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route to neuropsychology

hi everyone!
I understand that the main requirement to become a neuropsychologist is to undertake a bachelors degree in psych (accredited by BPS) then do a doctorate training in clinical psych/educational psych and then complete a 1 year MSc in neuropsychology however would it be okay for me to complete a 1 year applied neuropsych masters (e.g. at UCL) and then do the final masters - would it be credible? I just want to save time and would rather not go down the route of clinical psychology when i really want to be a neuropsychologist. any help would be much appreciated thank you!!!
No. You would need a DClinPsy or EdPsy to gain HCPC registration. No one will hire you otherwise, and you would also be putting yourself at risk of using a protected title.

Beyond that the neuropsychology training route would build on the material introduced in the doctorate, and formal registration with the Division of Clinical Neuropsychology would require you to be working post qualification in the setting already with clinical supervision. It's those people who would be eligible for the course that would allow them to practice clinically, and those courses are often sponsored in Band 7 roles where clinicians are skilling up to do a role.

Those courses usually have a 'sister' course open that even shares the academic material, to non-qualified applicants out of academic interest, or international students who have different requirements in their native countries. They are clear that won't make you qualified as the majority of learning is still done on the job or with your supervisor, with the academic element as 'a skeleton' you hang it off.
Original post by mnsmsn
hi everyone!
I understand that the main requirement to become a neuropsychologist is to undertake a bachelors degree in psych (accredited by BPS) then do a doctorate training in clinical psych/educational psych and then complete a 1 year MSc in neuropsychology however would it be okay for me to complete a 1 year applied neuropsych masters (e.g. at UCL) and then do the final masters - would it be credible? I just want to save time and would rather not go down the route of clinical psychology when i really want to be a neuropsychologist. any help would be much appreciated thank you!!!

Hi! Just wanted to put some input here :smile:

As someone who is currently doing a clinical placement in neuro psych, I've found that clinical psychologists tend to find the work before qualifying as a neuropsychologist. At least, where I work, they are working in neuro for a while as clinical psychologists and then pursue the MSc. It may be different in other Trusts, as everyone's journey into psychology is different! But I wouldn't say you need a qualification in neuropsychology to pursue it, if that makes sense.

Unfortunately as Lord Asriel has stated, to be a recognised psychologist, you do need to go through the proper training and be accredited by the HCPC. If you wished to get some experience into neuropsych work in the meantime, often there are assistant psychologist supporting neuropsychology teams. The role can be quite clinical as well as research based.

~ Fatiha, Cardiff University Student Rep
Reply 3
Original post by Lord Asriel
No. You would need a DClinPsy or EdPsy to gain HCPC registration. No one will hire you otherwise, and you would also be putting yourself at risk of using a protected title.
Beyond that the neuropsychology training route would build on the material introduced in the doctorate, and formal registration with the Division of Clinical Neuropsychology would require you to be working post qualification in the setting already with clinical supervision. It's those people who would be eligible for the course that would allow them to practice clinically, and those courses are often sponsored in Band 7 roles where clinicians are skilling up to do a role.
Those courses usually have a 'sister' course open that even shares the academic material, to non-qualified applicants out of academic interest, or international students who have different requirements in their native countries. They are clear that won't make you qualified as the majority of learning is still done on the job or with your supervisor, with the academic element as 'a skeleton' you hang it off.

Thank you so much!!
Reply 4
Original post by CardiffUni Rep 2
Hi! Just wanted to put some input here :smile:
As someone who is currently doing a clinical placement in neuro psych, I've found that clinical psychologists tend to find the work before qualifying as a neuropsychologist. At least, where I work, they are working in neuro for a while as clinical psychologists and then pursue the MSc. It may be different in other Trusts, as everyone's journey into psychology is different! But I wouldn't say you need a qualification in neuropsychology to pursue it, if that makes sense.
Unfortunately as Lord Asriel has stated, to be a recognised psychologist, you do need to go through the proper training and be accredited by the HCPC. If you wished to get some experience into neuropsych work in the meantime, often there are assistant psychologist supporting neuropsychology teams. The role can be quite clinical as well as research based.
~ Fatiha, Cardiff University Student Rep

Thank you that is so helpful! Can I just ask do you have any tips for finding neuropsych work experience as I've had a few rejections (as a y12 student) or do you know of any opportunities?
Original post by mnsmsn
Thank you that is so helpful! Can I just ask do you have any tips for finding neuropsych work experience as I've had a few rejections (as a y12 student) or do you know of any opportunities?


You won't find any psychology work experience at your age, I'm afraid. Best you can do at your age is do something vaguely or tangentially related to it, like volunteering in a care home or whatnot. You'll have opportunities to get work experience once you are a psychology student at university
Original post by mnsmsn
Thank you that is so helpful! Can I just ask do you have any tips for finding neuropsych work experience as I've had a few rejections (as a y12 student) or do you know of any opportunities?

It's very hard to find direct psychology placements as a year 12 unfortunately due to safeguarding issues! Neuropsychology is typically found in the discipline of health psychology - ie., clinical psychology in the context of health conditions. Doing a hospital work experience could be helpful, if your local hospital offers it. Whilst you won't be directly observing a psychologist, I found that it still relates a bit, especially if you're shadowing in wards such as dementia wards. Otherwise, there are a few online work experience platforms you can find on the internet (although I am unsure if they would be neuro-psych specific)

I would say, if you're really interested in neuropsych and in the process of applying to university, to not worry too much about getting direct work experience. Its the same case for most students, so generally psychology personal statements don't focus too much on what kind of experience you have, moreso about how you talk about it in your personal statement πŸ™‚ (in case that was what you were worried about)

~ Fatiha, Cardiff University Student Rep
Original post by mnsmsn
hi everyone!
I understand that the main requirement to become a neuropsychologist is to undertake a bachelors degree in psych (accredited by BPS) then do a doctorate training in clinical psych/educational psych and then complete a 1 year MSc in neuropsychology however would it be okay for me to complete a 1 year applied neuropsych masters (e.g. at UCL) and then do the final masters - would it be credible? I just want to save time and would rather not go down the route of clinical psychology when i really want to be a neuropsychologist. any help would be much appreciated thank you!!!

Hi @mnsmsn

Just thought I would input some extra in here.

I have just finished a MSc in cognitive Neuroscience and Neuropsychology at the University of Essex. Unfortunately, as Cardiff Uni mentioned as a year 12 it may be more difficult finding neuropsychology experience. However when you do start university, some universities allow undergraduate students to get paid work as research assistants. While I was studying BSc in psychology with cognitive neuroscience at Essex one of my lecturers specialised in developmental psychology/neuropsychology and students were able to apply to be her research assistant which is great experience.πŸ§ πŸ‘©*🏫

I also did a research experience module at university where I was able to meet so many researchers at other universities in the neuroscience field. This was great for adding experience to my CV as well as networking with people in the industry. I would also recommend adding a placement year to your undergraduate studies as the placements team will help you find experience in your local area and prep for interviews.

If you would like to learn more about the courses I have attached links to both the BSc and MSc below. πŸ‘©*πŸŽ“
BSc Psychology with Cognitive Neuroscience - Psychology with Cognitive Neuroscience Degree | University of Essex
MSc Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuropsychology - Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuropsychology Degree | University of Essex

If you have any more questions, please don't hesitate to ask 😊

Official Essex Rep - Marieta
Reply 8
Original post by CardiffUni Rep 2
It's very hard to find direct psychology placements as a year 12 unfortunately due to safeguarding issues! Neuropsychology is typically found in the discipline of health psychology - ie., clinical psychology in the context of health conditions. Doing a hospital work experience could be helpful, if your local hospital offers it. Whilst you won't be directly observing a psychologist, I found that it still relates a bit, especially if you're shadowing in wards such as dementia wards. Otherwise, there are a few online work experience platforms you can find on the internet (although I am unsure if they would be neuro-psych specific)
I would say, if you're really interested in neuropsych and in the process of applying to university, to not worry too much about getting direct work experience. Its the same case for most students, so generally psychology personal statements don't focus too much on what kind of experience you have, moreso about how you talk about it in your personal statement πŸ™‚ (in case that was what you were worried about)
~ Fatiha, Cardiff University Student Rep

This is so useful, shadowing dementia wards in hospitals is such a good idea thank you!! by any chance, would it be alright to keep in contact with you as I do not know many people in the clinical neuropsych field? please do direct message me if you can πŸ™‚
Original post by mnsmsn
This is so useful, shadowing dementia wards in hospitals is such a good idea thank you!! by any chance, would it be alright to keep in contact with you as I do not know many people in the clinical neuropsych field? please do direct message me if you can πŸ™‚

Hey @mnsmsn,

You can chat to all our staff including Marieta through our Unibuddy profiles on the Essex webpage. Here is a link to Marieta's page, where she will be able to answer any questions, offer any advice and share her own experiences: https://api.unibuddy.co/og/university-of-essex/buddies/staff/64fedfaf736ec100102cc2d6.

Essex Official Rep - Morgan βœ¨πŸ“šπŸŽ“
Original post by mnsmsn
This is so useful, shadowing dementia wards in hospitals is such a good idea thank you!! by any chance, would it be alright to keep in contact with you as I do not know many people in the clinical neuropsych field? please do direct message me if you can πŸ™‚

Of course, you're welcome to send a visitor message to my profile anytime and I'd be super happy to answer :smile:

~ Fatiha, Cardiff University Student Rep

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