Doctor of Clinical Psychology (DClinPsy)

Duration Full time 3 years
Discipline
  • Psychology
LocationExeter (Streatham)
Start date October

Research overview

  • Over 40 years' experience in providing clinical psychology training
  • Emphasis on adult lifelong learning exemplified in our problem-based learning approach
  • Strong commitment to offer a broad theoretical base in the three major evidence-based approaches (CBT, CAT and systemic)
  • Expertise in clinical neuropsychology and mood disorders
  • Commitment to equity, inclusion and promoting diversity
  • Active involvement by Experts by Experience in designing and delivering teaching, committee membership and recruitment of staff and trainees
  • Excellent range of research opportunities

Our aim is to produce graduates who will make a meaningful contribution to the lives of people who use clinical psychology services, the services themselves and the profession of clinical psychology. We are passionate about the role of clinical psychology within the NHS and this course prepares trainees to work in and positively shape these services once qualified.

The programme is regulated by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and is accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS). On successful completion of the course trainees will be able to apply for registration as a Practitioner Psychologist with the HCPC in order to practice and will also be eligible for Chartered Clinical Psychologist status with the BPS. Upon successful completion of coursework, all students also gain a secondary accreditation qualification of a Foundation in Systemic Therapy with the Association of Family Therapy (AFT) and Level 1 of the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy (BABCP). Students are also given the opportunity to complete BABCP Level 2, an Intermediate in Systemic Therapy (AFT) or a Foundation in Cognitive Analytic Therapy with the Association of Cognitive Analytic Therapy (ACAT).

We utilise a Reflective Scientist Practitioner model which draws on the research evidence-base to inform clinical activities, while reflecting on this through a critical lens to consider its application to different populations than those used to build the evidence. How the research evidence provides a link between research experiences and clinical activities is viewed as a fundamental aspect of the programme to be reflected on and developed. This integration is achieved through course work, research, clinical activities, reflection and private study.

Our staff

For more information about the course team and their clinical and research interests, see our Staff Profiles.

BPS Accreditation

Our latest BPS Accreditation visit in June 2022 highlighted these areas of good practice for our programme:

  • The range of therapy modalities and potential opportunities for dual accreditation that the programme provides for trainees.
  • The programme team offers great support and engagement for Experts by Experience (EbE).
  • There is a positive relationship between placement supervisors and trainees.
  • The programme is highly regarded by the University stakeholders.

What our trainees say about the course:

My favourite aspect of training at Exeter is the plurality of perspectives that are encouraged across the academic, clinical, and research strands. As someone who tends to think about psychological distress in terms of relationship and community connection, I loved the fact I was exposed to ideas and approaches that reinforced my perspective but also added new layers and sometimes even challenged my assumptions. This has enabled me to think much more broadly and deeply about clinical work, research, and my own self-concept as a psychologist. 

Cohort 2021 trainee.

As a marginalised person, I had my concerns about relocating to the South West of England. However, placement supervisors, clinical tutors, and management, including my appraiser, have been extremely supportive and considerate of my needs, social positioning and both personal and professional goals. I have also found the faculty overall to be genuine, and I have had enjoyable conversations with them about clinical psychology and how it relates to our lives.

Placement supervisors have also appropriately and genuinely initiated conversations about race, neurodiversity, gender, sexuality, and other social graces. I also admire the course's dedication to diversity and inclusion. The course has plans and will continue to explore ways to make the profession more diverse and inclusive.

There were so many interesting topics to learn about on the course, including and not limited to systemic practice, leadership and organisational influence, dynamic models of working, neuropsychology and cognitive analytic therapy. Overall, my time here has been truly a life-changing experience.

Cohort 2019 trainee.

Course content

Teaching, research and placements

We place an emphasis on core competencies across clinical specialisms and theoretical orientations. The academic content is enriched and informed by the experiential learning gained on clinical placements.

The programme works in partnership with local NHS providers and has strong links with the region’s clinical psychologists who contribute to teaching and are able to offer a wide range of clinical experience in a variety of settings. We offer training to supervisors on having a trainee and on anti-racism and inclusion.

Assessment

Progression through the doctorate requires successful completion of continuously assessed tasks which are coordinated across the three modules to ensure a reasonable workload. These are supplemented with a number of formatively assessed assignments.

Feedback is regularly sought from trainees on the quality of teaching, placements and all other aspects of the programme.

The views of our stakeholders are valued highly and all stakeholders, including trainees, are key members of decision-making committees that influence programme development (e.g. placement, curriculum, selection, joint training committee, etc.)

Course Handbook

View the course handbook 

Entry requirements

Academic requirements

Applicants must have an undergraduate degree which has conferred Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) with the British Psychological Society (BPS). Only those who have GBC can be considered. If you are an Open University graduate and are awaiting confirmation of your GBC status when you apply, please contact the Programme Administrator to discuss this further.

Your undergraduate honours degree should be:

  • at 2:1 level
  • OR 2:2 level plus further PG training (Masters, DPhil or PhD level). A completed Masters should be classified as a research Masters degree with the research component being at least 50% of the course, or classified as a taught Masters degree with a supervised clinical practice component being at least 50% of the course.

If you obtained a 2:2 level undergraduate degree with GBC and have not completed a further PG qualification, you may still apply if you have indicated that you fit one of the contextual admissions criteria.

Clinical experience

Whilst successful candidates are usually selected based on a minimum of one year of clinical experience of working with people with psychological needs, ideally supervised by a clinical psychologist, the quality of experience and the way in which applicants have applied this knowledge will also be considered as part of our selection process. Relevant clinical experience can be split across posts and may include voluntary work, although short part-time volunteer work or short placements during a first degree are normally insufficient on their own. Applicants whose experience is restricted to an academic research setting should ensure that they gain some familiarity with clinical populations and settings.

Experience can be gained in any type of environment, whether within the NHS or other health or social care settings. The purpose of experience is to help applicants develop the competencies needed for training such as resilience to working with psychological distress, a commitment to reflective practice and to gain a realistic sense of the clients with whom clinical psychologists work, and of the profession and its working practices.

Requirements for international students

If you are an international student, please visit our international equivalency pages to enable you to see if your existing academic qualifications meet our entry requirements.

English language requirements

IELTS (Academic)

Overall score 6.5. No less than 6.0 in any section.

TOEFL IBT*

Overall score 90 with minimum scores of 21 for writing, 21 for listening, 22 for reading and 23 for speaking.

Other accepted tests

Information about other acceptable tests of linguistic ability can be found on our English language requirements page.

Pre-sessional English

Applicants with lower English language test scores may be able to take pre-sessional English at INTO University of Exeter prior to commencing their programme. See our English language requirements page for more information.

Application and selection

How to apply:

Applications are made through the clearing house website.  Overseas applicants who do not meet criteria for home fee status should also apply through the Clearing House system.

All applications must be sent to the Clearing House by the beginning of December the year prior to entry. Visit the Clearing House website for precise deadline dates each year.

Potential applicants are advised to attend our online open day.

Our approach to selection:

We are looking for trainees ready to embrace learning, with an existing commitment to inclusion, reflection and developing high levels of competence in research, clinical work, academic assignments and socio-cultural competence. We also want to attract trainees who are able to demonstrate that their values and behaviours align with the values of the NHS Constitution.

In line with a reflective evidence-based approach, Exeter selects on the basis of the Competency Model which was developed following a job analysis of the trainee clinical psychology role (Baron & O’Reilly, 2012).  The model specifies ten competencies that underpin successful trainee clinical psychologists. These are: intellectual ability and academic rigour, communication skills, self-awareness and openness to learning, personal maturity, warmth and empathy, resilience, organisation, autonomy and initiative, motivation and application and contextual awareness. The programme recognises that its processes form part of a national programme and therefore uses the Job Description and Person Specification (.pdf) that is made available to all applicants.   

Our selection process:

All applications that meet minimum entry criteria will be put through to shortlisting. All applications are assessed by a panel consisting of a member of Course Staff and a local NHS Clinical Psychologist. In order to reduce the risk of bias, information about institutions attended and degree class are removed before shortlisting and we provide mandatory training to all shortlisters for benchmarking and to reduce bias.

Applications are assessed in relation to 3 areas:

  • readiness for clinical training;
  • clinical competence/aptitude;
  • and research competence/aptitude.

Following shortlisting, applicants will be notified whether they are being invited for interview, on the reserve list for interview, or have been unsuccessful. Applicants who are invited for interview will be able to take advantage of our buddy system, enabling them to meet with a current trainee prior to interview to find out more about the lived experience of the course and trainee life at Exeter. Applicants who require adaptations to interview processes due to disability / additional needs should contact us.

Interviews will be held in the spring of each year and take the form of one interview, approximately 1 hour in length.  We review our interview process each year and train the interview team to eliminate bias and for benchmarking. Candidates will be given tasks to undertake prior to the interview in preparation for the day, such as a video/roleplay/research design. We intend the time you spend with us to be respectful, constructive and supportive, and all candidates will be given a clear brief about what to expect when they are invited for interview. All selection tasks are designed to give candidates the opportunity to demonstrate the required competencies and values for entry into the programme.   

Interview panels are made up of an expert by experience, a course member and a psychologist from the locality.  We are working hard to ensure that our panels are diverse in terms of race, gender and class. 

Applicants should consult the Clearing House website to find out the dates for interview for the relevant year and whether interviews will be online or in person, our current plan is that interviews will remain online to address the environmental and cost implications of holding them in person. In exceptional circumstances, alternative interview dates are available, please contact the course team to find out if your circumstances apply.

Once interview days have concluded, applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application (offer, reserve offer or unsuccessful). Unsuccessful and reserve list applicants will be given the opportunity to meet with the chair of their interview panel to get feedback on their interview.

All offers of a place on a course are dependent on satisfactory criminal record and health checks and compliance with health checks will be acted upon.

International Trainees

We hold our international interviews a month before our ‘home student’ interviews. Shortlisting for international interviews is done by programme staff and the interview panel is made up of a member of the programme senior management team and a Psychology Head of Service from one of our local NHS Trusts. Like the home students, unsuccessful international trainees are offered a chance to talk to the course staff that interviewed them for feedback.

Finance: fees and funding

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

The programme is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) across all aspects of the course, not only from a social justice standpoint, but because we recognise the immense value that a broad range of experiences and backgrounds bring to the profession of Clinical Psychology. We are committed to diversifying the profession so that clinical psychologists also reflect the diversity within the client groups we serve.

We welcome applicants from diverse cultural and personal contexts, mature applicants with extensive life experience, and applicants with disabilities. Candidates with disabilities are welcome to contact us to discuss the programme's capacity to meet their training needs. Please contact the Programme Administrator or the University AccessAbility department for further details.

Our selection procedures are designed to be fair, and informed by current thinking on broadening access, thereby enabling the Exeter programme to select the strongest candidates. To address socio-economic inequality and contextual admissions, we have a slightly different selection criteria for those with contextual admissions. You do not need a driving license to study at Exeter; however, because of the remoteness of some of the placements this is advised.

We run two mentoring schemes for those from racialised minority backgrounds: Breaking Through (PDF), for those considering applying for DClinPsy training, and Amplify, for those currently on training. These mentoring schemes are to try to overcome the barriers that structural and systemic racism create. We also have active ‘Anti-racism’ and ‘Addressing Disability’ working groups on the course. We choose to have working groups rather than an EDI committee so that we can stay task focused and put our energy into making changes for the better.

Once such change is that if applicants from a racialised minority ethnic group meet a minimum shortlisting criteria (which is not detailed on this website), then we will put people through to interview. The minimum criteria is there because all candidates must fulfil this in relation to research, clinical skills and readiness. We will put this in place for all applicants who have given the Clearing House permission for us to know your racialised identity, and if this falls into a racialised minority because of this underrepresentation in Clinical Psychology.

DClinPsy training at Exeter is informed and enriched by input from our Lived Experience Group. Experts by experience are involved in the design and delivery of the course including selection, the curriculum and teaching, and research consultation, and we are committed to continued involvement. We encourage those with experience of using clinical psychology and mental health services to apply.

Contact us

We welcome enquiries about our research degrees, for further information please contact the programme team:

Email: DClinPsy@exeter.ac.uk
Tel: +44 (0)1392 725762

Course content

Teaching, research and placements

We place an emphasis on core competencies across clinical specialisms and theoretical orientations. The academic content is enriched and informed by the experiential learning gained on clinical placements.

The programme works in partnership with local NHS providers and has strong links with the region’s clinical psychologists who contribute to teaching and are able to offer a wide range of clinical experience in a variety of settings. We offer training to supervisors on having a trainee and on anti-racism and inclusion.

Assessment

Progression through the doctorate requires successful completion of continuously assessed tasks which are coordinated across the three modules to ensure a reasonable workload. These are supplemented with a number of formatively assessed assignments.

Feedback is regularly sought from trainees on the quality of teaching, placements and all other aspects of the programme.

The views of our stakeholders are valued highly and all stakeholders, including trainees, are key members of decision-making committees that influence programme development (e.g. placement, curriculum, selection, joint training committee, etc.)

Course Handbook

View the course handbook 

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

The programme is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) across all aspects of the course, not only from a social justice standpoint, but because we recognise the immense value that a broad range of experiences and backgrounds bring to the profession of Clinical Psychology. We are committed to diversifying the profession so that clinical psychologists also reflect the diversity within the client groups we serve.

We welcome applicants from diverse cultural and personal contexts, mature applicants with extensive life experience, and applicants with disabilities. Candidates with disabilities are welcome to contact us to discuss the programme's capacity to meet their training needs. Please contact the Programme Administrator or the University AccessAbility department for further details.

Our selection procedures are designed to be fair, and informed by current thinking on broadening access, thereby enabling the Exeter programme to select the strongest candidates. To address socio-economic inequality and contextual admissions, we have a slightly different selection criteria for those with contextual admissions. You do not need a driving license to study at Exeter; however, because of the remoteness of some of the placements this is advised.

We run two mentoring schemes for those from racialised minority backgrounds: Breaking Through (PDF), for those considering applying for DClinPsy training, and Amplify, for those currently on training. These mentoring schemes are to try to overcome the barriers that structural and systemic racism create. We also have active ‘Anti-racism’ and ‘Addressing Disability’ working groups on the course. We choose to have working groups rather than an EDI committee so that we can stay task focused and put our energy into making changes for the better.

Once such change is that if applicants from a racialised minority ethnic group meet a minimum shortlisting criteria (which is not detailed on this website), then we will put people through to interview. The minimum criteria is there because all candidates must fulfil this in relation to research, clinical skills and readiness. We will put this in place for all applicants who have given the Clearing House permission for us to know your racialised identity, and if this falls into a racialised minority because of this underrepresentation in Clinical Psychology.

DClinPsy training at Exeter is informed and enriched by input from our Lived Experience Group. Experts by experience are involved in the design and delivery of the course including selection, the curriculum and teaching, and research consultation, and we are committed to continued involvement. We encourage those with experience of using clinical psychology and mental health services to apply.

Application and selection

How to apply:

Applications are made through the clearing house website.  Overseas applicants who do not meet criteria for home fee status should also apply through the Clearing House system.

All applications must be sent to the Clearing House by the beginning of December the year prior to entry. Visit the Clearing House website for precise deadline dates each year.

Potential applicants are advised to attend our online open day.

Our approach to selection:

We are looking for trainees ready to embrace learning, with an existing commitment to inclusion, reflection and developing high levels of competence in research, clinical work, academic assignments and socio-cultural competence. We also want to attract trainees who are able to demonstrate that their values and behaviours align with the values of the NHS Constitution.

In line with a reflective evidence-based approach, Exeter selects on the basis of the Competency Model which was developed following a job analysis of the trainee clinical psychology role (Baron & O’Reilly, 2012).  The model specifies ten competencies that underpin successful trainee clinical psychologists. These are: intellectual ability and academic rigour, communication skills, self-awareness and openness to learning, personal maturity, warmth and empathy, resilience, organisation, autonomy and initiative, motivation and application and contextual awareness. The programme recognises that its processes form part of a national programme and therefore uses the Job Description and Person Specification (.pdf) that is made available to all applicants.   

Our selection process:

All applications that meet minimum entry criteria will be put through to shortlisting. All applications are assessed by a panel consisting of a member of Course Staff and a local NHS Clinical Psychologist. In order to reduce the risk of bias, information about institutions attended and degree class are removed before shortlisting and we provide mandatory training to all shortlisters for benchmarking and to reduce bias.

Applications are assessed in relation to 3 areas:

  • readiness for clinical training;
  • clinical competence/aptitude;
  • and research competence/aptitude.

Following shortlisting, applicants will be notified whether they are being invited for interview, on the reserve list for interview, or have been unsuccessful. Applicants who are invited for interview will be able to take advantage of our buddy system, enabling them to meet with a current trainee prior to interview to find out more about the lived experience of the course and trainee life at Exeter. Applicants who require adaptations to interview processes due to disability / additional needs should contact us.

Interviews will be held in the spring of each year and take the form of one interview, approximately 1 hour in length.  We review our interview process each year and train the interview team to eliminate bias and for benchmarking. Candidates will be given tasks to undertake prior to the interview in preparation for the day, such as a video/roleplay/research design. We intend the time you spend with us to be respectful, constructive and supportive, and all candidates will be given a clear brief about what to expect when they are invited for interview. All selection tasks are designed to give candidates the opportunity to demonstrate the required competencies and values for entry into the programme.   

Interview panels are made up of an expert by experience, a course member and a psychologist from the locality.  We are working hard to ensure that our panels are diverse in terms of race, gender and class. 

Applicants should consult the Clearing House website to find out the dates for interview for the relevant year and whether interviews will be online or in person, our current plan is that interviews will remain online to address the environmental and cost implications of holding them in person. In exceptional circumstances, alternative interview dates are available, please contact the course team to find out if your circumstances apply.

Once interview days have concluded, applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application (offer, reserve offer or unsuccessful). Unsuccessful and reserve list applicants will be given the opportunity to meet with the chair of their interview panel to get feedback on their interview.

All offers of a place on a course are dependent on satisfactory criminal record and health checks and compliance with health checks will be acted upon.

International Trainees

We hold our international interviews a month before our ‘home student’ interviews. Shortlisting for international interviews is done by programme staff and the interview panel is made up of a member of the programme senior management team and a Psychology Head of Service from one of our local NHS Trusts. Like the home students, unsuccessful international trainees are offered a chance to talk to the course staff that interviewed them for feedback.

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BPS accreditation

This programme is accredited by the British Psychological Society.

HCPC approval

This programme has been approved by the Health and Care Professions Council.

Athena SWAN

We have made a commitment to gender equality for all our staff and students. Psychology has been granted a Silver Athena SWAN award.

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