School of Psychology

Postgraduate Diploma in Clinical Psychology (PGDipClinPsyc)

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The Postgraduate Diploma in Clinical Psychology (PGDipClinPsyc) is a professional course of study that enables successful students to register and practice as Clinical Psychologists in New Zealand and internationally.

The programme utilises scientific methods within clinical practice and balances the need for compassion and respect for others with excellence in practice.

The PGDipClinPsyc is a three year (full time) clinical training programme which includes a Master’s or PhD research thesis on an approved topic – please note that completing a PhD thesis would extend the clinical programme by at least two years. It is also possible to complete the PGDipClinPsyc alongside our specialist Masters programmes in Forensic Psychology, Cross-Cultural Psychology and Cognitive and Behaviourial Neuroscience.

At the end of the training programme, students will graduate with a PGDipClinPsyc, and hold a Master’s or PhD degree, and be qualified to work as clinical psychologists in health, corrections and a wide range of community settings.

Places in the programme are strictly limited and students must apply for the programme and be successful in a selection process before being granted entry.

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Programme Structure

In Year 1 students will complete the following courses:

PSYC 412, Criminal Conduct 1: Criminal Conduct and Crime (15 points)

PSYC 442, Criminal Conduct 2: Areas of Applications (15 points)

PSYC 451, Clinical Adult Assessment and Intervention (30 points)

PSYC 452, Clinical Child and Family Psychology (30 points)

After Year 1 students may take two years out (defer) from the programme to complete a PhD.


Year 2 students will complete:

PSYC 561, Practicum (60 points)

Master's or PhD thesis


Year 3 students will complete:

PSYC 562, Advanced Practicum (120 points)

Along with two of the following:

  • PSYC 571, Advanced Neuropsyhcology Theory and Practice (15 points)
  • PSYC 572, Adult and Clinical Psychology: Advanced Intervention Skills (15 points)
  • PSYC 573, Clinical Criminal Justice Psychology (15 points)

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Entry Requirements

Students applying for the Clinical Programme should have completed as many of the following courses as possible (or the equivalents, if you are applying from outside of Victoria):


PSYC 325, Advanced Research Methods (Compulsory for postgraduate study)

PSYC 221, Social Psychology

PSYC 231, Cognitive Psychology

PSYC 233, Brain and Behaviour

PSYC 235, Abnormal Psychology

PSYC 327, Cognitive and Behavioural Neuroscience

PSYC 332, Behaviour Analysis

And one of:

PSYC 238, Lifespan Development

PSYC 338, Cross-cultural Psychology

It is expected that applicants will also have completed a basic Maori language/society course and attended a Treaty of Waitangi Workshop prior to their application.

Students who wish to apply for provisional admission into the PGDipClinPsyc must have:

  • completed an undergraduate degree majoring in Psychology, with an A- grade average in their best four 300-level psychology courses
  • completed a least 60 points of 300-level psychology courses, including PSYC 325

Students who hold higher degrees in Psychology (such as a BA/BSc(Hons)) must have an A- grade average in their most recent year of study or have completed a Master’s with the equivalent of first class honours or have completed a PhD in Psychology.

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Applications must be submitted by the 8 October for entry into the programme in the following academic year. The application form can be found here.

To apply, three copies of the following documents must be submitted to the Clinical Administrator:

  • completed PGDipClinPsyc application form 
  • academic transcript(s)
  • a Curriculum Vitae

Applicants will also need to ask two people to act as referees. The referees will complete their references and send them directly to the clinical administrator - more information is available on the application form.

Applications should be marked 'confidential' and sent to:

C/- Clinical Programme Administrator

School of Psychology

Victoria University of Wellington

PO Box 600

Wellington 6140

New Zealand

International applicants must contact Victoria International to begin the application process, applications will need to be submitted at least 1 month in advance of the application deadline to allow for international enrolment processes to be completed. International students who have questions about the clinical programme fees should contact the Faculty of Science.

Those who have already commenced or completed a Clinical Psychology Masters or Doctoral programme (or similar) overseas should consult with the New Zealand Psychologists Board in the first instance to find out what they would need to gain registration in New Zealand. You can then apply to the Victoria clinical programme and may be given some cross-credits.

Applications will be reviewed and undergo a shortlisting process. Shortlisted applicants will be invited to attend a panel interview at the School.

Students submitting applications are advised to proceed with enrolment in other study options, such as Honours, to ensure enrolment deadlines are not missed. Successful applicants accepted into the programme will have their enrolment changed to reflect first year of the clinical programme.

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Additional information

Please note the following requirements which may also be necessary:

  • final acceptance into the provisional year (Honours year) is conditional upon the outcome of a police check
  • those who accept a place on the Clinical programme undertake to ensure they have a minimum of a restricted driver’s license prior to commencing their first professional year
  • some agencies where students undertake placements (e.g. District Health Boards) may require students to undergo a health screening test and/or have some immunisations prior to commencing the placement

The School of Psychology offers the Te Kura Matai Hinengaro Bicultural Award to support Maori and Pasifika clinical students. These scholarships cover either full or partial fees for two years. Eligible students who wish to apply should check the scholarships database for more information, or contact the Scholarships Office. Applications close on the 1st of April.

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For further information regarding the Clinical programme contact:

Clinical staff