Access scheme for aspiring clinical psychologists from under-represented backgrounds

As part of our ongoing commitment to addressing issues of diversity and inclusion within the psychology professions, and our wider responsibility to address social inequalities in healthcare, Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust is excited to be working with Health Education England (HEE) to improve the diversity of our workforce and better represent the users it supports.

The Aspiring Clinical Psychologists Access Scheme provides an opportunity for recent psychology graduates who might otherwise be excluded from entering the profession, due to social or economic disadvantage, the opportunity to develop invaluable clinical experience, insight and preparation for their next steps.

Our Trust is really excited to be recruiting to eight new posts for graduates considering a career in clinical psychology. These assistant psychology roles offer opportunities to those unable to afford to carry out voluntary work experience, relocate to take up positions, or who may have caring responsibilities and require more flexible working arrangements.

The posts available span a range of specialities, including mental health, learning disabilities, physical health and services for children and young people, at sites across Gloucestershire.

The placements are funded at five months’ full-time, but options for part-time positions are available for those who want or need greater flexibility.

Eligibility criteria

To be eligible for this programme, candidates are required to:

  • hold an upper second-class honours degree or higher in psychology and have graduated within the previous two years
  • not hold or be studying for a Master’s degree (with the exception of a Master’s degree completed as a conversion degree for applicants with a non-psychology undergraduate degree OR a combined undergraduate MSc degree)
  • not be salaried or a post-graduate trainee in a university programme
  • not have held any substantial prior paid assistant psychology post, research assistant or similar employment. Previous paid work experience at a very limited period or employment (such as sessions for less than the equivalent of four weeks in total) as a research assistant/assistant psychologist, will be accepted.
  • meet the criteria of being excluded from entering the profession through unpaid work experience. This could be for several reasons, such as:
    • family being on a low income or supported by benefits
    • receiving grants, bursaries or awards via your university student support service or government maintenance grants
    • being a care leaver or student not supported by family or parents
    • having caring responsibilities

We hope that by making these posts available, we will be offering invaluable experience to psychology graduates who would otherwise be disadvantaged by the need to gain professional experience through voluntary roles.

For further information and to apply for this role, visit NHS Jobs>

In the short film above, Liz Curtis, Head of Psychological Services for GHC, talks about the access scheme and the assistant psychology roles currently available within our Trust. If you have any questions, or would like to discuss the scheme further, please email

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