Psych NP programs that are the most psychotherapy focused?

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    Anyone attended/heard of a psych NP program that's heavily focused on psychotherapy? I know Penn's program is. I'm open to cheap state schools, expensive private schools, "name" schools and non-name schools. Just want to know what's out there. Thanks =)
  2. 12 Comments so far...

  3. 1
    I'm interested in this information too but I spoke to therapists in other disciplines (psychologists, social workers, mental health counselors). They all say the same thing. You really learn on the job and through additional continuing education and mentoring after you graduate.
    priorities2 likes this.
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    Makes sense. I am curious about Vanderbilt's program. With online lectures and only a 12-month curriculum, how much psychotherapy skill can really be gained compared to longer or in-person programs I wonder?
    Candimk2 likes this.
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    Quote from priorities2
    Makes sense. I am curious about Vanderbilt's program. With online lectures and only a 12-month curriculum, how much psychotherapy skill can really be gained compared to longer or in-person programs I wonder?
    Umm, not much. Psych NP programs are focused primarily on diagnosis and med management. There's not much room left for psychotherapy (and v. little expectation, as far as I can tell, that psych NPs will be providing psychotherapy, same as psychiatrists). The curricula I've looked at seem be more or less traditional NP-type curricula with a psychotherapy course tacked on, just enough to differentiate the program as a psych NP program. Psych CNSs, which are being entirely eliminated, used to be rigorously trained as psychotherapists, but those days are over with and the psych CNS credential is being eliminated.
    priorities2 likes this.
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    It's unfortunate that the credential is being eliminated. I wonder why that is. I heard Penn is incorporating some of its CNS curriculum into the NP curriculum, at least.

    Another question - I get in-state tuition at UND based on my state of residence. I'm thinking about applying to their online program and supplementing it with non-degree-seeking courses in psychotherapy at a local state school. Does this seem feasible/like a good idea?
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    I've seen a few schools that offer quite a few psychotherapy courses and look like very good programs. As elkpark said, many just offer the FNP program with 2 or 3 "specialty courses" tacked on, typically psychopharmacology, etc. The program at Columbia University is an example of a program with what looks like a very specialized concentration in psych/mental health, including courses in psychotherapy. Here's their curriculum (I counted 5 distinct therapy courses, which I bolded. I'm sure many of the others include therapy too):

    Sample Program Plan

    Course Number Course Name Credits Type
    Summer I: 12 Credits
    Advanced Physiology 3 Core
    Introduction to Addictive Behaviors: Theories of Causation 3 Specialty
    Evaluation and Application of Research 3 Core
    Advanced Clinical Assessment Across the Lifespan 3 Core
    Fall I: 12 Credits
    Behavioral Development Across the Life Span: A Risk/Vulnerability Perspective 3 Specialty
    Health and Social Policy: The Context for Practice and Research 3 Core
    Advanced Pharmacology 3 Core
    Advanced Health Assessment in Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing I 2 Specialty
    Advanced Health Assessment in Psychiatric-Mental Health in Nursing II: Clinical Practicum 1 Specialty
    Spring I: 9 Credits
    Pathophysiology Across the Lifespan 3 Core
    Psychopathology 2 Specialty
    Family Theory in Context 2 Specialty
    Theory and Practice of Individual Psychotherapy I 2 Specialty
    Summer II: 5 - 11 Credits
    Contemporary Issues and Trends in Addiction 3 Optional Specialty
    Clinical Management of the Patient with Addiction: Evaluation and Treatment 1-3 Optional Specialty
    Management and Advanced Practice Nursing 1 Core
    Seminar on Family Therapy and Technique
    2 Specialty
    Theory and Practice of Individual Psychotherapy II 2 Specialty
    Fall II: 6 Credits
    Practice of Family Therapy 2 Specialty
    Theory of Group Psychotherapy 2 Specialty
    Clinical Practice and Supervision with Groups 2 Specialty
    Spring II: 7 Credits
    Incorporating Genetics into Advanced Nursing Practice 3 Core
    Advanced Practice in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing I 4 Specialty
    Summer III: 5 Credits
    Psychopharmacology in Psychiatric and Mental Health 1 Specialty
    Advanced Practice in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing II 4 Specialty
    Total Credits 56 - 61
    priorities2 likes this.
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    Thanks for linking to that, IcySageNurse.

    I've done a bit more research today and determined that a few other programs also have extensive therapy components:
    - OHSU
    - University of Washington
    - Case Western Reserve University

    Programs that *seem* not to (based on the course lists):
    - Boston College
    - UND
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    Quote from priorities2
    Thanks for linking to that, IcySageNurse.

    I've done a bit more research today and determined that a few other programs also have extensive therapy components:
    - OHSU
    - University of Washington
    - Case Western Reserve University

    Programs that *seem* not to (based on the course lists):
    - Boston College
    - UND
    Your welcome. I was going to suggest OHSU but couldn't find the curriculum. NP schools on the West Coast tend to be great though IMHO. Every curriculum I've looked at looks really good - OHSU, UW, UC Davis, etc. The curriculum for the FNP program at UCSF is amazing - I wish all NP schools followed their model.
    priorities2 likes this.
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    Elkpark:

    What do you suggest for prospective psych NP who want to learn psychotherapy? I myself thought about taking mental health counseling courses as a non-degree student.
    JesusKeepMe likes this.
  11. 0
    NYU is very heavy on the psychotherapy in their Psych NP program. You can also look into attending something like the New York School for Psychoanalytic Therapy and Analysis (NYSPP Homepage). Don't know where you are but I'm sure there is something like this in your area.


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