Our mission is to provide excellence in pediatric psychology and pediatric neuropsychology training to graduate students, interns, and postdoctoral residents/fellows. 


  • Integrity – to exhibit high standards in ethical and professional behavior in the practice of psychology.
  • Dignity – to show dignity and respect through our interactions with our advanced psychology students, our patients, and all others, regardless of culture, race, religion, disability, gender, employment status or individual differences.
  • Nurturance – to support our advanced psychology students in a manner which nurtures mastery and excellence.
  • Diversity – to embrace cultural and individual diversity and strive to recruit interns representative of diverse personal and demographic characteristics. Candidates, likewise, should have the experience and the desire to work with diverse groups of children, adolescents, and families.

Our Philosophy

Phoenix Children’s Doctoral Internship in Clinical Psychology trains interns as practitioners by using evidence-based practices. The training faculty at Phoenix Children’s operates from a practitioner-scholar model. Consistent with this model and its emphasis on the mutuality of science and practice, the focus of our training program is on the practical application of scholarly knowledge in the provision of direct patient care, coupled with the evaluation of the efficacy of those interventions and continued planning to improve those services. Interns are trained to think critically in the delivery of services that take into account individual, cultural, and societal factors. The majority of current staff members were trained in the scientist-practitioner model and see the inclusion of empirical work as a necessary component for the competent assessment and treatment of psychological problems. We strive to provide interns with a breadth and depth of training experiences in the context of utilizing innovative scientific information to guide their assessment and treatment conceptualization, planning and delivery. Through not the primary focus, there can be research opportunities for motivated interns.

We utilize a developmental process for the training of our interns. Interns learn through the observation and subsequent practice of professional activities while receiving support and feedback regarding their progress. Supervisors will work throughout the year to move the interns to a more autonomous role and prepare them to become early-career psychologists, who are well-prepared for their post-doctoral residency/fellowship by the end of the training year. 

We provide a well-rounded psychology training experience and offer training in assessment, outpatient individual, family, and group therapies, as well as inpatient consultation/liaison work. All interns are expected to participate in these activities over the course of the year. Internship tracks offer opportunities for more intensive training experiences in areas of focus so that interns can home their practice.

The internship program is administered by the Training Director with the assistance of the Graduate Medical Education (GME) Program Administrator and the Internship Training Committee, consisting of staff psychologists in the Divisions of Psychology and Neuropsychology at Phoenix Children's. 

The Program

The primary goal of the program is to train interns in the core competencies needed to be a skilled psychologist working with children, adolescents, emerging adults, and families in a medical setting. The psychology interns provide empirically supported assessment, intervention, and consultation for our patients. Our doctoral internship program offers simultaneous training in assessment as well as inpatient and outpatient interventions with patients who have medical and/or psychological conditions.

Our internship offers two tracks: (1) Pediatric Psychology (APPIC code 205212) and (2) Pediatric Neuropsychology (APPIC code 205213).

Pediatric Psychology track:
a. Engage in the assessment and brief treatment for inpatient medically-based. consultation/liaison psychology with patient populations that include but are not limited to:
     i. Pain, complex chronic illnesses, coping with extended hospital stays, disordered eating, medically unexplained symptoms, adjustment to recent diagnosis, and non-adherence to medical regimen.
     ii. Anxiety and/or depression comorbid with medical conditions
b. Provide outpatient services within specialty clinics such as cystic fibrosis, pain, gender, IBD, and/or hematology clinics
     i. Can include multidisciplinary clinics (MDCs) and outpatient follow-ups as well as group therapy.
c. Provide outpatient psychotherapy.
d. Complete a minimum of four psycho-educational evaluations over the course of the year

  1. Pediatric Neuropsychology track:
    ***This track affords training in concert with the criteria set forth by the Houston Conference on Specialty Education and Training in Clinical Neuropsychology. 
    a. First six-month rotation (3 days/week at Phoenix children's specialty Care Center and Ed-Avondale and two-days/week at the Phoenix Children's Hospital-Main Campus)
         i. Engage in a major rotation of outpatient neuropsychological evaluation of acquired brain injuries and medical conditions that affect central nervous system functioning.
         ii. Patients referred for neuropsychological evaluation include:
              1. Ages from 3-21 years
              2. Presenting problems stemming from medical conditions such as: epilepsy, pediatric cancers, brain tumors, movement disorders, traumatic brain injuries, stroke, genetic disorders, and congenital CNS disorders.
    b. Second six-month rotation (Phoenix Children's-Main Campus)
         i. Engage in a minor rotation of inpatient neuropsychology involving inpatient assessment with referrals from the neuro-rehabilitation unit and, hospital-wide inpatient neuropsychological consultation. 
         ii. Provide intervention services within specialty clinics and multidisciplinary clinics which may include cystic fibrosis, craniofacial, pain, cardiac, autism, and /or hematology/oncology clinics.


Both Pediatric Psychology and Pediatric Neuropsychology Interns will:

  • Maintain an outpatient psychotherapy caseload.
  • Conduct 2 outpatient therapy groups over the year such as, PMT for parents of children with ADHD, helping parents and teens enhance executive functioning, illness recovery (CHIRP), etc.

Our program embraces cultural and individual diversity and strives to recruit interns representative of diverse personal and demographic characteristics. The patient population at Phoenix Children's Hospital reflects the cultural and socioeconomic diversity of the Southwest. In 2020, 43.1% of Phoenix Children's Hospital patients were Latinx, 6.5% African American, 2.2% Native American, 3.6% Asian and 8.5% other. Six percent of Phoenix Children's Hospital patients were older than 18 years of age; as of 2017, 55% were patients receiving benefits through (Medicaid/AHCCCS).

To better enable our interns to care for these patients, we offer monthly diversity seminars covering topics such as: cultural determinants of health disparities, cultural humility, social justice, working with the Latinx population, working with Native American patients and families, providing care to 2SLGBTQIA+ youth, and disability as diversity. 

All trainees are encouraged to participate in our community activism project aimed at increasing the interest of under-represented minority high school students in careers in mental health.

Interns may participate in the hospital diversity and inclusion committee. The mission of the committee is for our graduate medical education community to reflect the diversity of the larger world that we serve and to foster a culture of inclusive excellence.

Phoenix Children's will also provide reasonable accommodation to qualified trainees with disabilities in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), as amended and related state laws, and Phoenix Children's Graduate Medical Education Accommodations for Disabilities Policy, which can be accessed on Phoenix Children's intranet (InDEx) or by requesting copies from PC’s Medical Education Office. Trainees who require accommodations should contact the Training Director to make arrangements.

Additionally, integration of science and practice, ethical practice of psychology, communication and interpersonal skills, supervision, and the development of professional values and attitudes are addressed during the training year. Further, there are opportunities for supervision of junior trainees and scholarly inquiry. The Psychology Department also trains psychology/neuropsychology practicum students, psychiatry fellows and medical residents, and pediatric psychology fellows/residents.

We will provide training in tele-therapy and the use of the Phoenix Children's telehealth system (e.g., Zoom) as well as training in use of interpretative services in the practice of psychology with patients and families. 

The Psychology Department also offers a one-year postdoctoral residency/fellowship in pediatric psychology. The residency is affiliated with the Arizona Psychology Training Consortium and, thereby, a member of the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers (APPIC).


Currently, many licensed psychologists on the faculty are supervising interns. Our psychology staff view the role of quality supervision as paramount to intern training. Please review our handbook for more detailed information. Because of this emphasis on training, there are opportunities to:

  • Observe your supervisors’ work
  • Provide co-therapy with your supervisor
  • Observe/be observed live and/or on a telehealth platform
  • Review video recordings of sessions

Our interns receive a minimum of four hours of supervision per week, including a minimum of two hours of individual supervision. They will also have the opportunity for additional input with case presentations as well as journal club. Working with our psychology practicum students will provide the opportunity to supervise a graduate student under the umbrella supervision of a licensed psychologist. 

Our psychologists represent an eclectic mix of theoretical perspectives, including: 

  • Cognitive behavioral (including DBT and ACT)
  • Family systems
  • Interpersonal
  • Solution-focused
  • Behavioral


Given that we work with physicians and other medical staff on a regular basis, both inpatient and outpatient, it is important to work in an interdisciplinary manner. Interns will have the opportunity to observe faculty in these interactions while gradually gaining more experience, skill, and independence in their consultant role. With a pediatric population, interns also often engage in consultation with school personnel in order to ensure continuity of care from the medical setting to the patient’s broader environment.


The Division of Psychology is located on the fourth floor of the ambulatory building (Barrow Neurological Institute), along with psychiatry, neurosurgery and audiology. Many other outpatient medical specialties are located in the floors below. Multiple disciplines request inpatient hospital consultations that occur throughout the main hospital and in the East building on campus. The pediatric neuropsychology interns will also spend a significant portion of their time at our Phoenix Children’s Specialty Care Center and ED-Avondale Campus as well as the second floor of the Main hospital and new medical office building at the Thomas/Main Campus.