SRP: a guide for supervisors

Introduction

One of the key assignments of the trainees on the Lancaster Doctorate in Clinical Psychology Programme is the Service Related Project (SRP). This is normally a small scale piece of research, service evaluation, or audit conducted within a clinical context. While it does not necessarily have to be explicitly psychological in focus (e.g., it could include an analysis of referral patterns to a clinical psychology department), it has to address issues of relevance to the practice of clinical psychology, and ideally should be of interest to local practitioners.

Information about the assignment

The work for the SRP is typically undertaken by trainees in their first and second year of study (see timetable below) although it may be conducted over a longer time period for trainees on a bespoke pathway of training. The word count limit is 6,000 words, not including the ethical section, references and appendices. However, trainees are also expected to disseminate the findings appropriately to the service in which the work took place, via a presentation or a bespoke report for example. Some SRPs are also published in peer reviewed journals.

For more information please see the trainee SRP guidance in the online handbook.

A copy of the marksheets for the SRP can also be downloaded from the Marking for all assignments except the thesis section of the online handbook.

Field supervisors

We are keen to hear of ideas for projects from local services and particularly welcome projects that fit within the expertise of the staff team: see here

All trainees have as a minimum two supervisors consisting of a field supervisor based in the local service and a member of the research team who is the research supervisor. The contribution of each supervisor varies depending on the strengths of each and the nature of the particular project. Typically the field supervisor works with the trainee to identify a project idea that would be useful for their service and helps provide access to participants. The research supervisor takes a lead in helping with ethical application and data analysis (although obviously the field supervisor can input to these too). The field supervisor usually provides one draft read of the assignment and research supervisor one to two draft reads. At the start of the project the roles of all members of the team are documented in a research contract so everyone is aware of the required tasks and expected timeframes.

Presentations

The trainees present their findings at the SRP presentation day in March of their second year. This event is an opportunity for the trainees to showcase their research to peers, programme staff, course stakeholders and service users. The day is a stimulating experience and we very much welcome field supervisors to attend. The presentation day will usually feature a seminar from a guest speaker. Copies of presentations from previous years can be downloaded from the programme website. An invitation is circulated around January, please contact Sarah Heard (details below) for more information.

Year Period Actions
1 June/July You will be contacted by the course for potential project ideas
September - November You will be approached by trainees interested in your project ideas. Please note that project ideas might need to change to reflect better the course's requirements. If you are not approached by the end of November you can assume that your project has not been taken up. Please feel free to contact the Research Coordinator, s.heard@lancaster.ac.uk, if you have any questions at this point.
January - May If your suggested idea is chosen the trainee will arrange for a research contract to be agreed between you, the trainee and the academic supervisor (one of the course team). This document outlines the responsibilities of the various individuals involved.
2 December - January You should receive an initial draft of the SRP from the trainee.
February The assignment will be submitted by the trainee.
March The trainees will present their findings at the SRP presentation day which you will be invited to attend.
March/April You can now finalise dissemination plans with the trainee.

Contact details

For more information about the service related project (SRP), please contact Sarah Heard, Research Coordinator, either by phone, 01524 592754, or email, s.heard@lancaster.ac.uk.