Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (DClinPsy)

Commendations from the British Psychological Society (June 2010)

In their recent accreditation visit the British Psychological Society (June 2010) had ten areas of commendation:

  1. This is a well structured and effectively managed programme. It is a positive reflection on the leadership provided by the Programme Director and the staff team as a whole that a significant number of additional trainees have been accommodated with little disruptive impact. The actions taken by the programme to support training in the north of the region have been strongly welcomed by both the SHA and services in the Bristol, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire areas.
  2. The programme is very well supported within the School of Psychology, and within the wider University. Clear and effective arrangements are in place, particularly in relation to ensuring that income derived from the School’s professional training activities is invested directly in those programmes, their staff, and in the provision of excellent physical resources and facilities. The visiting team was impressed by the Dean’s confidence that this approach will continue under the University’s new College structure and governance arrangements.
  3. The programme benefits from excellent links with the other professional training and research opportunities within the School. These include the IAPT programmes, the newly established DClinRes which offers particularly interesting opportunities for the future in relation to interprofessional approaches to research and complex interventions, and MSc programmes in a number of psychotherapeutic approaches. The Mood Disorders Centre offers a particularly distinctive and valuable clinical research environment.
  4. The programme’s work to involve service users and carers in a range of areas is exemplary, and highly inventive. A clear strategy is in place that moves beyond the programme, with a vision for involvement across the School's activities which enables individual contributors to establish a level of involvement that suits their individual circumstances.
  5. The programme’s ethos of social empowerment is clearly articulated, and highly valued by trainees and other stakeholders. The programme has successfully built on its longstanding expertise in community psychology, and is being evolved further to meet the need for psychologists who are well equipped to work flexibly in modern health and social care. The visiting team experienced the programme’s absolute commitment to empowerment and working with complexity consistently over the course of the visit.
  6. The programme enjoys a national reputation for excellence in relation to problem-based learning, and its overall approach in this area is clearly providing trainees with an effective vehicle for integrating theory, practice, and values on an ongoing basis. The programme has also shown innovation and inventiveness in relation to the assessment of trainees through direct observation on placement.
  7. Difference and diversity has been fully integrated into the programme in all areas, and continues to evolve as a result of the programme’s long-term commitment to enabling trainees to develop competencies in a way that is culturally appropriate.
  8. The Reflective Organisational Practice strand is an effective way of responding to NHS and organisational challenges. Supervisors welcome trainees’ engagement at an organisational level from an early stage in their training, and the institutional observation and reflection that trainees undertake on placement is a highly creative way of engaging them in complex organisational issues of this kind.
  9. The selection process is well thought through, and attracts consistently positive feedback. It has been designed to get the best out of applicants. The visiting team was also impressed with the level of involvement of service users and carers in selection, both in the interview process, and in decision making.
  10. The programme team are highly personable and approachable, and maintain regular contact with their tutees, supervisors and service colleagues. This makes for a supportive learning environment for trainees, and services offering placements to the programme feel that their needs are very well catered for.