Professional and personal development

We are committed to facilitating trainees in their development as reflective scientist practitioners. We see training in clinical psychology as a complex process that presents significant personal, academic, clinical and research challenges and demands. This includes exposure to distress as a routine part of training.

Everyone is different, and trainees will want to take their own routes towards understanding how their own personal attributes and backgrounds impact upon their professional interactions. Within the programme, trainees will have opportunities to reflect in a variety of settings: in reflective journals, in supervision, with mentors, through appraisal, in tutorials and in peer group meetings.  Trainees are expected to take part in all teaching and placement activities as part of their role, and in line with new HCPC procedures. Trainees are asked to sign a consent form to participate in role plays as part of their training. The form is reproduced here, and forms are available for signature during the induction week. 

Role Play Consent Form

Trainees are expected to take part in all teaching and placement-related activity as part of their role. This may include role-play. Please refer to other sections of the handbook for more detail about this if required and for reasons concerning any requests to opt out of sessions/placement activity. 

For contractual purposes, trainees need to give consent to undertake role-play in academic and placement settings (with request for absences recorded). Please sign below and this will be kept in appraisal file.

I consent to participating in role-play whilst in my training and know I can request opt out through speaking to appraiser.


Signed…………………………….. Date…………………………………………

Being in the client position

It can be helpful for trainees to experience, even if only briefly, being in the position of client, who brings his or her own personal experiences for confidential consideration.  Taking part in such a process can help trainees to develop empathy and respect for clients' perspectives. 

In keeping with the adult learner model, we encourage trainees to select an approach that meets their needs, so we do not require that the approach chosen be formally approved by programme team members.  However, trainees should discuss possible options with their appraiser, tutor, supervisor or mentor; wherever possible we can suggest suitable names and ideas or we will have ideas of where trainees can look.  We do not have a formal list of "approved practitioners". Trainees must, however, take into account whether the practitioner has a recognised qualification or accreditation (e.g., BABCP or UKCP registered). Trainees take responsibility for their own choices and therefore cannot hold the university or their employer responsible for any consequences.

When deciding whether an approach, therapist or counsellor is appropriate, and whether the time is right, trainees need to consider carefully their preferences and hopes for the work.  We would advise that trainees discuss with the practitioner what can realistically be achieved in a fairly limited time. We know from research and experience that good personal relationships are important in promoting change and development during training.