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Research in the Clinic

All aspects of your participation in therapy at The Psychological Clinic—including the scheduling of appointments, contents of therapy or testing sessions, all contents of records, and outcomes of therapy or testing—is confidential by state and federal law.

A confidential record of services provided to you will be maintained by The Psychological Clinic for 10 years past your last scheduled appointment. If you are participating in couple's therapy, a separate record is kept for each individual, and all confidentiality policies apply independently to each record. Only the specific individual may have access to her or his file. All parts of your therapy/testing records are highly secured and protected by the same confidentiality and privacy laws.

Research

The Psychological Clinic has several research projects occurring at any given time (examples provided below), and the structure of the clinic is organized to not only provide effective care for our clients, but also to facilitate basic and applied research. We believe that research and practice can go together, and we have taken a number of steps to make this process fairly seemless. 

For example, two very thorough, reliable, and valid diagnostic interviews (similar to those often used in clinical trials) are administered to all clients prior to treatment.  This not only allows us to make well-informed treatment decisions and direct our clients to the most appropriate services for their problems, but also facilitates research on specific conditions (e.g., generalized anxiety disorder or borderline personality disorder).   

Similarly, outcome is assessed for every client at every session using a brief questionnaire.  This measure is instantaneously scored via a netbook, and the information is available to our therapists prior to meeting with their client.  This allows us to not only monitor our effectiveness with clients session-by-session, but also allows us to conduct research on therapy outcome and the complex session-by-session processes of psychotherapy. 

Two current resesarch projects in the clinic will be briefly described.  One project is focused on assessing student therapists themselves and, specifically, which variables predict better and worse therapist effectiveness with clients as well as the therapists’ eventual performance on the psychologist licensing exam.  This will hopefully lead to a better understanding of therapists’ competence as well as new ways of evaluating this important concept. A second involves research into the characteristics of staff who work with dually-diagnosed persons (i.e., intellectual disability and mental health conditions).  This is an underrepresented and vulnerable population, and we believe that is important to identify the staff behaviors which may facilitate or inhibit effective caregiving behaviors.
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