This study describes a quality improvement (QI) process to reduce bias and increase inclusion and equity in the recruitment of health service psychology interns in an American Psychological Association-accredited psychology internship program at a national children’s hospital.
This QI project utilized two Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycles targeting the application review and the interview processes primarily using supervisor engagement and feedback to inform these processes. The goal of the PDSA cycles was to increase diversity in psychology doctoral interns offered interviews and ultimately recruited to the internship program.
The application rating form was revised to place a greater emphasis on factors related to diversity, such as increasing the number of points applicants could earn for being bilingual. Regarding the interview process, structured interview questions were created, and a new, unified rubric was used to score interviewees. The changes in demographics of applicants selected for interviews and feedback from applicants who interviewed are reported.
The QI process resulted in tangible changes to improve equitable and inclusive internship recruitment. Lessons learned throughout this process included the need for continual auditing of practices through an equity lens, engaging supervisors at all stages of the process, and implementing incremental actions.