Intellectual and Developmental Disability Psychology: A Unique Approach to Graduate Training Often the psychology of intellectual and developmental disabilities

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Intellectual and Developmental Disability Psychology: A Unique Approach to Graduate Training Often the psychology of intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) is concentrated in developmental,clinical, or school psychology graduate programs. There are fewdesignated IDD psychology programs across the United States.The OSU Nisonger Centers IDD Psychology Doctoral programoffer unique scholarly and clinical training in the field of IDD.One of seven doctoral graduate degree program areas ofOhio State University's Department of Psychology, the IDDPsychology Program specializes in training researchers andpractitioners to work with people with IDD.

IDD Specific CoursesDevelopmental Disabilities: Interdisciplinary Perspective (1st year)Ethics and Professional Issues in PsychologyResearch Forum Interdisciplinary Seminar on Autism Spectrum Disorders Assessment in IDD Psychopharmacology Behavior Modification

Field ExperiencesA total of 18 credit hours of field work including:Diagnostic Assessment/ Functional Behavioral AssessmentBehavioral interventionsSocial Skills groupsLEND traineeLEND interdisciplinary clinics (1st and 2nd years)LEND seminars and courses (throughout coursework)

Internship Students will be required to complete 1,500 internship hours in anapplied setting serving children or adults with IDD.

Masters, Candidacy Examination, Doctoral DissertationMasters Thesis: completed by beginning of third yearCandidacy Examination-written and oral portions Doctoral Dissertation

Postdoctoral FellowshipsBoston UniversityNational Institute of Mental HealthNationwide Childrens HospitalNorth Carolina Chapel HillUniversity of WisconsinYale University Child Study Center


Andrea Witwer, PhDThe Ohio State University Nisonger Center; Department of Psychiatry and PsychologyBackgroundCurriculum/Program RequirementsProgram ObjectivesEquip students to pursue a career in IDD psychology as a researcher, administrator, or in private practice.

Gain knowledge in areas such as causes of developmental disabilities, psychological and physical characteristics of these populations, assessment and diagnosis, and treatment approaches.

Program graduates will have research skills to extend the boundaries and application of this knowledge. By achieving this, they can adapt to the changing needs of professional practice in the field.

Graduates Discussion/ChallengesLicensure requirements in various states have changed such that licensure is not guaranteed for our students. We are pursing ASPPB accreditation to address this. Outreach to LEND/UCEDD network to facilitate varied training and internship opportunities is a necessity.

Collaboration among UCEDD and LEND program can enrich training for graduate students, interns, and postdoctoral fellows.


Curriculum/Program RequirementsDoctoral Level Psychology Courses:Statistics CoursesResearch MethodsPsychological Assessment CoursePsychobiologyDevelopmental PsychologyHistory and Systems Psychopathology Social Bases of Behavior

Productivity of Graduate StudentsActivities of graduate students (2005-present)Numerous presentations at local and national meetingsOver 50 peer reviewed papers during graduate tenureGrants agencies such as Organization for Autism Research and Ohio Department of Mental HealthUniversity Fellowship recipients

Student Awards and RecognitionAcademy on Mental Retardation Dissertation Award, AmericanAAID Early Career AwardGraduate Associate Teaching Award



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