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5 steps to becoming a clinical psychologist with UWA

27/06/2024 |

Embarking on the journey to become a clinical psychologist is rewarding and at UWA you’ll have access to a comprehensive pathway that equips you with the knowledge, skills, and experience needed to thrive in this dynamic career.  
Let's explore the steps to becoming a clinical psychologist and why studying at UWA is an excellent choice for aspiring mental health professionals.

The pathway to clinical psychology: from student to practitioner 

  1. Bachelor’s degree 
    Your pathway to becoming a clinical psychologist typically begins with completing a bachelor's degree in psychology. At UWA, you’ll have the opportunity to study psychology within a wide range of bachelor’s degrees including the Psychology (Extended Major) and Psychological and Behavioural Sciences major, gaining a solid foundation in psychological principles, research methods, and human behaviour. This undergraduate degree serves as the first step towards pursuing advanced studies in clinical psychology. 
  2. Honours 
    During your honours (usually your fourth year of undergraduate study), you can concentrate on your major subjects while honing essential skills such as research, time management, problem-solving, and communication, critical for your academic and professional development. 
  3. Postgraduate degree 
    After completing your bachelor's degree, aspiring clinical psychologists typically undertake further study at the postgraduate level. At UWA, you can enrol in the Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Clinical Psychology which provides you with a combination of clinical skills and research knowledge. This rigorous course combines coursework, clinical placements, and research training prepares you for professional practice in clinical psychology and is accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC). 
  4. Practise registrar period 
    Following completion of the master's program, you must fulfill a period of supervised practice, known as a registrar period, internship, or supervised practice placement. This involves working under the supervision of experienced, board-approved clinical psychology supervisors in a variety of settings, such as hospitals, mental health clinics, or private practices. The length of this supervised practice period varies depending on the type of degree completed but typically lasts for at least two years. 
  5. Registration as a clinical psychologist 
    Upon successful completion of the supervised registrar period, you are eligible to apply for endorsement as a clinical psychologist, which involves demonstrating a high level of competency in clinical practice through a combination of education, training, and supervised experience. 

Why study clinical psychology at UWA 

Studying clinical psychology at UWA offers you a distinct advantage, thanks to the university's reputation for excellence in both teaching and research. UWA's School of Psychological Science is home to world-renowned researchers and clinicians who are at the forefront of advancing knowledge in the field of psychology. 

UWA’s Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Clinical Psychology provides you with a comprehensive and evidence-based education that prepares you for the diverse challenges of clinical practice. Through a combination of coursework, practical placements, and research opportunities, you will develop the skills and expertise needed to work effectively with individuals, families, and communities facing mental health challenges. 

UWA has a strong emphasis on research, leading in clinical psychology training. You’ll engage in cutting-edge research projects and collaborate with staff members who are conducting groundbreaking research in areas such as mental health interventions, neuropsychology, and psychotherapy outcomes. 


Ready to get started? Find out how to apply now. 

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