Richard Sinacola

Richard Sinacola

MFT Adjunct Faculty
  • Ph.D. Professor of Clinical Psychology, and MFT Assoc. Chair. Los Angeles Campus

  • The Chicago School Los Angeles
Marriage and Family Therapy
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
Office Location
Office Phone
On-campus Ext.

Dr. Sinacola is a TCSPP faculty member and former interim Chair of the Clinical and MFT programs. A recognized expert, he is a published author of several scholarly works on the subjects of psychopharmacology and counseling, and a presenter on a wide-range of psychological applications and issues. Dr. Sinacola was also a trainer for PESI Healthcare Corporation and is a frequent lecturer at the Betty Ford Center. Dr. Sinacola was the former Director of Psychology Programs at Chapman University - Palm Desert Campus, and former Chair of Counseling and Addiction Studies at the University of Detroit Mercy. He has also held appointments as a director of clinical training and supervision for the Counseling and Psychological Services at Wayne State University where he also served as a counselor for first and second year medical students. He held teaching appointments at Wayne State University, The University of Detroit, Mercy College of Detroit, Oakland University, and Baker College. In addition to teaching and academic positions, he has conducted a private practice in the Detroit, Palm Springs, and Pasadena areas for over 30 years.

  • A.B., Psychology, The University of Detroit. Detroit, Michigan
  • M.S.W., Clinical Social Casework, Wayne State University, Michigan
  • Ph.D., Counseling/ Psychology, Wayne State University, Michigan
  • Licensed Psychologist - CA and MI
Areas Of Expertise

Select Presentations

  • Sinacola, R. (2014). Pharmacologic Approaches for Treating Impulse Control Disorders presented at the 50th Annual CAMFT Confrence.  Indian Wells, CA.
  • Sinacola, R. (2011). Update on Psychopharmacology presented at the 47th Annual CAMFT Conference. San Francisco.
  • Sinacola, R. (2002-07). Conducting effective mental status and risk assessments. Oral presentation at PESI Healthcore Corp., various locations.
  • Sinacola, R. (2005). Update on pharmacology for MFTs. Oral presentation at The Desert Chapter of the CA Association of MFT, CA.
  • Sinacola, R. (2006). Psychopharmacology for counselors in higher ed. Oral presentation at The University of San Diego, San Diego, CA.
  • Sinacola, R. (2008). Pharmacological treatment for patients with AD. Oral presentation at The Southern CA AZH Conference, CA.
  • Sinacola, R. (2009). Practical application of law and ethics. Oral presentation at The Betty Ford Center, Rancho Mirage, CA.

Select Publications

  • Sinacola, R., & Peters-Strickland, P. (2012). Basic Psychopharmacology for Counselors and Psychotherapists (2nd Ed.). Boston: Allyn & Bacon - Pearson.
  • Sinacola, R. (1997). "Basic Psychopharmacology for Professional Counselors." The Michigan Journal of Counseling and Development.
  • Sinacola, R. (1998). "The Use of Therapeutic Assistants in Outpatient Psychotherapy." The Journal of Psychotherapy in Private Practice.
  • Sinacola, R. (2000). Professional Counselors in Private Practice. Learning Publications
  • Sinacola, R. (2002). Conducting Effective Mental Status and Risk Assessments. PESI Healthcare Publications.
  • Sinacola, R., & Peters-Strickland, T. (2006). Basic Psychopharmacology for Counselors and Therapists. Boston: Allyn and Bacon

Community Involvement

  • Past Editorial Board Member for the MI Journal of Counseling and Development
  • Past Member of the Board of Licensure State of Michigan
  • Past Member of the Desert Sleep Disorders and Neurology Study Group
  • Past Secretary of the Michigan Psychological Association

Professional Memberships

  • American Counseling Association
  • American Psychological Association
  • CA Association of MFT
  • Prescribing Psychologists Register


Q: Please describe your teaching philosophy.
A: Socratic and interactive. I work to make complex concepts easy to understand and apply.

Q: Please provide a statement or philosophy regarding the practice of psychology.
A: Psychologists must be agents of change in a complex society. We must always be looking to understand behavior and how to shape it in the service of the patient.

Q: Why did you choose to enter the field of psychology?
A: I was very involved in religion and wanted to continue to help others and study human behavior and its ramifications.

Q: What advice would you give to a student entering The Chicago School?
A: Work hard, study harder. Never forget the lives you will change in ways you may never fully realize.