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Psychology: Training

a guide to careers in psychology

Psychology

Training

Routes into psychology careers

Insider Views

See what former students have done and get insights into working in the sector

Jobs and Experience

How to get helpful work experience and get started

Tips for Applying

How to get work in this sector

Sector Overview

What jobs are available and how to get them

Qualifying

Forensic Psychology

  • You will need an accredited Master's in Forensic Psychology followed by two years' supervised practice
  • Gaining experience before your course could help you get a place. You will find some ideas in this jobs and experience widget
  • Your supervised practice could be in the justice system (trainee psychologist, psychological assistant, crime analyst or researcher) or in academia (research or lecturing). Social work, probation, the Health Service, Prison Service or Police could all be relevant areas in which to work
  • Alternatively, you could do a Doctorate at Birmingham or Nottingham (equivalent to the Master's and supervised practice)
  • There is no official funding available. Some people may be funded by their employers, if already working in a related area. Others may look for sponsorship for their dissertations

See the BPS guide to becoming a forensic psychologist

Educational Psychology

  • Professional training involves a 3 year full-time doctoral degree
  • The first year is spent in full-time study. The 2nd and 3rd years include a placement in a Local Education Authority (or other educational psychology provider) with 1 or 2 days of study per week
  • The Teaching Agency offers funded places. The application process takes place between October and December of the year before you want to start
  • You will generally require a 2.1 or above along with at least 1 year full-time (or equivalent part-time) relevant experience of working with children and young people
  • Experience could include part-time or voluntary work gained at Sussex. You will find some ideas in this jobs and experience widget
  • If you are accepted onto a funded place, you must also commit to working as an educational psychologist for 2 years after qualification (in England)
  • There are 12 institutions offering the doctoral qualification in England. For information about training/funding in other parts of the UK contact course providers directly

Full details on educational psychology training are available from the Department for Education

See also the BPS guide to becoming an educational psychologist

 

Clinical Psychology

  • Professional training involves a 3 year full-time doctoral degree
  • The National Health Service (NHS) provides the funding for most of the places on clinical psychology courses. Successful applicants are employed as Trainee Clinical Psychologists by the NHS while they study
  • Minimum salary is £26,041 per annum (April 2015)
  • Courses generally look for candidates with a 'good' 2.1 or above
  • You will need a range of clinically-relevant experience before applying for a course. Quality is as important as quantity, as is the ability to show what you have learnt from this experience
  • Experience could include part-time or voluntary work gained at Sussex. You will find some ideas in this jobs and experience widget and on the Clearing House experience page
  • There were 591 places available in 2015 and there was a 16% success rate for applications. Between 1 in 6 applicants got a course place
  • There are 30 course centres in England, Wales & Scotland

Full details on clinical psychology training are available from the Clearing House for Postgraduate Courses in Clinical Psychology

Applications open in September 2016. Deadline is early December 2016 for the 2017 intake

See also the BPS guide to becoming a clinical psychologist

Other Training Routes

These areas of psychology follow a similar path with an accredited Master's course followed by two years supervised practice:

There is no official funding available, although you may be eligible for institutional support/scholarships. You could also look for employer funding, if that is applicable

Clinical Neuropsychology

  • In order to work as a clinical neuropsychologist you will need to take the clinical psychology or educational psychology qualifying route
  • Educational psychology allows you to get into paediatric clinical neuropsychology
  • Clinical psychology allows you to get into adult or paediatric clinical neuropsychology
  • After qualification you will be eligible to take the BPS Qualification in Clinical Neuropsychology which confers eligibility for entry onto the Society's Specialist Register of Clinical Neuropsychologists

Counselling Psychology

  • You will need an accredited Doctorate in Counselling Psychology
  • Some doctorate courses require a Certificate in Counselling (1 year, part-time course) prior to starting, as well as relevant counselling experience (paid or voluntary)
  • There is no official funding available, although you may be eligible for institutional support/scholarships
  • An alternative is the BPS Qualification in Counselling Psychology, which is essentially a self-study version of the Doctorate. You would need to arrange your own training experience too

See the BPS guide to becoming a counselling psychologist

Psychotherapy and Counselling