Child Clinical Psychology | Psychology | SIU

Southern Illinois University



College of Liberal Arts

students monitoring lab

Clinical Psychology

The Clinical Psychology program at SIU is designed to develop clinical psychologists who will have the skills and breadth of perspective to adapt flexibly to the changing roles and opportunities in the field.  Accordingly, our goal is to provide a broad education in a wide variety of professional skills, providing such training within an environment that encourages the integration of science and practice.  We seek to train researchers who address questions of clinical significance, practitioners who will think critically about new concepts and methods in their practice and who actively use the developing scientific bases of psychology, and administrators who are skilled in supervision and program evaluation.  Philosophically, our goals therefore involve breadth, flexibility, and balance.

Features of the Clinical Psychology Program

  • Accreditation:  We have been continuously accredited by the American Psychological Association since 1961.  For verification, contact the Commission on Accreditation or visit the website -

                 Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation
                 American Psychological Association
                 750 1st Street, NE  Washington, DC 20002
                 Phone: (202)336-5979 / Email:

  • Balance:  We seek to provide balanced training, with respect to clinical and research training, and with respect to perspective.  We aim to provide the graduate with a solid foundation as a clinical psychology generalist, so that she/he can pursue a variety of career paths, change careers successfully, and adapt to inevitable changes in the profession.
  • Specializations:  The program offers specializations in adult and child clinical psychology.  The two areas have complete curricula and distinct training opportunities.  While many programs provide some training in child clinical topics, relative few provide distinct specializations.
  • Financial Assistance:  We offer substantial support, guaranteed to all first-year students and historically available throughout a student’s four years on campus.  Students in good standing can anticipate receiving a stipend and a tuition waiver, and all students complete training assignments as teaching or research assistants or in an externship.  For more information, see Financial Assistance page.
  • Graduated Clinical Training:  Practicum training begins early (during the first semester) and grows in complexity.  At first, students participate in weekly vertical team meetings, reviewing the clinical activity of advanced students or sitting-in as co-therapists.  Subsequently, they begin to see their own clients.  As training progresses, students move toward the functioning of an independent professional, with increasing client load, case complexity, and level of responsibility.
  • Wide Range of Clinical Experiences: The program provides many and varied opportunities, occurring through regular clinical practica, summer field placements, specialty practice, and clinical training assignments.  Training sites include The Clinical Center, the campus Counseling Center, regional mental health centers, adolescent and adult correctional facilities, and a rehabilitation center for brain damaged individuals.
  • Research Training:  We offer solid training in basic and applied research.  The program operates on an elective-mentor system: that is, students may choose to work primarily with one faculty member throughout their graduate career, but they are also free to complete the M.A. thesis with one faculty member and the dissertation with another, while participating in research activities with other faculty.  The clinical faculty themselves represent a very broad range of interests. Moreover, students in the clinical program can choose to work with any departmental faculty regardless of program.  Students are encouraged and receive travel funds to present research at conferences and to become involved in the publication process.
  • Teaching:  Students have a variety of opportunities to develop teaching and presentation skills.  Most students will have at least one training assignment as a teaching assistant.  Further opportunities include class presentations, formal thesis and dissertation research presentations, conference presentations, and teaching Psychology courses.
  • Atmosphere:  Faculty and students are proud of the program’s collegial and supportive atmosphere.  We seek to maintain high academic and professional standards, while being responsive to the goals, strengths, and needs of individual students.  In general, students report experiencing the program as being highly facilitative of their professional development.

Clinical Psychology Faculty

Mary Louise Cashel, Associate Professor and Director of Clinical Training

David DiLalla, Associate Professor; Associate Provost for Academic Administration

Lisabeth DiLalla, Professor

Chad Drake, Assistant Professor

Karla Fehr, Assistant Professor

Sarah Kertz, Assistant Professor

Michelle Kibby, Associate Professor (cross-appointed with BCS)

Benjamin Rodriguez, Associate Professor

Applying to the Clinical Psychology Program

Visit the Department of Psychology's Admissions page for more information.

As a member of the Council of University Directors of Clinical Training (CUDCP), the Clinical Psychology program at SIU adheres to CUDCP’s policies and guidelines for graduate school admissions, offers and acceptance. For additional information about these policies, please visit this page.

More information about clinical psychology and application tips also can be found at, offered by CUDCP.