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Unit information: Clinical Practice Dissertation in 2018/19

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Unit name Clinical Practice Dissertation
Unit code PSYCM0057
Credit points 60
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Academic Year (weeks 1 - 52)
Unit director Professor. Kit Pleydell-Pearce
Open unit status Not open

When this unit is taken as part of the MSc in Clinical Neuropsychology, formal progression to this unit requires that the prior 120 credits of taught component have been passed as approved by the Faculty Examination Board.


Those taking this unit must confirm with the BPS Chief Examiner when they are actively registered on this unit.

School/department School of Psychological Science
Faculty Faculty of Life Sciences


The aim of this mandatory 60 credit point unit is to provide support to clinicians wishing to meet the British Psychological Society (BPS) Division of Neuropsychology (DON) standards for entry onto the specialist register in Clinical Neuropsychology -Practice Dimension. The unit culminates in submission of a Clinical Practice Portfolio meeting BPS requirements and which includes a case log, supervision log and 6 clinical cases described within 6 x 4000 word (max) case reports in QiCN format outlined in BPS regulations as described in:

BPS guidelines require submission of 6 patient case reports (4000 words max) as a component of the portfolio. For those taking MSc in Clinical Neuropsychology one of these cases is delivered within a separate unit: PSYCM0035: Theoretical and Clinical. Students also need to submit 5 QiCN case reports specific to this unit, and these will form the primary basis for viva questions. These additional case reports are termed 'substantive cases'.

The Clinical Portfolio submitted for assessment must contain:

(a) A Case Log Summary covering the required period of supervised clinical practice, in the format given in the separate booklet of forms.

(b) Case Log Record Sheets for a representative sample of cases undertaken during the period of supervised clinical practice, with each signed and dated by both yourself and your Supervisor.

(c) A Supervision Log, giving date and duration of each supervision, signed by yourself and your Supervisor. This should log a minimum of 60 hours supervision.

(d) The six case studies as detailed above.

The 5 “substantive” case studies must each must be strictly no more than 4000 words and should include a front sheet, an appendix giving test results, and a clinical case report.

It is your responsibility to ensure that everything required is included in the Clinical Portfolio at the time of submission.

Intended learning outcomes

The intended learning outcomes are to develop knowledge and skills that meet the BPS criteria for the clinical neuropsychology Practice Dimension. Under BPS guidelines this entails submitting accounts of supervised practice and evidence of practice experience in the form of a portfolio describing clinical experience. As noted by the BPS:

Supervised practice is the experiential process designed to develop a candidate’s knowledge and skills so that s/he is competent to practise independently as a clinical neuropsychologist. Supervised practice builds upon the academic components of the QICN by requiring the development and demonstration of practical skills in applied settings.

The system is designed to ensure that candidates who complete the QiCN are able to meet, to an appropriate standard, a range of work demands within their particular contexts of employment. It maintains a clear emphasis on what the candidate actually does, and on the understanding and demonstration of good professional practice, whatever the setting.

The key features of the system are that it: l emphasises the acquisition and demonstration of generic and specific core competencies as a practitioner; is planned, with flexibility to allow necessary changes; is facilitated by experienced professionals, that is, your Supervisor(s).


Teaching details

Virtually all teaching will be via distance learning given that most clinicians taking this unit will be distributed across the UK and professional commitments will mean that regular travel to Bristol is infeasible.

Teaching will include regular group sessions with other clinicians seeking the QiCN practice dimension in which generic and some specific clinical practice issues will be explored.

There will be focused discussions of how to handle the demands of a viva examination and indications of what to expect in these examinations.

There will be sessions dedicated to the writing and construction of case reports in QiCN format.

Where relevant clinicians will have 1:1 sessions with clinical tutors in order to discuss specific aspects of their own developing QiCN practice portfolio.

Supervision will ensure that candidates are aware that their portfolio submission meets all BPS requirements.

Assessment Details

Assessment requires submission of a clinical portfolio to BPS requirements which includes three key elements: (1) 6 case reports (each 4000 words max); (2) supervision log; (3) case log. The entire portfolio will be read by two BPS approved members of the Specialist Register who will then assess the candidate within a formal viva and confirm that the candidate is able to demonstrate knowledge and competency that meets BPS requirements. A single composite mark will be awarded based upon performance in the viva and upon the quality of submitted reports. A candidate who does not meet BPS competency requirements (as determined by the external assessors) will not pass. The pass mark is 50%.

Reading and References

Relevant information including candidate handbook, supervisor handbook & supervision contract forms can be found on the BPS websitehttps:[http:////|//] (Last accessed 27/03.2018)