are $378/credit hour while tuition and fees for out-of-state students are $740/credit hour; for 12-14 hours tuition and fees are $4537 per semester for in-state students and $8881 for out-of-state students.
Based on this information and the proposed curriculum we have developed, we offer the following projected tuition and fee costs for the program:
Obviously, if tuition and fee costs go up then the expenses will go up. Also, if students are able to waive doctoral courses because of courses taken as part of their Master’s program and do not take electives to fill in the time when those courses would have met, the costs would go down accordingly.
In terms of adjusting for these costs, Radford offers various forms of financial aid. Of most relevance and importance to prospective Psy.D. applicants, pending adequate funding from the Commonwealth, the University has committed to paying Psy.D. students’ tuition (for both in-state and out-of-state students in the first year and for those who qualify for in-state tuition in their second and third years) and offering an assistantship for qualified students throughout the three years of coursework, provided the students remain in good standing. The 20-hour assistantship for 2011-2012 is $13,800; the amount in subsequent years will depend on funding from the Commonwealth. Thus, in 2012-2013 (and we anticipate in future years), instead of paying for school, students will not have to pay tuition and instead will be paid while taking courses.
Assistantship opportunities vary based on the year in the program. First year students usually are assigned to work on technology projects and to be “flex agents” -- available for the entire Department of Psychology, often helping with various tasks such as research; second year students can continue in the same role as in the first year, can teach undergraduate courses (when available), or may be assigned to relevant offices outside the Psychology Department (pending faculty approval); third year students have the same options as second years as well as having the opportunity to work in the Department of Psychology’s Center for Assessment and Psychological Services.
Programs are expected to provide data on students’ success in obtaining internships. The program is required to report for each of the past seven (7) years:
NOTE: In calculating the above percentages, the program must base these on the total number of students who sought or who applied for internship in each year.
As we noted above, our first cohort of students entered in Fall 2008, so the members of this first cohort applied this year. We are pleased that all 3 who applied were matched in the first round of the process. Two of the three sites are currently APA-accredited and the third is in the process of submitting material so we hope they will be accredited before the end of the internship year. The sites are listed below:
We have collaborated with other groups to establish an internship consortium that has positions reserved for RU students (see the Practicum/Internship Page). So, we anticipate that at least 2 students per year will be guaranteed placements – 1 at the RU Student Counseling Services and 1 at Stone Mountain Health Services (providing integrated care at a Federally Qualified Health Center in far Southwest Virginia). We anticipate that the consortium will be applying for APPIC membership in the Spring of 2012.
Programs must report the number and percentage of students who have failed to complete the program once enrolled. These data should be calculated for each entering cohort by dividing the number of students in that cohort who have left the program for any reason by the total number of students initially enrolled in that same cohort. These data should be provided by cohort for all students who have left the program in the last seven (7) years or for all students who have left since the program became initially accredited, whichever time period is shorter. Programs are required to present this information in the following format:
We had one student in our original cohort who decided that her career plans had changed and that a doctorate in counseling psychology was no longer what she wanted to do. In her withdrawal letter she stated that her decision was not reflective of the program’s quality but rather her own path in life.
Our goal is to provide thorough information and “informed consent” to students regarding the Psy.D. Program foci, work-load, and expectations. We also plan to very carefully screen applicants and only offer admission to students who we believe are a good fit for the Program and who we believe have the background necessary to succeed at Radford and as a Counseling Psychologist. Thus, we hope that the attrition rate will be low.
Reporting of program licensure data is an expectation of the US Secretary of Education’s National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity for program accreditors, including the APA Commission on Accreditation. As such, programs must report the number and percentage of program graduates who have become licensed psychologists within the preceding decade. In calculating the licensure percentage:
Program licensure rates MUST be updated at least every three years. Programs may clarify their licensure rate for the public in light of their training model and program goals and objectives.
As with several previous items, we do not have data yet on the percentage of students who have become licensed psychologists.
Because we are a Psy.D. Program and have a focus on training practitioners to provide mental health services in rural areas, we hope to have a very high percentage of graduates who become licensed psychologists.
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As we discuss in both the Accreditation page and the first section of the FAQs page, the Radford University Psy.D. Program is not yet accredited by the American Psychological Association. If you have questions about the accreditation process for doctoral programs in psychology, you can contact the APA via the following means:
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Last Updated 10/16/2012