Rosie Bunting, MSc Mental Health and Clinical Psychology
After studying Psychology at undergraduate level, Rosie was unsure of the best way of using her qualification. Although dedicated and interested in her job working as a support worker for children with learning disabilities in a residential unit, she felt that her career was lacking a clear direction so she decided to do some research into options for further study.
The course provides a good overall picture of mental health and psychology, and the year-long placement looks brilliant on a CV.
Rosie works once a week at Croydon Health Services NHS Trust, where she has a position as honorary assistant psychologist, working with the Croydon learning disability team. “My lecturer James Binnie helped me track down my placement, which so far has really shown me what’s involved working as a psychologist in the NHS,” she says. “It’s been a hands-on experience and I’ve been very involved in direct clinical work, which has been great.”
Rosie is working towards making initial assessments for clients, and is currently learning how to carry out assessments for autism and dementia. She’s also learning about how to undertake exposure work, or therapeutic interventions. “The trust is supportive and teaching me a lot, with the aim that I’ll be able to work with clients on my own,” she says.
“In some ways I wasn’t sure what to expect from the course, but the lecturers on the course, particularly Paula Reavey and Zoe Boden are so engaging and passionate on the subject,” she says. “It’s a lot of work but it’s helped to solidify my understanding of the role of psychology in the health service and, although it’s cliché, I’m really enjoying what I’m studying.”
I'm really excited about the ‘experts by experience’ module – I’m especially keen to hear Jaqui Dillon who's a prominent voice in the Hearing Voices Network.
Sense of purpose
Rosie is quick to highlight the difference between this course and studying psychology at undergraduate level. “During my first degree I felt the study of psychology was detached from its practical application, but this course shows how knowledge is used, as well as developing theoretical understanding, which is what I exactly wanted from my Masters.”
After graduation Rosie is keen to continue to work as an assistant psychologist, with a view to perhaps becoming a clinical psychologist in the future. “This course has made me think about doing a PhD too, to take my career to the next stage. It’s great to be engaged and have a clear sense of purpose – and I have to credit the course with that.”