You would work towards registration as a Chartered Counselling Psychologist with the British Psychological Society (BPS).
To get Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC), you need either a BPS recognised degree (first or second class Honours) in psychology, or a degree in another subject plus a BPS recognised conversion course.
To do an Honours degree in psychology you usually need 4-5 Highers.
Paid or unpaid work experience is advantageous.
After your degree you would find relevant paid or voluntary work experience (at least 12 months) ideally as a psychology assistant or research assistant, before choosing your speciality.
In order to qualify as a registered Chartered Counselling Psychologist, you need an accredited Doctorate in Counselling Psychology or the BPS's Qualification in Counselling Psychology (QCoP).
Glasgow Caledonian University offers the only accredited doctorate course in counselling psychology in Scotland.
You will require a satisfactory criminal record check from Disclosure Scotland to show that you are suitable for this type of work. Contact Disclosure Scotland for details on the type you would need.
There are jobs with local authorities and the civil service, the National Health Service (NHS), and in private hospitals. About half of counselling psychologists do clinical work in health and social care settings. There are jobs in the human resource management departments of private companies.
What Does it Take?
listening skills and patience
clear, logical thinking
respect for confidentiality
self-awareness and insight
good research skills.
You should be:
sympathetic and tolerant
able to communicate with different people and build relationships with clients
able to help clients open up and discuss distressing experiences.
Once you have achieved Chartered Membership of the BPS you will continue to learn and train during your career through a programme of Continuous Professional Development (CPD).
You will need to keep up to date with research on a wide range of conditions and developments in the treatment of these conditions.
You could set up as a self-employed consultant, working from home or from a rented office.