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Health Psychologist in Training

Trainee Health Psychologist

NHS Education for Scotland (NES) in partnership with Health Boards in Scotland is funding 3 Trainee Health Psychologists to explore the contribution health psychology can make in supporting NHSScotland to meet its health improvement targets, with this intake focussing on health improvement in relation to obesity.

These are two-year fixed term posts designed to allow the Trainee Health Psychologists' successful completion of the British Psychological Society's Stage 2 Training while employed by the NHS to undertake a programme of approved work.

The application phase for the 2020 intake is now closed.

Please read all documentation before continuing to the application form (e-form).

Additional Information


The NES Health Psychology Stage 2 Training Programme

1. Introduction :  Health is all about behaviour

To radically improve the health of people in Scotland we need to understand and change the environmental, socio-economic and individual causes of poor health. Promoting effective, evidence based delivery of health care, and supporting people to adopt healthy behaviours is a crucial part of the Scottish Government's health improvement strategy.

2. What can health psychologists contribute?

A Health Psychologist has high level competencies in research, design, delivery and evaluation of interventions, consultancy, teaching and training, and generic professional skills.

These competencies are acquired during Stage 2 training, including:

  • Practice: Developing professional practice, designing healthcare policy and practice.
  • Implement psychological interventions; for example, improving self-efficacy, setting realistic goals, coping with barriers to change. 
  • Research: designing, implementing and evaluating research on issues relevant to managing health and health behaviour.
  • Consultancy: planning, implementing, evaluating healthcare projects for clients.
  • Teaching and training: providing theory-driven, evidence-based training for health professionals, others delivering health care and patients.


NHS benefits from the NES Stage 2 Programme:

  • Developing links and sharing best practice between NHS Health Boards
  • Linking health psychologists with expertise from Scottish Universities with the NHS via  supervision and collaboration 
  • Joint supervision of specific projects, developing shared supportive networks for trainees and other stakeholders      
  • Developing behaviour change science and research evidence to apply in practice
  • Continuity in posts (e.g. NHS Grampian, NHS Fife; NHS Tayside) facilitates sustainable development of input to programmes, for example ‘Keep Well’.

Other benefits:


  • NES supported jointly funded project with NHS Lanarkshire and North Lanarkshire Council around:  ‘Reshaping Care for Older People’, to develop psychological capacity among the health and social care workforce, particularly the Community Assessment and Rehabilitation Service and Home Support (Reablement) Service. 


3. Providing high quality trainees : The NES Training Programme

NES recognises the importance of adding Health Psychology to the NHS skill mix in Scotland by supporting training posts. Since 2007 NES has jointly funded (with NHS Health Boards) 2 year training posts for health psychologists in NHS Health Boards in Scotland. Over thirty trainees have undertaken this programme to date.

The projects undertaken can be grouped into several areas:

  • Health Improvement, health inequalities, illness prevention
  • Physical Healthincluding long-term conditions
  • Smoking, Drugs and alcohol
  • Antenatal, Postnatal care and Early years
  • Health Eating, Activity, Weight Management
  • Frailty and Dementia

For more examples click here (PDF file).


Benchmark Statement

You can view our Benchmark Statement here.