Master of Clinical Psychology and Doctor of Philosophy

The information on this page applies to future students. Current students should refer to their faculty handbooks for course information.

The Master of Clinical Psychology and Doctor of Philosophy will open the doors to both a professional and research career in clinical psychology. The degree’s combination of clinical and doctorate-level research training will enable you to work around the world as a psychologist.

The Master of Clinical Psychology and Doctor of Philosophy (MCP & PhD) is ideal if you want to become a qualified clinical psychologist, but are also interested in a path into research or academia. In this double degree you will complete the coursework program, the Master of Clinical Psychology (MCP), as well as a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) research thesis.

The four-and-a-half-year course is structured so that MCP coursework is completed over the first three years (1st year is full-time MCP; 2nd and 3rd years are concurrent MCP part-time and PhD full-time) and the remaining three semesters are for full-time PhD studies.

Like the MCP program, the MCP & PhD includes a minimum of 1200 hours of clinical placements. These will be done both in our on-campus Psychology Clinic as well as in outstanding teaching hospitals like Westmead Hospital and the Children's Hospital at Westmead. And, with careful selection of clinical placements and additional clinical placements hours, MCP & PhD graduates can meet UK, US and Canadian standards.

To assist students to make informed choices about their study, we have identified the Inherent Requirements for coursework courses in clinical psychology. For more information about the requirements, please read the Inherent requirements for clinical psychology.

Course outline

Unit of Study information on faculty page

Study plan
In first year, you will enrol full time in the MCP coursework units of study. In second and third year, you will complete the MCP coursework units and commence PhD research. In fourth and fifth year, you will be enrolled full time in the PhD. Upon completion of all requirements for both degrees students will graduate with a MCP/PhD award. Thesis submission requirements and examination procedure as set out in the Academic Board resolutions for this course and the Higher Degree (HDR) Rule.

Further course information

Progression rules

Once enrolled in the Doctor of Philosophy component, students will have an annual review of progress, in which the candidate will be required to provide evidence of progress in their research and towards the completion of their thesis. On the basis of the evidence provided, the faculty will recommend the conditions of candidature to apply in the following year, and may request a further review at the end of a semester. If a candidate is not progressing satisfactorily towards the completion of the degree, they may be asked by the faculty to explain why their candidature should not be terminated.

Course outcomes and further study

Graduate opportunities

The Master of Clinical Psychology and the Doctor of Philsophy degree is recognised in principle, by the New South Wales Ministry of Health as qualifying the holder for progression to the grade of Clinical Psychologist.

The course is undergoing accreditation by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) as a 5th and 6th year of training, and is an approved qualification for Associate Membership of the Australian Psychological Society (APS) College of Clinical Psychologists and the Australian Clinical Psychology Association (ACPA).

The Psychology Board of Australia (PBA), through APAC, recognises the course for the purposes of registration and endorsement of practice in clinical psychology.

Course accreditation

Both the MCP and the MCP and PhD are accredited by the APAC as a fifth and sixth year of study, and is approved qualifications for Associate Membership of the Australian Clinical Psychology Association (ACPA) and the APS College of Clinical Psychologists. The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency's (AHPRA) Psychology Board of Australia (PBA) also recognises the programs for the purposes of registration and for endorsement of practice in clinical psychology. This program is recognised by the NSW Ministry of Health as qualifying the holder for progression to the grade of clinical psychologist.

Further study

Meritous students may be eligible to apply for post-doctoral research positions at the School of Psychology.

Admission

Admission requirements

Please refer to the 'Admission Requirements' information on the School of Psychology website.


Available places will be offered to qualified applicants based on merit and interview, according to the following admissions criteria:



  • Completion of an Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) accredited four year bachelors degree with honours in psychology from a higher education provider, gaining at least an upper second class (2.1) honours, or equivalent. The bachelors degree with honours must include a major research project and thesis as an essential part of the degree.

  • You must satisfy the Head of the School of Psychology (or delegate) of your personal suitability for the practice of clinical psychology through your application, referee reports and selection interview.

  • You must satisfy the requirements for admission into the Doctor of Philosophy.


All qualifications obtained from a non-Australian Higher Education Provider must be assessed as equivalent by the Australian Psychological Society (APS) before an application may be submitted. If your qualification was obtained from a non-Australian Higher Education Provider you must provide evidence of an individual (or group) conducted research project and thesis. Provide the degree name, thesis title and thesis abstract, including information on methods used and whether the project was theoretical or conducted with methods consistent with an Australian fourth year honours degree. To determine equivalency, visit the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) or Australian Psychological Society (APS) websites.


You are not required to have completed an empirical research project in the area of abnormal or clinical psychology. The selection process aims to identify that you have a demonstrated interest in these areas, an awareness of clinical issues, and relevant experience. Clinical relevance may be demonstrated on the basis of projects in other areas of psychology, such as cognitive psychology, developmental psychology, individual differences, human learning, neuroscience or social psychology, or relevant work experience.


Applicants must comply with the English language requirements of the University of Sydney and the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA), as additional English language requirements apply under the current Australian Health Practitioners Regulation Agency (AHPRA) standards for registration. Where these are inconsistent with University of Sydney standards, the higher standard will apply. Applicants relying on primary, secondary and/or tertiary qualifications to satisfy AHPRA's English language requirements must provide documentary evidence to demonstrate completion of the qualification, language of instruction, duration and recognised country. For more details, visit the AHPRA English language standards webpage.

How to apply

Domestic students

How to apply

Please refer to the 'How to apply' information on the School of Psychology website.

1. Complete online application form ('APPLY NOW' button at top right hand corner)
- All qualifications obtained from a non-Australian Higher Education Provider must include assessment by the Australian Psychological Society (APS). APS Assessment processing time is up to 6-8 weeks and must be completed before the closing date.

- If you intend to enrol in the PhD, if not offered a place for the MCP/PhD double degree, you will be required to submit an additional PhD application and scholarship application.

- If you intend to be considered for the MCP, if not offered a place for the MCP/PhD double degree, you will be required to tick both the MCP and MCP/PhD boxes on the supplementary form. Do not submit a second separate online application for MCP.

2. Supporting documentation. Upload to online application.

3. MCP Supplementary form. Upload to online application.

4. Two academic referee reports. Nominate two referees on the online referee report form at least two weeks prior to the closing date.  Referees email the electronically completed referee report directly to the Admissions Office.

To apply an online application must be submitted by the application closing date, including uploading the supplementary form, supporting documents and two referee reports submitted directly from the referee to the Admissions Office. All documents must be received by the deadline or the application will be considered incomplete and will not be evaluated nor proceed to interview. Late applications are not accepted.

Admission to this course is extremely competitive due the high calibre of applications received and the limited number of places available each year. Only top-ranking applicants meeting all academic admission requirements will be invited to attend a selection interview. The selection interview, usually held in the last week of November and first week of December, specifically assesses relevant academic, research and clinical work experience, performance, aptitude for clinical psychology and awareness of ethical issues relevant to clinical practice. Following the interview process, offers of admission are made to eligible applicants in order of merit, ranked upon application, academic record and interview performance. Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application through their online application portal from early December onwards.

Credit for previous study may be available in some circumstances. For details, please see the School of Psychology website.

International students

How to apply

Please refer to the 'How to apply' information on the School of Psychology website.

1. Complete online application form ('APPLY NOW' button at top right hand corner)
- All qualifications obtained from a non-Australian Higher Education Provider must include assessment by the Australian Psychological Society (APS). APS Assessment processing time is up to 6-8 weeks and must be completed before the closing date.

- If you intend to enrol in the PhD, if not offered a place for the MCP/PhD double degree, you will be required to submit an additional PhD application and scholarship application.

- If you intend to be considered for the MCP, if not offered a place for the MCP/PhD double degree, you will be required to tick both the MCP and MCP/PhD boxes on the supplementary form. Do not submit a second separate online application for MCP.

2. Supporting documentation. Upload to online application.

3. MCP Supplementary form. Upload to online application.

4. Two academic referee reports. Nominate two referees on the online referee report form at least two weeks prior to the closing date. Referees email the electronically completed referee report directly to the Admissions Office.

To apply an online application must be submitted by the application closing date, including uploading the supplementary form, supporting documents and two referee reports submitted directly from the referee to the Admissions Office. All documents must be received by the deadline or the application will be considered incomplete and will not be evaluated nor proceed to interview. Late applications are not accepted.

Admission to this course is extremely competitive due the high calibre of applications received and the limited number of places available each year. Only top-ranking applicants meeting all academic admission requirements will be invited to attend a selection interview. The selection interview, usually held in the last week of November and first week of December, specifically assesses relevant academic, research and clinical work experience, performance, aptitude for clinical psychology and awareness of ethical issues relevant to clinical practice. Following the interview process, offers of admission are made to eligible applicants in order of merit, ranked upon application, academic record and interview performance. Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application through their online application portal from early December onwards.

Credit for previous study may be available in some circumstances. For details, please see the School of Psychology website.

Fee disclaimer

Domestic students

Annual review for postgraduate student contribution amount

Importantly, student contribution amounts are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study (subject to a Commonwealth specified cap), effective at the start of each calendar year.

Postgraduate Domestic Tuition Fee

This 2016, tuition fee for a domestic postgraduate student represents the fee that is payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2015 for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.

Annual review for postgraduate domestic tuition fee

Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental fees

For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the student contribution and/or course fee. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing and equipment. For further information about these additional incidental fees, please visit the University's Future Students' website.

Potential for inaccuracy

Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information in this prospectus, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.

The academic requirements that are displayed are applicable to currently available courses only, and are updated annually in October and may be changed without notice. The Faculty Handbook and the University of Sydney Calendar are the official legal source of information relating to study at the University of Sydney, and you are referred to those documents

Please note that if you are classified by the University as a Research Training Scheme student in accordance with the Other Grants Guidelines (Research) 2010, you will be exempt from the payment of any SCA or tuition fees for courses undertaken as part of a Research Masters degree and Research Doctoral degree. More information about your eligibility for this Scheme is available here.

International students

International tuition fees for postgraduate students

This 2016, tuition fee for international postgraduate students represents the fees that are payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2016, for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.

Annual review

Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.

Additional incidental fees and health insurance

For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the tuition fees. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing, and equipment. The University's Future Students' webpage has further information about these additional incidental fees for postgraduate coursework students and postgraduate research students.

In addition to the fees indicated here for the course of study, International Students studying on an Australian Student Visa must have appropriate health insurance for the duration of their studies on a Student Visa through an approved provider of the Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) scheme. This is a requirement of the Australian Government, unless otherwise exempted by the Government.

Potential for inaccuracy

Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information here, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.

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