APA/APAGS Statement on the 2013 APPIC Internship Match
For students in clinical, counseling and school psychology programs, the APPIC Internship Match Day is a critical milestone in their academic careers. The American Psychological Association and American Psychological Association of Graduate Students are encouraged that, during the first phase of the 2013 internship match process, fewer students looking for an internship failed to match than did so last year. However, we also strongly note that the imbalance between the number of students seeking internship and the number of internship positions, particularly accredited internships, is unacceptably high. Helping to resolve the internship crisis is one of APA and APAGS's highest priorities — and will remain so until it is no longer a crisis.
The Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internships Centers released this year's match statistics today:
- 4,481 students registered for the 2013 match
- 4,051 students submitted a ranking list
- 2,515 positions were available at APA- and CPA-accredited internship sites
- 861 positions were available at APPIC member, non-APA/CPA-accredited internship sites
- 2,431 students matched to APA- and CPA-accredited internship sites
- 663 students matched to APPIC member, non-APA/CPA-accredited internship sites
These data indicate a match rate of 76.4 percent to any internship, and 60.0 percent to APA- and CPA-accredited internships.
These numbers reveal that the field is continuing to experience an internship crisis, one that in many cases haphazardly affects students who are otherwise qualified and prepared to be interns. We reiterate that this crisis is complex and requires the continued focus of many stakeholders devoted to short- and long-term solutions, such as the ones APAGS outlined in July 2012 with our official position on the crisis and published in Grus et al. (2012).
For those who did not match to an internship this year, APAGS extends our uncompromising support and encouragement. We understand that no matter how many times you have braced yourself for the possibility of not matching, the reality still stings. This news may also lead you to doubt your abilities and feel let down by others. These are natural feelings, and you are not alone. APAGS is pained to hear stories of students in these predicaments. They are happening far too frequently and affect students who would very likely match in a system that had no shortage. We hope you find constructive ways to further your professional development in the upcoming year. APAGS and APA continue to fight for students in these situations where ever possible.
APAGS recently updated its article describing the next steps for students who did not match. The article contains links to further sources of support.
Those who secured an internship have reason to celebrate the opportunity to continue your professional training and goals without interruption. We hope that you are pleased with your outcome and that you have a great internship training year.
For all students — present and future — APA is extremely concerned about the APPIC internship match imbalance. We have been involved in a number of steps to address it in 2012 and 2013, specifically:
- APA funded an Internship Stimulus Package, designed to help currently non-accredited internships achieve APA accreditation. As a result of the advocacy of APAGS and other training groups, APA agreed in August 2012 to fund up to $3 million over three years for this program. So far, APA has funded 32 internships at a total of $600,000.
- We are advocating for reimbursement for services provided by clinical interns. Internship sites in numerous states have had difficulty getting reimbursed for services provided by interns. Reimbursement for such services could make it easier to create and fund internship positions.
- APA's Commission on Accreditation is at a historic moment in considering revisions to its Guidelines and Principles, providing APAGS with several opportunities to outline our concerns and recommendations related to the internship crisis. We consider each question and comment an opportunity to advance our goal of an APA-accredited internship position for every student in an APA-accredited doctoral program.
- At "Courageous Conversations 2," an internship crisis dialogue among APAGS, APPIC and various councils of doctoral training programs in December 2012, APAGS spoke to the needs of its members:
- We asked doctoral training councils to encourage doctoral programs to provide financial assistance to students who do not match in the APPIC match. This support could include an assistantship with a stipend or free tuition to students who need to stay enrolled to document full-time status. All training councils agreed to recommend this to their member programs.
- We will educate applicants to doctoral programs about the internship match so they can make fully informed decisions about their education and training. APAGS premiered these materials in January 2013 and will continue to develop and share information at conferences, on the Web and through its Campus Representative network.