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What is Clinical Psychology?

Dr Lynne Howey (Consultant Clinical Psychologist) Dr Sarah Hill (Highly Specialist Clinical Psychologist) Patrick Welsh (Psychology Assistant)

What is Clinical psychology?

The application of psychology to health and community care.

(British Psychological Society, 2001).

This application involves the assessment and prevention of psychological distress, disability and dysfunctional behaviour.
(Vallis & Howes, 1995).

What do we do?

Clinical psychologists aim to reduce psychological distress and to enhance/promote psychological well-being. We may assess clients using a variety of methods including psychometric tests, interviews and direct observations. Assessment may then lead to therapy. We may work in a variety of services and settings:
(CAMHS, AMH, LD, Older Adults, Substance Misuse, Forensic, physical health)

What do we do?

Direct clinical work (assessment/ intervention) Consultation within and outwith the NHS

Involvement in clinically relevant research and audit

Teaching/Training Supervision
(Psychologists/Other professionals)

Clinical Supervision Process Model (Hawkins & Shohet, 2000)

2. 3. 4. 5.

6. 7.

Reflection on content Explore strategies and interventions Explore therapy process and relationship Therapists counter-transference Supervisory process as a reflection of therapy Supervisors counter-transference Wider context

Clinical Psychology; Current Training Route

Psychology BSc/BA (BPS/GBR Accredited) Min 2:1

Relevant experience (2 yrs +)

Psychology/Research Assistant post, or equivalent &/or Masters degree in relevant subject (2 yrs +)

Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (3 yrs)

What is relevant experience?

Voluntary or paid work as a support worker, teaching assistants, social work assistant. Any work with certain client groups (LD, Dementia, Young Offenders, Substance Misuse) Graduate Mental Health Workers (GMHWs) Psychology Assistant /Research Assistant MSc/MPhil in Health Psychology/Developmental Psychopathology

A week in the life of an Assistant Psychologist

Low intensity interventions Research Audit/Audit meetings

Assessment (e.g. Intelligence testing)

Most assistants will usually spend a lot of time with one of these!

Applying for the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology

Apply through Leeds Clearing House Application packs available in September

Application forms submitted in December

Interview/written tests in April/May

Success Rates

Taken from the Clearing House for Postgraduate Courses in Clinical Psychology (2007).

Where to find out more

British Psychological Society
NHS Jobs Sector 1 Psych Click
www.jobs.nhs.uk www.sector1.net www.psyclick.org.uk

Northern Regional Graduate Psychologists Group (NRGPG)


Clearing House for Postgraduate Courses in Clinical Psychology


Clinical Psychology: Career Path in NHS on Qualification

Specialist Clinical Psychologist (eligible for chartership) (2 years and additional responsibilities)

Highly Specialist Clinical Psychologist

Consultant Clinical Psychologist

Professional Lead

A week in the life of a Highly Specialist Clinical Psychologist

Therapy session Psychometric assessment Therapy session LAC Review meeting Assessment session in playroom Admin

Psychometric assessment

Wednesday Thursday
Psychology Business Meeting School meeting re new client Assessment session Therapy session Admin Team allocation Meeting

Reading/research School meeting re client New client slot ABC

Core Group meeting at familys house

Therapy session Meeting with colleagues Re teaching Clinical Governance meeting

Team business Meeting

Team education slot Supervision with trainee Multiagency autism spectrum disorders meeting

Therapy session
Therapy session Admin

A week in the life of a Consultant Clinical Psychologist

Stakeholder Consultation Meeting, Teesside doctoral course (also on-call rota) Therapy session Supervision of counselling psychology trainee Writing up clinical notes/ assessment/ discharge reports

New Assessment appointment (with Psych asst) Therapy session Therapy session Supervision with clinical psychologist Therapy session Therapy session Clinical notes

CPD meeting with Psychiatrists (CBT with psychosis) Telephone consultation with CP re LAC

Supervision with trainee CP Team business Meeting Team education (presentation of research; mothers of children with ADHD) Child protection meeting (to decide whether to register) Admin/ discussions

Supervision with CP My supervision Visit to secure unit re new intake into TFC Therapy session (TFC) Admin/ team discussion Supervision with Consultant CP

Therapy session (TFC)

Therapy session (TFC) Clinical notes

Current Developments within the profession

Improving access to psychological therapies (Lord Layard)

New ways of working

Private Practice

Being a Clinical Psychologist


1. 2. 3.

2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Work with a variety of people Challenging and rewarding The NHS Career Progression Autonomy Every day is different

Emotional Impact The NHS Bottlenecks in training process

Contact details
Mrs Judith Tulip Voluntary Services Manager County Durham and Darlington Priority Services Human Resources Department Earls House Hospital Lanchester Road Durham DH1 5RD Telephone: 0191 333 6328 Email: judith.tulip@cddps.nhs.uk Dr Lennon Swart Consultant Clinical Psychologist Professional Head of Psychology: Children and Young People's Services Derwentside Child and Family Centre 192 Medomsley Road Consett County Durham DH8 5HT


Huey, D & Britton, P. (2002) A portrait of clinical psychology. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 16: 69-78. Marzillier, J & Hall, J. (1992). What is clinical psychology? Oxford: OUP.

Vallis, T & Howes, J. (1995). The field of clinical psychology: arriving at a definition. Canadian Psychology, 37: 120-127.
British Psychological Society, Division of Clinical Psychology. (2001). Core purpose and philosophy of the profession. Leicester: BPS Hawkins, P & Shohet, R. (2000). Supervision in the helping profession. Open University Press.

Thank You