Universiteit Leiden

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Live supervision of training in clinical psychology therapeutic skills

Anne Krause and Niki Antypa received a facultairy 'Grassroots' subsidy of 1.000 euros for education innovation. They're going to implement live supervision of students during therapy/coaching sessions in the International Practice Internship.

It is the first time students will receive live supervision and it will be evaluated how they benefit from it. Feedback will be obtained both from students, student coaches and clients.

Traditional supervision

Training in clinical psychology therapeutic skills requires close supervision. Traditionally, therapy/coaching sessions are video-taped and then viewed by the supervisor, who gives feedback afterwards. The practical problem with delayed (post-session) feedback is that it is more difficult to provide specific feedback. It also involves the risk that trainees continue to implement ineffective and inappropriate practices, especially when trainees have more than one session a day.

Live supervision

Live supervision means that the supervisor participates in the session (by observing the session through a one-way mirror glass window or a webcam), and immediately intervenes by offering constructive feedback. These approaches are known as “Bug-in-the-eye” (BITE; participation via camera or single-glass window). We will use a tablet-based BITE supervision to guide our students during their therapeutic/coaching sessions.


In this way, we are able to:

  1. observe the situation live;
  2. to simultaneously direct the trainee’s attention to specific behaviors of the client and/or himself;
  3.  to deliver effective instructional interactions using short concise cues (e.g., “summarize”, “rephrase”);
  4.  to immediately reinforce / praise the trainee when he/she is doing well and is “on the right track”.


On the other end, the student can:

  1. learn to directly implement evidence-based practice into behavior;
  2. ask for quick feedback by short pre-programmed entries like “help”;
  3. maintain autonomy;
  4. focus on the therapeutic alliance with the client.

Therapeutic training takes place live.

The internship is part of the Master in Clinical Psychology at Leiden University. Most of the work takes place at the new Leiden University Treatment Expertise Centre (Leids Universitair Behandel Expertise Centrum, LUBEC).

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