University of Sydney Handbooks - 2021 Archive

Download full 2021 archive Page archived at: Thu, 23 Sep 2021 13:38:13 +1000

Clinical Psychology

Course overview

The Master of Clinical Psychology (MCP) and Master of Clinical Psychology and Doctor of Philosophy (MCP/PhD) trains psychology graduates in the professional specialisation of clinical psychology. The MCP and MCP/PhD are accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) as a 5th and 6th year of study.

The Psychology Board of Australia (PsyBA), through APAC, also recognises both courses for the purposes of registration and for endorsement of practice in clinical psychology.

The MCP and MCP/PhD include three components: academic course work, supervised clinical placements and research. The academic coursework involves lectures, workshops, forums and seminars by the University academic staff.

The program includes a minimum of 1200 hours of clinical placement experience, through supervised clinical practice in our on-campus Psychology Clinic and external teaching hospitals and clinics. The research component requires students to undertake research on a clinical topic, and to complete either a masters research project or doctoral research thesis.

Students gain knowledge and practical experience to work as a professional clinical psychologist. Our programs adopt a Scientist-Practitioner model, led by practicising psychologists with expertise in their research areas recognised at an international level. The course develops foundational skills in cognitive behavioural therapy, by gaining experience of therapy and psychometric assessment across the lifespan. Students develop further depth and breadth to their clinical experience, through advanced units of study and external clinical placements by exposure to multiple models of treatment.

Contact and further information:
Program Coordinator:
Associate Professor Maree Abbott, Director of Clinical Education


Master of Clinical Psychology

These resolutions must be read in conjunction with applicable University By-laws, Rules and policies. These include:
– the Resolutions of the Faculty;
– the University of Sydney (Higher Degree by Research) Rule 2011 (the HDR Rule); and
– the Research Code of Conduct 2013; and the Research Data Management Policy 2014.
Additionally, the coursework components of this award course are subject to:
– the University of Sydney (Coursework) Rule 2014 (the 'Coursework Rule');
– the Coursework Policy 2014;
– the Academic Honesty in Coursework Policy 2015; and
– the Academic Honesty Procedures 2016.
The latest versions of all such documents are available from the Policy Register:

Course resolutions

1 Course codes


Course and stream title


Master of Clinical Psychology


2 Attendance pattern

The attendance pattern for this course is full-time for the first year. Students may apply to the Director of Clinical Training to switch to a part-time enrolment from second year.

3 Admission to candidature

Available places will be offered to qualified applicants based on merit and interview, according to the following admissions criteria.
To be eligible to be admitted to candidature by the Dean, an applicant must:
hold or have completed the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Psychology, Bachelor of Science (Honours), Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Honours), Bachelor of Arts (Honours), Bachelor of Economics (Social Sciences)(Honours) or Bachelor of Liberal Studies (Honours) from the University of Sydney with First Class Honours or Second Class Honours Division 1 in Psychology; and
satisfy the Head of the School of Psychology of his or her personal suitability for the practice of clinical psychology, as determined by interview.
The Dean may admit to candidature an applicant who does not meet the requirements of sub-clause (1), provided that the applicant holds a qualification or qualifications that, in the opinion of the Dean, are equivalent to those prescribed in sub-clause (1).
An applicant for admission to candidature must submit to the Faculty:
satisfactory evidence of the applicant's eligibility for admission; and
two referees' reports (two academic or one academic and one work experience related), as required by the Head of the School of Psychology.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander applicants who wish to be considered for admission under the Cadigal program must additionally apply through the University's Mana Yura Student Support Team. Eligible applicants may be given priority for interviews.

4 Requirements for award

The units of study that may be taken for the Master of Clinical Psychology are set out in the table of units of study for the Master of Clinical Psychology course.
To qualify for the award of the degree of Master of Clinical Psychology, a candidate must:
complete 96 credit points of units of study as set out in the table of units of study; and
complete clinical placements as prescribed by the Head of School; and
conduct a research project on an approved topic.

5 Cross-institutional study

Cross-institutional study is not available in this course.

6 Course transfer

The Master of Clinical Psychology is completed as a stand-alone course. Transfer from the Master of Clinical Psychology to the Master of Clinical Psychology / Doctor of Philosophy is allowed.

7 Credit for previous study

Credit transfer for the Master of Clinical Psychology component is subject to the provisions of the Coursework Policy and the Resolutions of the Faculty of Science, except that:
no more than 48 credit points may be credited; and
the coursework must have been completed no more than three years prior to first enrolment in this course and not have been counted towards another award.

8 Time limits

Except with the permission of the Dean or Associate Dean, a candidate will complete the requirements for the Master of Clinical Psychology degree:
within a minimum period of four semesters and a maximum period of twelve semesters for full-time study; or
within a minimum period of eight semesters and a maximum period of twelve semesters for part-time study; and
within six calendar years of admission to candidature.

9 Progression rules

Candidates for the award course must satisfactorily complete all units of study.
Candidates who fail to satisfactorily complete a practicum unit of study at the first attempt can, following remediation, make a second attempt at completing a practicum unit of study.
Candidates who fail to satisfactorily complete two practicum units of study will be deemed to fail to meet progression requirements and may be asked to show good cause why they should be permitted to re-enrol in the award course.
Coursework and research units of study will be dealt with under the Progression rules of the University of Sydney (Coursework) Policy 2014.

10 Transitional provisions

These resolutions apply to persons who commenced their candidature after 1 January 2019, and persons who commenced their candidature prior to 1 January 2020 who elect to proceed under these resolutions.
Candidates who commenced prior to 1 January 2020 may complete the requirements in accordance with the resolutions in force at the time of their commencement, provided that requirements are completed by 1 January 2025, or by a later date as the faculty may, in special circumstances, approve.