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Hi everyone! I have my first interview this Tuesday and Wednesday and wanted to create a place where we can debrief after the interviews. We can share anything from what everyone wore to actual questions and itineraries, as well as hopes and fears post-interview. Hopefully comparing notes will help ease anxieties!

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Any tips for the interview process? I have my first one coming up and I’m extremely nervous about it especially since this is my first time applying! Is your interview for PsyD or PhD?

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Posted (edited)

My first time applying as well! I did an interview in December and wish I came across this sooner:

I found this while checking out the 2018 threads, and found these to be similar to the questions I was asked in my interview. Clinical Psychology Potential Interview Questions: http://www2.tulane.edu/sse/psyc/news-and-events/archive/upload/InterviewQuestions.pdf Thought this might be a good starting point!

 

Edited by Mickey26

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5 minutes ago, checkingmyemail said:

I found this to be an excellent resource. It talks about the whole process, but Section 3 is specifically for interviews: 

Section 3: I Just Got an Interview for a Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program What do I do?!

Thank you!!! I’ll take a look for sure. So nerve wracking??

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I know it's nerve-wracking, but remember, out of all the applicants you made it onto the short list! You've already impressed them on paper. Just go in confident that you would be an asset and talk about your interests, goals, and why you think x school is right for you. Most of the questions I remember being asked about my goals and why I wanted a doctorate, my experiences, and my research interests. Another tip is be friendly! Even with your "competition." The students and faculty will notice the people that are friendly with their potential cohortmates and those who are standoffish. Also, I interviewed with a student as well, and I think being as professional with them as your POI or any other faculty is also super important. 

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Posted (edited)
43 minutes ago, checkingmyemail said:

I found this to be an excellent resource. It talks about the whole process, but Section 3 is specifically for interviews: 

Section 3: I Just Got an Interview for a Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program What do I do?!

Mitch Prinstein's guide is literally the bible, we need the PDF pinned on this forum. He literally has answers for 90% of the questions asked here all year round, what an angel. 

Trying to prepare for all possible curve balls and trying to narrow down my messy research interests in advance of interview season aaahhh good luck y'all

Edited by higaisha

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In a recent phone interview I had, I was asked to describe a potential thesis or dissertation project I would like to work on and how I would go about designing it (methods and everything). This question caught be by surprise and I hadn't prepared for it. So be ready to have a response in case something like this comes up!

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These are all great resources! I think it’s also important to be familiar with the POI’s research and funding agencies and to have genuine intrigue and questions about these. My current supervisor mentioned that lack of curiosity and questions about her research is a turn off for her. 

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35 minutes ago, psychhealth101 said:

In a recent phone interview I had, I was asked to describe a potential thesis or dissertation project I would like to work on and how I would go about designing it (methods and everything). This question caught be by surprise and I hadn't prepared for it. So be ready to have a response in case something like this comes up!

Yikes! That’s a tough question! Thank you for sharing this. 

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39 minutes ago, psychhealth101 said:

In a recent phone interview I had, I was asked to describe a potential thesis or dissertation project I would like to work on and how I would go about designing it (methods and everything). This question caught be by surprise and I hadn't prepared for it. So be ready to have a response in case something like this comes up!

omg thats intense what program was this for?

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2 hours ago, ROGERthat22 said:

Any tips for the interview process? I have my first one coming up and I’m extremely nervous about it especially since this is my first time applying! Is your interview for PsyD or PhD?

My interview is for an IDD/Clinical PhD program but I don’t think that it’s too different between PsyDs and PhDs. 

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2 hours ago, ASDadvocate said:

My interview is for an IDD/Clinical PhD program but I don’t think that it’s too different between PsyDs and PhDs. 

Perfect, thank you! The only reason I ask is because it seems as if you dont really have a POI with psyd. Of course you have the concentration you would like to focus on but not really a specific professor you would work under right? 

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1 hour ago, ROGERthat22 said:

Perfect, thank you! The only reason I ask is because it seems as if you dont really have a POI with psyd. Of course you have the concentration you would like to focus on but not really a specific professor you would work under right? 

I had the opportunity to speak over the phone back in September with a POI for the PsyD program I applied to. In that particular program, you do get assigned to a professor and I had to choose 2 POIs on the app just like all the other PhD applications I completed. If I get an interview with that program, I’ll likely interview with the POIs I selected. However, not all programs are the same so it may be possible that for some PsyDs you may have a more general interview process. I would be interested to hear from others who have gone to PsyD program interviews. 

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9 hours ago, psychhealth101 said:

In a recent phone interview I had, I was asked to describe a potential thesis or dissertation project I would like to work on and how I would go about designing it (methods and everything). This question caught be by surprise and I hadn't prepared for it. So be ready to have a response in case something like this comes up!

Same here! Was expecting it more for a live interview than over Skype :(

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21 hours ago, ASDadvocate said:

I had the opportunity to speak over the phone back in September with a POI for the PsyD program I applied to. In that particular program, you do get assigned to a professor and I had to choose 2 POIs on the app just like all the other PhD applications I completed. If I get an interview with that program, I’ll likely interview with the POIs I selected. However, not all programs are the same so it may be possible that for some PsyDs you may have a more general interview process. I would be interested to hear from others who have gone to PsyD program interviews. 

I’ll definitely let you know how mine goes! I know as far as the places I applied they were all more generalist programs so that makes more sense to me now 

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Just had my first Skype interview, it went really well! She was very nice and her questions were as expected - what was my path to grad school (I have a career change), why clinical psych, what was the biggest challenge I've faced so far, what is my statistics experience in terms of my projects (and it was okay that I said it's been several years - she went on to describe how her students get training in it). She spent lots of time talking about her projects and giving me more details, I'm extra excited about what she's working on now. 

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I just had my first in-person interview this past Tuesday and Wednesday. It was a two-day interview with lunches, dinners and the actual interviews. This program is a PhD in Psychology with a specialization in intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). 

Interviews:

Because this program is very specialized in a particular research population, although I applied to two specific POIs, the candidates met with all 5 core faculty from that division. Apparently, the faculty determines which candidates should be admitted and which ones in particular would be a good match for their mentorship styles and their research interests. I had 3 interviews the first day and 1 interview the second day (I was one of the candidates who wasn't able to meet with one of the POIs because she had very limited time). I found this particular interview to be much less intense than I expected it to be! I feel that I actually over-prepared for it- which could be a good thing in the end! I got general questions about why I wanted to go to grad school for a PhD, what my research interests were, and very few specific questions about my experiences (only follow-up questions when I brought my experiences up). The HARDEST question I was asked was, "What would be your masters project? And what variables/outcomes would you look at?! Thankfully, the current students were AMAZING and they graciously gave us tips about what to expect in the interviews! This very hard question was brought up the night before interviews and I had a chance to think about it in advance ?Interviews lasted 30 minutes and overall, I felt I spent more time waiting for my turn than actually meeting with the POIs.

Socials:

The night before interviews, after all candidates had arrived from the airport, a few of the students took us to a quaint place in Columbus to have dinner. This was very informal but gave the opportunity to meet them and ask questions. We also had lunches that were catered to the conference room where we met on both interview days. All the candidates ate with a few of the current students who were available. On the first day of the interviews, all candidates went to dinner with three POIs and the majority of the current students. This was very informal but also gave me the opportunity to learn more about my POIs personalities.

Logistics:

There were a total of 6 candidates including me who were interviewed. This may actually be different from other programs. One of the students told us that they typically only invite as many people as they would have space/funding for. As opposed to other programs who may invite 30+ candidates to ultimately extend admittance to 4 people. I thought this was nice. 

They reimbursed for dinner from the night candidates arrived to the city (we all came out of state) and for flights. They also booked us and paid for hotel rooms near the university. I felt very fortunate for this as it was very unexpected. In terms of transportation, the students drove us around to the dinner location, back to the hotel when needed, and to the hospital that we visited where we would be doing clinical work at some point in the program. There was also a shuttle bus from the hotel to the university every 30 minutes.

Overall Thoughts:

I really liked this program and I'm hoping for an acceptance! What I liked the most was the very specific research clinical work being conducted with the population I'm interested in and the collaborative climate I sensed from the faculty and students. This last piece matters a lot to me since the university where I currently work is very competitive and I don't feel a sense of "friendliness" among students and faculty. The one thing that concerns me a little is the fact that this particular program is not APA accredited. This is something that both of my supervisors emphasized I should look for in a graduate program. My thoughts are that attending this program might ultimately limit the states I would be able to practice in but I would still be able to become licensed and work in states that don't require you have a doctorate from an APA accredited program- which is honestly the majority. Plus, my husband and I are actually really looking forward to move out of FL and possibly not come back. FL does require APA accredited programs for licensure. 

I'm hoping to get an acceptance and at least have this option for grad school. I'm an older applicant and I don't think I'm willing to go through this process again for many reasons more personal to my specific circumstances. I hope this information helps people! Good luck to everyone!

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On 1/10/2019 at 8:09 PM, ASDadvocate said:

 ...The one thing that concerns me a little is the fact that this particular program is not APA accredited. This is something that both of my supervisors emphasized I should look for in a graduate program. My thoughts are that attending this program might ultimately limit the states I would be able to practice in but I would still be able to become licensed and work in states that don't require you have a doctorate from an APA accredited program- which is honestly the majority. Plus, my husband and I are actually really looking forward to move out of FL and possibly not come back. FL does require APA accredited programs for licensure. 

I'm hoping to get an acceptance and at least have this option for grad school. I'm an older applicant and I don't think I'm willing to go through this process again for many reasons more personal to my specific circumstances. I hope this information helps people! Good luck to everyone!

I considered applying to a couple of programs that were in the "process" of accreditation (like OHSU), and my director/PIs/mentors immediately said "Absolutely not." If you do not get any more interviews this application period, I would strongly recommend for you to think about the implications of this important decision.

I've read in other doctoral-level forums that this limits your options in so many ways you can't even imagine, and by the time you graduate, you may mostly likely look back and regret this decision (vs. waiting to apply the next application round). Many employers (state hospitals, private hospitals, VAs, government-funded jobs, etc) will not hire individuals who did not graduate from APA-accredited programs. This will also affect insurance reimbursements, liability, etc. Also, the type of "license" you receive will most likely require some type of supervision, even after graduation from this type of program, and you should begin thinking about what agencies would be willing to supervise/commit to your training.

I recommend you to check out SDN and get perspective from experts in the field, I'm pretty active on that forum and have seen this type of concern raised on there in the past. Best of luck to you!

Edited by checkingmyemail

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Has anyone had to do Clinical Psych group interviews? 

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2 hours ago, Steph93 said:

Has anyone had to do Clinical Psych group interviews? 

Yes! I think it was more of a scheduling thing than a typical interview format, but I did have the experience of answering/asking questions with multiple applicants in the room.

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1 minute ago, psykick said:

Yes! I think it was more of a scheduling thing than a typical interview format, but I did have the experience of answering/asking questions with multiple applicants in the room.

Tell us more. What was it like?

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