Clinical Psychological Assessment Training Issues in the COVID-19 Era: A Survey of the State of the Field and Considerations for Moving Forward




Gicas, Kristina M.
Paterson, Theone S. E.
Narvaez Linares, Nicolás F.
Loken Thornton, Wendy J.

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Canadian Psychology/Psychologie canadienne


This survey aimed to inform graduate-level training in clinical psychological assessment by identifying strategies, barriers, and needs of psychologists in managing assessment training activities in the COVID-19 era. A national online survey in English and French was advertised to registered psychologists involved in teaching, training, and/or supervision of clinical psychological assessment in Canada. Quantitative items were summarised, and qualitative data from the survey underwent thematic analysis. Of 164 respondents, 36% endorsed teaching clinical psychology or cognitive assessment courses, and 54% of them said they would adapt teaching to be entirely remote in the context of COVID-19 restrictions. The biggest teaching barriers were perceived as insufficient knowledge of remote clinical assessment methods and inadequate guidance from institutional authorities, while the most significant concerns were perceived ability to effectively meet course objectives and to prepare students for practica. Over three quarters (77%) of respondents indicated being involved in assessment training/supervision in practica or residencies, with 57% of these indicating their activities will be carried out in a blended format. The biggest barriers were clinic closures, on-site training restrictions, and inadequate resources, while concerns were related to threats to assessment validity and to health and safety. Results of this survey provide a snapshot of the state of the field, and the authors offer key considerations for moving forward as psychologists prepare to adapt teaching, training, and supervision activities. The impacts of COVID-19 on clinical psychological assessment training are broad and, although disruptive, present an opportunity for a paradigm shift.


The authors would like to acknowledge the assistance of members of the Clinical Neuropsychology Section Executive Committee of the CPA and the Assessment Training Issues in the COVID-19 Era Working Group in creating this survey. Additionally, the authors would like to thank Puneet Parmar for assisting with survey programming.


Neuropsychology, Psychological Assessment, Training, Graduate students, Covid-19


Gicas, K. M., Paterson, T. S. E., Narvaez Linares, N. F., & Loken Thornton, W. J. (2021). “Clinical psychological assessment training issues in the COVID-19 era: A survey of the state of the field and considerations for moving forward.” Canadian Psychology/Psychologie canadienne, 62(1), 44–55.