Clinical Psychology - Frequently Asked Questions

Do you accept applications from International students?

Yes. We accept applications from anyone who meets the prerequisites of the course.

I am an international student, how do I apply?

There are two parts to the application process for International students.

First you should apply for admission to the University of Canterbury, where your previous qualifications will be assessed by our Admissions team.

Applicants who are based overseas, or who have completed their qualifications outside of NZ, are encouraged to apply for admission at least 2 months prior to the programme application deadline. Any applications which are received after the deadline will not be able to be considered

Once this has been confirmed, you should follow the application process for the Clinical Psychology programme.

Are there any scholarships for domestic or international students?

You can search available scholarships for all students on our website.

Is the diploma available via distance learning?

No. This is a taught postgraduate qualification, and is only available at our campus in Christchurch, New Zealand for those selected into the programme.

I have studied clinical psychology overseas, can I just complete the Internship component?

No. The PSYC670 Internship in Clinical Psychology is only available to students who have been accepted into the Clinical Psychology programme and who have completed the first two years of training.

My degree is not in Psychology, what can I do?

If your undergraduate degree is not in Psychology, a Graduate Diploma in Science (in Psychology), followed by one year of postgraduate study (Honours, Masters Part 1 or PGDipSci) will provide the basic qualifications to meet the prerequisites. It will be important within these qualifications that the other course prerequisites are met, these include PSYC335 Abnormal Psychology and an advanced research methods with a statistical focus. Please refer to the official PGDipClinPsyc regulations for specific requirements.

It is recommended you discuss your options with a Student Advisor in the College of Science.

I have completed courses which I think are equivalent to the prerequisites, how can I get this checked?

If you believe you have completed equivalent courses at a New Zealand university, please contact the Professional Programmes Administrator who can check and confirm this for you. If you completed these at a university outside of New Zealand, we will need you to provide an official course outline from the institution you attended, detailing the content of the course. This is done as part of your Admission process.

Do I have to complete my Masters at the same time?

Yes and No. If you do not already have a Masters (or PhD) in Psychology, then you will need to complete this concurrently with the PGDipClinPsyc. If you have already completed a Masters or PhD in Psychology, you don’t need to do another one. If you are currently completing a PhD in Psychology, you don’t need to complete a Masters in Psychology.

How much does it cost?

Information on fees is available on our website.

I have lots of experience working in mental health, can I apply?

Yes, provided you meet the prerequisites of the programme. It should be noted that clinical experience cannot take the place of any course prerequisites as outlined in the regulations.

Can I register as a Psychologist after completing this programme?

Yes. Upon completion of the Postgraduate Diploma in Clinical Psychology (and either a Masters or PhD in Psychology) graduates can apply for registration under the Clinical Scope of Practice with the New Zealand Psychologists Board.

I want to do a Masters in Clinical Psychology, but you only have a Postgraduate Diploma. Can I still register with this qualification?

You can register as a Clinical Psychologist upon completion of the PGDipClinPsyc and a Masters in Psychology.

Do you offer a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology?

No, we offer a PGDipClinPsyc and you can opt to complete a PhD in Psychology concurrently.

What sort of experience do I need?

Applications are strengthened by having:

  1. clinical, or clinically-related experience, e.g. telephone counselling (Lifeline, Youthline), support/case worker (in a mental health setting), etc.,
  2. research experience, e.g. research assistant, summer scholarship student, etc.,
  3. cultural experience, e.g. Te Reo Māori language course, etc.
What is an approved 400/600-level Research Methods paper?

We require a postgraduate Research Methods course that comprises statistics and data analysis with applications for psychology. An example of this is PSYC 460 Research Methods in Psychology. Courses on research design and communication only do not meet this requirement. If you would like to check if a course meets these requirements, please contact the Professional Programmes Administrator.

How many people are accepted each year into the programme?

Up to 16 people are selected each year.

My application to the PGDipClinPsyc was not successful. Can I receive feedback?

We do not give individual feedback to unsuccessful applicants, and instead encourage you to review our selection criteria and consider how your application may be able to be strengthened.

I completed my Psychology postgraduate studies more than 10 years ago, can I still apply?

Yes, you can apply, although we recommend that you consult the course outlines for the prerequisites to check if you are confident that your knowledge is recent and relevant, or even consider doing a Postgraduate Diploma in Science and (re)doing the pre-requisite courses for the clinical programme.