University of Oxford
The Course is part of the Oxford Centre for Psychological Health, which also includes and integrates the Oxford Cognitive Therapy Centre (OCTC) and the Oxford Health Specialist Psychological Intervention Clinic (OHSPIC).

Course code:


Course length:

3 years (full-time)


You can email any enquiries after checking all 6 pages below, which cover most FAQs

Administration email:

[email protected]
Oxford logo

About the programme

The Course is full-time for three years and attendance at all course components is mandatory over that time, including the induction period. Periods of fixed leave are set at the Spring (Corresponding to Easter) and Winter (corresponding with Christmas) breaks with additional allowance to be taken across the year during placement days.  Larger blocks of leave can be taken during the summer months at times when no teaching is scheduled; these are up to two weeks as permitted within Trust guidelines. Any requests for longer duration of leave requires approval by the Programme Director and is considered only under exceptional circumstances.

The length of the course cannot be reduced through the accreditation of prior learning or experience: all trainees are required to complete the full programme of training in order to qualify. There is no part time variant of the course available.


The academic programme is carried out over three terms in each year of the Course. Following a four-week induction block, academic teaching closely parallels the clinical experience of trainees on placement, taking into account developmental and life-span perspectives. Teaching topics include adult mental health; older people; children, young people and families; intellectual disability; clinical health psychology; neuropsychology; substance misuse; leadership; professional issues; professional reflection. There is a strong emphasis on research skills, with training in design and analysis across the three years. A number of therapeutic models are taught, with cognitive-behavioural and family/systemic approaches forming the core of the curriculum.

The Course aims to encourage creative self-directed learning where possible and the academic programme includes skills focused workshops, seminars and interactive sessions such as problem-based learning in addition to lectures. Teaching is delivered by Course staff, clinical supervisors working in the region, external lecturers and experts by experience. The academic curriculum is regularly revised to incorporate new ideas and equip trainees with the necessary skills to work effectively in the changing NHS culture.

Attendance at all teaching sessions is mandatory and is monitored. Unauthorised absence may lead to disciplinary proceedings.


There is an excellent range of placements in the area available to the Oxford Course. These cover a wide range of specialty areas and theoretical models. Clinical placements enable trainees to develop a comprehensive portfolio of generic and specialist clinical competencies, so that by the end of training they should be well prepared to start working in the area of their choice. Trainees will typically complete six placements over the three years of the Course, however, in years one and three there may be year-long placements.  First and second year placements typically cover the core areas of adult mental health; older people; children, young people and families; and people with intellectual disabilities. However, in some cases, trainees may need to extend the acquisition of competencies in these specialist areas into the third year. Placements are usually approximately five and a half months in duration and trainees will normally spend between 60 and 70 days on each placement.

Placements are fully integrated with the academic programme. Over the course of training, trainees may express preferences for the opportunity to develop particular clinical competencies. The course works closely with trainees through the three years to map a training journey that as far as possible meets trainees’ individual training needs and reflects interests. These needs and preferences are considered by the trainee's course tutor, in conjunction with the clinical team, alongside the availability of supervision. At regular six-monthly intervals, there are scheduled individual discussions with the trainee's course tutor about progress and further learning needs. Third year placements will cover a wide range of more advanced/specialist clinical competencies.  A further aim of this third-year placement period is to equip trainees with additional skills such as leadership, consultancy, supervision and effective team-working to meet the needs of the modern NHS. There is a wide range of third year placements available, and options in terms of placement configuration (six-month and year-long); these are allocated on the basis of trainee learning needs, interests and career aspirations. All placements are closely monitored and assessed.

The development of clinical competence takes place on placement and through skills-based workshops and teaching blocks organised throughout the Course. Workshops are provided in a variety of therapeutic approaches, including cognitive/behavioural and family/systemic and in various aspects of working with priority NHS groups. Trainees are encouraged to work wherever possible with staff from other professions. Trainees normally receive a minimum of one-hour formal individual clinical supervision each week whilst on placement in addition to less formal supervision and support amounting to at least three hours contact time in total per week.


Trainees are taught the skills to carry out clinical research in a professional context by Course team members who are themselves actively involved in research. Trainees are also encouraged to carry out research and audit projects on placement and are supported by their clinical supervisors and Course staff to do this. Formal teaching is provided on research design and methods and on applied statistics and analysis of qualitative data. Trainees also have good access to statistical resources.

Trainees work on three clinically focused research projects throughout the three-year period of training; these are submitted together in a research portfolio which is examined at viva voce examination in the third year.  The three research projects are a Service Improvement Project (SIP, with a Quality Improvement emphasis), a Systematic Review of the Literature (SRL), and a Theory Driven Research Project (TDRP). These projects can include qualitative and quantitative research methodologies. ; the TDRP must be quantitative or mixed-methods. Some support with research is provided by the Experimental Psychology Department of the University of Oxford and staff from that Department and others in the University will also chair the supervisory committees for TDRPs. Research will normally be conducted on clinical samples. There is a wide pool of experienced research supervisors in the four counties; these include Course staff, local clinicians and researchers based in local universities. All research submissions are in the form of manuscripts suitable for publication. It is expected that trainees will submit their work for publication in peer-review journals / wider dissemination. The DClinPsy is fully recognised as a research doctorate (PGR) of the University of Oxford.


Research competence is primarily assessed through the research portfolio. This must be evaluated as making a significant contribution to the field of knowledge in clinical psychology.

Clinical competence is assessed in a number of ways. At the mid-point and end of each placement, supervisors carry out an overall evaluation of the trainee's clinical competence and trainees submit a logbook summarising their clinical experience. Trainees also submit for formal assessment five clinical studies (Integrated Clinical Reports, ICRs), two each in Years One and Two, and one in Year Three, and are required to pass two direct assessments of clinical competence for each placement. To pass each placement, trainees are also required to submit two formal structured observations of their supervisor, or other appropriate psychological therapist, and two of their supervisors observing them. Direct observation and live supervision are viewed as essential aspects of the training experience.

To complete the Course successfully, trainees must pass all these assignments. Additionally, to proceed to the second half of the programme, trainees must pass a mid-Course Review in which progress in completing placements, academic assignments and research proposals is assessed.


The core staff with day-to-day involvement in the Course are listed here. Further information, including research interests, may be found at https://oxicptr.web.ox.ac.uk/people.


Prof. Paul Salkovskis - Programme Director 
Dr. Myra Cooper - Research Director
Ms. Lorna Hogg - Clinical Director 
Dr. Louise Johns - Research Director
Prof. Craig Steel - Academic Director 

Clinical Tutors

Dr. Ciorsdan Anderson - Clinical Tutor and Lead for Supervision Training
Dr. Clare Borsay - Clinical Tutor
Dr. Kathryn Evans - Clinical Tutor and Systemic Lead
Dr. Alison Griffiths - Clinical Tutor
Dr. Susannah Jenner - Clinical Tutor
Dr. Nigel King - Clinical Tutor and Neuropsychology Lead
Dr. Matthew Knight - Senior Admissions Tutor and Clinical Tutor
Dr. Sarah Lack - Clinical Tutor
Dr. Emily Reeves - Clinical Tutor
Dr. Fin Williams - Clinical Tutor
Dr. Nicola Lane - Clinical Tutor
Dr. Ceara Moore - Clinical Tutor
Dr. Amy Hawkins - Clinical Tutor

Research Tutors

Dr. Neil Carrigan - Research Tutor
Dr. Alasdair Churchard - Research Tutor
Dr. Matthew Hotton - Research Tutor
Dr. Alex Lau-Zhu - Research Tutor

Academic and Course Tutors

Dr. Joanna Adams - Course Tutor
Dr. Libby Barnardo - Course Tutor
Dr. Sarah Coles - Course Tutor 
Ms. Sarah Favier - Systemic Family Therapy Tutor
Dr. Fiona McFarlane - Course Tutor
Mr. Ferdinando Salamino - Systemic Family Therapy Tutor
Dr. Reena Vohora - Academic Tutor and EDI Lead
Dr. Victoria Roberts - Course Tutor

Administration Team

Ms. Tamzen Carty - Admissions, Accreditation and Audit Administrator
Ms. Angela Fox - Academic Administrator / PA to Director (Academic)
Ms. Povanasvarie Govind - Centre Administrator / PA to Programme Director
Ms. Ramona Kantschuster – People’s Experience Group Lead.
Ms. Natalie Lippert - Institute Administrator
Ms. Tracy McAteer - Head of Operations / Programme Manager 
Ms. Theresa Pedlar - Senior Institute Administrator 
Ms. Deryn Southam - Clinical Administrator / PA to Director (Clinical)

Last updated:

15th August 2023