Postgraduate study
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Clinical Psychology DClinPsychol

Awards: DClinPsychol

Study modes: Full-time

Funding opportunities

Programme website: Clinical Psychology

First taught in 1959, this advanced practitioner programme is one of the longest established of its kind in the UK.

The standard qualification for a career in clinical psychology, a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology makes you eligible to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council and chartered status with the British Psychological Society.

You'll be trained to an advanced level in the use of psychological interventions across a variety of settings, and will gain competencies in the application of a range of therapies, including cognitive behavioural therapy and interpersonal therapy, and other approaches.

In addition to compulsory competencies in psychological therapies and clinical case management, you will also achieve advanced competencies in consultation and supervision, service development and governance and applied psychology research and evaluation.

The programme is constantly updated to ensure it reflects current practice, and you’ll be taught by lecturers who, as practitioners, are able to convey the most up-to-date methods and theories.

Thanks to our partnership with NHS Education for Scotland and a number of Scottish NHS boards, current arrangements are that you will be employed throughout your training as a trainee clinical psychologist. At least half of your training will be clinical practice-based and you will complete a number of clinical practice placements, usually within your employing NHS health board area, covering different specialities and service areas.

Your learning is spaced throughout your years of training, organised in teaching blocks and days and interspersed with supervised NHS placements in linked areas.

Placements cover a wide range of psychological work in primary care settings, the community and hospital.

Year 1 courses:

  • Clinical Psychology I
  • Adult Mental Health
  • Intellectual Disabilities
  • Research 1

Year 2 courses:

  • Clinical Psychology II
  • Children, Adolescents and Families
  • Neuropsychology and Older Adults
  • Research 2

Year 3 courses:

  • Elective Advanced Practice Seminars covering different specialist populations (e.g. psychosis, trauma, eating disorders) and therapies (such as ACT, IPT, CAT, and Schema Therapy)
  • Mandatory Professionalism and Practice teaching
  • Specialist Placements

The core purpose of the clinical psychology training programme is to train clinical psychologists to doctorate level, which allows trainees to impart the range of competences necessary to become eligible to apply for chartered status within the British Psychological Society and to apply for Health and Care Professions Council registration as a Practitioner/Clinical Psychologist.

The programme provides sufficient experiences to equip trainees with the skills, knowledge and core values of the profession to work effectively within the NHS with a range of clients and in different settings using various psychological interventions.

Competent trainees will:

  • be able to apply psychological skills, knowledge and values to clinical problems; that is, trainees will be able to assess, formulate, evaluate and solve problems using a range of psychological theories and knowledge
  • be able to apply knowledge of the different areas of clinical psychology to form a basis for working in any of the current applied fields of clinical psychology
  • have practical, clinical and research skills, knowledge and values that will enable them to pursue a career in any area of clinical psychology and with clients from a diverse range of backgrounds and in academic, health or community settings
  • be skilled at communicating effectively with clients, and with staff from other disciplines and to work within multi-disciplinary teams as a clinician, supervisor or consultant
  • be skilled in the knowledge and values required to work effectively with clients from a variety of cultural and ethnic backgrounds
  • understand the social context within which psychological problems may develop, and how environments may be modified in an attempt to ameliorate problems
  • understand the need for regular evaluation of their work, be skilled in self-reflection and self-awareness, understanding the need for continuing professional development after qualification

Once registered with the Health and Care Professions Council and the British Psychological Society, you will be eligible to apply for employment as a clinical psychologist in the NHS or with other organisations, and commence a rewarding career in this stimulating field.

These entry requirements are for the 2024/25 academic year and requirements for future academic years may differ. Entry requirements for the 2025/26 academic year will be published on 1 Oct 2024.

A UK 2:1 honours degree or its international equivalent.

You must be eligible for the Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) with the British Psychological Society (you may be eligible for GBC either through your undergraduate degree or through a GBC masters conversion course).

Applicants should hold a GBC-accrediting honours degree with a mean percentage mark of at least 61 or a GBC-accrediting MSc conversion degree in psychology with a mean percentage mark of at least 61.

You should have relevant experience that allows you to apply psychological principles in practice. Check the programme website for more information:

You will be required to attend an interview as part of our selection process.

You must meet the visa requirements to be employed in the UK without restriction.

Students from China

This degree is Band C.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

Regardless of your nationality or country of residence, you must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic: total 7.0 with at least 6.5 in each component. We do not accept IELTS One Skill Retake to meet our English language requirements.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Home Edition): total 100 with at least 23 in each component. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • C1 Advanced (CAE) / C2 Proficiency (CPE): total 185 with at least 176 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with passes in all four components.
  • PTE Academic: total 70 with at least 62 in each component.

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, Trinity ISE or PTE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries (non-MESC).

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than five years old* at the beginning of your programme of study. (*Revised 05 March 2024 to extend degree validity to five years.)

Find out more about our language requirements:

Tuition fees

The base fee and additional research costs of the programme are paid for by NHS Education for Scotland (NES).

Living costs

All trainees are responsible for their own accommodation costs for the duration of the programme, apart from those in distant NHS Boards (Highland, Grampian, Tayside and Dumfries and Galloway) who are given accommodation expenses during teaching blocks.

Trainees are funded through NHS Education for Scotland (NES). The current arrangement is that NES pay fees, trainee salaries, and travel expenses. Those accepted on these funded places are currently employed by the NHS as Trainee Clinical Psychologists while they study, through one of the Scottish health boards. Trainees start employment at spine point 21 on the Agenda for Change Salary band 6. This increases to spine point 22 at the start of year 2 and spine point 23 at the start of year 3. All pay increases are subject to satisfactory progression. Should there be any changes to funding arrangements, we will update this page with further information at the earliest opportunity.

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • School of Health in Social Science
  • Medical School
  • Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG

All applications for the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology are processed by the Clearing House for Postgraduate Courses in Clinical Psychology.

Further information

  • School of Health in Social Science
  • Medical School
  • Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG