Course Information

Course Overview

The Doctorate in Clinical Psychology course is a three year programme based on a developmental model of skill acquisition with :-

  • Year 1 focusing on skills relevant to working with individuals.
  • Year 2 on systemic skills (group, community).
  • Year 3 on organisational and developing skills in preparation for the qualified role. 

There are three main aspects to the programme:

1) Taught component

Over the three years of training, the taught academic programme seeks to enable trainees to develop the academic and clinical skills to prepare them for a generic practice in clinical psychology.  This is achieved through a combination of theoretical and skills based teaching.  We place an importance on the concepts of transferable skills and there is an expectation that trainees will learn to apply these skills across a range of clinical settings.

In addition to clinical skills based teaching, the programme covers a variety of conceptual frameworks for understanding and working with psychological distress, covering individual, (cognitive and behavioural therapies, and psychodynamic psychotherapy), systemic and community perspectives.  Throughout the programme an emphasis is placed on theory-practice links and this is supported by regular reflective practice seminars in which trainees discuss clinical cases. 

2) Clinical Practice Placements

Over the three years of training, trainees will undertake a series of formal supervised clinical placements of six months to a year duration. The placements will be in a variety of speciality areas in which clinical psychologists practice and provide trainees with a firm foundation in assessment, formulation, intervention and evaluation skills. 

3) Research

Research is an integral part of the academic programme and is drawn on in all aspects of teaching.  The research module aims to enable trainees to become “research literate” and also to develop the necessary skills to evaluate their own clinical work as well as devising and implementing both service based  and academic research. Trainees undertake:

  • A  small-scale service evaluation study 
  • An original research study written up as a thesis.

Assessments relevant to each of these three aspects of the programme are scheduled throughout the three years of training.


Successful completion of this programme confers eligibility for Chartered Membership of the British Psychological Society and full membership of the Division of Clinical Psychology.

The Health and Care Professions Council has approved this programme

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