Doctorate in Educational and Child Psychology

Information About | Other Programmes in the Division


Information about the Doctorate in Educational and Child Psychology

This is a 3-year postgraduate course in educational and child psychology, which has a clear vocational focus and requires applicants to have some prior relevant experience. This means that most people will have thought long and hard about whether this is the right training for them, and will have chosen Educational Psychology over some of the alternative careers that are open to them. 

UCL has a long standing reputation for innovation and quality in professional training in Educational Psychology. We offer a fully integrated practice-based/theoretically innovative/research-rich programme, reflected by our focus on evidence-based practice. An outstanding team of in-house practitioners offer a supportive approach to enhancing student experience, cutting edge theoretical/research knowledge and excellent links with Services in the region. Excellent facilities and resources, including a specialist collection of assessment and intervention tools, first rate elearning and IT support, and access to a wide range of libraries and electronic resource collections within UCL and other colleges of the University of London, are also available to our trainees.


Structure of the Doctorate Programme

In the first year of the course, UCL based study (2-3 days per week) plus independent study (1-2 days per week) is combined with UCL supervised placement within a Local Authority Educational Psychology Service (1-2 days per week).

In the second and third years of the course, trainees obtain employment within Services as trainee educational psychologists and UCL teaching blocks (3 days per month in year 2, 2 blocks of 3 days per term in year 3) combine with independent study/UCL tutorials and placement and research with the employing Local Authority (approximately 12 days per month in year 2, 56 days per term in year 3).


Trainees submit three portfolios of professionally-related work (one for each year) and 5 x 4,000 word Case Reports integrate theory and practice throughout the three years. In addition, 2 x 3hour written examinations using problem-solving questions and case scenarios to test the application of knowledge and understanding to professional practice are sat in the first and second years. Assessment of Research Skills is by a thesis of 30,000 words which makes a distinct contribution to the knowledge of the subject and offers evidence of originality shown in the discovery of new facts and/or the exercise of independent critical power. This is submitted at the end of the third year.


Applying for the Doctorate in Educational Child Psychology

It is essential you have an honours degree in Psychology that confers Graduate Basis for Registration with the British Psychological Society and Experience of work with children in education, child care or community settings to be eligible to apply.

Our entry requirements and application process are very specific – please visit our application page and read this thoroughly:

All UK applications must be made through the Childrens Development Workforce Council:

No direct applications to UCL will be considered, with the exception of EU applicants who should click here: The course funding and placement arrangements mean that only UK/ EU nationals are eligible to apply to the course; unfortunately anyone requiring any form of work permit or visa cannot be considered.


What do people do with a Doctorate in Educational and Child Psychology?

The overall aim of our programme is to enable trainee educational psychologists to effectively integrate theory and practice and become skilled and accountable professional practitioners, eligible for Chartered status with the British Psychological Society upon graduation. Educational Psychologists work in the field of education with children and young people who have a range of educational and psychological needs.

For more information about the profession and about Graduate Basis for Registration visit the British Psychological Society website:

Further Information

Please select the links for further information


Q: What are the fees for the research programmes?

Please go to this link here for more details for fees for 2011-2012/