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Newcastle University: Clinical Psychology

Institution Newcastle University View institution profile
Department School of Psychology
Web Visit Newcastle University website
Study type Research


Our Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (DClinPsy) is approved by the Health and Care Professions Council. It integrates academic and practical teaching across a range of psychological approaches. Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust employ our trainees for the duration of the course.

Teaching across all years is predominantly in groups and generally conforms to the principles of 'adult learning'. For example, we view our trainees as active agents who share responsibility for their own development, and we expect our teachers to behave like 'guides' rather than experts. We consider 'discovery' learning to be the optimal way of achieving many of our objectives and expect that, rather than passively receiving information, our trainees will be empowered to question clinical lore, develop new conceptualisations, integrate new and old knowledge, and work on developing new skills collaboratively and experientially.

We ensure that the course reflects the current needs of the NHS. Local Special Interest Groups also contribute extensively to the design and delivery of the courses. We are recognised for having very positive relationships with local NHS services, with graduates being held in high regard, and for the strong research component of the course (BPS Approval report, 2012).


The course begins with a three week full-time induction teaching block. The remainder of the first year's academic teaching continues for two days per week, alongside one day for self-directed study and two days on clinical placement in the NHS, which continues in year two from September until December.

For part two of the programme (which starts in February of year two) there are up to three teaching days per month (all Mondays) until the end of the course.

The academic teaching is organised in courses, each of which is intended to contribute to our aims and objectives in a coherent and integrated way. These competency-based courses include: •Induction •Assessment •Formulation •Intervention •Evaluation •Research •Service Delivery •Communication and Teaching •Specialist Topics •Personal Professional Development (PPD).

The dissertation consists of a literature review and empirical project presented in manuscript form, each typically 5,000 to 8,000 words in length. You will begin work on this in the second part of year one, collect data through year two and submit in year three.

It aims to introduce you to the realities of conducting clinically relevant research and to foster the competencies conducive to an active research role in the NHS. This requires the ability to: •identify appropriate topics •formulate relevant questions •select an appropriate methodology •submit a research proposal •execute the project within a tight schedule •analyse the results •communicate the findings effectively through written and oral methods.

The region's research community has a range of ongoing clinically relevant research programmes and welcomes collaboration with our trainees. All projects have an explicit psychological underpinning. We encourage a programmatic research model, in keeping with research and development initiatives in the NHS. This offers you significant advantages in terms of knowledge, expertise and support for the work you are undertaking.

A service-related development research project, of 5,000 words, is also submitted in year two. This is normally conducted during placements in year one or two. It aims to provide you with the opportunity to demonstrate competence in relation to service-related, implementation research. It will address topics primarily of relevance to the practice of clinical psychology within the local clinical service in which it is undertaken (e.g. an audit or staff training).


Clinical experience takes place during four, six month core placements followed by an elective placement of 11 months.


Newcastle University







About us
A Global Top 125 university (QS World University Rankings 2023), Newcastle University is dedicated to excellence, creativity and innovation, pioneering solutions that can change our world.

Through world-class research it tackles some of the biggest challenges facing society globally, leading in its key strengths of ageing and health, data, energy, cities, culture and creative arts. The UK’s Research Excellence Framework 2021 assessed its research as world-leading with outstanding impact.

Through high quality teaching it …

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