Frequently Asked Questions

The School of Psychology is not accepting applications for either the Master of Psychology (Organisational) or the Combined PhD/Master of Psychology (Organisational) program for 2018. Should further information be required, please contact the School directly at psychology@unsw.edu.au.


1. What mark do I need to get in to the program?
Master of Psychology (Clinical): First Class Honours (or equivalent)

Master of Psychology (Forensic): First Class Honours (or equivalent) OR Second Class Division One Honours (or equivalent)

Program entry requirements can be found here.

Information about UNSW Psychological Science (Honours) grading can be found here.

If you completed your degree outside of Australia, you may use the Postgraduate Coursework Entry Score Calculator to give you a rough idea of what a certain GPA/mark at your home institution could be compared to in UNSW terms. The calculator is to be used as a guide only, and achieving a comparable GPA/mark is in no way a guarantee of admission.

2. Must I have my final results before I submit an application?
Not necessarily. Students enrolled in their fourth year of psychology studies in Australia can apply before their results are finalised. Evidence of enrolment MUST be supplied with the application. Such evidence may be an enrolment letter or, preferably, an interim transcript. Information about the application process can be found here. Students enrolled in psychology studies overseas, however, must complete their program before an application can be submitted (refer to Question 6, below).

3. Is there a mid-year intake?
No.

4. Do I need work experience in a related field?
Selection for the programs is based on an applicant’s academic record, referee reports and interview/Assessment Centre performance. While work experience is NOT REQUIRED, any experience you do have may prove useful should you be invited to participate in an interview or Assessment Centre.

Any experience of working directly with the public may potentially be helpful, especially experience of working with individual with specific needs or disadvantaged individuals. Many charities and other organisations can provide such opportunities. The School cannot provide a list of suitable organisations.

5. What does it cost, and are there scholarships available?
Postgraduate Commonwealth Supported Places are available to eligible students enrolled in the Master of Psychology programs, and fee information for other students (such as international students) can be found on the Fees website. Prospective applicants may also like to use the Fee Estimator as a guide.

Information about scholarships can be found on the Scholarships website. If you are applying for a Combined PhD/Master of Psychology program you will find a number of scholarships available. Information about the scholarships and eligibility can be found on the Graduate Research School (GRS) website. Please carefully note scholarship application deadlines, as they may differ to those for applications for admission.

Direct questions about fees to: fees@unsw.edu.au

Direct questions about scholarships to: scholarships@unsw.edu.au (coursework) or the appropriate contact from the GRS (https://research.unsw.edu.au/graduate-research-school-contacts)

6. My psychology degree is from X, Y, Z country. Can I apply?
The School cannot answer this. If you have a psychology qualification from a country other than Australia, you must apply to have it assessed by the Australian Psychological Society (APS). You can use the outcome of the APS assessment to determine whether or not you are eligible to apply. Note that the APS can only assess completed qualifications.

7. My psychology degree was awarded more than 10 years ago. Can I apply?
Generally, applicants should have completed an accredited four-year sequence in psychology within 10 years of their expected commencement in the Master of Psychology. Exceptions may be possible in limited circumstances, guided by the APAC Rules & Standards June 2010.

8. I don’t have a psychology degree. Can I apply?
Applicants must have completed an accredited four-year sequence in psychology, including Honours, to be eligible for each program. As a graduate of another discipline, you may find suitable accredited bridging psychology sequences by using the search function on the APAC website.

9. Can interviews be conducted using Skype?

Using Skype for your interview is possible only for applicants for the Master of Psychology (Clinical) program. However, it is our preference that applicants attend interviews in person. Generally, Skype is used only in exceptional circumstances, at the discretion of the program Selection Committee. In-person attendance is mandatory for the Assessment Centre for the Forensic program.

In 2017, the Interview Period for the Clinical program will run from Monday, 4 December to Wednesday, 13 December 2017 inclusive. The Forensic Assessment Centre will run on Wednesday, 6 December 2017.

10. What is an Assessment Centre?
The term 'Assessment Centre' does not refer to a location, but to a process. A typical Assessment Centre incorporates a set of varied exercises which are designed to simulate different aspects of the relevant work environment. The Assessment Centre for the Forensic program spans half a day, while the Assessment Centre for the Organisational program lasts a full day.

For more detail please see https://student.unsw.edu.au/assessment-centres.

11. Can I get an offer (or conditional offer) now for reason A, B, C?
Interview and Assessment Centre shortlisting does not start until the application deadline has passed. The School is unable to make offers – conditional or otherwise – to any applicant, for any reason, before interviews are completed. Typically, interviews are conducted between late November and early to mid-December each year.

12. Can I defer my offer?
No, offers cannot be deferred.

13. Can I start the Master of Psychology and transfer into the Combined PhD/Master of Psychology?
This may be possible upon completion of the first year of your Master degree, provided you meet the entry requirements for the Combined program, have a suitable PhD supervisor, and have performed well in the first year of your Master degree.

14. Can I study part-time, or by distance?
Master of Psychology programs are not offered in distance mode. The Clinical program may be taken part-time only with the approval of the Program Director. The Forensic program can be taken part-time for the first year only.

Please view the University Handbook for the Clinical and Forensic programs.

15. Can I work while I study?
Working while studying is not recommended. While students may not need to be on campus every day of the week, program commitments (particularly professional placements) often extend past standard semester times. Even if studying part-time, it would be essential to have a flexible job.

It is not possible to work while studying full-time. The one exception to this may be flexible, casual work – for example tutoring on an undergraduate course. If a student takes the Master of Psychology (Clinical) or Master of Psychology (Forensic) part-time, there may be scope to do some part-time or casual work. However, such work would need to be extremely flexible owing to variability in class times and professional placement days. In the case of the Forensic program, this arrangement would only be practical in the first year of the program, and impossible once placements commence.

Sample (but subject to change) program schedules can be found either in the Timetable or Program Guide sections of the Current Students (Postgraduate Coursework) website.

16. When I complete the program will I be able to work as a psychologist in Australia?
Yes, all the School’s Master of Psychology programs are accredited by APAC. On completion graduates will be eligible to apply for registration as a psychologist in Australia.

17. When I complete the program will I be able to work as a Clinical Psychologist/Forensic Psychologist?
Subject to further supervision (refer to http://www.psychologyboard.gov.au/Endorsement.aspx). On completion of the program, students who complete an additional two years of supervision with an endorsed Clinical or Forensic Psychologist will be able to apply for endorsement as a Clinical/Forensic Psychologist, and to apply for full membership of the relevant college of the APS (https://groups.psychology.org.au/colleges/).

18. When I complete the program will I be able to work as a psychologist overseas?
Probably not without completing further qualifications. Unfortunately there is little international agreement regarding psychology qualifications. Although the country you want to work in may give you some credit for your Australian qualifications, you are likely to need to complete additional qualifications. It is particularly difficult for an Australian-trained psychologist to work in the USA.

Information current at: November 2017.

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