Clinical Psychology Internship Forensic Psychology Track
The Forensic Psychology Track within the NYU Langone–Bellevue Clinical Psychology Internship has a dual focus in both clinical psychology and forensic psychology.
The program combines the resources of Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center on Wards Island and NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue to offer training in both acute and long-term care of forensic patients who are at various stages of involvement with the criminal justice system.
At both sites, interns are active members of a multidisciplinary treatment team and acquire greater knowledge of and sensitivity to the needs of forensic patients, as well as experience managing the many legal, clinical, and organizational issues that affect these individuals.
Forensic Track Rotation Requirements
The Forensic Psychology Track consists of three four-month rotations, individual psychotherapy requirements through the Bellevue Adult and Child and Adolescent Outpatient Psychiatry Clinics, a didactic seminar series, and case conference. Two of the rotations, Forensic Assessment and Forensic Treatment, are required. Interns choose a third rotation among any of the other possible rotations offered.
Throughout the internship year, forensic interns spend two full days per week at Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center treating patients individually and in a group setting, performing various types of forensic evaluations and assessments, working as part of a multidisciplinary treatment team, and attending and participating in forensic-focused didactics and case conferences.
Forensic Assessment Rotation
This rotation is based at Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center. Interns gain experience in various types of forensic evaluations, including evaluations of competency to stand trial, violence risk assessment, risk assessment of sex offenders, and forensic evaluations to assist the court in determining how dangerous patients are and their future institutional placement. In addition, interns are exposed to the latest in psychological and neuropsychological testing with particular focus on violence risk assessment, malingering, personality assessment, and neuropsychological issues.
Forensic Treatment Rotation
This rotation is housed on the Forensic Inpatient Psychiatry Service at Bellevue, which provides acute psychiatric care to male patients aged 16 and older. Patients on this unit may be pre-arraignment, awaiting trial, or post-conviction. Psychology interns work as part of a multidisciplinary team consisting of a psychiatrist, psychologist, social worker, activity therapist, and medical students.
The intern serves as the primary therapist for one or two patients. This role includes an initial intake interview, meeting with the patient three times each week for individual psychotherapy, participation in weekly treatment team meetings, documentation, and the preparation of a discharge summary. Interns may also carry an additional one or two patients for twice-weekly psychotherapy and co-lead a psychotherapy group with a member of psychology staff. The treatment team psychologist provides supervision for individual and group therapy, and, whenever possible, interns are encouraged to provide supervision for other trainees on the unit.
Outpatient Psychotherapy Cases
In addition to rotations, interns carry a diverse outpatient psychotherapy caseload at Bellevue. Interns treat a minimum of three outpatient adults, as well as one child or adolescent patient. Forensic interns are assigned individual supervisors for each rotation experience and each outpatient psychotherapy case.
Two days a week, forensic interns work at Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center. Patients committed to the center fall into one of three categories: (1) those requiring restoration of competency to stand trial, (2) those found not criminally responsible due to mental disease or defect (not guilty by reason of insanity, or NGRI), and (3) civil psychiatric patients determined to pose a significant risk to self or others due to problems with behavioral control.
While at Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center, each forensic intern has an assigned caseload of male and female patients with varying legal statuses and diagnoses. Interns work with an interdisciplinary treatment team on one of the psychiatric admission units, attending and participating in morning rounds and monthly team meetings. Interns also conduct a weekly fitness-to-stand-trial group and supervise master’s level trainees.
Forensic interns conduct various types of forensic evaluations: competency to stand trial, violence risk assessment, risk assessment of sex offenders, and forensic evaluations to assist the court in determining how dangerous patients are and their future institutional placement. In addition, interns attend and participate in the grand rounds lecture series and case conferences, which complement weekly individual and group supervision.
Forensic Track Didactics
Forensic Psychology Track interns participate in additional forensic-focused didactics and case conferences at Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center.