University of Wisconsin-Madison
Department of Rehabilitation Psychology and Special Education

194-630 Internship in Rehabilitation or Special Education

Instructor: Kristine M. Eiring, Ph.D.
432 N. Murray Street, Room 428
263-5824; other office #: 310-6020, ext 2
dreir[email protected]
Office hours: Fridays 1-2, or by appointment

Teaching Assistants: Daniel Reynolds
432 N. Murray Street, Room 418
Email: dreynold[email protected]

Susan Schall
432 N. Murray Street, Room 417
Email: sscha[email protected]

Secretary: Mike Duckwitz
432 N. Murray Street, Room 423

Course Objectives

This course provides supervised field experience in a rehabilitation-relevant community agency or program, under the supervision of a professional in this field. It is designed to give undergraduate students in Rehabilitation Psychology and related majors an introduction to professional practice in rehabilitation. In addition, it provides opportunities to develop knowledge and skill important to professional practice through supervised clinical activities. More specifically, course objectives focus on the following areas:

1. Knowledge of the rehabilitation and human service system and specific agencies and
programs within the system.

2. Knowledge of clientele served by rehabilitation and human service agencies and their

3. Skill in direct service to clients and other professional responsibilities.


All students will complete an internship in an approved agency site, extending over a specified number of weeks, according to a specified schedule. The total number of hours spent in the placement will determine the number of credits awarded for the course. Various activities may be included in the internship experience depending on the nature of the site, the learning objectives of the student, and the readiness of the student to assume different responsibilities.

Within the first four weeks of the internship the student, agency supervisor, and course instructor will meet jointly to discuss learning objectives and internship responsibilities. At the end of that meeting the student will prepare a learning contract stating learning objectives, along with activities and responsibilities designed to accomplish those objectives. Learning objectives will specify the areas of knowledge and skill to be developed through the internship experience.
Activities and responsibilities might include any of the following: observation, outside reading, discussions with various staff both inside and outside of the agency, visits to other agencies and programs, and direct service and other day-to-day responsibilities. The student will submit a copy of the learning contract to his/her TA who will sign it and pass it on to Dr. Eiring to be signed. The student and agency supervisor should sign this prior to giving it the to the TA. After Dr. Eiring has signed it the TA will keep the original and give a copy to the student and the student will make a copy for the agency supervisor. The original is given to Dr. Eiring at the end of the semester and will be placed in your department file.

Another meeting of the student, agency supervisor, and instructor will be held at midterm to discuss internship activities and progress in accomplishing learning objectives. In addition, the need for any changes in objectives, activities, and responsibilities will also be discussed. Again, the student will be responsible for preparing a revised learning contract and distributing copies to the agency supervisor and instructor.

In instances where the internship site is beyond driving distance from Madison, telephone contacts will substitute for the two joint meetings.

Throughout the internship experience the student will be expected to maintain regular contact with the instructor, as individually agreed upon. This will typically be accomplished through one of two methods: (a) written logs of internship activities submitted to the instructor on a weekly basis when this is agreed upon; or (b) or group meetings (seminar) with the instructor.

At the end of the internship the student will submit a brief paper (approximately five pages) discussing his/her own perceptions of progress in meeting each of the learning objectives. This will include a discussion of where the student perceived her/himself to be at the beginning of the internship, and at the end, with respect to each of the objectives. In addition, the agency supervisor will submit a written evaluation of the student's performance at the end of the internship on a form which will be provided by the instructor.


1. Complete the internship experience according to the specified schedule.

2. Submit a copy of the learning contract to the instructor one week after the first joint meeting.

3. Submit a copy of the revised learning contract one week after the joint midterm meeting (if revisions are made).

4. Maintain regular contact with the instructor according to the agreed upon procedures.

5. Submit the paper discussing progress in meeting the learning objectives by Monday of the last week of the internship experience.


Grades will be based on the evaluation by the agency supervisor of student performance and on progress in meeting learning objectives, as discussed in the student's final paper. The student will also be expected to satisfy all other requirements specified above, including assignments given in the individual or group meetings with the instructor.

Seminar Dates for Monday Section

September 19th Introductions

October 3rd

October 17th

October 31st

November 14th

November 28th

December 12th

Seminar Dates for Tuesday Section

September 20th Introductions

October 4th

October 18th

November 1st

November 15th

November 29th

December 13th

Note: Students can miss one class unless otherwise discussed with the TA. If a student misses more than one class than the grade for this class will be affected.

630 Final Paper


The final paper is a review of your field placement. The objective is for you to reflect on your placement and consider your development. Please follow the guidelines listed below.

1. Five pages in length, no longer than seven pages.

2. Use APA style for the title page only; include:

a. Title page, consistent with APA format, including:

(a) title
(b) header, including page numbers
(c) running head
(d) institution of affiliation
(e) etc.

b. Introduction

c. A main body

d. Conclusion

Papers should reflect a professional tone, appropriate for rehabilitation professionals working in a professional rehabilitation environment

a. Papers will be respectful of clients, supervisors, co-workers, etc.
b. Papers will be positive in tone
c. Criticisms or complaints will be worded in a tentative way (e.g., _____ may pose a problem in that ___________ .)
d. Criticisms or complaints will include insight into constraints, and proposals for possible solutions.
e. Use professional language and avoid using “I” when discussing your development (discuss this with your T.A.)

3. Discuss your site placement and describe the services offered. Review your responsibilities at this site. Offer your initial impressions. Consider also reviewing some of these issues: ethical dilemmas encountered, knowledge gained, skills developed, relationship between client characteristics and the services offered by your placement site. Comment about your contract and fulfilling your responsibilities.

Rehabilitation Counseling/Rehabilitation Psychology

Field Experience Contract

The field experience component of undergraduate and graduate instruction in rehabilitation psychology/rehabilitation counseling is designed to provide students with practical experience, including the provision of direct client/consumer services, assuming responsibilities that are consistent with the student's level of professional development and learning needs.

will complete field experience under the
Student's Name

supervision of
Agency Supervisor(s) Phone


from through
Start Date End Date

for hours/week.


Note: All contracts must be type written.

Duties and responsibilities will include the following:

Learning objectives (knowledge and skill to be developed) will include the following:

The student will perform the duties and responsibilities specified in a reliable and conscientious manner and will maintain regular contact with the instructor, and agency supervisor(s), and any other university supervisor(s), informing them of any problems that might develop in performing those duties and utilizing them as resources to facilitate learning and professional development.

The agency supervisor(s) will assign duties consistent with student readiness and provide the necessary supervision to perform those duties. The agency supervisor(s) will also provide an evaluation of the student's performance at the end of the semester, using a form to be provided.

The instructor will be available to both the student and agency supervisor to facilitate the fulfillment of this contract. The instructor and/or other designated university supervisor will meet with the student and agency supervisor (in the case of out-of-state placements, phone and/or e-mail contacts will be used) at least three times for graduate students and twice for undergraduates to facilitate planning and to monitor and facilitate progress.

Student Date

Agency Supervisor(s) Date

Instructor Date

Other University Supervisor(s) Date

Last modified: Friday, 1 December 2006, 01:35 PM