Training to become a clinical psychologist involves a minimum of 6 years, full-time study at university. A 3 year undergraduate degree in Psychology is the first step. Following this, several years of relevant work experience are required as an assistant psychologist or a researcher, prior to the undertaking of the 3 year, postgraduate doctorate in clinical psychology.
The doctorate in clinical psychology involves a combination of clinical placements in the NHS, academic study, and a research thesis. Clinical placements make up the majority of the doctoral training, where trainee clinical psychologists work with adults and children in NHS services, under the close supervision of an experienced, qualified clinical psychologist.
Following completion of the doctorate, clinical psychologists are required to continually update their knowledge and skills through continuing professional development (CPD).
The training that clinical psychologists undergo means that the interventions they offer are based on the most relevant research and literature, to ensure that their services are evidence-based.
The British Psychological Society provides further detail on the role of a clinical psychologist and how their role compares to other professions in this guide: http://www.clinicalpsychology.org.uk/