The Cultural Neuropsychology Initiative (CNI) at the UCLA Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior and the UCLA Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital offers a unique training opportunity for pre-doctoral clinical students who are interested in the neurocognitive and neuropsychiatric assessment of individuals from diverse cultural backgrounds through the Culture and Neurocognition Assessment Service (CANAS). Since July 2010, the CNI offers a 12-month training rotation for graduate students enrolled in an APA approved Clinical Psychology doctoral program. Students in the CNI clinical practicum provide outpatient neuropsychological assessments to Spanish speaking and bilingual patients across the lifespan with a variety of diagnoses, including dementia, epilepsy, brain tumors, organ transplant, learning disabilities, and other conditions that impact neurocognitive functioning. CNI practicum students are trained in the theory and practice of neuropsychological assessment with individuals from diverse cultural backgrounds in general, and also receive specialized training in the administration and interpretation of linguistically and culturally appropriate neuropsychological measures with Spanish dominant and bilingual individuals. Practicum student are expected to participate in all aspects of neuropsychological assessment within CANAS from the initial intake interview to report-writing and feedback.
Current position openings: We currently offer 2-3 positions each year.
Resource Allocation: Practicum students share office space on the Semel Institute C Floor. Appropriate office equipment, including desk, phone, computer, and office supplies, is provided.
Supervision: All practicum students receive weekly supervision from Dr. Cagigas and other rotating bilingual/bicultural faculty, who are both neuropsychologists and licensed clinical psychologists. There is also a weekly case conference in which all CNI trainees, including interns and postdocs, present and discuss their cases. CNI practicum students participate in several didactic seminars that are part of the post-doctoral fellowship program in neuropsychology, including the Cultural Neuropsychology Seminar, as well as mandatory group supervision with other UCLA neuropsychology practicum students on Thursdays from 10:30am-12:00pm. In addition, informal supervision (phone calls, emails, etc.) is available when necessary, and all supervisors are available for consultation if an urgent situation arises. Practicum student evaluations will be completed by the direct clinical supervisor. Orientation to the CNI occurs in mid-July and is conducted by supervisors and past practicum students. All essential materials, including psychological assessment instruments, are available and provided for all practicum students.
Supervisor: Xavier E. Cagigas, Ph.D.