Addressing Behavioral Health Needs

Clinical Psychology Ph.D. Focuses Curriculum on Underserved Communities

Publication Date: 10/30/2019

The University of Texas at Tyler College of Education and Psychology welcomed its inaugural class in the new doctoral program in clinical psychology this fall.

The first clinical psychology Ph.D. to be offered in Northeast Texas, the program is designed to prepare students for professional and academic careers as clinical psychologists. The curriculum places emphasis on practicing clinical psychology among underserved populations.

“The 35 counties in Northeast Texas face significant challenges and disparities in the health status of their citizens, including behavioral health,’’ Dr. Charles Barké, chair and professor of psychology and counseling, said, citing a recent report on the health status of the region. “Our clinical psychology doctoral program will address these behavioral health needs by bringing highly qualified students to Smith County, increasing the likelihood that they will remain in the area after graduation and add to the doctoral level provider workforce.’’

The program also will place significant numbers of students at multiple behavioral health service sites throughout the area as part of their clinical experiences. “Many regional healthcare and social service agencies have expressed a strong desire for doctoral clinical psychology students to be actively involved in their service delivery,’’ Barké said.

Students will have the option to specialize in one of three areas: veterans and active duty military mental health, rural mental health, or geropsychology. Courses will be delivered on campus for the first four years, with the fifth year consisting of a full-time, 12-month clinical psychology internship.

For more about the clinical psychology Ph.D. program, visit

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UT Tyler