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Psychology

Location:
555 University Avenue, 6th Floor, Black Wing
Phone:
416-813-7654 ext. 206784
Email:
psychology.department@sickkids.ca
Hours:
416-813-8839
View looking up from the atrium with colourful glass walls framing the way to the roof

As part of the Centre for Brain & Mental Health, the Psychology Department provides consultation, assessment, diagnosis, treatment recommendations and interventions for children and adolescents up to the age of 18 who are being treated at SickKids for primary medical and psychiatric conditions.  

The SickKids Psychology Department only accepts referrals from internal SickKids physicians and staff. If you would like a referral, please speak to a member of your SickKids care team.

psychology infographic model of care, combining clinical, research, training and education pillars

Through the integration of clinical care, research and training and education, the Psychology department at SickKids uses evidence-based approaches to address the complex developmental, medical and personal needs of patients. 

What we do

SickKids Psychology provides a variety of psychological services to address complex patient needs. Examples of specialized psychological services include: 

  • Providing evidence-based therapy for issues related to health conditions and their management 
  • Assessing and diagnosing neuropsychological disorders in children with a variety of developmental and/or medical conditions 
  • Providing individual or group interventions to promote healthy coping for patients and caregivers 

Programs and services

SickKids Psychology provides care to families across Ontario and beyond. To help us provide psychological services that transcend geography, we use a hybrid model in which both virtual and in-hospital appointments are offered as appropriate for the family and the nature of service. 

Please note: psychology services are available for SickKids patients who belong to specific hospital programs. 

There are four main categories of psychology services at SickKids, explained in detail below.

Comprehensive assessment of cognitive and academic skills to provide insight into the potential impact of a patient’s medical condition and/or treatment on brain functioning. Recommendations are made to assist with educational planning and medical management. 

Support and intervention services for patients and families who are struggling to cope with diagnosis or treatment-related issues. 

Assessment, diagnosis and therapeutic interventions for children with mental health diagnoses including anxiety disorders and mood disorders. 

  • Consultation with members of the patient care team regarding psychological issues impacting treatment. 
  • Consultation with schools and other community agencies about developmental, behavioural and learning issues. 

Who we are

The Department of Psychology is home to Neuropsychologists, Health Psychologists, Psychometrists, research staff and students/trainees in various stages of graduate study. 

We use evidence-based approaches to provide clinical serviceswhich are enhanced by the integration of research and training [anchor]Our family-centred model of care considers and respects the diversity of the families we serve with respect to language, culture, level of function, gender identity, medical and trauma history.  

Our training programs are central to our department and include trainees at the practicum, residency and fellowship levels. We value the insights and dedication of our trainees and value supervision, as reflected by our biannual mentorship award. 

Director

Dr. Jonathan Golden, Ph.D., C. Psych. 

Director of Clinical Training: 

Dr. Sharon Guger, Ph.D., C. Psych. 

Dozens of blood samples with red, orange and purple lids

Research activities

The Psychology Department adopts a scientist-practitioner model that integrates clinical care with research. In addition to our group of full-time research staff, many of our clinicians are also actively involved in research – both as independent investigators and as members of multi-disciplinary teams.  

Our Psychologists are involved in a variety of SickKids Research Institute programs. 

Empty lecture hall of 15 rows and a speaking podium

Education and training opportunities

The Psychology Department consists of highly qualified and experienced training faculty, all of whom are dedicated to training. You can expand the sections below to explore a variety of training opportunities offered by the department.  

Residents (3) gain experience with children and youth who present with mental health issues related to congenital, perinatal, or acquired medical conditions. The overall goal is to prepare residents for the varied demands of professional practice in psychology - skills that are readily transferable to a wide range of community settings. 

  • Neuropsychology - Our program has been a member of the Association of Postdoctoral Programs in Clinical Neuropsychology (APPCN) since 2008. The 2-year fellowship adheres to a scientist-practitioner model and training prepares fellows for independent practice in paediatric neuropsychology, registration with the College of Psychologists of Ontario (CPO), and board certification through the American Board of Clinical Neuropsychology (ABCN). One fellow is hired each training year. 
    To apply for this opportunity, please complete the Neuropsychology Fellowship application by January 4, 2021.
  • Health Psychology - As one of the fastest growing subspecialties in psychology today, paediatric psychology offers clinicians the opportunity to work in partnership with a wide range of professionals to enhance children’s health and well-being at the intersection of mind and body. There are two 1-year fellowships available. 
  • Research Fellowships - Post-doctoral fellows focusing on experimental and/or clinical research are at times available through the department. Arrangements are made on an individual basis with the Psychology supervisor and are dependent upon research funding. These positions, when available, are posted through our SickKids Careers site. 

The practicum program is for graduate students who are in the earlier stages of their training. SickKids accepts approximately 5-8 students a year with a focus on assessment or intervention. Practicum placements typically run two days per week from September to April, or four days per week from May to August. 

For more information on the above training opportunities, please see the brochures below. These include information on entrance requirements and application information, goals and objectives, key dates, and contact information.  

Contact SickKids Psychology

Phone: 416-813-7654 ext. 206784  

Fax: 416-813-8839 

Email: psychology.department@sickkids.ca

Address:

The Hospital for Sick Children 

Psychology Department, 6th Floor Black Wing 

555 University Avenue

Toronto, ON M5G 1X8 

Training and education contacts

Practicum Placements: psychology.practicum@sickkids.ca 

Pre-Doctoral Residency sharon.guger@sickkids.ca 

Post-Doctoral Fellowship: 

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