Short-listing and interview process Short-listing and interview process

Our selection process is under a continuous process of evaluation and review in light of feedback from applicants and the views of those involved in selection.  

Literacy and Numeracy Test

Your application will be considered as part of our comprehensive shortlisting process. As part of this process, we conduct a literacy and numeracy test.

However, to make our overall shortlisting process fairer, and to improve the experience for candidates who are selected to attend for interview, this year we are introducing an online literacy and numeracy test in advance of the shortlisting process. Please review the example practice paper to give you an idea of the skills being assessed and the level of knowledge needed.

Applicants to the Programme will receive an email which explains the process by which this will occur and gives instructions for completion of the test. If you have applied and do not receive this email by Friday 6 January, please email the Programme as soon as possible.

Both tests must be passed in order for your application to be considered in the subsequent shortlisting process.


Shortlisting is done by rating applications forms on the basis of the minimum entry requirements. Each application is rated independently by two people: a member of Programme staff and a clinical supervisor. We are currently developing our Service Users and Carers involvement in shortlisting. These ratings are used to identify people for interview.  Applicants who are not offered an interview are sent information about our shortlisting criteria and asked to evaluate their own application against these, together with a list of common reasons applicants are not offered an interview.  Unfortunately, due to the numbers of applications we receive, we are unable to offer individual feedback following shortlisting.


Applicants who are offered an interview attend two interviews and a separate, short test of basic (GCSE level) numeracy and literacy skills.  This test is a requirement of the NHS organisation which commissions places on the Programme.  For 2017 entry this may be held prior to the interview dates and at a test centre away from the UEA.  Full details will be provided to those offered an interview.  Performance on all aspects of the selection process contributes to an offer of place on the Programme.

One interview covers academic and research issues and the other, personal and clinical issues.  There are three people on the research interview panel, including Programme staff and clinical supervisors.  The clinical interview is the same but with additional Service User and Carer representation.  All interviews are conducted using the same script; this helps with equal opportunities and is used to help interviewers rate each applicant in relation to a person specification.

The person specification includes:

  • having a good understanding of research design principles;

  • the ability to develop a research proposal;

  • the ability to demonstrate basic clinical skills;

  • the ability to link theory and practice;

  • the capacity to reflect on one’s own experience and to learn from it;

We expect applicants to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding gained in their undergraduate psychology degree, and have a good working knowledge of clinical psychology in the health service.  Further details about the Programme and the interview process are sent to all those invited for interview.  Existing trainees are available at the interviews to meet candidates and to provide additional information.

As well as the criteria outlined above for both shortlisting and the interviews, the Programme also considers any Fitness to Practice issues that arise during the shortlisting or the interviews process in relation to entry on to the Programme.  Please see the Clearing House information regarding this for more detail.

Universities will not usually allow you to enrol onto a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology if you are currently enrolled on any other degree e.g. a PhD or Masters’ programme.  If you have any outstanding requirements from another programme, you may be required to withdraw from that programme in order to take up a place or to continue your studies on a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology.  Applicants who are in the processing of completing a PhD must have submitted their thesis by the time of application.

Applicants will have an opportunity to express preferences about which placement base location they will be allocated to but no guarantees can be given about choice of base.  It is strongly recommended that the trainee lives within the base allocated, as clinical placements are likely to involve considerable amounts of travel, and living close by reduces the distances covered.  Further, living in the base location enables contact with and support from other trainees in the same base.  Suitable adjustments will be made under appropriate circumstances to support travel whilst on placement.

Successful applicants will be notified by letter shortly after the interviews.  Unsuccessful applicants from the interviews will also be notified at this time and are offered verbal feedback from a member of one of their interview panels. 

Admission to the ClinPsyD Programme is subject to satisfactory criminal record (enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service) and occupational health checks. 

Candidates selected by the University will be offered employment by an appropriate NHS employer to facilitate their training.

You are able to view the shortlisting criteria used for the 2016 entry to the course.  Please note these are subject to revision prior to selection for entry in 2017.