Students completing the MPCAC Psychology program may follow one of two degree plans.  Students may fulfill the requirements of the 60-hour degree plan, currently sufficient for licensure as a Licensed Psychological Associate (LPA) or Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in Texas. This program should meet most or all of the licensing requirements in other states; however, please refer to that state's specific list of courses for confirmation. Students can anticipate taking courses Fall, Spring, Summer I, Summer II, Fall, Spring, Summer I, Summer II, and graduating in August (total 25 months). Funding from MSU is only available during the Fall and Spring semesters.  

The 63-hour degree plan meets the same licensing requirements but replaces the one elective with 6 hours of thesis. Students completing this program should add a semester to their program (graduating in December-29 months). This option should only be chosen by students wanting to pursue a doctoral degree and a possible career in academia or research.

Objectives:

  1. The program shall provide foundational courses upon which the student will build a professional identity in a multicultural world. These courses also provide the minimal entry-level requirements for becoming a student-therapist and are required prior to enrolling in Clinical Practicum.
  2. Exposure to theoretical underpinnings of the field ranging from individual, family, and group therapy to career and life-span development in a multicultural world. The student shall, by graduation, identify with one or two main approaches to treatment while also demonstrating awareness of multiple treatment and conceptualization modalities. Theory informs the practitioner of areas to explore that may cause, maintain, or exacerbate mental health issues. Furthermore, theory provides direction in treatment strategies for the alleviation of mental illness when possible or maintenance of mental health while minimizing the impact of chronic mental health issues. Since humans are an amalgamation of the physical, mental, and emotional, students will be trained in the biology of behavior with the goal of knowing when to make referrals to medical practitioners. Finally, professional issues relating to the fields expectations and prohibitions will be intertwined throughout the program.
  3. Scientist-practitioners are excellent consumers of research who are able to filter through pseudoscience, popular opinion, and faulty conclusions drawn upon poor methodology. These skills help scientist-practitioners proved empirically supported treatments and avoid pop psychology. Included is the understanding that individuals come from a variety of backgrounds which impact how one views the world and perceives life’s experiences (e.g., ethnicity, gender, age, socioeconomic status, region, sexual orientation). Scientist-practitioners are able to review the literature and identify bias and offer critique as social sciences attempt to study and understand various groups. Other skills include assessing empirically based treatments for their generalizability to a specific group based upon the clinician’s multicultural awareness. Finally, scientist-practitioners are bridges between the scientific community and lay public. They serve as translators so that the lay person can be exposed to beneficial research findings and avoid misleading or even harmful pseudoscience.
  4. The clinical/counseling program is committed to training license-eligible master’s level clinicians who enter the profession with trained skills. This process begins the first semester and includes recorded clinical interview and role-played counseling skills within the program; providing individual, couple, family, and/or group therapy via clinical practicum and internship; and conducting intellectual, personality, academic, and career assessment. Students will graduate well prepared to begin their post-graduation supervision requirements leading to independent licensure.
  5. The capstone project allows students to be active in the direction of their professional goals. Students wishing to complete the terminal master’s program and immediately seek licensure are encouraged to complete the Applied Paper. This thorough and in-depth analysis of a clinical case allows the student to present one’s preferred theoretical orientation, treatment goals based upon said theory and empirically based treatments, and demonstrate through services provided how clinical services proceeded. The Applied Paper will integrate psychological assessment when possible and be written in a biopsychosocial format.
  6. The Thesis option is designed for students wishing to pursue a PhD/PsyD upon graduation. These students are required to demonstrate statistical proficiency prior to being allowed to enroll in Thesis. Once enrolled, the student will identify a research question, a method for obtaining an appropriate sample, select a statistical analysis that could best answer the question, conduct the study, write up the results, and prepare the results for a professional presentation and submission to a peer-reviewed journal. At MSU Texas, we encourage students to engage in this process independently while under the mentorship of a faculty. By independently identifying an  area of research to explore, we believe the student is more engaged in the research process thus enhancing learning and professional identity development.

Coursework:

Coursework focuses on four separate areas.  Students must meet the minimum requirements in each of the areas of emphasis.

A. Clinical Core: The following courses are required of all first-semester students and must be completed with a 3.0 or higher prior to Clinical Practicum.  

 

 
Electives

Course

60-hour Program

63-hour Program

PSYC 5143 Applied Ethics

Required

Required

PSYC 5213 Theories of Counseling

Required

Required

PSYC 5163 Psychopathology: Diagnosis/Psychopharmacology

Required

Required

PSYC 6113 Counseling Methods/Individual Psychotherapy

Required

Required


B. Theoretical Core:  Courses in this block address biological bases of behavior; acquired or learned bases of behavior; social/cultural/systemic bases of behavior; and individual or unique bases of behavior.

 

 
Capstone Project

Course

60-hour Program

63-hour Program

PSYC 5153 Theories of Personality

Required

Required

PSYC 6133 Marriage, Family, and Systems Psychology

Required

Required

PSYC 6103 Vocational Assessment and Counseling

Required

Required

PSYC 5233 Human Development Across the Life Span

Required

Required

PSYC 5183 Professional Issues

Required

Required

PSYC 5863 Biological Bases of Behavior

Required

Required


C. Research Methodology Core:  Courses and requirements in this block help students understand methodologies used to investigate questions and acquire knowledge in the discipline. Professionals in our field are life-long learners who must be skilled in accessing, interpreting, and applying research to practice.

 

 
Research Methodology Core

Course

60-hour Program

63-hour Program

PSYC 5113 Research and Statistical Methods

Required

Required

PSYC 5200 Foundations of Research Methods/Outcomes

Required

Required

PSYC 5203 Applied Research Methods/Outcomes

Required

Required

PSYC 5843 Multicultural Psychology: Research/Practice

Required

Required

PSYC 6181 Evidence Based Practice

Required

Required


D. Applied Core:  Courses in this block address the applications of psychological principles and theories to clinical and counseling psychology; assessment techniques; sensitivity to social and cultural diversity; professional standards and ethics; and, supervised clinical experience.

 

 
Applied Core

Course

60-hour Program

63-hour Program

PSYC 5133 Intellectual Assessment

Required

Required

PSYC 6143 Personality Assessment

Required

Required

PSYC 5273 Addictions: Research and Practice

Required

Required

PSYC 6123 Therapeutic and Psychoeducational Groups

Required

Required

PSYC 6152 Practicum I

Required

Required

PSYC 6103 Internship I

Required

Required

PSYC 6200 Internship II

Required

Required


E. Students must complete a sufficient number of elective courses such that the total number of course hours meets or exceeds the minimum for their degree option.

 

 
Theoretical Core

Course

60-hour Program

63-hour Program

Elective (s) equaling 3 hours

Required

No

PSYC 5103 Cognitive-behavioral Therapy

 

 

PSYC 5123 Child and Adolescent Psychology

 

 

PSYC 5193 Independent Study

 

 

PSYC  5253 Forensic Psychology

 

 

PSYC 5263 Health Psychology

 

 

PSYC 6001 Teaching Practicum

 

 

PSYC 6013 Special Graduate Topics in Psychology

 

 


F. Capstone Project. Students completing the 60-hour program will present a formal case conceptualization including a biopsychosocial approach, theory, testing data (if available), and short- and long-term treatment goals. Classmates are allowed to attend.

The thesis option requires a defense of the completed work before a committee of three graduate faculty (one may be from another department). The entire university community is allowed to attend.     

 

 
Clinical Core

Course

60-hour Program

63-hour Program

Applied Research Paper

Required

No

PSYC 6983 Thesis I 

No

Required

PSYC 6993 Thesis II

No

Required


G. Students must participate or attend at least two events (e.g., conference, annual meeting, continuing education workshop) hosted by a professional association or organization beyond Midwestern State University (e.g., American Psychological Association, Southwestern Psychological Association, Texas Psychological Association, Greenbelt Counseling Association).