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Clinical psychologist

Clinical psychologists help people to deal with mental health issues, phobias and addiction.

Annual Salary

£32,305 to £45,838

Average UK salary in 2019 was £30,378
(source Office for National Statistics)

Working hours

37 to 39 a week

You could work: evenings / weekends; occasionally

Future employment

There will be 6% more Clinical psychologist jobs in 2026.
In your local area

Day to day tasks

In this job, you'll:

  • assess clients’ needs through interviews, tests and observations
  • decide on the most appropriate treatments, like therapy or counselling
  • plan treatment programmes
  • work with clients in groups or individually
  • go to case conferences
  • carry out research
  • work closely with other professionals like doctors
  • produce legal reports and act as an expert witness in court

Working environment

You could work in an NHS or private hospital, at a client's home, at a university or at a health centre.

Your working environment may be emotionally demanding.

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course

You'll need to complete:

Competition for postgraduate training is strong. You'll need a first or upper second class degree, and evidence of excellent research skills to apply. You'll also need relevant work experience.

If you have a degree in a different subject, you may be able to complete an approved psychology conversion course.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 3 A levels or equivalent
For more information

You could do a clinical associate in psychology integrated degree apprenticeship.

As clinical associate in psychology you would work under the supervision of a registered clinical psychologist.

The clinical associate in psychology role sits between psychology assistant and qualified clinical psychologist.

You will need graduate basis for chartered membership (GBC) for the British Psychological Society.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • a degree in a relevant subject for a degree apprenticeship
For more information

Requirements and restrictions

You'll need to:

More information

Professional and industry bodies

You can join The British Psychological Society for professional development and training opportunities.

Further information

You’ll find more about careers in clinical psychology from The British Psychological Society and Health Careers.

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You could work with particular groups like children, young offenders or people with addictions.

With further training, you could specialise in clinical neuropsychology, or move into research or university teaching.

You might also work as a freelance consultant, advising other professionals and clients, or set up your own psychology practice.

You’ll find more details about careers in psychology from The British Psychological Society and Health Careers.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

You'll need:

  • knowledge of psychology
  • counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgemental approach
  • the ability to understand people’s reactions
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • analytical thinking skills
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • excellent written communication skills
  • concentration skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently
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