Should I do an accredited Forensic Psychology masters as a fallback?

The place to ask about degree courses, conversion courses, masters, PhD or other qualifications. Discuss specific courses, their pros and cons, the content, the application process, different institutions, how to fund them, etc. Includes advice if you have a 2:2 and questions on transcripts
Post Reply
ourbooksandourpens
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Aug 28, 2020 12:02 am

Should I do an accredited Forensic Psychology masters as a fallback?

Post by ourbooksandourpens »

Hi, everyone! :mrgreen:

I'm currently a third year undergraduate in psychology and I want to go into clinical psychology. While I understand a masters is by no means necessary (and I'm on track for a First, fingers crossed), from looking at previous versions of the Alternative Handbook, it seems that a lot of people who get on have a masters and I want to boost my chances as much as possible (not to mention I've seen a lot of people say they weren't successful in obtaining an AP post* until after they obtained a masters). The issue I have is given how competitive clinical psychology is, I'm hesitant to go for a clinical psychology masters since it offers no training in and of itself. I'm estranged from my family, so I don't have the insurance of being able to live at home, and seeing how much friends who have graduated are struggling for jobs (especially now) has made me want to ensure I have a back-up plan to ensure I still end up in a good job.

I've seen forensic psychology mentioned as a relevant masters for the clinical psychology doctorate multiple times and I figured this could give me both a relevant masters and a fallback option if clinical psychology doesn't work out (I could try and go for the supervised practice route to becoming a forensic psychologist instead, although I recognise this route is still competitive). I want to emphasise I am very interested in forensic psychology and it one of the areas I'd be interesting in going into following the clinical psychology doctorate; I'm also currently training for a volunteer role working with those who have came into contact with the CJS to have relevant experience. I have two questions, really: Are clinical psychology masters looked upon more favourably and, if so, is it to an extent it would be work taking the risk? And is this an advisable thing to do?

*I've also read that AP posts aren't the be all and end all, but again, it seems majority of those who are successful have them. Voluntary AP roles would absolutely not be an option for me, so I want to be able to give myself as good of a shot possible at obtaining a paid role.
User avatar
miriam
Site Admin
Posts: 7983
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2007 11:20 pm
Location: Bucks
Contact:

Re: Should I do an accredited Forensic Psychology masters as a fallback?

Post by miriam »

Paid experience is also helpful in progressing your career and securing an AP post and will earn you money rather than costing you money. I'd start there, rather than with an MSc, as extra qualifications are optional - especially with a first - and won't make up for a lack of experience.
Miriam

See my blog at http://clinpsyeye.wordpress.com
ourbooksandourpens
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Aug 28, 2020 12:02 am

Re: Should I do an accredited Forensic Psychology masters as a fallback?

Post by ourbooksandourpens »

miriam wrote: Tue Oct 20, 2020 11:47 pm Paid experience is also helpful in progressing your career and securing an AP post and will earn you money rather than costing you money. I'd start there, rather than with an MSc, as extra qualifications are optional - especially with a first - and won't make up for a lack of experience.
Hi, miriam! Thank you so much for your reply.

I've decided I'm going to forgo the masters and this really reassured me that trying to get into a relevant role wouldn't be hopeless without one (especially as you're in the area I'd ideally go into), so thank you so much for your advice. I think I've just been paying too much attention to other people's journeys and feeling like I had to do everything I could to fit the 'standard' mould of an applicant to have the best chances possible, which, in retrospect, was quite silly (since there is no 'standard' mould, really).
User avatar
miriam
Site Admin
Posts: 7983
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2007 11:20 pm
Location: Bucks
Contact:

Re: Should I do an accredited Forensic Psychology masters as a fallback?

Post by miriam »

Well I hope you enjoy your next steps. That's the key thing really, to make the most of your experiences, as they will build upon each other.

BTW If my work is of interest, we will have some psych grad field-worker posts coming up to advert next month, probably 2 or 3 of them or several part-time roles, depending on the locations of our Innovation project (my best guess so far is that one will be based in west London, and one in the west Midlands, with other part-time posts more spread out in other regions)
Miriam

See my blog at http://clinpsyeye.wordpress.com
Post Reply