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Field Experience

Psychology majors can participate in PSYC 491, Professional Field Experience in Psychology, each academic term. This course involves placement at a community agency performing work relevant to psychology for academic credit. During the COVID pandemic, there is an online-only alternative (departmental) placement option to complete this requirement for students who are unable to secure a community placement.  The course may be taken as a capstone experience or for elective credits (elective credits beyond the three credits counted for a capstone experience count toward the 120 needed for a degree, but not toward the 42 limit on psychology credits). Psychology majors interested in participating in PSYC 491 must first apply to and be accepted for the program before they can arrange a placement. 

Students interested in participating in PSYC 491 should carefully read the description of the program, and review the Available Placements. Students must then: 

1.)  Submit the application form by the due date.

2.)  Reference letters are now  OPTIONAL , therefore it is up to the student if they feel it will be beneficial to request/submit them.  If the student chooses to do so, the student must complete the waiver form.

Then the student must send the Recommendation Form to their requested recommender. 

3.)  Complete a request for placement approval form, IF the student is seeking to complete a field experience at a site that is not on the current list of available sites.    

4.)  A review of applications will occur after the due date, by both Dr. McWilliams (491 coordinator) and psychology department advisors.  

The number of internship hours required corresponds to the number of credits the student enrolls for.  Please see the chart for Fall/Spring or for Summer  to plan your schedule appropriately.   

Important Dates for 491 Application and Registration:

                                            Summer and Fall 2023 Dates & Deadlines  

  • February 1, 2023- Information Night- 6:30pm – Life Sciences Building (LSB G-15)
  • February 10, 2023- Web application due (submitted electronically) 
  • March 6, 2023- Notification of acceptance and authorization of interviews (sent to student’s MIX email account) 
  • April 3, 2023- Student-Supervisor Agreement and Practicum Agreement Forms due, signed by student and supervisor (NOTE: late submission of these forms may result in an inability to register for PSYC 491 for the chosen semester) 

                                                    Spring 2024 Dates & Deadlines  

  • September 13, 2023- Information Night- 6:30pm – Life Sciences Building (room TBD)
  • September 22, 2023- Web application due (submitted electronically) 
  • October 16, 2023- Notification of acceptance and authorization of interviews (sent to student’s MIX email account) 

  • November 17, 2023- Student-Supervisor Agreement and Practicum Agreement Forms, signed by student and supervisor, due. (NOTE: Background check must also be complete before student will receive the CRN for registration) 

Application due dates are posted in the Life Sciences Building each semester. Acceptances to the program and information about setting up a placement will be e-mailed to applicants following acceptance to the program. Applications will be accepted after the due date, but priority for preferred placements will be given to on-time applicants. Students are not allowed to contact sites to set up interviews or arrange for placements until they receive an acceptance to the program, contact information and instructions for setting up a placement. 

Students who are already approved for the PSYC 491 program and who have received authorization to interview at a placement site(s) have several more steps to complete before registration can occur.  Students may access and download all of the required documents here.  

1.)  The instructions for next steps, includes advice regarding interviewing and setting up a placement.  

2.)  After a successful interview, the Student/Supervisor Internship Agreement form and the  Practicum agreement form must be completed and submitted by the due date. Please type in all responses and complete with student and supervisor signatures where indicated.  Both of these contractual forms must be submitted prior to registering for the course. Forms may be scanned and submitted via email to or delivered to the Psychology office. 

3.)  After being approved for PSYC 491, students names are submitted for a mandatory background check.  Please check for an email from  This background check must be complete before students are permitted to register.   

At the conclusion of the practicum, site supervisors are required to submit an evaluation of the student via webform no later than one week prior to the end of semester.  

Frequently asked questions about obtaining a Professional Field Experience in Psychology are answered in the description of the program above. Any additional questions may be directed to the program coordinator, Stephanie McWilliams ( or 304-293-0834).