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Predoctoral Practicum

The developmental disabilities practicum provides focused training in therapy and psychological assessment of individuals with autism spectrum disorder, as well as children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). We currently offer five rotations:

  • Behavioral Interventions for Families Program (parent training for families of children with autism and other developmental disabilities)
  • Families Moving Forward Program (parent training for families of children with FASD)
  • Pediatric Feeding Disorders Program
  • Autism Diagnostic Clinic
  • FASD Diagnostic and Evaluation Clinic

At the beginning of the practicum, Drs. Laura Silverman and Christie Petrenko will meet with each trainee to develop an individualized training plan based on the trainee’s interests, short- and long-term goals, and availability. Based on these individualized training plans, trainees will be assigned to one or more rotations. Trainees will receive individual and group supervision, as appropriate, as part of each rotation.

Trainees will also meet as a group once a month with Drs. Silverman and Petrenko for a monthly didactic seminar. Brief check-ins with trainees will also occur during these monthly meetings to ensure training activities are well coordinated and that trainees are meeting expectations for their training plans.


Students must be enrolled in the Clinical Psychology doctoral program at the University of Rochester. No prior experience with developmental disabilities is required.

Application Deadline

April 1

Number of Hours Expected

The total number of hours expected will be determined as part of each student’s individualized training plan. The number of hours will vary depending on which rotations trainees select and the number of cases they are assigned.