Consistent with our mission to provide comprehensive pre-doctoral training in evidence based practices, CBT California offers a highly-selective externship for advanced doctoral level psychology graduate students. As part of the placement, externs receive training and supervision on CBT, DBT and other empirically supported treatments. They also attend group supervision, weekly didactics and participate in research. A predominantly clinical position, practicum students provide individual and group therapy in the private practice setting in various treatment modalities, including DBT, CBT, ACT, and CBASP. At this time, we only accept applicants from Duke University, Pepperdine University, and Alliant University. Applications for practicum are accepted in February of each year. Applicants must be cleared by their Training Director to apply. Please contact your school for more information.

Nature of Setting and Population Served

Externs provide services in group practices settings including our Orange County, Long Beach, or Beverly Hills/LA location to a culturally diverse, sophisticated, and educated clientele. Service location for the externship will be determined with input from the extern, although all externs must attend the weekly DBT team meeting in person at our Long Beach office.  Externs provide cognitive behavioral therapies (CBT, DBT, ACT and CBASP) to adults and adolescents in both individual and group formats.  All settings are interdisciplinary and patients are seen for empirically supported treatments.

Direct/Indirect Services

The externship aims to familiarize the extern with four evidence based treatments, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Cognitive Behavioral Analysis System of Psychotherapy (CBASP) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). Externs also typically carry 3  individual CBT patients, 4 DBT patient and 1 CBASP patients. They also have the opportunity to serve on committees for multiple local and international CBT organizations.

Externs develop a group research project to complete for the year. For the past several years, the projects have been reported at national and international conferences. Several are in preparation for publication.

Supervision and Training 

Primary supervision is provided by licensed clinical psychologists or postdoctoral fellows.  Required courses include the CBT course, the DBT team consultation and the CBTC didactics.  The extern will be provided several required trainings at the beginning of the year including: a three day required training in DBT, a one day training in CBASP, and a one day training in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.  Opportunities for other seminars and courses are available.

Required Days

Externs are required to be on site a minimum of 18 hours a week.  Required days are Mondays 9-7pm,  Fridays 8:15-10:45am and one additional full day to be arranged with the Director of Training. The Monday didactics are held at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, where the extern registers as a volunteer in order to collaborate on research.  Attendance is required at Mindfulness (Mondays 9:00-9:30), Research Meeting (Monday 9:30-10:30), the Advances in Cognitive Therapy (Mondays 10:30-12) (at Harbor-UCLA), CBTC research meeting (currently Wednesdays 1-2pm via teleconference. Day/time changes yearly) DBT Team Meeting (8:15-9:45am Friday in the Long Beach office, attendance in person is mandatory) and CBTC didactics (every other week on Fridays 9:45-10:45). For individual DBT patients, the extern must make themselves available (within their limits) for supervised between-session phone coaching for their DBT patients.

Additional information

Students applying for the CBT California externship must have had previous psychotherapy experience providing direct services to adults. Completion of a course in CBT is preferable, but not required. Must have a distinct interest in Cognitive Behavioral Therapies.

Students must be approved by the Training Director at their program to apply for this externship.  If you have been approved to apply, please wait to be contacted by our Educational Coordinator. We will contact everyone who has applied after we have received the lists from all schools.

Application Materials:

Letter of Interest (must include specific interest in CBTs)

Two Letters of Recommendation


CBT Case Conceptualization