Training in Psychotherapy (TIP) Tool

Woman looking at the board in an adult education class

NEW! TIP Tool 2.0

In 2019, we completed a pilot test of the TIP Tool with two well-established, nationally recognized psychotherapy training organizations. RAND’s application of the tool to eight trainings led to several improvements. The pilot test:

  • Improved usability by increasing clarity of language and ease of ratings assignment,
  • Ensured utility for training organizations, and
  • Demonstrated face validity of the tool, showing that item, domain, and total scoring appeared to be a valid measure of concepts assessed by the tool.

The Training in Psychotherapy (TIP) tool is designed to assess how psychotherapy trainings for community-based providers incorporate core elements of effective psychotherapy training.

Specific evidence-based psychotherapies have been shown to improve symptoms and speed recovery from mental health conditions. To ensure access to these psychotherapies in community settings, providers must be trained to deliver them. Providers must have access to psychotherapy trainings that meet their needs, and can support competent delivery of evidence-based psychotherapies.

Categorizing Training Programs

The TIP Tool was designed to capture the full range of different psychotherapy trainings. It characterizes training across a continuum.

The TIP Tool Continuum

The TIP Tool continuum reflects the need for different training options and allows better understanding of where a psychotherapy training falls on this continuum.

  • Raising Awareness

    Provides an overview or introduction to a given psychotherapy.

  • Skill-Building

    Promotes change in clinical practice by providing the foundation for developing skills and therapeutic techniques.

  • Supporting Competence

    Develops skills consistent with a given psychotherapy and helps clinicians achieve adherence and competence.

Psychotherapy trainings can vary substantially in their scope and objectives. Some trainings may be designed to provide clinicians with an introduction to a psychotherapy. These trainings are valuable in that they may serve as a primer to increase a clinician’s familiarity with a given psychotherapy. At the other end of the spectrum, some trainings may be designed to teach clinicians to implement a given psychotherapy with fidelity. This type of training builds specific skills needed to implement the psychotherapy with adherence and competence.

Domains Assessed by the TIP Tool

The TIP Tool assesses psychotherapy training programs on five domains.

Five Domains of TIP Scoring
Domain Factors Considered
Training Format Includes features of the didactic portion of a training, such as length of training, level of interactivity, and provision of feedback.
Training Content Focuses on the topics covered in the didactic portion of the training, such as core techniques and theory and clinical decisionmaking.
Consultation and Supervision Focuses on the consultation and supervision component of a training, including the availability of consultation and supervision and characteristics of consultation and supervision (e.g., length, how the review of sessions is conducted).
Program Evaluation Designed to capture any evaluation that is incorporated into the training, including participant satisfaction and assessment of knowledge and skills.
Implementation Facilitation Focuses on the incorporation of implementation of the psychotherapy into the trainee’s practice and organization into the training.

Research Sponsors