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Getting A Work Placement

All my emailing and dedication paid off yesterday, when I got my first unpaid work placement with a clinical neuropsychologist! I can’t start until I get my CRB back but I am very excited!

To get on to a clinical psychology doctorate, you much better your chances, from what I have read, by doing assistant psychologist posts before applying. However, assistant psychologist positions are in themselves also hard to get, as the competition is fierce! You need relevant experience to do those, too.

So, I went in search of experience that would give me the skills, and direct contact with psychologists, that I would need to get the elusive assistant psychologist job. I’ve emailed plenty of psychologists in the hope of some form of work experience, and it does pay off!

My role will include patient contact, and the sort of research skills that are also valued by assistant psychology jobs and clinicial psychology doctorates alike. I’ll be part of an oncall team that goes on to the neuro wards, talking to patients, playing games with them, and taking them around the hospital etc. I will also be hopefully helping the person I am doing the placement for with an audit of a service she has set up for people with pituitary tumours.

I think I got really lucky in obtaining this experience, as from what I’ve seen it’s not all that common to be offered something like this before you’ve finished your undergraduate degree! What I would say if you’re looking for something similar is to cast out a very wide net, and be persistent!

Hopefully, from this I will gain contacts that will help me get an assistant psychologist position at the particular hospital when a position opens up. So aim high and reach for what you want!