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What Is Psychology Internship ?

What Is Psychology Internship ?

If  you're a psychology student looking to learn functional skills and apply your academic knowledge in a professional workplace, then an internship is a viable way to achieve this. There are many psychology internships available, each offering unique experiences and specialized practice methods. Learning about the different psychology internships can help you make a more informed decision about which one most closely aligns with your career goals in the psychology field.

A psychology internship is an essential part of a psychology student's academic and professional career. It offers a tangible experience to interns where they can learn about the practical applications of psychology and implement what they have learned from their textbooks, lectures and professors. There are a variety of internships with their own subdisciplines to consider, but the duration, responsibilities and pay for each may vary. During an internship, the employer expects the intern to commit to the role diligently and demonstrate a steady improvement in their work ethic, patient care and knowledge.

Benefits of a psychology internship

A psychology internship can offer several benefits to participating students. For starters, it provides interns with a variety of different tasks and responsibilities, allowing them to learn how to perform many duties. Some interns also have a mentor who provides them with specialized instructions and teaches them details of how to perform the job well while also serving as a valuable connection and resource.

Listing an internship on your resume may also provide additional career opportunities because employers sometimes prefer or even require students to have completed an internship in order to qualify for an entry-level position. Interns also benefit from gaining new or expanding on important soft skills like listening, communication, empathy, compassion and analytical skills. Additionally, students can sometimes use their internships as college credit, which can fulfill a portion of the hours needed for graduation without taking a class.

Types of psychology internships

Sports psychology intern

A sports psychology internship provides students with the experience to explore how psychological factors can affect, alter and influence the various elements of sports, including a person's athletic performance, any physical activities they participate in and how well they exercise. In this internship, they learn how to identify the correlation between sports participation and good health. They also learn how to use their psychology skills to improve someone's mental health and teach them ways to perform better in a game. Motivating others, visualizing goals and attentional focus are other skills a sports psychology intern can learn.

Psychology intern

A psychology internship provides interns with the fundamentals of psychology practice working with adults, adolescents and children, often within a hospital or psychiatric work environment. Interns learn how to assist patients with a diverse range of mental health issues, like addiction and substance abuse, and may also gain experience in group facilitation work. Some of these internships may transition from a hospital setting to an outpatient type of work environment with follow-up therapy sessions.

Virtual school psychology intern

A virtual school psychology internship provides interns with the experience to create psycho-educational evaluations and teach them how to write accurate assessment reports about young students. Interns learn how to meet online with students who are experiencing some difficulty in completing their schoolwork or are showcasing some behavioral and emotional issues affecting their academics. An intern typically tests these students to identify any issues and then relays their reports to a licensed psychologist or counselor for additional help.

Behavior technician intern

A behavior technician internship teaches interns how to provide Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy to children with a diagnosis of mental health conditions like autism and developmental disabilities. In this position, an intern may perform several duties, such as providing ABA group and one-on-one therapy sessions, implementing behavior support plans and providing assistance with patients' daily routines. They learn how to collect accurate data and complete daily session notes that are concise and detailed.

Goal specialist intern

A goal specialist internship provides interns with experience on how to help clients by using a variety of strategies and plans based on behavioral science methodologies. In this role, an intern can expect to coach clients by using techniques like cognitive-behavioral therapy, mental contrasting and motivational interviewing. They may also consult and coordinate directly with psychology advisers on how to develop new and intuitive coaching techniques.

Psychological assistant intern

A psychological assistant internship provides an intern with the opportunity to aid licensed psychologists as they care for and treat their patients. In this role, the intern can provide care to patients under the supervision of the psychologist. An intern's job duties may include tasks like conducting a thorough assessment of patients, patient intake and assisting in research initiatives. The psychological assistant intern also learns how to make accurate diagnoses and prepare important medical documentation and records

Veteran outreach psychology intern

In the veteran outreach psychology internship program, students learn how to manage veteran outreach programs such as community outreach and veteran-specific events. In this role, the intern can expect to work directly with veterans and provide them with assistance. The student gains experience by learning about the most relevant psychology concepts used specifically for helping the veteran demographic.

Pre-licensed mental health intern


In a pre-licensed mental health internship, the intern works with an experienced mental health provider to outline details like patient cases and treatment plans. The intern learns how to manage their own emotions and practice efficient self-care strategies to help them be able to provide proper care to patients. Having a licensed mental health practitioner to guide them throughout the internship helps to improve their capabilities as mental health professionals and psychologists.


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