CFE Overview

Cooperative Field Experience (CFE) Program

The Cooperative Field Experience (CFE) is highly recommended for all psychology majors. Graduating seniors consistently say the CFE is one of the most worthwhile experiences of their college careers. The CFE experience enhances professionalism and allows students to apply what they have learned in classes to the work place.  CFEs have the potential to transition into paying jobs post graduation and greatly enhances students' chances for successful admission to graduate school. Click here to download the CFE Guidelines.

The CFE is available to qualified students. To apply, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Completed at least 60 credits.
  • Have an overall GPA of at least 2.5.
  • Have 15 credits of appropriate coursework in psychology, with a GPA of 3.00.
  • Completed all general requirements in English, speech, and mathematics, as stipulated by the College of Liberal Arts and Education.
  • Obtain supporting signatures of psychology CFE supervisor, department chair, academic advisor, and one other faculty member.
  • Obtain the permission of the agency and on-site supervisor for the CFE.

Detailed information about the CFE is available from the department office.

Please also consult the CFE bulletin board outside room 226 Warner

University Placement Services is another resource for internship information. See the Career Center.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs) about CFE

"Where can I do my CFE?"

The CFE can be done at any site mutually agreeable to you, the CFE supervisor, and the site supervisor. Many students do CFEs at schools and agencies in the Platteville area, but some students do them in the summer, closer to home. The department maintains a list of sites that have expressed interest in having CFE students.

"Who sets up the CFE?"

The CFE supervisor will assist you in setting up your internship.

"How many hours of CFE should I take?"

This depends on your schedule and the needs of the agency. You may not count more than 8 CFE credits toward graduation. For each 40 hours of CFE, you earn 1 credit. Many students enroll for 2 or 3 CFE credits in a semester, some do only one, and others take a summer CFE for up to 8 credits.

"How many CFEs can I do?"

There are no limits except that only eight CFE credits may count toward graduation. Many students do more than one. Nationally, the trend is for students to do two CFEs.

"Why is the CFE not required?"

Not every student will qualify. We send only the best students out on CFE, and there are occasions when students do not meet the requirements.

"Can I get paid for a CFE?"

Some CFEs are paid positions, but most are not. If the CFE is a paid one, different rules apply regarding hours and requirements. Consult the CFE supervisor for more information.

"Can I do the same CFE for two semesters?"

This is a possibility. You would enroll in CFE for both semesters, and would have to redo the paperwork the second time around.

"Who supervises the CFE?"

Your direct supervisor is the on-site supervisor. The UWP CFE supervisor is available in an advisory role (i.e., to help you work out any problems that arise), but does little actual direct supervision. As part of the CFE requirements, you keep a log and write a paper. The faculty supervisor evaluates those.

"Is it possible for a site to turn me down?"

Yes. Even though we only send our best students to a CFE site, the student must interview and be approved by the site supervisor.


Comments from Recent CFE Students:

  • “It helps you get experience with the setting and population you want to work with.”

  • “You gain knowledge about how information from classes applies in the real world."

  • “It helps you gain focus, to see if this type of setting is where you really want to work.”

  • “It can point you in a new direction.”

  • “Experience looks good on job and grad school applications.”

  • “It helps to have more people who can write letters of recommendations for you, for jobs after graduation.”

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