June 24, 2024

Job description                    

We are seeking a qualified Clinical Psychologist with strong interests in youth mental health research and practice development to work across several projects under the direction of Dr Daniel Michelson. The focus of the post will be on supporting the development and evaluation of innovative psychosocial interventions for adolescents and young adults, with a particular emphasis on brief, scalable formats that can be delivered by non-specialists through ‘task-sharing’ approaches.   

The post-holder will be based in the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London, joining Europe’s largest grouping of youth-focused mental health scientists, clinical academics and researchers at the newly established Pears Maudsley Centre for Children and Young People.  

The main part of the job plan (approx. 0.3 FTE) will focus on an NIHR Public Health Research-funded programme (‘HOPEFUL’) which is jointly led by Dr Michelson and Dr Clio Berry (Brighton and Sussex Medical School). Other project partners include Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, and the University of Kent. HOPEFUL will undertake a feasibility study and multi-site randomised controlled trial of a hope-focused intervention for young women who are not in education, employment or training, with a geographic focus on deprived coastal regions in southern and eastern England. The Research Clinical Psychologist will work closely with the HOPEFUL team, including academics, senior clinicians and PPI experts, to develop a practice manual, training curricula and supervisory tools for a hope-focused preventive intervention. The post-holder will also be involved in the supervision and training of youth mentors, who will guide the participating young women through the intervention process. The post-holder may also be involved in the direct implementation of the intervention during the feasibility study. 

The balance of the job plan (approx. 0.2 FTE) will concentrate on (i) co-designing and evaluating a suite of single-session interventions for adolescents on waitlists for community CAMHS in South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust; and (ii) refining a theory of change for task-sharing models of youth mental health care in and around Brighton, in collaboration with local commissioners, third-sector partners, and academics at the University of Sussex and Brighton and Sussex Medical School. 

NB: The suggested split of FTE is merely indicative, and the post-holder will be expected to manage their time flexibly across these projects and potentially other studies. 

We are looking for a clinically qualified psychologist with research experience in a relevant area (e.g., gained as a research assistant/associate/fellow or during doctoral training). The post-holder also requires excellent organisational skills, meticulous attention to detail and outstanding communication abilities. These attributes will be critical for collaborating effectively with service partners and academic collaborators, and coordinating complex time-sensitive tasks across multiple projects and institutions. For those seeking to pursue a future clinical academic career, an appropriate professional development plan will be provided (e.g., mentoring and other support for developing a competitive fellowship application).

Candidates should submit their application along with a CV and cover letter detailing how they meet each of the job criteria, together with a concise description of their research interests and career goals.

Informal enquiries can be directed to Dr Daniel Michelson (daniel.michelson@kcl.ac.uk)

Interviews will be held in w/c 15th April 2024 with an intended start date of 1st July 2024. 

This post will be offered on an a fixed-term contract until 31st March 2026.  

This is a part-time post – 50% full time equivalent

Key responsibilities

  • Drafting high-quality intervention materials (manuals, handouts, training curricula, supervision protocols) that build on evidence-based source materials and lived experience/end user insights from advisory and co-design groups  
  • Drafting research/service evaluation protocols and associated governance applications  
  • Drafting reports for funders, sponsors, and other research stakeholders  
  • Delivering training and supervision for a youth mentor-supported psychosocial intervention (HOPEFUL project) as per protocols for a feasibility study and randomised controlled trial 
  • Piloting novel psychosocial interventions directly with young people to gain preliminary evidence of feasibility and acceptability    
  • Contributing to the supervision of postgraduate students and junior staff (e.g., assistant psychologists)  
  • Contributing to peer-reviewed research papers and public engagement materials, including lay summaries  
  • Identifying and communicating areas of difficulty, and helping to formulate solutions in conjunction with the wider project teams 
  • Maintaining up-to-date file repositories and other systems to support effective collaboration between the principal investigator, co-investigators, project staff and wider collaborators
  • Working according to Good Clinical Practice, and attending relevant training to strengthen compliance  
  • Ensuring data confidentiality by working within the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the Data Protection Act 2018 and other regulatory bodies, and attending relevant training to strengthen compliance 
  • Attending such meetings as necessary for satisfactory completion of the duties of the post, including regular in-person meetings at the IoPPN and periodic off-site meetings, including travel to collaborating sites in southern and eastern England 

The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post-holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.  

Skills, knowledge, and experience 

Essential criteria  

1.    Doctoral qualification in clinical psychology with active HCPC registration as a Practitioner (Clinical) Psychologist 

2.    Experience in applied mental health research, gained as a salaried research assistant/associate/fellow and/or during doctoral training

3.    Experience of providing evidence-based psychological interventions for young people aged 12-24 years, gained as a trainee and/or qualified clinical psychologist 

4.    Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including demonstrated ability to prepare research outputs with meticulous attention to detail

5.    Excellent team-working skills, with demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with others and independently as needed

6.    Excellent organisational skills, with demonstrated ability to meet deadlines while managing multiple competing demands 

Desirable criteria

1.    Experience as a developer, trainer and/or supervisor of evidence-based psychological interventions 

2.    Experience of lived experience involvement in mental health research and service development 

3.    Experience of NHS quality improvement and service evaluation 

4.    A track record of peer-reviewed publications 

5.   Commitment to pursuing a clinical academic career 

This post is subject to Disclosure and Barring Service and Occupational Health clearance.


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