UCL Graduate degrees


Clinical Associate in Psychology (Adult Mental Health) apprenticeship MSc

The course aims to train psychology graduates to become skilled professional Clinical Associates in Psychology (CAP), working within Adult Mental Health. This Master's programme provides the formal apprenticeship training required as part of the student's employment within the NHS. Students on this programme qualify as Clinical Associates in Psychology.

Key information

Programme starts

January 2022

Modes and duration

Part time: 18 months

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 8 November 2021
Close: 26 November 2021

Tuition fees (2021/22)

See Fees Note (PT)
See Fees Note (PT)

Note on fees: Fees are funded by the NHS

Accreditation: We are pursuing accreditation by the British Psychological Society (BPS).
Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A minimum of a second-class Bachelor's degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Standard

Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

About this degree

The teaching and training will focus on the knowledge and clinical competencies required to work as a Clinical Associate in Psychology with adults with mental health problems in inpatient and community mental health services. The broad purpose of the occupation is to provide high quality, evidence-based psychological support within the community, with formulations derived from rigorous psychological measurement and assessment tools to work with populations from different backgrounds, cultures and contexts. 

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of nine compulsory modules, five modules (15 credits), two modules (30 credits) and a dissertation (30 credits). 

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

Compulsory modules

  • Social and Healthcare Context (15 credits)
  • Assessment and Engagement (15 credits)
  • Psychological Interventions: Fundamentals (15 credits)
  • Psychological Interventions: Implementation (30 credits)
  • Quality Improvement and Audit (15 credits)
  • Psychological Interventions: Advanced (15 credits)
  • Developing as a Practitioner (15 credits)
  • Research Dissertation (30 credits)
  • Clinical Portfolio and End Point Assessment (30 credits)

Modules are taken in sequence, with Module 1 to 8 completed over 12 months. As this is also an apprenticeship programme, CAP apprentices need to be able to demonstrate that they have met competencies before progression on to Module 9. During the last 6 months of the programme, students will primarily receive support towards the end point assessment within their work setting. 

Optional modules


All students will undertake a systematic literature review as their research dissertation.


Students are employed by and complete their apprenticeship with their participating NHS Trust. 

Teaching and learning

Students will be taught via lectures, practical workshops, and clinical seminars. Teaching will include both university and service-based supervisory practice.  Students will also have access to moodle resources, tools, forums and activities, and undertake independent study.  

Assessments will be conducted in a number of ways: group and individual presentations, case studies, essays, objective structured clinical examination and dissertation. 

Teaching will take place on Wednesdays and Fridays with teaching taking place from 10 to 5. Approximately 50% of the time will be spent in lectures, 25% in workshops, 15% in clinical seminars, and the remainder in independent study. 

Additional costs

There are no additional costs associated with the course. 

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.


Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.


Tuition fees on this programme are fully funded by the NHS.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.


The Master's programme is the formal apprenticeship training required as part of the student's employment as a Clinical Associate in Psychology who upon successful completion of the programme will move to being qualified CAPs. It is anticipated that apprentices will stay in these positions after completing the programme, working as a qualified CAP.

For further details, please visit the NHS Careers website.

Options for career development include progression to working as a qualified CAP. Other options include moving into related fields such as teaching, social work and clinical psychology.


The Clinical Associate in Psychology is a new occupation within the NHS. The course will train students to work in adult mental health settings.  The occupation addresses an unmet need in mental health provision as outlined in the NHS Long Term Plan and Community Mental Health Framework. The training is provided in partnership with NHS Trusts, who are committed to supporting the long term development of the CAPs role.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL programme is run and taught by experienced practitioners in the field, and therefore a balance is achieved between the teaching of the theoretical knowledge needed and the practical skills necessary in training as a Clinical Associate in Psychology.

Students will receive employment and practical experience in a relevant service alongside this formal training needed in order to become a qualified Clinical Associate in Psychology.

Department: Division of Psychology & Language Sciences

Application and next steps


Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

This programme requires two references. Further information regarding references can be found in our How to apply section.

Who can apply?

Applicants will be nominated by their NHS employer and are required to show evidence of ability to study successfully at postgraduate level.

Application deadlines

All applicants
26 November 2021

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Clinical Associate in Psychology (Adult Mental Health)
    at graduate level
  • why you want to study Clinical Associate in Psychology (Adult Mental Health) at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.

Page last modified on 28 August 2021