What experience did you have when you got on training?

Discuss applications to the clearing house (and to courses that are not in the clearing house system), screening assessments, interviews, reserve lists, places, etc. here
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ChrisCross
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Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2017 8:37 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by ChrisCross » Fri May 12, 2017 12:52 pm

Hi folks,

Massively excited to be able to post here!

I'm 22 (will be 23 when I start) and a first time applicant - 1 interview and 1 reserve list interview that I wasn't called up for in the end.

I graduated in 2016 with an MSci in Psychology and Psychological Practice, which was a 4 year undergrad degree integrated with a masters year and honorary AP placement.

During my degree, I worked as a support carer with adults with mental health difficulties (6 months). I also volunteered for the Samaritans for almost 3 years and volunteered abroad in Sri Lanka for about 5 weeks. I wrote about my experiences in Sri Lanka and managed to get an article published in the BPS Psychologist magazine.

After my degree I was lucky enough to be offered a paid AP position in the trust where I completed my placement (in CAMHS) and I have been working there ever since (just over a year now).

So there you have it! Not an awful lot of experience compared to some other applicants, but I think the key for me was reflecting constantly throughout the process, learning about myself, other people and the profession. I think most importantly, I really sat down and thought about my values and the kind of clinician that I saw myself becoming in future if I was lucky enough to be offered a place on a course. I am hugely excited to start training and will be looking forward to the many challenges that I'm sure it brings!

MindfulPsych
Posts: 179
Joined: Sun Mar 08, 2015 11:33 am

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by MindfulPsych » Sat May 13, 2017 9:16 am

ChrisCross wrote:Hi folks,

Massively excited to be able to post here!

I'm 22 (will be 23 when I start) and a first time applicant - 1 interview and 1 reserve list interview that I wasn't called up for in the end.

I graduated in 2016 with an MSci in Psychology and Psychological Practice, which was a 4 year undergrad degree integrated with a masters year and honorary AP placement.

During my degree, I worked as a support carer with adults with mental health difficulties (6 months). I also volunteered for the Samaritans for almost 3 years and volunteered abroad in Sri Lanka for about 5 weeks. I wrote about my experiences in Sri Lanka and managed to get an article published in the BPS Psychologist magazine.

After my degree I was lucky enough to be offered a paid AP position in the trust where I completed my placement (in CAMHS) and I have been working there ever since (just over a year now).

So there you have it! Not an awful lot of experience compared to some other applicants, but I think the key for me was reflecting constantly throughout the process, learning about myself, other people and the profession. I think most importantly, I really sat down and thought about my values and the kind of clinician that I saw myself becoming in future if I was lucky enough to be offered a place on a course. I am hugely excited to start training and will be looking forward to the many challenges that I'm sure it brings!
This has given me so much hope - thank you ChrisCross... I graduated in 2015 and have 3 years experience and i'm now training as a PWP. Feeling much better about my chances.

Congratulations and enjoy the course! :D

KatieD
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2015 2:29 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by KatieD » Mon May 15, 2017 12:14 pm

This is long but honest…

Graduated in 2009 with a degree in Psychology, Social Policy (1:1), completed a Masters in Social Care (2010, 1:1, mental health thesis) and a Masters in Psychology (High 2:1, won research award, 2013). Many CPD workshops.

Context: I’m Irish, the HSE does not pay AP roles, and so although I wanted clinical psychology graduating from my undergrad, the recession and need to support my family financially meant I took the long route. I’ll be 29 (just about!) starting clinical in London but, I’ve been working since I was 16, at least 10 years of which was full-time work across the care sector.

Undergraduate experience – worked part time throughout undergrad in care roles, plus volunteer roles e.g. research assistant, presenting at conferences etc.

Postgraduate experience – (key roles mentioned)
3 years part time volunteering listening services (ISPCC, Dublin Rape Crisis Centre etc.)
3 years full time in various services as Social Care worker in Care service – including young offenders, crisis intervention and specialist services for looked after teens and trauma.
8 months not working – travelling mainly in Asia, Australia, USA.
1 year paid AP early intervention services ABA (30 hours per week during MA Psych)
c. 2 months off for wedding, honeymoon and changing jobs.
3 years in split posts. Working full time as a complex care manager in specialist community MHID service (shift work: began as Snr support worker, promoted after c. 1 year).
Plus (same three year time period) honorary AP part-time in HSE primary care child adolescent services (1.5 days per week) and honorary AP AON (assessment) services (.5 days per week).
August 2016 – current Full-time Paid AP post Disability Service. Plus, voluntary experience facilitating support groups for adult M.H. charity service (c. 2 hours per week).
Involved in in-service research projects throughout, and have a research role in PSI sub-committee.

I know that as I post this, for some, my route will be scary. I’d love to say it’s unusual, but I meet so many people with similar work histories. Interviews have been my big struggle, but…I’ve had reserve places for the last three years.

This year, I feel that I was in a position financially to step back, stop working crazy 70-90 hour weeks, and take the time to really think about what I wanted. I took time before each interview (as in wasn’t working the night before!) and relaxed about it all. I also admitted to myself that I wasn’t a ‘typical’ applicant, and stopped trying to see myself in that frame. Instead, I really focused on the strengths that my path had taught me. I reflected on the reality of what that meant in terms of dictating my choices (in a non-angry resentful way) and explained that (and my dyslexia) in interview.

I feel more solid as a person and ready for training, and although I could have gotten on years ago, I think that the resilience I’ve had to develop, has knocked some of the edges off me, and will make me a better clinician. The irony isn’t lost on me, that I had a post drafted for the ‘deciding to withdraw from the process’ thread: Although I’m (only?) 29, I’ve had serious health scares and will be IVF as a consequence. I’m so lucky to have a partner I adore and was on the cusp of walking away, mainly as although I love my work, I recognise that clinical is also ‘just’ a job, and I felt that ‘pending’ was beginning to interfere with my life. Realistically, I am delighted to have gotten on, and looking forward to the adventure and challenges that it brings. But, I don’t think that there is a magic answer to “what you need to become a trainee”. It’s a mixture of luck, opportunity and ability to persist. I know so many great people that have walked away because they needed to make other choices. It’s a crazy competition, with only so many places, and so many inspirational applicants. I remember being so intimidated when I first started interviewing and met people, whom I thought were inspiring, and couldn’t work out where I ‘fit’ in comparison. This year, I think I stopped comparing and thought about me. I also think I just finally got lucky….

ClinPsyOo
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Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2017 10:24 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by ClinPsyOo » Wed May 17, 2017 3:21 pm

So thrilled to be posting on this thread, which has both been a source of inspiration and and a source of fear that I would never 'get there'. Thank you to all of you for sharing your stories! Let's hope I can describe this journey in a helpful way.

Long story short, I initially left school, trained as a musician,and supported myself with various music and hospitality jobs from the age of 15. Along the way, I took my baccalaureate (equivalent to A levels) as an external candidate as I had no academic qualifications and always dreamed to go to uni. I moved to the UK 10 years ago and started my my BSc Psychology with Education and Community development at 25 with the clear goal of becoming a CP but no awareness of the difficulties lying ahead. I graduated in June 2014 with a First. In hindsight, doing a combined honours degree was not a great idea and I found it hard to focus on the education modules. I have no other academic qualifications, I thought this would hinder my chances to get on the course, but it didn’t :) I have published my dissertation, which, I think, really helped.

Experience: (A lot of part-time overlapping experiences, tricky to keep the balance between unpaid posts, short contracts and the need to pay rent!)
- 3 years as a volunteer at MIND for 3 years few hours/week as a STR worker in a Day Centre. They offered a lot of training (KUF working with PD, co-facilitating groups, Mental health first aid). I also had the opportunity to start new projects. For example, I set up and ran a group on food and mood.
- 2 years as a PT Support worker for people with disabilities at university. Allowed me reflect on people’s needs.
- 6 months in an honorary post in drug and alcohol service. First NHS experience and allowed me to discover how such services are organised. I was asked to help on a big audit for the psychiatrists, which was very helpful for CV and job interviews.
- At the same time I did two research internships (3 months each) and got a research assistant post. Got a couple of publications out of them.
- 1.5 year as a FT Clinical support worker in a crisis house on a shift schedule which allowed me to undertake other honorary positions. I learned so much there. So many presentations and issues. Large MDT in short term settings. I also ran groups and was the link for domestic violence.
- 6 months honorary AP job in children's social service (1 day week). Got to meet a lot of great CPs and trainees there. Truly inspiring and helped me keeping the eyes on the prize when I felt overworked.
-3 months lectureship in research methods with my undergrad university. I have since carried on doing some academic work for them on an hourly-paid basis.
-3 months assistant practitioner job in a memory service - I could not get an AP job and I was desperate to get a band 4.
-1 year FT NHS AP. It felt like the holy grail. Health psychology setting. Screened all inpatients - Adult and Paediatric. Amazing supervision and opportunity to have my own caseload as well as being involved in research.

Overall, as well as the quality of the services I worked in, having the support of these teams and being inspired by great CPs really helped me. I applied to the training 3 times. First year I didn't realise that my English qualification wasn't valid, so that didn't go well. 2nd time, I got an interview but didn't get on. 3rd time lucky, got 3 interviews and a reserve interview place. Got 2 offers. The difference about this year is that I have been honest about having an atypical journey and I highlighted my specific interest in social justice/psychology-activism/community psychology.

Currently on maternity leave and I just accepted my place at UEL. I will be 32 when I start and my little girl will be 16 months. I am terrified about the demands of the course and family life but I also know that I am ready and that I can count on my support network! Bring on September :)

I'm happy to answer any questions if that can help.

Esk
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Oct 31, 2009 10:49 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by Esk » Thu May 18, 2017 2:36 pm

Wasn't sure I'd ever get to post here after being on this forum since 2008!

I graduated in 2007 after completing a post-graduate diploma to convert my joint degree into a psychology one. I immediately went into support work for people with LD and spent 5 years there, completing a PGCE and an MSc in Psychiatry at Cardiff University along the way.

I first applied fresh out of uni and again when I had just started my masters, at that time not really having a clue what I was doing and I would cringe to read those applications now. After my MSc I worked for a year as a teacher/support teacher for in a additional needs department of a college. I then started a job as a research assistant in mental health where I worked for 2 years and this is when I started applying again, in 2011. I then worked as a research associate in LD for a year before moving onto an RCT involving people with LD. During this time I also volunteered on a project using diagnostic tools for PTSD, was an honorary assistant working in a trauma service and worked on another RCT involving people with TB. I also did some lecturing on LD and health for medical students. I then got myself my first NHS AP post in 2015, requiring me to move to NHS England when I'd previously always been based in Wales. Again, this was in LD so a lot of my experience is quite focused in that area. I also provide research support privately to a brain injury service.

I had my first interview in 2014 and have had 2 every year since. At first I think my lack of NHS experience held me back, I just wasn't used to the language of the NHS and my feedback was always that my answers lacked depth. Last year was probably the first time I felt truly ready and aware of what the course really entailed, after working in the NHS alongside trainees. I got my first reserve place last year but felt that my anxiety took over, as I had put so much pressure on myself by then.

I was reluctant to do any mock interviews last year as I thought they'd be super embarrassing but this year I bit the bullet and accepted all the mock interviews I was offered. The first one was horrendous and I was mortified! I stuck with it though and spent more time focusing on my anxiety and how I was coming across in interviews, rather than cramming information. I was also helped to think more reflectively about what had got me to this point and had a session of personal therapy that really helped in this. In the lead up to my interview I just tried to read a lot, interesting pieces from the Guardian or BPS on mental health etc.

My interview was last week. I thought it was awful and was really hard on myself. I was insistent that I had messed it up. So I was both shocked and delighted to get a call from Cardiff yesterday. I'm so pleased to finally be moving on in the process and incredibly relieved to not have to go through the application process ever again! And Cardiff is just a dream come true for me, being from South Wales.

I've found this forum to be incredibly supportive and have always enjoyed the sense of a shared experience here. My message would be to keep going, if it's really what you want more than anything, and make sure you love what you do in the meantime.

YellowNutshell
Posts: 26
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:01 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by YellowNutshell » Sun May 21, 2017 1:01 pm

Quite surprised to be able to post in this thread, this has been my first year applying and I gained 1 rejection, 3 interviews- 2 of which I had no offers, and finally one straight offer. 3rd time lucky!

My experience feels a little lacking in comparison to some, so I do feel that being quite reflective in interview helped. Also I'd pretty much written off this year so I was a lot more relaxed about it!

Experience wise I graduated in 2014 with an MPsych degree in Advanced Psychology which was clinically focused. I got a 1st and had also done a placement year doing some research into communication with children with complex needs.

I volunteered 1 day a week for around 6 months in a female rehabilitation setting in my 4th year.
Spent 10 weeks in Sri Lanka- not necessarily as psychology focused as promised but a good learning curve nonetheless.
6 months as a community support worker for Rethink (charity). Helped run some groups and had my own caseload, mainly doing a lot of anxiety management and drawing upon CBT approaches.
14 months as CSW again with a local CMHT. As well as having my own caseload again I managed to accrue different responsibilities there, including a bit of audit type work.
6 months Psychology Assistant in IAPT. Unfortunately not as varied as I'd hoped and just did assessments, but interesting to learn more about IAPT and primary care.
And I've literally this week just started a new role as an AP in a community LD service which at the moment seems very daunting and overwhelming!

I also volunteered in Romania for 2 weeks, 2 years in a row when I was just 17 and 18. I think this was most likely what led me to consider CP and has always stuck with me.

Very excited to be starting training (I'll be 27 when it starts) but have to admit feeling quite nervous and having a crisis of confidence at times. Hopefully when I settle into my new job this will go and I'll feel more prepared!

inbloom10
Posts: 21
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2016 10:37 am

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by inbloom10 » Fri May 26, 2017 12:22 pm

Incredibly surprised to be posting on here but hopefully it’s helpful to some losing hope..!

I’m 22, will be 23 when I start in September, and graduated from an MSci Psychology and Psychological Practice degree with a 1st in July 2016. While I was on the course I had an approximately 8 month honorary AP placement in a secure care service as at the time I thought Forensic Psychology was the route for me... turns out I’m much more suited to Clinical! During this post I co-facilitated a therapy group and shadowed my supervisor in some assessments, but the role was quite heavily admin and research focused.

During my degree I also volunteered for ChildLine as an email counsellor for about a year, and volunteered as a research assistant in my first and second year. I also volunteered as an honorary AP for one summer in a Community Mental Health Team.

Throughout my degree I also worked as a part-time administrator for a private psychology company who then hired me as an AP when I graduated last year. This is my current role and mostly involves completing cognitive functioning assessments using with WAIS and other psychometrics with adults and children and writing these up into reports. I have also gained some experience with Looked After Children, however I haven’t had any long-term 1:1 clinical work.
In terms of publications, I published an article on NextGenForensic - a Forensic Psychology Blog - about my dissertation, and completed some research while I was on placement which was published in a small journal. I also wrote an Article for The Psychologist about my time at ChildLine.

And that’s about it! Not much compared to some other candidates I’m sure, but I think it’s important to remember that they’re not looking for the ‘finished product’ and no one is the ‘perfect candidate’!

Also – I absolutely hated my interview! In my opinion it went awfully, and although everyone told me the interviewers were lovely, I absolutely hated it and was certain I wouldn’t get a place! So if you hate your interview or think you’ve messed up, please try your best to stay positive and be kind to yourself (easier said than done, I know)!

Good luck to all future applicants and people yet to hear back 

AlisonMac
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2015 3:53 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by AlisonMac » Fri May 26, 2017 7:25 pm

I'm excited to be able to post on this thread. I'm 26 and have been offered a place starting in September.

I completed my degree in psychology and straight from this I completed an MSc in abnormal and clinical psychology which I received a distinction for. After graduating I started working as a support worker in a low secure unit. I worked there as a support worker for a year and then I also began volunteering with their psychology department one day a week. I wasn't allowed much patient contact during this time due to insurance purposes, but I was able to co-facilitate groups, help write reports and I think just being in the psychology office and being in a place where everyone thought psychologically was really helpful. After six months of volunteering an assistants post came up in the same unit which I was lucky enough to be offered. I worked as an ap there for 18 months, where I gained so much experience I can't describe it all. I had individual sessions based on a range of models, and interpretive models. I facilitated groups such as mindfulness, DBT skills, communications and drug and alcohol. I also got a lot of experience in report writing, attending professionals meetings, and team formulations. i also co-authored a paper which has now been accepted to be published (but was just in submission at the point of my application).

I left my post there to begin working as an ap in an adult CMHT in January this year. And have now been lucky enough to be offered a place. This was my second year applying. Last year I had three interviews, but looking back now I really wasn't ready then. I guess to some my experience may seem really limited as I really only have experience working in these two settings but I've learnt so much from these posts.

lemondrizzle
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Feb 05, 2017 9:03 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by lemondrizzle » Fri May 26, 2017 11:01 pm

Can't believe I'm posting here, but here I am :)

I am 22 and will be 23 when I start the course. I had 3 straight rejections and one interview, which materialised into a place :D

Qualifications
BSc Psychology 2:1 (68%)

Experience at time of application (in chronological order):
- 2 weeks centre volunteer in a skills development centre for people with disabilities
- 1 week honorary research assistant working on someone's thesis research
- 1 week shadowing clinical psychologists in an inpatient neurorehabilitation unit
- 0.6 month honorary research assistant working on someone's thesis research
- 1 month honorary research assistant in an inpatient neurorehabilitation unit (10 hours a month)
- 0.4 months paid ABA tutor (7 hours a week)
- 2 months research internship doing a systematic review (1-2 days a week)
- 0.4 months paid team leader/ABA therapist (1 day a week)
- 1.5 months honorary assistant psychologist in a children, young people and families' service (2 days a week)
- 1 month paid research assistant working on developing a new intervention (1 day a week)
- 3 months paid Lead ABA therapist working with one child with autism (varied from 3-15 hours a week)
- 7.5 months paid assistant psychologist in an inpatient neurorehabilitation unit (2.5 days a week)
- 2.5 months honorary assistant psychologist in a community drug and alcohol service (2 days a week)

Looking back at this, I seriously tried to milk my experiences as much as I could and tried to include anything and everything relevant, even if it was only for a week!

I've worked part-time ever since I've graduated. I only started a full-time post recently (so nice to be earning more money)! So yeah... this is how my journey has looked - somewhat hectic with all my different part-time jobs that I was switching between on a daily basis, but hopefully that has prepped me well for training. :)

og1234
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2016 3:08 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by og1234 » Tue May 30, 2017 3:47 pm

Graduated in 2013 with Psychology BSc 2.1. During the summer between second year and third I traveled South East Asia and volunteered as a counsellor with a charity to offered assistance to young women to help them to break the cycle of poverty they found themselves in.
During my third year I volunteered in a dementia care home, helping out support staff and nurses in order to recruit participants for my dissertation.
After graduating I went straight in to a Clinical and Health Psychology MSc and graduated with Merit in November 2014.
During my MSc I worked part-time in bars and towards the end of my degree looked for support-worker roles.
I got a job as a support worker in a privately run secure hospital for people with acquired brain injury and autism/ld.
I was a support worker for 4 weeks before the company recruited internally for an AP which I was lucky enough to get.
I worked as an AP for 8/9 months before I was offered a Trainee Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner role in the NHS.
I was a trainee for 1 year and undertook the Postgraduate Diploma in Low Intensity Therapies which I passed with distinction in May 2016.
I worked as a Qualifed PWP in the same service from May 2016 - December 2016. I started to feel that I was getting burnt out as a PWP, was not getting to spend much time at all with ClinPsychs and that I was losing some of my creativity as a practitioner.
I decided that I wanted to go back to working as an AP as I enjoyed that style of working but was nervous about leaving a permanent, band 5 post (with a significant chance to progress on to HIT training) for a fixed term, band 4 post. However, I knew that my heart wasn't truly in IAPT working and felt I was unlikely to get on to clinical training, if I stayed in the role I was in as I didn't feel I was learning. That's not to say that everyone working in IAPT feels this way but my service wasn't really providing us with much CPD time and I was feeling pretty isolated, working in clinics alone and only seeing other colleagues once a week.
In January this year I took an AP role in an Early Intervention Service, which I love, and I'm happy to say that I was successful in my application to the Doctorate this year (application #3)
I honestly think that if I had stayed put in my PWP role I would not have been successful this year, as my desperation to leave would have contributed to more anxiety in the lead up to the interview and I don't think that my role was allowing me to be as a creative and person-centered as I would have liked. Although my current role wasn't on my application when it was submitted this year I think working this role enabled me to feel more confident when offered an interview.

If anyone has any questions I'd be happy to answer them :D

Tlf
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue May 09, 2017 2:56 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by Tlf » Mon Jun 05, 2017 4:30 pm

Pleased to be able to post here! I will be 29 starting the course so a little older than many starting I guess... maybe due to my non -traditional route.

- Graduated Psychology Degree 2009
- Volunteered as RA 6 months PT during undergrad
-Completed Forensic Psych Masters 2010
- Worked as a bank HCSW in a forensic LD unit for a year
- Worked as an Independent Mental Health Advocate for almost 3 years, PT at first alongside my MSC, then full time.
- Gained a trainee PWP place, worked as a PWP for 3 years incl. Promotion to supervisory role.
- Volunteered PT as an RA again, roughly a year alongside full time work as PWP
- Trained as a HI therapist, which I will have been doing for a year post-qualification when I start the course (2 years total)

Quite a different route to many as I did not have a single AP post. Hope this is helpful for some!

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sweetpea
Posts: 145
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Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by sweetpea » Wed Jun 07, 2017 3:14 pm

I'll be 29 when I start training. Second time applicant; only applied when I was ready.

My successful application was very reflective. Instead of trying to gloss over the gory details, I openly explained the difficulties I've had along the way, with a concise focus on what learning I can take forwards into training and beyond.

Education
- BSc Psychology; mental & physical health
2:1 (65%) - 2009-13
- MSc Clinical Aspects of Psychology
Distinction - 2013-14

My academic record prior to my MSc wasn't straight forward - no A Levels, repeated 3rd year of BSc and completed with an unusually bumpy transcript. Doing my MSc was a huge turning point, because I was able to fully apply myself (no extenuating circumstances) and rediscover my motivation and enthusiasm.

Experience
(chronologically, in months of full time equivalent):

- 4.5 mos ABA tutor (p/t, during undergrad)
- 1.9 mos Peer Supporter (p/t, during undergrad)
- 1.6 mos Disability mentor (p/t, during MSc)
- 4.2 mos Honorary Assistant Psychologist - CAMHS anxiety and depression (p/t, MSc placement)
- 3.6 mos Research Assistant - adolescent depression (p/t)
- 3.5 mos Honorary Research Assistant - technology in mental health (p/t)
- 7.5 mos Assistant Psychologist - quality improvement (p/t)
- 10 mos Assistant Psychologist - CAMHS eating disorders (f/t)

Until last year, all my roles were part time, so I've mostly held two or more positions in parallel. I have been incredibly fortunate that each of my positions has led to the next, through being in the right place at the right time. That said, there's been an awful lot of unpaid overtime and excessive stress and responsibility, so I'm relieved to be getting off the pre-qualification hamster wheel. :D

puggins
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2015 6:42 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by puggins » Tue Jun 05, 2018 4:27 pm

Hi all, very happy to share my experience and say I am finally on training :).

I am starting training at the age of 26, and it has taken me 3 applications and 1 interview to get to this point.

Education:
- MSci Psychology and Psychological Practice, First
- No postgraduate education

Paid Experience:
- 10 months (full-time) Associate Practitioner in an EI service
- 10 months (full-time) Assistant Psychologist in CAMHS LD service
- 11 months (full-time) Assistant Psychologist in Older Adults Memory Service
- 3 months (full-time) Rehabilitation Support Worker in Brain Injury Unit
- 12 months (full-time) Residential Support Worker for adults with ASD and Honorary Assistant Psychologist in Older Adults CMHT/Inpatient

Voluntary Experience:
- 6 months (1 hour per week) Helpline Volunteer for Domestic Abuse Charity
- 6 months (2 hours per fortnight) Group Facilitator for Mind

Additionally, I don't have any formal publications but I have other disseminations (oral presentations/poster presentation) which I found useful to reflect on, as well as having been involved in audits/service evaluations. I don't think my research experience is particularly strong, but this has been something I've openly acknowledged :).

Happy to help and answer any questions if anyone has similar experience and is thinking about applying :).

yorkshirepysch
Posts: 36
Joined: Thu Jul 16, 2015 11:53 pm

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by yorkshirepysch » Tue Jun 12, 2018 4:59 pm

Hi everyone,

I’m 23 and will be starting training at Manchester in October. This is my third time applying (second ‘proper’ time).

I graduated from UCL in 2015 with a first class honours in BSc Psychology & Language Sciences. I don’t have a masters. Prior to UCL I did a few months experience in South Africa with my Aunt who runs a private practice there, doing very casual admin-type tasks. I also did a few months (2 days a week) during one university summer working at a Psychological Medicine dept in my hometown. If I’m honest I didn’t really learn anything about clinical psychology from either of these voluntary roles!

I got my first AP job when I left uni in Brain injury. I worked there for around 7 months and left for another AP job closer to home in adult female complex trauma, in a specialist therapeutic community. After around 11 months I then left this role for an AP job in forensic services. I was in forensics for around 11 months too before I moved into an RA role in Manchester. I found out that I got offers to do the DClin around March of this year. My contract in Manchester has now come to an end, so I’m doing locum RA work for several researchers at UoM now, and also taking it chilled before Oct!

I’m happy to answer any questions people have! :)

graduateak
Posts: 103
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2012 2:25 am

Re: What experience did you have when you got on training?

Post by graduateak » Fri Jun 15, 2018 6:06 pm

Graduated in 2011 with a first in Psychology
- during undergrad volunteered with the Samaritans

Post undergrad
It took me about a year after I graduated from my undergraduate working as a Lifeguard and doing bits of voluntary work (neurosurgery ward, online CBT support) before I got my first relevant paid job in a charity where I had volunteered.
- 1 year pt Online CBT coordinator
- 1 year very pt Honorary AP in Clinical Health Psychology (worked with my supervisor to write the job description so that it benefited us both).

PGCert Mental Health Care
- 1 year Trainee PWP split between a clinical health psychology service (supervised by a CP) and primary care - was going to stay on as a qualified PWP, but after receiving no offers of an interview for the DClin, applied for a funded PhD on a whim (just thought that ).

4 years - Nearly finished (I hope) PhD in relevant area (supervised by a CP)
- bits of teaching on undergrad Psychology, and Medicine
- assisted with other bits of research
- 3 years volunteer support group coordinator for a local eating disorders service
- 1 year pt Mental Health Practitioner at the same charity (supervised by a CP)

When I graduated I had a really fixed plan and put a lot of pressure on myself to get an AP post and get onto the doctorate, things didn't turn out that way and I'm glad they didn't as it enabled me to explore other careers and options. A few key jobs led on from voluntary work, and I've had CP supervision in non-AP roles.
“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” ― Albert Einstein.

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