Psychology question!

(16 Posts)
wineandsunshine Sat 19-Aug-17 18:35:50

Any advice/help would be appreciated!

I am considering returning to study - I have a degree/PGCE in primary education. I am looking at psychology specifically targeting children and would have to use the OU.

Does anyone have experience in this role/Type of job that could advise me on which course they took? Also I wondered if my previous credits could be transferred?

Many thanks!

OP’s posts: |
ReinettePompadour Sat 19-Aug-17 18:50:12

I've been to a university open day recently and they told me that psychology is now the most oversubscribed course (along with criminology and forensic science) and employment is very very competitive difficult due to the popularity. Salarys are going down in that sector too because of the numbers.

I assume that you can use your current contacts to gain experience and then employment in this sector?

I dont know about transferring credits as I am starting afresh so didn't ask but I'm sure someone can advise you. I just wanted to share my experience at the university open day with you so you know what you're up against. Good luck though.

TiramisuQueenoftheFaeries Sat 19-Aug-17 18:54:06

Are you planning to go directly into a psychology related field?

Basically all require further postgraduate training and are generally very competitive. Where are you hoping the degree will take you?

BubblesBuddy Sat 19-Aug-17 20:04:49

If you want to be an Educational Psychologist it's tough to get trained. I would look into it if it interests you. Not sure an ou degree in psychology would help.

Callamia Sat 19-Aug-17 20:14:55

Look at conversion MScs, you have a relevant first degree and you should have no problem getting on a conversion course.

What do you want to do next? A conversion course should be no barrier btw, I know several people in clinical and academic psychology careers who took this route.

SpongeBobJudgeyPants Sat 19-Aug-17 20:19:17

I considered training as an Educational Psychologist years ago, using my psychology degree, as I was doing a teaching certificate alongside. The one year teaching requirement put me off (first teaching practice was a nightmare (other staff as well as pupils) so I abandoned that idea. but if you have worked as a teacher, maybe that would count. IME OU are very good about credits for previous stuff.

Bobbiepin Sat 19-Aug-17 20:23:39

Does it have to be OU? IOE have some good courses related to things like educational psychology if that's what you're looking at.


wineandsunshine Sun 20-Aug-17 15:48:57

Thankyou everyone!

That's interesting about the course being so popular - I do really need to stick with OU as I'm self employed now and need to continue earning whilst studying. What is IOE?!

I've been having a look at clinical psychologist and educational psychologist jobs within the education sector and they just interest me - I haven't go a specific role in mind. This sounds very vague I know! I have itchy feet ref my career grin

OP’s posts: |
Bobbiepin Sun 20-Aug-17 19:40:39

IOE is the Institute of Education. I was looking at their Ed Psych PhD for a while, just not in the right place for it yet.

StorminaBcup Sun 20-Aug-17 19:47:09

Have a look at the BPS careers website here for the basics on education and career paths.

I did the same as you a few years ago and I'm now looking at a conversion course for occupational therapy. Psychology degrees are great if you have the means to be able to do lots of volunteering and are free to move around the country for when posts become available. If you have a mortgage or children it's really hard to get establish. It's hugely competitive - even psychology assistant posts get hundreds of applicants. Just be clear that it's a lot of training as well - you'll more than likely need a doctorate.

Good luck smile

TiramisuQueenoftheFaeries Sun 20-Aug-17 20:16:46

Warning - clinical psychology is brutally hard to get into. Once you get the doctorate your job prospects are actually very good, but there are a fixed number of posts on the doctorate and they are massively, massively oversubscribed. Most people have to apply multiple years to get in. You also need a strong academic record AND experience in an "assistant psychologist" post or similar, which are also hugely oversubscribed and pay nothing or fuck-all.

I'll be honest, most of the people I know who successfully got into a DClinPsy either were supported by their parents or their partner while gaining the work experience they needed. It would be very tough to do with kids and without financial support.

Callie85 Tue 22-Aug-17 19:26:51

Hi OP just to let you know that the OU masters in psychology isn't BPS accredited so would not help you qualify in the field. If you already have a degree and want a career in psychology, your best bet would be conversion course through another uni - there are quite a few that offer distance learning.

wineandsunshine Wed 23-Aug-17 08:40:35


I contacted my local authority for advice and they told me to have a look at the BPS website which has been really useful. I'd did note that the OU wasn't accredited which is a shame so I'm just in the process of contacting the online university departments to ask them a few questions!

The doctorate is actually funded for the first year, and then the placement follows for the remainder which would be 3 years in total too.

It's a long process - I just need to decide if I stop working to try this route!

OP’s posts: |
TiramisuQueenoftheFaeries Wed 23-Aug-17 08:56:41

Which doctorate are you looking at? Do you have the work experience to have a shot at getting onto it? I would definitely recommend speaking to some people in the field if you possibly can. It's a big commitment to make.

wineandsunshine Thu 24-Aug-17 18:18:13

I had a look at the Educational Psychology doctorate - they have a good link on the BPS website to the application website.

I do have experience in schools and currently in home childcare - various age ranges!

I would love to speak to someone in this role!

OP’s posts: |
grassseedy Thu 24-Aug-17 18:48:10

I'm a clinical psychologist; both clinical and educational psychology are extremely competitive. The clearing house publishes statistics relating to how many applications each year, and it looks like in 2016, 3700 ish applied for under 600 places - 16% success rate. Bearing in mind that a very high proportion of these applicants will be very eligible, by that I mean will already have a PhD, clinical experience as an assistant psychologist and perhaps also some experience as a research assistant too.

We advertised an assistant post last year, and had 130+ applicants. We are in a relatively 'unpopular' region of the uk too.

I would suspect that educational psychology is the same.

Now, none of this is to put you off, but really you're looking at at least 5 years between now and when you'd be likely to be successful with an application for a clinical training place, and then that's 3 years of pretty full on training. I'd think really carefully about whether that's for you.

Saying all that, the best people we have had in recent years as assistants and then trainees have been people who have come from other occupations, so if you feel you can hack it, go for it!!

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