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Pediatric Neuropsychology Externships

Neuropsychology Externship 2014 - 2015

Please note the following information. The final deadline for applications to the Division of Pediatric Neuropsychology is February 15, 2014. However, we will schedule interviews on a continuous basis, as applications are received. You will receive notification via email that your application has been received and what, if any, additional materials are needed. Due to the high volume of calls received in the past, we request that you not call to confirm the status of your application.

The Institution
Children’s National Medical Center is a non-profit institution incorporated in 1870. The mission of Children’s National is to be preeminent in providing pediatric healthcare services that enhance the health and well-being of children regionally, nationally, and internationally. Through leadership and innovation, Children’s National strives to create solutions to pediatric healthcare problems.

The hospital on Children’s main campus is located in Washington DC, adjacent to the Washington Hospital Center, National Rehabilitation Hospital, the Washington V.A. Hospital, Catholic University and Howard University. It is easily accessible from suburban areas. In addition, Children's National has seven satellite outpatient clinics in Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia, and is part of a complex of healthcare facilities for the entire Washington metropolitan area. Further information about the hospital and its programs is available at our website.

Psychology and Neuropsychology are both Divisions within the Center of Neurosciences and Behavioral Medicine, which is directed by Dr. Roger Packer, a neurologist. Other divisions in this center include Psychiatry, Neurology, Neurosurgery, Developmental Pediatrics, Genetics and Metabolism, Hearing and Speech, and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. The Center for Excellence structure was designed to stimulate multidisciplinary collaboration, in terms of both patient care and research, among disciplines and specialties with common interests. Psychology and Neuropsychology have particularly strong working relationships with Psychiatry, Developmental Pediatrics, and Neurology.

Children’s National is the pediatric teaching hospital for the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences. Psychologists at Children’s National hold academic appointments in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and the Department of Pediatrics at the medical school. Children’s National offers a variety of training programs in various medical specialties, all of which are overseen by the medical staff. The Division of Pediatric Neuropsychology offers training programs at the post-doctoral, pre-doctoral internship, and practicum-level for psychology students.

Clinical Externship in Assessment - Pediatric Neuropsychology
Description: This is an advanced assessment externship in the Division of Pediatric Neuropsychology at Children’s National. The program is under the direction of Gerry Gioia, Ph.D., and includes 12 faculty neuropsychologists, four pediatric psychologists, six postdoctoral fellows, as well as multiple predoctoral interns and externs. Neuropsychology externs learn to administer neuropsychological tests, including measures of intelligence, attention, executive function, language, visual processing, learning and memory, social cognition, fine motor abilities, and emotional adjustment. Externs are taught to interpret test data, formulate diagnoses and conceptualize each patient’s unique pattern of neuropsychological strengths and weaknesses, assist with report writing, and participate in parent feedback conferences when possible. The externship is designed for students who are interested in developing advanced skills in child assessment, as well as those with specific interest in the specialty of pediatric neuropsychology. This service works in close consultation with Children's physicians and several multi-disciplinary teams. An extern may be involved in presenting neuropsychological findings to, and discussing cases with, neurologists, psychiatrists, psychologists, speech/language pathologists, and teachers.

There are three types of positions available, all of which provide extensive neuropsychological experience, but with different populations. The first is a general neuropsychology placement, focusing on the evaluation of school-age children and adolescents with complex neurological and developmental disorders (e.g., complex learning disabilities, AD/HD, traumatic brain injury, epilepsy, brain tumor/leukemia, etc.). The second placement involves working in the Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders, completing neuropsychological evaluations of school-aged children and adolescents with Aspergers and high functioning autism. This placement includes the opportunity to work as part of a multidisciplinary team including neuropsychology, developmental psychology, speech/language pathology, and psychiatry. The third placement involves assessment of, and intervention for, children and adolescents with concussions/mild traumatic brain injuries in the Safe Concussion Outcome, Recovery & Education (SCORE) program. This program has a particular specialty in working with children and adolescents with sports-related concussions. The SCORE clinic uses a primary care model to provide brief, focused evaluations that facilitate concussion management and monitoring throughout the recovery period. Clinical work in the SCORE clinic includes follow-up communication and care coordination with schools, trainers, and other medical professionals.

Didactics: In addition to 1-2 hours of individual supervision weekly, externs are welcome to attend weekly didactic neuropsychology seminars. The weekly seminar consists of talks on neuropsychological assessment of special populations, case discussions, and journal clubs. In addition, externs are encouraged to participate in behavior medicine grand rounds, selected psychology intern seminars, and other didactic experiences.

Research: Opportunities to participate in clinically based research may also be available. Staff interests include, but are not limited to, executive function, epilepsy, concussion, neurofibromatosis, childhood cancers, memory, and autism spectrum disorders.

Qualifications: The general neuropsychology and Autism placements are advanced child assessment externships, and thus are most appropriate for students in their third year or beyond, have completed coursework in assessment, have had prior externship experience with testing, and direct clinical experience with children. The externship in the SCORE clinic is appropriate for doctoral students at all levels of training who may have less assessment training or experience, or have a particular interest in working with children and adolescents with mild traumatic brain injuries/concussions or sports-related injuries.

Time Requirements: Sixteen hours per week is required. This externship is a 12-month commitment, although under special circumstances (e.g., internship start date, etc.), alternative arrangements can be made in advance.

Location: Our main clinical location is the Shady Grove Regional Outpatient Center (Rockville, MD), located 8 miles north of the beltway (495). In addition, some patients are seen at the main hospital, Upper Marlboro, and at the Laurel Lakes locations. Externs doing the general neuropsychology placement may be placed at any one of those locations depending upon which faculty member they are matched with.

Number of positions being offered: Eight to 10 externs will be accepted for the 2013-2014 training year. The final application deadline is March 1, 2013, although interviews will be scheduled on a continuous basis as applications are received.

To apply: Send a letter of interest, CV/resume with a list of relevant coursework, list of tests administered and number of administrations, and contact information (phone and e-mail), academic transcript (does not have to be official), and two letters of recommendation. In your letter of interest, please state which placement you are interested in being considered for (General, Autism, SCORE). Please direct all materials and inquiries to:

Christopher Vaughan, Psy.D. & Karin S Walsh, Psy.D.
Externship Co-Directors
Children’s National Medical Center
Division of Pediatric Neuropsychology
15245 Shady Grove Road, Suite 350
Rockville, Maryland  20850

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Clinical Externships in Autism Evaluation, Consultation and Treatment

Description: Clinical Psychology students are invited to apply for an externship at the Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders (CASD).  The position offers supervised training in evaluation, consultation, and treatment of toddlers, children and adolescents with autism and related disorders.  Children who come to our clinic present with problems including behavioral difficulties, and social and communication deficits consistent with autism spectrum disorders.  The children may also have medical conditions, underlying neurological disorders, and/or other genetic disorders.  Externs will have the following opportunities:
  • Comprehensive diagnostic evaluations for young children (under 5).  The extern may gain experience with the following assessment instruments:  Leiter International Performance Scale-Revised, Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scales of Intelligence Scales-III, Differential Ability Scales-II, Mullen Scales of Early Learning, Bayley-III, Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales-II, NEPSY-II, among others.
  • Neuropsychological evaluation.  CASD’s neuropsychology program offers comprehensive neuropsychological and diagnostic evaluations for children, adolescents, and young adults on the autism spectrum, or suspected of having an autism spectrum disorder.  The extern may gain experience with a broad range of neuropsychological assessment tools as well as standard autism diagnostic measures, report writing, and providing feedback and consultation with families.
  • Outpatient psychotherapy with children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders and their families. The extern’s typical caseload is 3-4 weekly patients.  Common referral issues include OCD symptoms, executive functioning problems, behavioral problems, anxiety, depression, and family difficulties.  Treatment often uses CBT, PCIT, exposure therapy, executive function training, psychoeducation empowerment, and parent training techniques.
  • Group psychotherapy. Co-facilitate social skills, executive functioning, or transition to adult life groups for higher functioning children with autism spectrum disorders.
  • Consultation regarding new diagnoses of autism spectrum disorders. Rapid consultation, education, and counseling with families of children newly diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder.  This includes developing a comprehensive treatment plan, psychoeducation and family support.
  • Weekly multidisciplinary team evaluations, case conferences and didactic seminars.  This will include experiences with our clinical psychologists, child psychiatrists, speech and language pathologists, and neuropsychologists.
  • Autism Diagnostics. Exposure to, and possible training in, autism diagnostic assessments including the Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised and the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-2.
  • Research. Although the majority of the externship focuses on clinical activities, there are also many opportunities to participate in research.
  • Supervision. Weekly individual supervision with Dr. Anthony, Dr. Kenworthy, Dr. Strang, Dr. Bollich, and/or Dr. Inge is provided. There are also group supervision sessions (e.g., intervention, assessment groups and case conferences). 
Applicants who are primarily interested in conducting neuropsychological assessments with this population may apply through this externship, or may also apply for the externship in Pediatric Neuropsychology (Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders placement) also described in this brochure.  

Qualifications:  A strong interest in autism spectrum disorders is required. Formal coursework in child development and assessment is expected. Assessment and therapy experience with children is preferred. Excellent communication skills and the ability to work as part of a team are also presumed.

Time Requirement:  Sixteen hours per week. This externship is a 12-month commitment from July-June.

Number of Positions Being Offered:  Four to six externs will be recruited for these positions.

Location:  Shady Grove Regional Outpatient Center in Rockville, Maryland.

To Apply: 
Send a letter of interest, current CV with a list of relevant coursework, academic transcript (does not have to be official), and two letters of recommendation to:

Laura Anthony, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders
15245 Shady Grove Road, Suite 350
Rockville, MD, 20850  
Office: 301-765-5430
Fax: 301-765-5497

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