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What is Clinical Psychology?



“Clinical psychology aims to reduce psychological distress and to enhance the promotion of psychological well-being.” (Quote taken from the website of the British Psychological Society –

Clinical Psychologists achieve this by a number of means. We offer direct assessment and therapy to people in distress.  We act as consultants to those who care for people in distress. We offer supervision to those who work with people in distress. We conduct research to understand distress better and find out what really helps.  We draw on a vast body of research to teach others how to manage distress and promote psychological wellbeing. In addition, we are trained to assess people’s level of psychological functioning, in terms of intelligence, learning ability, memory, personality and mental capacity.

We are also trained to assess the impact of events on people's lives.  This might be relevant where someone is seeking compensation for an injury, accident or assault. It might be relevant in helping the courts to judge whether someone is guilty of a crime and it can be relevant in the family courts in deciding how to ensure a child's future safety and wellbeing.

To become a Clinical Psychologist requires many years of study and training, and all UK Clinical Psychologists are trained to Doctorate level.  Most Clinical Psychologists then continue training and specialising long after they have qualified and throughout their career. This means that if someone has achieved Chartered Psychologist Status you can be sure they are a very highly trained and knowledgeable individual. 

Because Clinical Psychology is a vast area of study, individual clinicians tend to have areas of special interest and skill.  So if you have a particular need then it is worth finding a Psychologist who specialises in that area. 

Why choose a Clinical Psychologist?

Clinical Psychologists train for many years to attain Chartered Status and learn about many theories and models of psychological therapy gaining a substantial amount of practical experience along the way.  They are then able to draw on a vast range of therapy options to offer unique packages of therapy to meet each individual client's needs.  Clinical Psychologists are required to continue their professional development throughout their career to maintain their Chartered Status, to stay up to date and to ensure continued quality of service. 

You can find more information on the BPS website

Dr Yvonne Waft BSc (Hons), DClinPsychol, CPsychol, AFBPsS
Trinity Space Centre, Waldorf Way, Wakefield, WF2 8DH
07947 067847