Training and development (clinical psychology)
This page has information on the training and development opportunitues in clinical psychology.
After studying as a clinical psychologist, you need to be committed to learning and always keep your skills and knowledge up to date. You’ll need to keep up your registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and the British Psychological Society (BPS) will need you to continue your professional development.
"I'm currently completing a doctorate in clinical psychology, researching how clinicians assess the risk of violence." Louise Fountain, consultant clinical psychologist
What does continuing professional development (CPD) involve?
CPD helps psychologists to offer the best possible service to patients. A clinical psychologist must undertake an average of 40 hours CPD per calendar year, over a three-year period. It must not drop below 20 hours in each of those years. Psychologists may also be required to meet further obligations set by the BPS eg clinical psychologists have to work a minimum of 10 days per year in their area of speciality.
Chartered psychologists will be required to maintain a log book of their CPD activities, so that the Society can monitor their progress. CPD activities should be varied and balanced between directed and self-directed.
Examples of each are below.
Directed CPD activities
- post-qualification training courses
- received or conferred professional supervision in an area of psychology
- presentation or attendance at conferences
- professional committee work.
Self-directed CPD activities
- personal psychological counselling for professional purposes
- systematic reflection on practice
- maintaining a CPD log book (one hour maximum)
After qualifying and gaining some clinical experience, you may decide to specialise in a particular area of work, such as working with offenders or people with addictive behaviours. Some psychologists decide to go into supervisory roles, clinical management or clinical academic research.
You could apply for a trainee high intensity therapist position, enabling you to work under the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies initiative (IAPT).