University of Plymouth

School of Psychology | Faculty of Health

Course code:


Course length:

3 years (full-time)


01752 586701

Administration email:

[email protected]
University of Plymouth logo

Selection procedure

At Plymouth we are committed to a fair selection procedure which looks holistically at every applicant as a person not a number.

For this reason, we no longer use any form of pre-selection testing nor use any degree mark threshold.

Instead, we guarantee that every single application form we receive is considered carefully by at least one member of the course team and one local clinical psychologist. 

We then invite shortlisted applicants to our selection event so that we can meet in person (we were one of the few courses to interview in person in 2022 and the vast majority of those who attended said they preferred it being in person rather than online).

Selection Event

Currently there are two parts to the selection event:

  1. A panel interview is designed to explore candidates' strengths. Panels include members of the course team, representatives from our Plymouth Consultative Group of and practising clinical psychologists drawn from services across Devon and Cornwall. There will be a focus on academic and research competences, reflectivity, reflexivity, formulation, values and commitment to service user involvement.
  2. The other part is a group task which looks at how candidates work with others.

Information about the programme is available and current trainees are present throughout the selection event to consult with candidates.

Candidates provide information regarding preferences of location between Cornwall and Plymouth and South Devon. We work together with our training partners to consider preferences however your placement location preferences cannot be guaranteed, and we ask you to take this into consideration when you apply for this course. You will be given opportunities to discuss this thoroughly with the team and trainees currently in all locations. Candidates are informed when the selection process is completed and are allocated their placement base at this time.

This programme is committed to safer recruitment and principles are embedded into our short-listing and selection processes to ensure a safe and positive environment for service users and the workforce in health settings.

All offers of a place on the doctoral programme are dependent on satisfactory references, Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) and Occupational Health checks.

We provide telephone feedback to unsuccessful candidates following their interview and after the Clearing House closing the date for acceptance of offers

Equal opportunities

The course is committed to increasing diversity in the clinical psychology profession and therefore welcomes applicants from diverse cultural and personal contexts, and applicants with extensive life experience. 

We aim to be a disability-affirmative programme and welcome applications from people with disabilities, shortlisted applicants will be asked to contact us to discuss reasonable adjustments at our selection event. 

The University operates an Equal Opportunities Policy. The recruitment and selection processes for the Plymouth Doctorate in Clinical Psychology Programme comply with the University of Plymouth Admissions Policy. Applicants will not be discriminated against on the basis of any protected characteristic.

We implement positive action processes as part of our selection procedure, weighting applicants who have disclosed ethnicity, disability and contextual data and using this in our ranking of candidates following interview.

DClinPsych Plymouth University Anti-racism statement

"We recognise the realities of racism and respect and value diversity and actively work in coalition across all aspects of our programme.  We have an ongoing commitment which includes access to training, the experience of trainees and the anti-racist practice of Clinical Psychology. We also have a commitment to reflect on our own positions and practices. We recognise this is ongoing work and value feedback on how we can develop.” Plymouth DClinPsych Team Nov 2022.

Contextual admissions

Our programme is developing the use of contextual recruitment processes. This is based on evidence that contextualising individuals’ achievements using additional information about their educational, social and economic background can lead to fairer and more inclusive selection processes. This information could help us to recognise individuals with strong potential for success at doctoral level and within the profession, who otherwise might not have been identified.

The Clearing House circulates a survey to collect Contextual Admissions data separately from the application form. The Group of Trainers in Clinical Psychology have agreed the questions in this survey, which have evidence for improving the inclusivity and equity of recruitment processes. Completion of this survey is optional, however if you are able to answer any of the questions which provide some additional background about you, and you are happy to provide this to us via the Clearing House, then we would encourage you to do so.

We will also use the data for audit/research purposes to consider developments to selection processes in future years; and to create reports for external agencies such as Health Education England (which commissions many of the training programmes); etc.

Disability Confident / Applicants with disabilities 

We do not apply the Disability Confident Scheme.

We welcome applications from people with disabilities, please contact us to discuss any reasonable adjustments required.

We have information regarding trainee support at Plymouth University. Here is the student support services link to the university website.

Last updated:

24th August 2023