This is the first practitioner Doctorate in the UK to provide people who complete the course eligibility to practise in two different branches of applied psychology, in this case Forensic and Clinical Psychology.
Successful completion of the course will lead to a dual qualification conferring eligibility to practise as a Forensic and Clinical psychologist.
The course is run in collaboration with local service providers who regularly sponsor their assistant psychologists on the course. Trainees on the course are also sponsored by a range of partners including St Andrew’s Healthcare, Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Trust and Northamptonshire Healthcare Foundation Trust. We also welcome applications from people who wish to self-fund.
In the Centre for Applied Psychology, we are committed to involving experts by experience in all the different aspects relevant to our teaching and research. The Experts by Experience Steering Committee (EBESC) is a group that meets regularly to discuss, organise and support the work of experts by experience linked to the Forensic Clinical Psychology Doctorate Programme. We comprise members from various backgrounds, including local experts by experience who contribute to the course and staff from the Centre for Applied Psychology.
We contribute to our different courses in various ways:
- Contributing to teaching, including training workshops
- Reviewing, supporting, designing and contributing to research projects
- Co-ordinating feedback in the course subcommittee
- Involvement in the course admissions process
This Doctorate programme in Forensic Clinical Psychology is aimed at psychologists wishing to work in forensic and clinical settings who need skills from both forensic and clinical disciplines. A number of local providers provide sponsorship for current employees. Sponsorship will cover the fees for training alongside the provision of renumeration for trainees (please consult with sponsors for further details). Self funding and international trainees will also be considered. The programme is four years long in duration, and took its first intake of five trainees in September 2013. A typical intake is 5 to 6 trainees.
Approval for the programme has been granted by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and accreditation has been received from the British Psychological Society (BPS) for dual recognition in Forensic and Clinical Psychology.
Candidates who complete the programme successfully will be eligible to become Chartered Forensic and Clinical Psychologists within the BPS and to apply for registration with the HCPC as Forensic and Clinical Psychologists.
The programme seeks to train reflective scientist-practitioners who are able to use their core knowledge and skills to formulate problems in psychological terms and draw creatively on theories and techniques from the discipline of psychology to find feasible solutions to a wide range of presenting issues, considering both clinical and forensic approaches, and in both clinical and forensic contexts.
There is an increasing need in prisons and in the community for skills that draw upon both forensic and clinical disciplines. A large number of individuals within prison and probation settings have mental health problems, while those in forensic mental health settings need robust risk assessment to identify criminogenic need and inform release decisions.
The programme is deliberately generic to promote flexibility but also emphasises evidence-based practice. In line with NICE guidelines and the ‘What Works’ approach, special consideration is given to cognitive-behavioural approaches.
- The core principle is to apply psychological theories, principles, knowledge, models and methods in an ethical and evidence based way to promote the wellbeing and effectiveness of individuals, families, groups, organisations and civil society, respecting the dignity and rights of both victims and offenders and remaining mindful of the need to protect the public from harm.
- The programme encourages an attitude of ‘critical open-mindedness’ to a range of approaches and theories.
- The programme team works in close partnership with forensic mental health, clinical and correctional colleagues in setting the direction of the programme, in its delivery and in its review.
- The programme recognises that trainees are mature students who bring a rich variety of experiences to their training and have a clear voice on programme matters.
- The programme is situated in an area of rich ethnic diversity, and ethnic and cultural issues are fully addressed during training.
- The essential aim of the programme is to provide professional, doctorate level training, commensurate with the requirements of the HCPC and BPS to qualify individuals to work as both forensic and clinical psychologists in forensic mental health, clinical, prison and other forensic settings.
- Trainees are required to gain specialty specific competencies in both forensic and clinical psychology over the four years of training and to complete placements with each of the following four clinical client groups:
1. Children and Young People
2. Adults (Mental Health)
3. Older People
4. Neuro-atypical populations
In addition to the clinical groups above, trainees will work with offenders and/or victims of crime To achieve this, typically six placements are completed across the training. These often take place within forensic- clinical mental health and criminal justice settings, alongside mainstream mental health services.
- The HCPC requirements for both forensic and clinical psychology training are defined through a set of Standards of Proficiency (SoPs), which trainees need to achieve by the end of their training and a set of Standards of Education and Training (SETs) that the training provider needs to meet. Full details can be found on the HCPC website, detailing standards of proficiency and also information on standards of education and training.
Mandatory vaccinations for COVID-19 for prospective healthcare students
As at 1st February 2022, the Government has indicated the requirement for mandatory vaccination against COVID-19 in order to work in patient facing roles in the NHS is subject to consultation and may be reversed. This may mean that the Government may relax measures for you to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to undertake your placement at the NHS as part of your course. We are awaiting further information on this, and we ask for your patience over the next few days while the position becomes clearer. if you are not fully vaccinated already against COVID-19, we would encourage you to take up the offer of an MHRA approved vaccine, as this remains the best protection against the disease.
Why study this course?
- This is a unique course integrating forensic and clinical psychological practice at doctoral level
- The qualification confers a dual qualification, BPS and HCPC approved, for practice in forensic, clinical or combined settings
- You can expand the knowledge base in this crucial area of psychological practice through your own forensic clinical research
- You can push the boundaries to improve forensic clinical practice and protect the public