clinical psychology(8 Posts)
Does anyone have any recent experience of attempting to get on clinical psychology doctorate courses? I spent a few years trying to get on courses in the early '90s and since then have changed careers and more recently been working part-time and bringing up children, but am wondering now whether I should give it another shot, or whether it would be another frustrating journey around career cul-de-sacs.... Feel I need to make some changes, and start thinking ahead for when my children are at school, but not quite sure what to do at the moment!!
I think it had got a lot easier to get on (I trained about 5 years ago) as there were more places available, but it's quite possible it has gone the other way with all the cuts so you might want to find out how many places the courses have available coming up. When I was applying there was an alternative prospectus available which you might be able to find online - not sure where it was from, but it told you things like how many people applied for each place. Clinical psychology isn't quite the career it used to be either, with jobs being downgraded and frozen all over the place and very limited career options at the moment. However I love it and it is a great thing to do part time. I don't know if you would be able to think about counselling psychology which has really expanded in the last 10 years - you have to pay to do the course but can often do it part time and I think it's a bit easier to get onto? The clinical psychology doctorate has to be done full time and there is an expectation that you will be able to work evenings and weekends to get your thesis done - I did it before I had kids and tbh I don't know how the people with children managed it.
Thank you Nights, that is really interesting. I had no idea what the current situation is for clinical psychologists in the NHS, and was worried about (a) getting onto the clinical course and (b) being able to keep up with the workload and managing family as well, you've certainly given me food for though, will look into counselling psychology now. Thank you!
I would also consider looking at an MSc in Health Psychology. Nightsdrawingin is right about the limited options for clin psych, but health psych is growing.
Clinical seems to be very tough to get into at the moment, and assistant posts are also difficult to get at present.
The only thing about health psychology is what you actually want to be doing at the end of it all - unless it has dramatically changed since I was applying the health psychology MSc isn't a training which then equips you to work therapeutically. Quite a few people I know did it before doing clinical afterwards.
Assistant posts are ridiculously difficult to get, always have been - harder than getting onto clinical I think - but there are other routes, I didn't do an assistantship. At the place that I work we routinely get 100s of applications for assistant posts, but many many fewer for those for qualified psychologists.
The other advantage of counselling psychology is that it does not assume that you will work in the NHS and prepares you more for working in private practice or the voluntary sector. At times like this it is clear how useful that is when almost all clinical psychologists work in the NHS and therefore we are very vulnerable to government policy.
The best source in info on Clinical psychology is www.clinpsy.org.uk/forum. There are several threads looking at juggling family and the clinical psychology hoop jumping.
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