Taught course

Clinical Psychology

University of Essex · School of Health and Social Care
DClinPsy by taught

Entry requirements

You can apply for this course as a self-funded trainee (Home/EU or International fee status applicants), or you can apply as an NHS-funded trainee (Home/EU fee status applicants only). To find out more about this, take a look at our 'Information for applicants' page.

Before making your application please read Clinical Psychology page which includes FAQs and guidance for all applicants, and the pro-formas required for a self-funded application (Links to the pro-formas are also provided below).

Whether you are a Home/EU or overseas applicant, the entry requirements are the same.

All applicants should apply via the Clearing House,

• Applicants taking up a self-funded place will not be employed as a salaried NHS employee but the department would help to arrange an unsalaried contract with the host NHS Trust for the duration of training.

• Applicants taking up an NHS funded place will be employed as a salaried trainee clinical psychologist by the host NHS Trust for the duration of the training.

Applicants to the programme should:

  • Have Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) with the BPS.
  • Demonstrate at least one year's full-time, or equivalent, clinical or research experience relevant to clinical psychology. Applicants need to demonstrate that they have a realistic understanding of what the work of clinical psychologists entails and demonstrate experience of applying psychological theory in a clinical setting.

AND possess one of the following:

  • A BPS accredited degree in Psychology with a high 2:1 or above. The average mark for third year modules must be 65% or above.
  • OR
  • A recognised international degree in Psychology, equivalent to a UK high 2:1 degree (over 65%).
  • OR
  • A BPS accredited conversion degree in Psychology with an average mark of 65% or above.
  • OR
  • A 2:2 honours degree in Psychology with subsequent demonstration of academic competence, for example through achieving 65% or above (or equivalent) at Masters/Doctoral level in a research degree relevant to clinical psychology.

Applicants also need to understand the role of clinical psychologists working within the UK healthcare system and demonstrate their understanding and adherence to core NHS principles and values. Applicants need to demonstrate a commitment to applying psychological research and theories in a clinical setting. Applicants applying to NHS funded places on the programme need to demonstrate a commitment to working within the UK NHS and social care.

The programme does not offer Accreditation of Prior and Experiential Learning (APEL).

You must also have a satisfactory enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Check (including child and adult barred list check) and a Occupational Health Check - both of these are organised by the University.

A satisfactory Overseas Criminal Record Check/Local Police Certificate is also required, in addition to a DBS check, where you have lived outside of the UK in the last 5 years for 6 months or more.

Months of entry


Course content

The University of Essex Doctorate in Clinical Psychology has been training people to become reflective and highly competent clinical psychologists since October 2005. The programme was developed in partnership with commissioners from the Health Education East of England, the University of Essex, the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, and NHS Trusts based in Essex.

The programme benefits from the input and support of clinicians based in South and North East Essex, particularly Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust. Some input into psychodynamic teaching is also provided by the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust. The programme is housed in the vibrant academic and research community of the School of Health and Social Care, which has an excellent reputation for research and teaching in health and social care, and it is committed to inter-professional learning.

Some of the benefits of studying on our programme include:

  • Our relatively small trainee cohorts offer trainees the opportunity to work closely with the programme team and with one another. Such close working relationships, combined with robust and holistic support systems for trainees' personal and professional development, provide an optimal training experience and foundation for trainees' career-long personal and professional development.
  • The programme is particularly well integrated with local research and clinical networks. Clinicians working in the region contribute directly to the course through teaching, supervision (on placements and as field research supervisors) and other aspects of the programme. This close collaboration provides many opportunities for ensuring strong theory-practice integration.
  • Trainees on this programme benefit from teaching input from the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust and the possibility for some trainees to have a 3rd year placement there.
  • The programme aims to develop the critical and reflective competencies of trainees. We provide learning opportunities for developing flexibility, leadership skills and reflective practice that are essential to meet the challenges faced by the profession of clinical psychology and by health services.

We place a priority on responding to trainees' feedback and on reviewing and updating the way in which training is delivered in order to remain responsive to current needs and developments at the forefront of clinical psychology.

Key values and principles that underpin our course include:

  • We view training as a collaborative enterprise between stakeholders including trainees, clients, carers, NHS services and Trusts, local clinicians, and professional/regulatory bodies. The programme engages these stakeholders to remain responsive to local mental health needs.
  • Trainees are adult learners and junior colleagues who contribute to the overall training programme and one another's training experience. The programme team places a premium on clear communication and consultation in decision-making, incorporating the views of trainees, service users and other stakeholders in the effective delivery of the training programme.
  • The programme equips trainees to apply psychological knowledge and theory to research and practice in the service of reducing psychological distress and promoting and enhancing psychological wellbeing.
  • Trainee clinical psychologists on our programme develop all competencies required of clinical psychologists by the HCPC and the BPS. We consider a competent clinical psychologist to be more than the sum of a number of competencies. Our reflective and integrative focus enables trainees to develop meta-competencies required for reflective, integrative, ethical, autonomous research and evidence-based practice.
  • The programme does not focus on one model or approach, but instead draws on a number of different models and approaches including behavioural, cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), psychodynamic, systemic and integrative approaches alongside developmental, socio-political, critical and other perspectives. The main therapeutic modalities are CBT, systemic and short term psychodynamic models.
  • The programme is committed to recognising, accommodating and embracing diversity. This is reflected in the recruitment and selection of trainees and throughout the training, which emphasises the importance of developing cultural and diversity-related competence in research and clinical practice.

Information for international students

Entry requirements
You can find international entry requirements for most countries on our webpage www.essex.ac.uk/international. If your country is not listed, please contact Postgraduate Admissions at pgadmit@essex.ac.uk.

Pre-sessional English Language courses

If you need to improve your English language skills before joining your main degree course, we offer pre-sessional English courses on our campuses in partnership with Kaplan International Pathways. To learn more, please visit www.essex.ac.uk/international/pre-sessional

You can explore scholarship opportunities for your country at www.essex.ac.uk/international or view our university-wide scholarships at www.essex.ac.uk/scholarships.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • DClinPsy by taught
    full time
    36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Postgraduate Enquiries