How to apply

We hope you find the following information helpful and look forward to receiving your application for 2024 DClinPsy cohort.


Please ensure you have read the frequently asked questions section of our Programme web pages and all the relevant programme information we provide before you consider contacting the Programme with any enquiry as this can often answer the query. You can also find information about the programme in the Alternative handbook.

We receive a high number of very high quality applications to the programme each year. Not all applicants who meet the minimum criteria will be successful in gaining an interview. Each year we review and consider changes to our criteria; you may find that whilst you have previously been successful in being offered an interview, this may not be the case this time.

Applying to the Sheffield programme: general notes and changes for 2024 entry

The expectations and demands placed upon Clinical Psychologists in the NHS change and develop in response to the needs of client groups, and the evolving ways in which services are funded and developed to meet those needs. The expansion and development of a broader range of services for psychological wellbeing in recent years is reflected in a change in the nature and complexity of the clinical, consultancy and leadership roles of Clinical Psychologists.

Read the latest Trainee Clinical Psychologist Job Description and Person Specification

Please be aware of the University’s criteria for admissions as all places are offered subject to these Terms and Conditions upon Acceptance of an Offer.

We also review our admissions process annually, to ensure that we continue to train Clinical Psychologists who can work effectively in a changing and increasingly challenging NHS context. This increase in complexity is reflected in the work trainees undertake on placement from the very beginning of training. We reserve the right to modify our entry requirements for 2024 to reflect this.

We cannot respond to individual requests to comment on or advise you as to the suitability of your existing or planned qualifications; courses of study; or relevant experience prior to the submission of your application.

How to apply

Applications for 2024 need to be made by mid November 2023 - date tbc. Applications must be complete with references uploaded, so please allow time for references to be completed and submitted to yourself. Guidance on your application and eligibility can be downloaded from the side of this page. 

All UK applications for this course must be made through the Clearing House for Postgraduate Courses in Clinical Psychology. If your status is not clear then you may be asked for additional information by the University admissions team prior to your application being reviewed by our shortlisting team.

We no longer have places for international applicants who are self funding and we cannot accept applications from anyone without Home Fees Status.

Guidance on eligibility for home fee status for EU applicants

Travel and driving

  • All trainees will be expected to travel to placement.
  • A current driving licence is desirable, but not essential. For non-drivers travel on public transport will be expected, to allow you to access our wide range of placement opportunities.
  • Adjustments for disability can be made.
  • Some travel expenses for trainees will be reimbursed. We do not pay travel from home to work. Please consider the financial costs of this for yourself if you are intending to live at a distance from the programme base.

English language

If English is not your first language and your university qualifications were not taught and examined in English, you need to submit evidence of your ability in English language with your application. The IELTS test requirement for this programme is a minimum score of 7.0 overall with no element below 6.5 or an equivalent qualification at this level as listed on the English language requirements for research degrees page.

Equal opportunities and diversity

The Programme operates an equal opportunities policy and no applicant will be discriminated against on grounds of any protected characteristics (Equality Act, 2010). We particularly invite applications from people who identify as belonging to groups that are underrepresented in clinical psychology.

The programme reserves the right to use Positive Action where appropriate within the provisions of  the Equality Act (2010).  Such action is permitted in order to address the underrepresentation of applicants with specific protected characteristics within the profession.  We use the personal demographic details provided by the clearing house in this Positive Action process.  Therefore this is only possible where appropriate consent has been given for applicant information to be used in this way.

Selection procedures


All applications are anonymised in line with the policy of our employing NHS Trust Human Resources department. This removes the personal information sections (e.g. name, date of birth, address, language and disability confident information).  Additionally, details of the institutions that awarded degrees are not made available to shortlisters, in order to remove this potential source of bias.  Equal opportunities monitoring information is not available to those shortlisting; it can only be used at the invitation to interview stage as described above.


Entry requirements

In order to meet our minimum entry criteria, candidates must meet the entry requirements below and achieve a minimum score of 6 on our shortlisting criteria from two independent members of our shortlisting panel.

Application shortlisting criteria for 2024 entry 

We receive a high number of applications to the programme each year. Not all applicants who meet the minimum criteria will be successful in gaining an interview. In relation to our updated entry criteria, you may find that whilst you have previously been successful in being offered an interview, this may not be the case this time.

Entry criteria


A good upper second or first class Honours Degree in Psychology, which is accredited by the British Psychological Society. We do not normally consider candidates who have achieved a 2.2 in their undergraduate degree even with subsequent higher education qualifications*.

OR a good 2.1 or first class degree in another undergraduate subject and a post-graduate psychology diploma/conversion course accredited by the BPS. Applicants whose first degree was not in psychology must submit a transcript of the postgraduate course of study, which confers GBC.

*We use performance in the undergraduate degree as our main academic entry criteria. A good undergraduate degree reflects a robust performance across a broad range of modules and examination processes. The undergraduate degree also provides the greatest equality of access to programmes of study for all students at the tertiary level of education, rather than relying on performance in other higher degrees.


Direct experience of conducting a research project either at an undergraduate level or in subsequent work. Stronger applications will provide evidence of post-graduate research experience in academic or clinical contexts.

Accreditation of your degree

Evidence of eligibility for Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) of the BPS.

We do not consider applicants currently studying psychology as undergraduates.

Applications are rated by members of the selection committee according to a set of criteria covering academic, clinical, research, and inter-personal skills and experience, based on the trainee job description and person specification. Please see the Clearing House website for these items.

We review the academic and experience references as part of our shortlisting process.

Clinical experience and learning

Applicants should demonstrate that they have significant experience in working with client groups relevant to the practice of Clinical Psychology.

This should involve therapeutic or change oriented work, and include some supervision and reflection. You should demonstrate some understanding of the application of psychological theories and models to this work. You will also need to demonstrate an understanding of the complexity of the difficulties and experiences of people who present to Clinical Psychology services including the socio-political context.

Applicants should demonstrate a good understanding of the role of clinical psychologists in the current NHS. Stronger applications will provide evidence of direct experience of working with and supervision by a Clinical Psychologist. Applicants should demonstrate that they are able to reflect on their own personal and professional development and learning in relation to their experience.

Academic and research

Your academic referee should be chosen carefully to ensure that they are able to comment meaningfully on your academic aptitude and research competence. Please see our shortlisting criteria for details of academic and research requirements.

Shortlisting minimum score

Applicants must achieve a minimum score of 6 on their application form, from each of the two independent raters on our shortlisting panels.

Applications which are incomplete, i.e. lack the relevant references or degree transcripts, will not be entered into our shortlisting process. It is your responsibility to provide the Clearing House with all the relevant information to support your application.

Invitation to interview

The Selection Committee draws up a shortlist of those applicants who score above the threshold on our shortlisting criteria. We normally interview up to 100 candidates.

We rank all our applications against their shortlisting scores. Interview offers are to the highest ranked candidates in the first instance. All candidates with scores above the threshold will form our reserve list for interview. If you score below threshold, you will be informed of this and will not be interviewed this year.

Disability Confident scheme

In line with the Equality Act 2010 and our achievement of Disability Confident status, (previously known as "two ticks" or "double-tick"), we welcome applications from applicants with a disability, and encourage candidates to declare whether they have a disability in section 9 of the application form.

Applicants with a disability who meet the entry criteria above, including a score of 6 or higher, as rated by two independent members of the shortlisting panel, on our shortlisting criteria, will be offered an interview.


After successful shortlisting, candidates are invited to attend an interview.  The process for 2024 will be online. The interview process has three components:

  • Introductory Talk:  This takes place at the beginning of each day.  It does not form part of the selection process and is an opportunity for the course team to answer questions and to emphasise some of the key aspects of studying at Sheffield.
  • Group task: There will be a group task and successful applicants will be provided with information about this with their interview offer. The task is observed by members of the selection panel. We are interested in competencies relating to interpersonal communication, relationship skills, and reflective skills in this task.
  • Interview including role play: You will have an individual interview with a selection panel usually made up of programme team academic and clinical staff, a local NHS placement supervisor and an expert by experience. The focus of the interview is on knowledge of research and relevant clinical knowledge. You may be asked to engage in a short role play or clinical exercise. We are interested in your readiness for training; your understanding of the role of clinical psychology in the NHS; and your ability to think on your feet, and consider issues from a psychologically informed perspective in your responses to the questions.  The interview begins with a ‘prepared answer’.  The details of this will be sent to candidates a week in advance of their interview.

Adjustments for disability are offered to candidates who can provide evidence of need.

In line with clinical psychology as a reflective profession we engage in ongoing review of our procedures, and potential candidates should therefore check for updates relating to the 2024 entry process for both shortlisting and interviewing on the CAPU website before the deadline for applications.


We recognise that the interview day is busy and many people feel anxious. Our current trainees provide support for the candidates candidates in online sessions during the selection weeks. These supporters are not involved in any evaluation of the candidates and are available to answer questions.

Feedback from you

We will ask you to complete feedback on the day. These are important to us and have lead to us making changes to our selection processes in the past. You can submit these anonymously and your feedback is not seen by the interviewing panels and forms no part of our assessment of you.

Feedback policy

Due to the large numbers of applicants to the Programme, the anonymisation of application forms, and the administrative load of the selection process, we are unable to offer feedback on the shortlisting process. However, if you attend for interview we provide telephone feedback sessions following the completion of the interview process. These are available to candidates who have not been successful in the interviews; those on the reserve list will not receive feedback as your interview was considered successful bar restrictions in training numbers.