Factors associated with getting onto clinical training

Information about qualifications, experience and the typical career path
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Factors associated with getting onto clinical training

Post by russ » Tue Apr 10, 2007 8:54 pm

For those who wonder what factors best predict getting onto Clinical training, in 2004 the BPS Research Digest had the following article, which seemed interesting and relevant ...


It's no secret that the application process for clinical psychology training is cut-throat. But is it fair? And why are ethnic minorities so poorly represented among clinical trainees?

Anna Phillips and her colleagues (Lancaster University) analysed the application forms of all 1,538 applicants to clinical psychology training in the year 2000.

The factors that best predicted the 737 individuals who were short-listed (A-levels, a recognised degree, degree class, post-graduate qualifications, vocational experience, good references), and that best predicted the 410 candidates actually offered training places (degree class, vocational experience, having a clinical referee) clearly brought few surprises. Together, these factors predicted which candidates were selected with 78.3 per cent accuracy. That's not to say the selectors were choosing candidates on the basis of these factors alone, rather these factors might have been predictive of candidates' performance on the interview day. Answers to open-ended questions on the application form were not analysed.

Twenty-six per cent of applicants provided their personal details to the researchers. From these, no evidence was found for discrimination on the grounds of age, sex, ethnicity or sexual orientation, although there was a tendency for applicants who expressed religious interest to be under-selected.

The authors suggested the emphasis of the selection process on educational achievement and vocational experience could lead to unintentional, indirect discrimination against ethnic groups and others who might not enjoy the same educational opportunities as their white, 'middle-class' peers, and/or who might not be in a position to obtain vocational work.

Phillips, A., Hatton, C. & Gray, I. (2004). Factors predicting the short-listing and selection of trainee psychologists: a prospective national cohort study. Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, 11, 111-125.

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Content checked by ell (Team member) on 26/02/2012
Last modified on 26/02/2012

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