Information for DClinPsy applicants
Lancaster differs from many other Clinical Psychology programmes both in the way it selects candidates to interview and how it chooses those to offer places to. We have provided some background to our values and approach as it will help you understand the tasks applicants are asked to undertake.
About the programme
The vast majority of the DClinPsy curriculum is delivered via face-to-face teaching at Lancaster University, which is also your employment base as a Trainee Clinical Psychologist with Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust. In-person attendance at both teaching and placements is a requirement. The programme cannot be attended online 'live' from a distance due to the experiential learning and teaching requirements for trainee clinical psychologists. Placements are allocated across the whole of the north west of England and may be located in Lancashire, Cheshire, Greater Manchester, Merseyside or Cumbria. There are more details on placements in our handbook including information on expenses. You may wish to browse the entire handbook for full details on the programme's structure and delivery.
How our values translate to our selection procedure
The programme strives to ensure that we uphold the values of social justice, equality, and inclusivity at all times, including in our selection process. For this reason, our procedure is designed to actively encourage those from diverse backgrounds to apply and is focused on an individual's potential to become an outstanding clinical psychologist rather than over-emphasising existing knowledge and skills.
We are proactive about supporting people with disabilities
If you need support to access our selections procedure or feel that any aspect of our process would put you at a disadvantage, we will work with you to mitigate these issues and ensure that you are given a fair opportunity to show your potential. Please contact us and we can discuss your options.
Why we use a shortlisting test
Many applicants to our programme are fortunate enough to have had access to extensive education and employment. However, some individuals have not had these privileges, and may never have, but have significant potential and are well suited to the programme. As we want everyone to be assessed on a fair basis, we use a shortlisting test which examines potential rather than looking at the application form which emphasises experience. Evidence also shows that application forms are a very poor predictor of job performance. Our approach means using shortlisting processes which have substantial evidence to indicate they predict performance on both the programme and in a complex job role once qualified.
Why we focus on competencies, not knowledge and skills
Our selection event looks at the competencies an individual holds, not their knowledge and skills. As we have noted, for a variety of reasons not all applicants are fortunate enough to have the same access to education and employment. We focus on the potential of the applicant to develop during training and the personal qualities which will be required to manage both the programme and the job following qualification. While some applicants are disappointed that we do not look at their specific professional experiences, to do so would undermine our commitment to social justice and potentially unfairly exclude some applicants.