The curriculum proceeds from core courses providing an educational foundation to more specialized topics geared toward students' individual interests. During the first year of the program, students complete courses aimed at ensuring basic knowledge in psychopathology, research methodology, psychological assessment, statistics, and biological foundations of psychopathology. Also during the first year, students begin attending colloquia and other professional issues-related presentations designed to acquaint them with current research in the program and field more generally, to orient them to current ethical and professional issues in the field, and to further the process of professional enculturation. Additionally, students are encouraged to attend any research groups that interest them. Students are welcome to attend more than one group despite working officially with one professor, allowing for a greater breadth of exposure to various methods and topics.
During their second year, students begin seeing clients in the KU Psychological Clinic, having been prepared for this by a comprehensive clinic orientation during the summer of their first year. Second-year students also are working on completing their masters theses, as well as taking other core psychology and clinical psychology courses.
The "task requirement" is a central feature of the third year. As noted previously (see above section titled "Task Requirement") it may take the form of a literature review, a clinical intervention demonstration, or a program evaluation project. The course work during the third year is comprised of both elective and required classes, and students continue their practicum training in the KU Psychological Clinic (or the KU Medical Center in the case of students in the Clinical Health Subspecialty).