Psychologist Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Psychologist, or Psychotherapist uses psychological techniques and principles to help people control or overcome mental and behavioural issues. Their duties include observing and recording patients’ behaviour, performing controlled laboratory experiments and using psychotherapy and psychoanalysis to create treatment programmes.

 

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Psychologist duties and responsibilities 

Psychologists may work alone counselling patients, consulting with clients or doing independent research. Others work as part of a team with Social Workers, Physicians and other medical professionals to treat illness and promote overall wellness. Their duties and responsibilities vary depending on their work setting, but can include:

  • Interviewing, observing and surveying people to assess their emotional state
  • Conducting controlled experiments in laboratories and scientific studies to better understand behaviour and brain function
  • Testing patients to identify patterns that will provide more insights and understanding of their behaviours 
  • Helping clients set realistic mental and behavioural health goals and tracking their progress
  • Discussing treatment and control measures with clients 
  • Developing treatment programmes or using psychotherapeutic methods such as cognitive behavioural therapy to improve clients’ psychological health 
  • Supervising other psychological health professionals such as Clinicians and Counsellors 
  • Writing research papers and articles to disseminate findings with other professionals and contribute to the body of knowledge

 

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Psychologist Job Description Examples:

 

Example 1

NHS Lothian is committed to encouraging equality and diversity among our workforce, and eliminating unlawful discrimination. The aim is for our workforce to be truly representative and for each employee to feel respected and able to give their best. To this end, NHS Lothian welcomes applications from all sections of society. ***Please NOTE: We cannot accept late applications so please ensure your application is submitted early*** Assistant Psychologist Lothian Eating Disorders Service, Cullen Centre Royal Edinburgh Hospital Full time – 37.5 hours a week Interview will be on Microsoft Teams The Lothian Eating Disorders Service is a well established multi-disciplinary outpatient and community Eating Disorders Service. The service is based in the Royal Edinburgh Hospital and the post-holder also needs to be able to provide community outreach, including home visits, throughout Lothian. There may be a requirement for some flexible working (Monday to Friday 8am - 6pm) We are seeking a highly motivated psychology graduate, with a genuine interest in the specialty to join this multi disciplinary team. The post is primarily a clinical role and provides excellent experience in psychologically informed meal and social support alongside individual structured therapy interventions. The post-holder will also assist with administrative tasks, service evaluation, audit and research. There will be access to Clinical Psychology supervision and the service’s continuing professional development opportunities. This post requires the post holder to have a PVG Scheme membership/ record. If the post holder is not a current PVG member for the required regulatory group [website] child and/or adult) then an application will need to be made to Disclosure Scotland and deemed satisfactory before they can begin in post. **Please note: we anticipate a high level of interest in this position and may close the vacancy early once a sufficient amount of applications are received. Therefore, please make sure you complete and submit your application at an early stage** For further information on what is included in the role and what skills/experience are being looked for, click on the links at the bottom of the screen to the job description and person specification. If after reading this information you have any questions please contact: Gavin Menzies, Clinical Psychologist on 0[phone number] or email:

Example 2

There are various posts based within the Motherwell, Bellshill, East Kilbride & Kilsyth Psychological Therapies Teams. Part Time hours will be considered. Accountable to the Head of Adult Psychological Therapies, and responsible to the Consultant Psychologist (Locality Co-ordinator): Be responsible for the systematic autonomous provision of a highly specialised psychological assessment and treatment service to adults referred to Adult Psychological Therapies. Provide clinical supervision to clinical staff within Adult Psychological Therapies. Contribute to Psychological Services training, teaching and research activities. Represent the Locality Co-ordinator as required. Post Graduate Doctoral level (or equivalent) degree in Clinical or Counselling Psychology and be a Registered Clinical or Counselling Psychologist with the Health and Care Professions Council in the UK. Complete further courses of additional learning as relevant to the clinical skills required for the post and identified as significant in the Personal Development Plan, and have accredited training in the supervision of Post Graduate clinical trainees. Have knowledge of NHSL Health Board's Policies and Procedures, and national and professional guidelines for optimal standards of clinical care [website] child protection guidelines. Have knowledge of psychiatry and other related professions in order to understand complex clinical presentations. Work in a sensitive manner with respect to diversity and gender, ethnic, culture and philosophical issues with a wide range of individuals and organisations. Be aware of the limits of one's competence and expertise. Maintain and update knowledge of legislation and local policies and issues in relation to Adult Mental Health generally. Attend in-house and external mandatory training courses [website] computer training, Moving and Handling, Management of Aggression and Violence, etc. Be aware of the need to deploy valuable Health Service resources in an effective and rational manner according to contemporary evidence-based practice. Informal enquiries regarding the post will be welcomed by Dr Philip Quinn, Consultant Counselling Psychologist/ Locality Co-ordinator, on 01698 242440. If you have any queries regarding the application form or recruitment process, please contact Elaine McInally, Recruitment Administrator, on 01698 754338. We anticipate a high level of interest in this position and may close the advert once a sufficient amount of applications are received. Therefore, please make sure you complete and submit your application at an early stage. Whilst this advertisement may be for a specific post(s) in a particular location, applicants who are shortlisted for interview may be considered for similar vacancies in alternative locations.

Example 3

Role: Clinical Psychologist Salary: Up to £61,200 per annum Permanent: part time Location: Lufton College, Yeovil The Cambian Group, the UK’s largest provider of specialist services in education, mental health rehabilitation, and learning disabilities, is looking for a dedicated, caring individual to join the company as a psychologist. We offer excellent training and career progression opportunities as well as a variety of staff benefits. Job Role The role will involve the assessment, formulation, and treatment of the young people’s psychological needs. You will be part of a team that includes speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, mental health practitioner, care, and education. As a senior member of the therapy team, the post-holder will be expected to contribute to service development at the college and work with other psychologists within the region to continually improve service provision Full induction training is given. You will also learn from some of the most dedicated and inspirational people in our profession and just like our young people you will be learning all the time through our on-going mentoring and support. Candidate Profile To be successful in this role you will be excited by the Cambian vision and values and will relish an opportunity to make a difference. You will need to be a clear communicator, well-organised, confident and capable of managing a complex caseload in a demanding environment. Experience of supervising others and providing training to staff is required. Learning Disability and/or CAMHS experience preferred. Supervision experience preferred. Successful candidates will have to meet the person specification in order to be offered this post. Cambian is committed to Safeguarding and protecting the young people and service users within our care. All candidates will be subject to an enhanced DBS check and reference checks. Cambian is an equal opportunities employer. Job Types: Full-time, Permanent Salary: Up to £61,200.00 per year Work remotely: * No

Example 4

Role: Specialist Clinical Psychologist Salary/Benefits: Generous package available up to £61,200 depending on the level of experience. Full time: 40 hours per week (Part time will be considered) Location: Based across Cambian Wing College Bournemouth & or Purbeck View School, Swanage The Cambian Group, the UK’s largest provider of specialist services in education, mental health rehabilitation, and learning disabilities, is looking for a dedicated, caring individual to join the company as a psychologist. We offer excellent training and career progression opportunities as well as a variety of staff benefits. Job Role The role will involve the assessment, formulation and treatment of the young people’s psychological needs. You will be part of a team that includes speech and language therapists, occupational therapists, nursing, psychiatry, care and education. As a senior member of the therapy team, the post-holder will be expected to contribute to service development and work closely with other psychologists within the region to continually improve service provision Full induction training is given. You will also learn from some of the most dedicated and inspirational people in our profession and just like our young people you will be learning all the time through our on-going mentoring and support. Dependant on your experience you may be required to supervise other Mental Health Practitioners, Clinical Psychology Trainees, Healthcare Students, and Assistants. In addition to your consultation role to the homes you will also be providing specialist assessments of children and young people within the residential setting and creating regular psychological reports. These assessments will inform your input to the care homes and also to the children who may require you to offer direct 1-1 long term therapy. Further duties are described in the attached Job Description. Candidate profile To be successful in this role you will be excited by the Cambian vision and values and will relish an opportunity to make a difference. You will need to be a clear communicator, well organised, confident and capable of managing a complex caseload in a demanding environment. Experience of supervising others and providing training to staff is required. Learning Disability and/or CAMHS experience preferred. Successful candidates will have to meet the person specification in order to be offered this post. Cambian is committed to Safeguarding and protecting the young people and service users within our care. All candidates will be subject to an enhanced DBS check and reference checks. Cambian is an equal opportunities employer. Job Types: Full-time, Permanent Salary: Up to £61,200.00 per year Work remotely: * No

What does a Psychologist do?

Psychologists try to understand and explain feelings, emotions, behaviour and thoughts. They do this by observing, recording and interpreting people’s relationships with themselves and their environment. They also perform experiments and assessments to develop theories about the feelings, thoughts and beliefs that influence psychological health. 

Psychologists administer a wide range of tests to assess intelligence, personality, aptitude and cognitive performance. The work of a Psychologist may depend on their area of specialisation, such as developmental, clinical, rehabilitation, forensic, counselling or educational psychology. 

 

Psychologist skills and qualifications

A successful Psychologist candidate will have various prerequisite skills and qualifications to perform their duties effectively. These skills and qualifications include:

  • Exceptional listening and written and verbal communication skills
  • Strong diagnostic and observational skills 
  • Empathy, compassion and sensitivity to the issues of clients
  • Expert analytical skills
  • Ability to keep clients’ information confidential
  • Professionalism and patience
  • Ability to remain calm in tense situations 
  • Excellent interpersonal skills

 

Psychologist experience requirements

The type of experience Psychologists must have depends on the area of psychology they specialise in. Many employers prefer candidates who have worked as an Assistant Psychologist or in areas such as mental health work, social work or nursing. Some employers accept candidates who have worked as a Research Assistant. 

If you’re looking for an Educational Psychologist, look for candidates who have experience working with children in childcare, educational or community settings. While not essential, teaching experience is useful. If you’re looking for an Occupational Psychologist, a candidate who has experience in business and management or personal and human resources is preferable. 

 

Psychologist education and training requirements

Psychologist must have a bachelor’s degree in psychology. They must have completed the Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership and obtained an accredited postgraduate qualification in a specific specialism such as forensic or educational psychology. 

If you are looking to hire a Psychologist specialising in neuropsychology, the candidate must have a postgraduate qualification in clinical or educational psychology and completed specialist training in neuroscience. Candidates must also register with the Health and Care Professions Council. Candidates must also have completed additional psychology training from the British Psychological Society.  

 

Psychologist salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary of a Psychologist in the UK is £32,729 per year. Actual salary varies depending on several factors, including the Psychologist’s work experience, qualifications, specialism, employer and geographical location. 

 

Job description samples for related positions 

If a Psychologist is not quite what you’re looking for, here are other job description samples that may fit your needs:

 

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Psychologist job description FAQs

 

What qualities make a good Psychologist?

A good Psychologist possesses a great deal of patience. In many cases, a Psychologist helps people work through challenging issues, which can take much time and effort. It’s important to let patients work at their own pace, and this can be a tiring task without possessing a great deal of perseverance. 

 

What makes a good Psychologist job description?

A good Psychologist job description starts with an attention-grabbing headline that includes the specific job title. It also describes the work environment and the type of patients candidates will be dealing with. It also highlights the exact job duties and responsibilities and includes information about salary and benefits, including health insurance, career progression opportunities, travel reimbursements and housing benefits. It also mentions an application deadline to create a sense of urgency. 

 

Do Psychologists have different responsibilities in different industries?

The responsibilities of a Psychologist will depend on the industry in which they work. For example, Forensic Psychologists use psychological techniques to help Police, Lawyers and Judges solve cases. Educational Psychologists help diagnose and treat education and developmental issues and disorders.  

Job Description Examples

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