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Top Clinical Psychology Programs

The best clinical psychology schools are the graduate programs that take a psychology student through clinical training to become a practicing psychologist. Clinical work can be a specialization such as child psychology or developmental psychology, but it involves working with "patients" much like a psychiatrist does.

There are many public universities among the top ranked clinical psychology programs in the country. There are also some options among the newer schools that mix both campus and online education for clinical psychology training. Several of these institutions have had the time and resources to build up excellent faculty resources and quality educational programs. Below is a list of schools with clinical psychology programs that are considered to be excellent.

  • UCLA
  • University of Washington
  • University of Wisconsin
  • UC/Berkeley
  • University of Minnesota
  • Capella University
  • Indiana University/Bloomington
  • University of North Carolina/Chapel Hill
  • Argosy University
  • Penn State
  • Walden University
  • University of Illinois
  • University of Iowa
  • University of Pittsburgh

When psychology first became a science in the early 20th century it was essentially a research tool; clinical psychology developed as a therapeutic service after World War II. Since that time, two principal educational directions have developed; the PhD in psychology which is focused on research and the Psy.D practitioner option which prepares the grad student for a clinical practice.

Clinical psychologists have honed the science to the point that they are considered experts in providing psychotherapy. There are four principal theoretical orientations for analyzing psychological difficulties in a patient: those are psychodynamic, humanistic, cognitive behavioral and family therapy.

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