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Clinical Psychology

PRESENTATION

Panzi Hospital was founded in 1999 by Dr. Denis Mukwege. Since then, it has an average of 250 patients a month who are survivors of sexual violence and others suffering from fistula due to giving birth in bad conditions subsequent to different wars and generalized poverty in rural areas. The psychosocial management programme is done by a group of 3 psychologists and 9 psychosocial assistants. This number is insufficient for a good management of this service. The psychologists and other professionals who work in the structures of taking care of all sorts of violence in Bukavu city and its neighbourhoods have a pressing need of an enhenced and structured training for better responding to all sorts of trauma whose consequences will affect many generations.

GOAL, OBJECTIVE AND VISION OF THE PROGRAMME

The Evangelical University in Africa has decided to offer a training of highly qualified clinician psychologists, in collaboration with the Hospital of Panzi as principal place of practice and with all the other institutions offering the most adequate possible response to female survivors of violence of any sort. That is why it has just created within the Faculty of Medicine and Community Health a department of Clinical Psychology.

Goal of the programme

This programme leans on:

  • a contribution of theoretical knowledge in the domain of pathological and clinical psychology, psycho-traumatology, psychosomatic, psychotherapy and cultural psychology,
  • a personal training including a clinical experiment in the form of a training course and an experiment of personal implication in a group of supervision,
  • a contribution of knowledge concerning the techniques of investigation and evaluation in varied clinical fields,
  • sensitization on the problems arising from the professional practice and its deontology.

Objectives

General objective

The objective of Clinical Psychology Programme is to make students acquire a high theoretical and practical professional competence, especially those who are involved in the psychology training and who desire to work in the domain of clinical psychology, psychology and psycho-therapy, in the particular context of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Specific objectives pursued by the Programme

  1. To offer the students a fundamental basis in clinical psychology. This includes the conceptual, clinical and empirical foundations in relationship with the different traditions of the clinical psychology, and its contemporary actualizations.
  2. To give priority to three models which are: therapeutic-psychoanalytic, systemic and cognitive-behavioural, in order to solve particular situations of trauma which are in connection with all kinds of violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
  3. To facilitate access to diverse means and methods of critical exam’s discipline: varied methods (qualitative and quantitative), critical distance vis-à-vis the conceptual models, epistemology and history depending on the clinical traditions.
  4. To offer the foundations of the evaluation and diagnosis in clinical psychology, particularly: the tests, the questionnaires, the protocols, the principal diagnostic systems, the drawing up of reports, the different psychologies in the perspective of development and the development of the human being.
  5. To facilitate the gradual acquisition of competences by supervising and consulting, notably by a vicarious learning during a clinical training based on a basic didactic teaching.
  6. To center any evaluation and intervention on one’s permanent questioning as well as a reflexive conscience of the context and the relational elements which are linked to the everyday task of the psychologist-clinician.

Vision of the programme

The programme aims at promoting development, bio-psychosocial well-being of human being and the mental health of the people living in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. These people are heirs of tortured history, diversified culture, a society which is economically in transition, and political structures which are in search of stability 50 years after independence.

The teaching programme targets to form a high standard psychologist-clinician who is able to act as a contributor to the methods of examination and up-to-date psychological assistance, a competent interlocutor in a multidisciplinary team, a professional as well as researcher who is capable of thinking about their his practice in a particular sociocultural context and share this through scientific publications at an international level.

Resources

At the very beginning, the Department of Clinical Psychology will benefit from a support from some European Universities (Stockholm, Paris VIII…) and from some other competences existing in the universities of the Democratic Republic of the Congo such as the Universities of Kinshasa and Lubumbashi even from the universities of the Great Lakes region. The Evangelical University in Africa must design, as quickly as possible, a training programme for professors of Clinical Psychology which matches the high leadership to which the University aspires in this domain.

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