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What makes a good clinical psychologist

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This is a list of qualities that a group of service users, employed by the Birmingham clinical course, thought relevent for the personal suitability interviews when selecting applicants for the course.


  • Positive
  • Inspiring Confident Enthusiastic Optimistic Creative
  • Can think 'outside the box'
  • Willing to challenge and question
  • Can think on feet
  • Good communication skills at different levels Will 'shut up, listen and respond'
  • Articulate
  • Patience
  • Empathy empathy/sympathy balance Caring and kind Humour
  • Warmth/personable Compassionate
  • Aptitude/empathy balance unconditional acceptance not patronising
  • Respectful
  • Endurance
  • Inner strength Contained
  • Able to remain calm
  • 'wont jump into the hole with you'
  • Good level of psychological well being or can/has dealt with own issues and can use what has learned
  • Self awareness
  • Willing to work on own issues
  • Aware of their own prejudices
  • Aware when their own issues being triggered
  • Aware of own limitations
  • Humble - willing to admit wrong
  • Flexibility in own beliefs
  • Not threatened when mistakes pointed out
  • Willing to learn from client or others
  • Broad minded
  • Not judging
  • Aware that we all human - not that much separating us
  • Aware of power issues
  • Honest Trustworthy respects confidentiality Ethical/moral
  • Consistent
  • Punctual
  • Not easily flustered
  • Common sense
  • Can do multiple tasks at same time
  • Willing to keep up to date
  • Can work across all settings

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