How to become a psychologist
You can get into this job through a university course.
To become a psychologist, you'll need to:
- study a psychology degree accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS) or do a psychology conversion course
- gain Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership
- complete an accredited postgraduate qualification in your chosen specialism to practice as a psychologist
Psychology conversion course
You might be able to complete an approved psychology conversion course if:
- your psychology degree is not accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS)
- you have a degree in a subject other than psychology
To practice as a psychologist, you'll need to complete an accredited postgraduate qualification in your chosen specialism.
- educational psychology
- forensic psychology
- occupational psychology
- sport and exercise psychology
To apply for a postgraduate qualification in a specialism, you’ll often need:
- a first or 2:1 (upper second class) degree
- excellent research skills
- relevant work experience
You might want to check the postgraduate entry requirements with the admissions department where you want to study.
You can find out more about all of the different specialisms and the postgraduate training from the British Psychological Society (BPS).
You'll usually need:
- 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
- a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study
It can be helpful to get some paid or voluntary experience in health or social care or in education before you apply for a course.
You could contact the voluntary services co-ordinator at your local NHS trust for further advice.
You can also find volunteering opportunities through the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) and Do IT.
Professional and industry bodies
You can join The British Psychological Society (BPS) for professional development opportunities.
You'll find more advice on careers and training in psychology from The British Psychological Society (BPS) and Health Careers.