Apply for Clinical Doctorate as a Qualified CBT Therapist

Discuss applications to the clearing house (and to courses that are not in the clearing house system), screening assessments, interviews, reserve lists, places, etc. here
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Apply for Clinical Doctorate as a Qualified CBT Therapist

Post by cbthighintensity » Sat Dec 31, 2016 2:35 pm


I'm a trainee CBT therapist, halfway through my PGDip.

I'm very passionate about what I'm doing and after my CBT training I plan to complete a psychology conversion course. My long term plan is to apply for a Clinical Doctorate.

Now, I could end my training now, get a PGCert or finish the whole PGDip. I'm trying to understand which of these will make more sense long term. My guess is that the PGDip will increase my chances of getting into a Clinical Doctorate in the future but I'm asking you more experienced people :)

So, my question is: will being a qualified and accredited CBT therapist make the Clinical Doctorate application process easier or more difficult?

The reason why I ask this question is that I see it in two ways: on the one hand being a CBT therapist would signify good experience and facilitate the application process, but on the other hand I guess that would mean that a significant part of my doctoral training would already be covered.
I realise mine are only speculations and might be entirely wrong. If someone knows more about this, I'd really appreciate your contribution.

Do you know of similar cases?

Thanks very much for your help :)

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Re: Apply for Clinical Doctorate as a Qualified CBT Therapis

Post by lingua_franca » Sat Dec 31, 2016 10:37 pm

I know there are some other people on here who have applied for the doctorate after being a PWP, so if you search for topics you should find something.

Being a CBT therapist is a very different job from being a psychologist. The CBT therapist in my service once encouraged me to train in CBT by the same route she did, as she feels it's a quicker and less competitive route to a well-regarded therapy qualification. The problem is that I don't just want to do therapy. I have a research background, which I value, and I'm interested in formulation, consultation, and working with whole systems, whereas my colleague does direct therapeutic work with clients and very little else. So it's not an option that appeals to me. Does it appeal to you? As a CBT therapist you would have relevant experience and skills in mental health that could make you a stronger candidate for the clinical doctorate, but I'd imagine the selectors would want to be sure that you understood the difference between being a CP and being a CBT therapist, and to see why you have chosen one over the other.
"Suppose a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?"
"Suppose it didn't," said Pooh, after careful thought.
Piglet was comforted by this.
- A.A. Milne.

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Re: Apply for Clinical Doctorate as a Qualified CBT Therapis

Post by Alex » Sun Jan 01, 2017 3:00 pm

I am not entirely sure why you want to end the diploma when you have presumebly 6 months left?!

My advice would be to finish it.

I am not sure that it would be a particular advantage in the application process but I think it would be an advantage if you got on. Doctorates don't tend to cover CBT in the amount of detail that these diplomas do, so you would have a good basis of a therapy model starting off. Even colleagues who have a completed doctorate in heavy CBT oriented course, like the IoP, then complete the diploma tell me that they learn more in-depth in the diploma studies.

I would be clear with yourself, what is it about clinical psychology that you particular like or want to do? - as it is long road if you end back in a therapy role. Many clinical psychology roles are primarily therapy tasks, I know I have I have been in them!

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Re: Apply for Clinical Doctorate as a Qualified CBT Therapis

Post by Ruthie » Sun Jan 01, 2017 9:28 pm

Finish your cbt training. Getting on the doctorate is highly competitive and it is a good idea to have a back up plan.

Clinical psychology training is very different from cbt training so I definitely would not say a significant proportion of the training would be covered. I have done both although did the cbt after the dclin. You'll need to explain why you want to change and your understanding of the differences between a cbt therapist and a clinical psychologist. All in all cbt training could be a strong foundation for a dclin. Do you also have a prior profession? I know several former nurses and social workers who are now CPs and do think they bring a different and valuable perspective to their work especially in the MDT.

Most courses will consider your placements as well eg. doing an IAPT placement may not be a good learning opportunity for you if you were to start your dclin training as a cbt therapist but being in a CMHT with more complex clients, an inpatient service or a highly specialised psychological therapies service may be great ways to build on your experience.
If God invented marathons to keep people from doing anything more stupid, the triathlon must have taken Him completely by surprise.

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Re: Apply for Clinical Doctorate as a Qualified CBT Therapis

Post by dhillong » Fri Jan 06, 2017 2:26 pm

Im in a similar boat as you. Im an HIT and worked for 5 years as a mental health nurse in a forensic service. Completed an MSc and PhD in CBT for severe mental illness. Following this I went on to IAPT for 3 years. Whilst in the forensic service, I was supervised by consultant CP for nearly 8 years and this was invaluable experience particularly in doing full CP assessment in a forensic service, something that a CBT therapist may not have experience in. In IAPT, you will be lucky if you get a CP for supervision !

As a accredited CBT therapist I have lots of experience of therapy per se and i think most of this might be transferable to CP training. On the contrary, I'm keen to learn other evidence based theories which are useful in understanding clients and something that attracts to go on CP training. I have applied for the forthcoming intake.

I think your experience is useful and might be seen as a stepping stone as part of the bigger picture of clinical psychology.

Good luck

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