MSc Cognitive Psychology-Where does it take me

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Devika Anil
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Hi,I am an International student who is currently doing MSc Cognitive Psychology(NOT BPS accredited) in the UK. But I didn't do an undergraduation in Psychology and also i have a Masters in Social Work from India. So my question is, Is it possible for me to get a job related to Psychology after i complete this MSc? I am not sure where exactly this is taking me. I fear that i have made a bad decision.What are the career options I have after doing a non-BPS course?Devika
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marinade
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What counts as a 'job related to Psychology'?

PWP? Assistant Psychologist? Clinical Psychologist? I'd have thought it's no to all three.
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Waldorf67
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(Original post by marinade)
What counts as a 'job related to Psychology'?

PWP? Assistant Psychologist? Clinical Psychologist? I'd have thought it's no to all three.
1. What is PWP?
2. Why is it not possible to be an assistant with a masters in Cognitive Psych?
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marinade
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(Original post by Waldorf67)
1. What is PWP?
2. Why is it not possible to be an assistant with a masters in Cognitive Psych?
Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner - usually the job that Psychology graduates of today aspire to be (on the way to the holy grail of a clinical doctorate).

What's special about a master's degree? The OP already said that it isn't BPS, that's the key bit, unfortunately.

My understanding of things is that the NHS guidelines on paid APs don't mandate that a (paid) AP have BPS membership, however, if you look at a bouquet of person specifications for APs, you will see that BPS accredited, GBC membership and various other wordings that essentially mean the same thing regularly crop up at the top of the person specs in the 'essential' column. I'm sure someone can find a counterexample, but I don't think they'll be that common. Moreover pretty much everyone else applying will be BPS.

Someone could be a voluntary assistant AP without GBC membership, but that's kind of not really the point is it.
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Waldorf67
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(Original post by marinade)
Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner - usually the job that Psychology graduates of today aspire to be (on the way to the holy grail of a clinical doctorate).

What's special about a master's degree? The OP already said that it isn't BPS, that's the key bit, unfortunately.

My understanding of things is that the NHS guidelines on paid APs don't mandate that a (paid) AP have BPS membership, however, if you look at a bouquet of person specifications for APs, you will see that BPS accredited, GBC membership and various other wordings that essentially mean the same thing regularly crop up at the top of the person specs in the 'essential' column. I'm sure someone can find a counterexample, but I don't think they'll be that common. Moreover pretty much everyone else applying will be BPS.

Someone could be a voluntary assistant AP without GBC membership, but that's kind of not really the point is it.
I’ve honestly never heard of a PWP before, sounds more inline with mental health nursing.

What’s special about a masters degree? Nothing in isolation, but depending on various factors such as quality of institution, relevant work experience, academic experience it doesn’t seem right to say that an assistant psych job is not possible. I was offered an assistant psych job last year with just my undergrad.

Yeah but you seem focussed on the clinical setting, Psychology is not all about working for the NHS. Given the OP’s Masters is in Cognitive Psychology, I say she is heading more towards the academic route.

There is a hell of a lot more to Psychology than just working in mental health.
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Waldorf67
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(Original post by marinade)
Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner - usually the job that Psychology graduates of today aspire to be (on the way to the holy grail of a clinical doctorate).

What's special about a master's degree? The OP already said that it isn't BPS, that's the key bit, unfortunately.

My understanding of things is that the NHS guidelines on paid APs don't mandate that a (paid) AP have BPS membership, however, if you look at a bouquet of person specifications for APs, you will see that BPS accredited, GBC membership and various other wordings that essentially mean the same thing regularly crop up at the top of the person specs in the 'essential' column. I'm sure someone can find a counterexample, but I don't think they'll be that common. Moreover pretty much everyone else applying will be BPS.

Someone could be a voluntary assistant AP without GBC membership, but that's kind of not really the point is it.
Just reading about the PWP, and it seems to be something quite recent set up for NHS England, interesting as it’s not something I’ve encountered before!

What are your opinions on it? From a quick glance I feel it may be something set up as a quick and easy fix by the government to appear as if they are tackling mental health. As opposed to investing more money in a long term approach, to increase the clinical base.
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marinade
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(Original post by Waldorf67)
Just reading about the PWP, and it seems to be something quite recent set up for NHS England, interesting as it’s not something I’ve encountered before!

What are your opinions on it? From a quick glance I feel it may be something set up as a quick and easy fix by the government to appear as if they are tackling mental health. As opposed to investing more money in a long term approach, to increase the clinical base.
'It's the new AP' are comments said very regularly.

Yes, it is a quick fix. Although short of starting WW3 in the world of Psychology a person might say IAPT in general was a 'quick fix' and on the cheap, a view shared by some in IAPT itself and a frustration for many people who do the training, put a lot of hard work in and don't get the results they want for patients. A postcode lottery in funding and services is also a frustration.

I asked the OP what they meant as it doesn't seem very clear, however I do agree with you.

It's perfectly possible to get into an AP with a Bachelor's degree. That I do not dispute, however again we're talking BPS which the OP specifically mentioned. That's where that line was coming from.

There is a lot more to Psychology than working in Mental Health, however get a large group of Psychology students in a room and ask them what they want to do and a lot of it is PWP/AP/DClinPsych/PhD in Psychology. There are some interesting academic routes the OP can take a master's degree in, but that I know less about.
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Waldorf67
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(Original post by marinade)
'It's the new AP' are comments said very regularly.

Yes, it is a quick fix. Although short of starting WW3 in the world of Psychology a person might say IAPT in general was a 'quick fix' and on the cheap, a view shared by some in IAPT itself and a frustration for many people who do the training, put a lot of hard work in and don't get the results they want for patients. A postcode lottery in funding and services is also a frustration.

I asked the OP what they meant as it doesn't seem very clear, however I do agree with you.

It's perfectly possible to get into an AP with a Bachelor's degree. That I do not dispute, however again we're talking BPS which the OP specifically mentioned. That's where that line was coming from.

There is a lot more to Psychology than working in Mental Health, however get a large group of Psychology students in a room and ask them what they want to do and a lot of it is PWP/AP/DClinPsych/PhD in Psychology. There are some interesting academic routes the OP can take a master's degree in, but that I know less about.
Interesting. Sad truths to hear. The trouble with Psychology I find is the massive discrepancy between academic research and clinical practice. How many papers are published every month on clinical practice/ mental health, yet how much of it actual reaches the practical setting? How much of it actually makes a difference?

That was my issue with mental health work and why I decided to give it up, the government isn’t willing to invest enough to make a sustained impact. All they want is a quick fix to show what great an impact they’ve made.

What do you work in currently?
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marinade
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(Original post by Waldorf67)
Interesting. Sad truths to hear. The trouble with Psychology I find is the massive discrepancy between academic research and clinical practice. How many papers are published every month on clinical practice/ mental health, yet how much of it actual reaches the practical setting? How much of it actually makes a difference?

That was my issue with mental health work and why I decided to give it up, the government isn’t willing to invest enough to make a sustained impact. All they want is a quick fix to show what great an impact they’ve made.

What do you work in currently?
Oh I'm just a volunteer. I work in a pharmacy.

It's just I do a lot of volunteering for a mental health charity and spend time hanging around Psychology 3rd years, graduates, APs, PWPs, IAPT etc. Hear a lot of experiences about IAPT off people (hours of the stuff), personal and family experiences etc. "I want a job in clinical psychology" is a bread and butter conversation for me - I had multiple conversations along these lines last week, alone. A lot of 'the careers adviser at university told me ...'. I see a lot of input/output of volunteers who come in as 3rd years/graduates/postgraduates and have done xyz volunteering and go out and then the destinations they go onto. It's really interesting. I also think there is a lack of imagination as to what people could do afterwards*. I lived with/have friends anyway who did Psychology, but that didn't give me more than a general snapshot of the picture. Everything I've found out has been volunteering and networking. I did toy briefly with the idea of being a PWP so researched that as well but decided it definitely wasn't for me.

*I do find it interesting that when you get talking to people, quite often they don't know what these different career jobs/terms mean, just that everyone else at uni is talking about them, lecturers, careers people and they've been told if they want a job in 'clinical' they better do it!

At universities I've heard quotes about stonkingly high percentages of student these days wanting to do 'clinical modules' 70-90%, insanely oversubscribed and a small minority of students actually able to enrol on these modules. I mean it makes sense, some of these unis have 150, 200, 250, 300 people in a year in Psychology.
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