Barbara Kelly



Barbara Kelly

Department Faculty

  • Campus:
  • Online
BA Psychology
The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
Office Phone
Email [email protected]

Dr. Barbara Kelly earned her doctorate in psychology from the Forest Institute of Professional Psychology, having previously received her baccalaureate and masters' degrees from the University of Michigan and Wheaton College, Illinois, respectively. She is a full professor in the Bachelor of Arts in Psychology program at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, having previously served as Department Chair of the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology program at the Chicago campus (APA-accredited) and the Online Master of Arts in Psychology program. Prior to joining The Chicago School in 2007 she served as Associate Dean for Counselor Education and Program Chair of the Counselor Education programs at Argosy University. Her past positions include being a member of the clinical faculty at the University of Chicago and co-director of the adolescent inpatient units at Mercy Hospital in Chicago. Dr. Kelly has also served on the psychology staffs of several psychiatric hospitals conducting individual, couple, family, group, and multiple-family psychotherapy. She maintained a clinical practice in Chicago from until 2006. Her clinical and professional interests cluster around the areas of contemplative psychology and pedagogy, the psychology of spirituality and religious experience, diversity issues, and the training of mental health professionals.

Education History
Degree Institution
B.M. Music Education University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor, MI
M.A. Counseling Psychology Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL
Psy.D. Clinical Psychology Forest Institute of Professional Psychology, Des Plaines, IL
Licensed Clinical Psychologist, (inactive), Illinois
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (inactive), Illinois
Community Involvement
Role Organization
Chaplain, Past Senior Warden, Eucharistic Minister St. Philip's Episcopal Church, Beulah, Michigan
Secretary, Past President Father Lovett Foundation Board, Beulah, Michigan
Volunteer Glen Lake Community Library, Empire, Michigan
Member Northwestern Michigan College Concert Band
Areas of Expertise
Area Expertise
Sexuality/Gender Issues LGBTQ
Question and Answer
Please describe your teaching philosophy.

In the fields of psychology and counseling, students must be prepared to master a third-person knowledge base (the theories, techniques and skills of psychology), a second-person knowledge base (developmental and diagnostic assessment of others), as well as embark on and sustain an ongoing first-person understanding (self-knowledge; self-awareness). All this (and much more!) is required of practicing mental health professionals. The requisite third- and second- person knowledge bases are reflected in The Chicago School's Institutional Goals of Scholarship and Professional Practice (the material assessed by post-graduate licensure examinations), while the first-person awareness of self is reflected in the school's institutional goals of Diversity and Professional Behavior. Culturally sensitive, competent interpersonal relatedness requires an ever-expanding horizon of self-awareness and deepening attunement to self and other in the context of a community of care. These ongoing developmental processes must be catalyzed and nurtured in the classroom, the practicum/internship, and the graduate school community at large.

Please provide a statement or philosophy regarding the practice of psychology.

The practice of psychology and counseling requires a fully engaged mind and a fully awake and open heart, willing to deeply connect with others who are suffering. To be so fully engaged at the level of mind and heart with those who suffer requires practices that nourish and sustain us, as well as ongoing and regular connection to more experienced guides and supervisors. This work requires a combination of intelligence, courage, good humor, and humility.

Why did you choose to enter the field of psychology?

Having taught middle- and high-school orchestra for several years after undergrad, I found myself more interested in the kids' lives and their family situations than in finding new ways to get them to play in tune. I thought I might be of use to others and decided that clinical psychology was the best route for me to try to do just that. I've been at it ever since.

What advice would you give to a student entering The Chicago School?

Your life will be changed.

Professional Skills
lifespan psychology, multicultural training, psychology and spirituality