Work Experience for Aspiring Clinical Psychologist.

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xmili
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#1
Report Thread starter 1 year ago
#1
hey!

i’ve just gotten my gcse results and am going into sixth form starting september. In the future i hope to become a clinical psychologist however am struggling to think of different work experience that i can do that will help me apply to a good undergraduate psychology course.

If you have any idea please let me know!

thanks
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marinade
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#2
Report 1 year ago
#2
Relax, tons of time.

Unless you have parents of friends who are psychologists and can bung you some work experience that's not going to happen. One of the problems with trying to get experience is you're under 18, so SOME volunteer places will not be able to take you as there's a huge extra amount to think about and paperwork and this is not viable, especially for the casual end of volunteering outfits. For the more formal end, some will want university students.

You shouldn't need work experience to get onto the psychology course, generally speaking. What you do need is a plan for year 1/2/3 for how to get some experience and progress up the steps onto low level clinical related jobs you want immediately/six months/ a year after graduation.

One of the problems with work experience for clinical psychology is people take it very literally, too literally. If you look at the CVs of many successful people who became clinical psychologists or other things like PWP many did things to get them higher level experience later.

In 2020 the CV of a decent psychology grad looks something like the following:-
1st Year A-levels
part time retail job
volunteer in a local library

2nd year A-levels
Volunteer to help younger children read a few hours a week
part time retail job
NCS volunteer (summer placement, some do this for 2 years)

1st Year uni
Mentoring in schools
coaching a mental health sports team
volunteering for a social mental health charity on a very informal basis

2nd year uni
extremely basic 'research' related project/assisting on a very junior level as a volunteer
another retail job/bar work
volunteering in a hospital
placement/volunteering in a care home for a few weeks
volunteering for a homeless/addiction/mental health charity
summer placement of some flavour


3rd year uni
placement in a hospital/job as a health care assistant
job as a support worker
role in a psychology society at uni
small voluntary role as a research assistant
volunteer role in a mental health charity

The roles slowly ramp up over about 5 years. The important year now is probably the 2nd year of your undergraduate course, where ever you go you need to spend serious time researching the local mental health landscape and finding voluntary roles. These won't be explicitly said or advertised by your uni most likely and many will not be aware of many of them.
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bubblecat
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#3
Report 1 year ago
#3
you dont need work experience to get onto an undergraduate psychology course, but you will need a lot to get onto the phd/training programme and its very competitive. but you wont be doing that until you’ve completed your undergrad.
Last edited by bubblecat; 1 year ago
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chrisfrank
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#4
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#4
(Original post by marinade)
Relax, tons of time.

Unless you have parents of friends who are psychologists and can bung you some work experience that's not going to happen. One of the problems with trying to get experience is you're under 18, so SOME volunteer places will not be able to take you as there's a huge extra amount to think about and paperwork and this is not viable, especially for the casual end of volunteering outfits. For the more formal end, some will want university students.

You shouldn't need work experience to get onto the psychology course, generally speaking. What you do need is a plan for year 1/2/3 for how to get some experience and progress up the steps onto low level clinical related jobs you want immediately/six months/ a year after graduation.

One of the problems with work experience for clinical psychology is people take it very literally, too literally. If you look at the CVs of many successful people who became clinical psychologists or other things like PWP many did things to get them higher level experience later.

In 2020 the CV of a decent psychology grad looks something like the following:-
1st Year A-levels
part time retail job
volunteer in a local library

2nd year A-levels
Volunteer to help younger children read a few hours a week
part time retail job
NCS volunteer (summer placement, some do this for 2 years)

1st Year uni
Mentoring in schools
coaching a mental health sports team
volunteering for a social mental health charity on a very informal basis

2nd year uni
extremely basic 'research' related project/assisting on a very junior level as a volunteer
another retail job/bar work
volunteering in a hospital
placement/volunteering in a care home for a few weeks
volunteering for a homeless/addiction/mental health charity
summer placement of some flavour


3rd year uni
placement in a hospital/job as a health care assistant
job as a support worker
role in a psychology society at uni
small voluntary role as a research assistant
volunteer role in a mental health charity

The roles slowly ramp up over about 5 years. The important year now is probably the 2nd year of your undergraduate course, where ever you go you need to spend serious time researching the local mental health landscape and finding voluntary roles. These won't be explicitly said or advertised by your uni most likely and many will not be aware of many of them.
I was thinking of doing a placement in my 3rd year. after i finish the degree apply for a trainee pwp apply for the doctorate.
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marinade
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#5
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#5
(Original post by chrisfrank)
I was thinking of doing a placement in my 3rd year. after i finish the degree apply for a trainee pwp apply for the doctorate.
Do you actually want to be a PWP?
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chrisfrank
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#6
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#6
(Original post by marinade)
Do you actually want to be a PWP?
I dont know too much about it tbh. Its easy to get on and seems like a counsellor. I hoped clinical psychology was 80% patients but its 40% apparently.
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marinade
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#7
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#7
(Original post by chrisfrank)
I dont know too much about it tbh. Its easy to get on and seems like a counsellor. I hoped clinical psychology was 80% patients but its 40% apparently.
I would advise researching it then.

It's easy to get on compared to the doctorate. Is PWP easy to get on in general immediately out of uni? No. Because everyone who wants to do the clinical doctorate wants to be either an AP or PWP they are swamped with applications. The opportunities don't come up often and many people seem to wait for 'local' PWP jobs and that seems to waste an inordinate amount of time after graduation for some people. They are tough interviews, very picky and you'll need to practise by applying for a few. Read the reach out manual. You'll be up against last chance saloon grads who have a lot more experience than you and masters' degrees wanting to get onto PWP. It's completely achievable becoming a PWP a year or two out of uni, the question is do you want to?

I can't tell you what a PWP is like, because I'm not one, I've never been one, however I've met many people who have become them. PWP jobs are often with IAPT and every CCG runs it slightly differently with different services. Some people in some PWP roles complain about the workload and the telephone calls.

There are millions of PWPs or people who used to be PWPs on linkedin, can you charm them into giving you a brief answer?

The year qualifying on the training as a PWP is fairly gruelling for many people too. I'm not trying to talk you out of being a PWP, but many people I met are disgruntled about it and many left after 1/2/3 years. Themes talking to a lot of people is running very short low intensity CBT courses in groups as PWPs, doing the rounds around GP surgeries and telephone calls makes them fall out of love with it. The few PWPs I met who got on most well had a genuine love and respect for low intensity CBT (yet saw it's limitations). Many want to do high intensity and few make it (a massive bottleneck).
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Lady Galadriel
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#8
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#8
(Original post by marinade)
I would advise researching it then.

It's easy to get on compared to the doctorate. Is PWP easy to get on in general immediately out of uni? No. Because everyone who wants to do the clinical doctorate wants to be either an AP or PWP they are swamped with applications. The opportunities don't come up often and many people seem to wait for 'local' PWP jobs and that seems to waste an inordinate amount of time after graduation for some people. They are tough interviews, very picky and you'll need to practise by applying for a few. Read the reach out manual. You'll be up against last chance saloon grads who have a lot more experience than you and masters' degrees wanting to get onto PWP. It's completely achievable becoming a PWP a year or two out of uni, the question is do you want to?

I can't tell you what a PWP is like, because I'm not one, I've never been one, however I've met many people who have become them. PWP jobs are often with IAPT and every CCG runs it slightly differently with different services. Some people in some PWP roles complain about the workload and the telephone calls.

There are millions of PWPs or people who used to be PWPs on linkedin, can you charm them into giving you a brief answer?

The year qualifying on the training as a PWP is fairly gruelling for many people too. I'm not trying to talk you out of being a PWP, but many people I met are disgruntled about it and many left after 1/2/3 years. Themes talking to a lot of people is running very short low intensity CBT courses in groups as PWPs, doing the rounds around GP surgeries and telephone calls makes them fall out of love with it. The few PWPs I met who got on most well had a genuine love and respect for low intensity CBT (yet saw it's limitations). Many want to do high intensity and few make it (a massive bottleneck).
PWP is the only postgrad course I can think of that can give a Psychology graduate an "easy" professional registration. Applying for the PWP job is fun. Interviews are different for the different services. Please don't get dishearten if you don't get the job on your first interview. This is good experience and next time you will be more prepared. Anyway, there are other routes to success and happiness in Psychology
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