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pathway to becoming a clinical psychologist

hi, i'm an a level student studying psychology, sociology and english literature who wants to work as a clinical psychologist in the future. i'm confused as to how i would achieve this with the different responses I've been getting (being told to do a professional doctorate in counselling or clinical psychology????)

what would be the usual pathway for this? like, a bsc in psychology and then a clinical/counselling psychology doctorate or are there other steps, too? like an msc?
(edited 9 months ago)
Original post by pastaaroll
hi, i'm an a level student studying psychology, sociology and english literature who wants to work as a clinical psychologist in the future. i'm confused as to how i would achieve this with the different responses I've been getting (being told to do a professional doctorate in counselling or clinical psychology????)

what would be the usual pathway for this? like, a bsc in psychology and then a clinical/counselling psychology doctorate or are there other steps, too? like an msc?


I go by the following:
https://nationalcareers.service.gov.uk/job-profiles/clinical-psychologist (my first go to)
https://www.prospects.ac.uk/job-profiles/clinical-psychologist
https://www.bps.org.uk/clinical-psychologist-job-profile
https://www.healthcareers.nhs.uk/explore-roles/psychological-therapies/roles/clinical-psychologist (your future employer)
https://targetjobs.co.uk/careers-advice/job-descriptions/psychologist-clinical-job-descriptions

I can't see a way around getting a BPS accredited degree in psychology before going for the doctorate. The doctorate should be in clinical psychology, not counselling unless you want to be a counsellor (which is a different occupation).

Irrespective of whether it's a standard degree route or via degree apprenticeship, you still need an undergrad in psychology or equivalent (hence the psychology graduate conversion course). It's imperative that the degree is BPS accredited, otherwise you need to do a psychology conversion course on top.

The master's degree is there if you don't have at least a 2:1 in your degree. It strengthens your application to say you know enough of the basic material to do the job. If you would like to not spend a lot of money and do things as quick as possible, get the highest grades you can in your undergrad.

You should go for professional work experience (good luck with that) and getting your GBC membership before enrolling onto your doctorate.
Generally you'd complete a BPS accredited undergraduate degree, get some relevant experience and then apply for the doctorate. A lot of applicants would also complete a masters between the undergrad and doctorate to help make themselves stand out, so realistically you're looking at about 9ish years from starting uni to qualification.
(edited 9 months ago)

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