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Training to become an Educational Psychologist

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How to access the Educational Psychology Funded Training scheme and qualify as a practitioner educational psychologist.


If you are not yet ready to apply to train as an educational psychologist but want to know more about what the job involves, or how you can prepare for training, go to our Careers page.


*NEW IN 2018*

Starting from the 2018 intake, there are 10 more funded training places available through the Educational Psychology Funded Training (EPFT) scheme in England.  It brings the total number training places available for the 2018 intake to 160. 



  1. Who can apply?     
  2. What’s involved?       
  3. Costs   
  4. Universities offering the Educational Psychology Funded Training Scheme        
  5.   How to Apply          
  6.   FAQs   
  7. Login to online system 
  8. Download guidance documents


1. Who can apply

You must have one of the following at the time of application:      

  • A first degree in psychology (preferably 2:1 or above)      
  • A psychology-based Master’s degree   
  • A conversion award conferring eligibility for GBC (see below)             
You must also be eligible for the British Psychological Society Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC).  If you want to know more about conversion courses or your eligibility for GBC, please contact  The British Psychological Society, www.bps.org.uk, +44 (0)116 2549568.


If the qualification that grants you eligibility for GBC isn’t from the UK or Ireland, you’ll need to provide your British Psychological Society membership number when you apply.       

At the time of application, you must have a minimum of 1 year full-time experience of working with children and young people within:   

  • Education    
  • Health    
  • Social care    
  • Youth justice        
  • A childcare or community setting    

Full time means 37 hours a week, or the equivalent if part time.  This can be made up of either: 

  • All paid employment          
  • At least 9 months’ full-time paid employment (or the equivalent if part time) and the equivalent of 3 months’ relevant voluntary experience.      

You must be a UK resident. If you’re a non-UK applicant, you must be living in the UK at the time of application and be able to provide proof of residency. You must also have been an ordinarily resident of the UK for three years preceding the 1st day of the 1st academic year. If you intend to come to the UK to train, you are not eligible.       

You must be eligible to work in England for the duration of the course and for at least 2 years afterwards. If you are uncertain of your status, please contact     UK Visas and Immigration for advice.  

You must have a good command of written and spoken English.  If your first language isn’t English, you must provide recent evidence that you meet the required standard.  The only acceptable English qualification for the course is the International English Language Testing System, Academic.  An overall grade of at least 7.0, with a minimum of 7.0 in each of the sub tests, is required. 

There is no age limit to applying.  



2. What’s involved?  

A place on the scheme is a 5-year commitment, made up of a 3-year, full time, doctorate degree followed by 2 years of employment in England.  

You will spend your first year studying full time at a university that participates in the scheme. In the second and third years, you’ll work as a trainee educational psychologist on a practice placement with a local authority or another provider of educational psychology services. You will be expected to study for 1 to 2 days per week during this time.       

When you have completed your 3-year degree, you will need to register with the     Health and Care Professions Council, which is the regulatory organisation for educational psychologists.  You will then be able to work as an educational psychologist and use this title.        

After completion of training you will be expected to work as an educational psychologist for at least 2 years in England.  Failure to commit to this may result in your having to repay some, or all, of the cost of your training place.       



 3. Costs  

The scheme is the only publicly funded route in England to becoming an educational psychologist.  Costs are shared between the Department for Education (DfE) and employers (96% of whom are local authorities and schools).     

The DfE directly manages the government-funded element of the EPFT scheme, which covers the cost of course fees, up to a maximum of £29,000, and pays the student a tax-free bursary in the first year of training.    

The bursary for 2018 is:   

  • £15,950 for trainees attending a university outside London.  
  • £16,390 for trainees attending a university in London.     

In years 2 and 3, while you are on your practice placement, your placement provider will pay you either a bursary or a salary.   

Successful applicants will be required to sign a DfE Educational Psychology Funded Training (EPFT) scheme contract prior to starting. Failure to do so will result in applicants being unable to start the course on an EPFT scheme place.        

Self-funded training places may also be available.  If you are considering funding your own training, please contact the relevant university directly to find out if there are any places available and how to apply.    



4. Universities offering the Educational Psychology Funded Training Scheme 

The following universities in England currently offer post-graduate training programmes in educational psychology which are approved for funding under the EPFT scheme. Beginning with the 2018 intake the University of East Anglia (UEA) will also be offering a training programme for the first time under this scheme.  It is now available to select through our online application system, along with the other training providers listed below. 


 Educational psychology training in Wales and Northern Ireland   

There are comparable doctorate-level courses recognised by the HCPC and accredited by the BPS for professional post-graduate training in educational psychology, offered by universities in Wales and Northern Ireland.  Places on these courses are not eligible for funding support under the EPFT scheme.  The courses are not included in the EPFT online application system referred to below, but have a separate application process.  Further information can be found on the course webpages at Cardiff Universityand Queens University Belfast.  


 5. How to Apply   

The Association of Educational Psychologists now manages the on-line application process for the EPFT scheme for the benefit and convenience of applicants and training providers.  Full details of the application process are given in the handbook for applicants, which may be downloaded free of charge from this site (see download links below).  Additional information for potential applicants can also be found on our Frequently Asked Questions page. Terms and conditions apply to users of the on-line application system.  By registering on the EPFT system applicants agree that they accept those terms and conditions  

For any other queries regarding the application process please write to:  EPFT@aep.org.uk  



6.  Frequently Asked Questions  

We have published a number of frequently asked questions concerning the funded training scheme which you may find useful to review before proceeding with registration (see Download links below).  


 7.  Applications for 2018 intake  

The application deadline has now passed, so we are unable to accept any new applications.

If you wish to continue an already started application, please click on the "Login" button below: 



8. Download documents:  

EPFT Scheme 2018 - Applicant Handbook (pdf)   

EPFT Scheme 2018 - Referees' Guidance Notes (pdf)   

Frequently Asked Questions (pdf) [update for 2018 intake in preparation]  

Academic reference template (doc)   

Employment reference template (doc)