Friday, 26 January 2018

FOI request: DClinPsy Glasgow teaching programme #HamishMcLeod

This is an FOI request sent by Email to Dr Hamish McLeod, Programme Director, DClinPsy Glasgow:

"Strapline: FOI request: DClinPsy Glasgow teaching programme

Dear Dr McLeod

This is an FOI request.

I want to know detailed information about the teaching programme materials used and promoted within the DClinPsy programme at the University of Glasgow, to try and discover what the culture is, how open it is, how secure staff and trainees feel, if it's like a family or more of a hierarchical organisation, exclusive and elite.

Here are my requests (when I use the word "you" I mean as Programme Director, it's not personal):

  • I would like a list of topics taught within the programme, together with materials used, their focus, philosophy, references, approaches, processes and any other information which would help me understand what Glasgow DClinPsy academics and ClinPsy practitioners are delivering to trainees
  • who are the staff teaching on this course, what are their backgrounds, philosophy, qualifications, experience etc?  How are lecturing staff chosen for teaching on your programme, what processes are used to select? [I know that Attachment Theory, Risk of Relapse, Anhedonia and Metacognition are main subject areas but I have no knowledge of any other subject areas, whether there is psychoanalytic psychotherapy taught and its focus].
  • how is your programme monitored and evaluated effectively, from staff and trainee perspectives?  How do you collect trainee feedback and ensure that it's independent, that there is space for a student to be critical, honest, without it affecting how they are treated and their future job prospects?  [I know from personal experience how I've been treated, excluded for speaking out and denied the opportunity to defend myself and my reputation].
  • how do you meaningfully involve the voices of lived experience in your programme?  how do you ensure a wide range of user/survivor/carer opinions and viewpoints so that trainees will be well equipped to work effectively with the wide range of patients and people they are likely to come in contact with?  how do you meaningfully involve critical and questioning mental health user/survivor voices in your programme without silencing them?  how do you and your staff avoid directive interactions with people who have survived mental illness and coercive psychiatric treatment without retraumatising them?  [I'm thinking of invasive behaviours that may come over as bullying or intimidation by dint of the fact that many people with "lived experience" have been subject to abusive treatment in MH settings for just saying No].
  • what are your processes and procedures for meaningfully involving a wide range of ClinPsy lecturers and lived experience voices?  I want to know how senior academics avoid influencing the DClinPsy programme at Glasgow with their own agenda, limiting the potential of the trainees and narrowing their outlook.
  • when you are choosing trainees for the programme how do you ensure that the selection process is completely independent and fair, without bias?  How do you avoid selecting trainees who favour the topics which the senior academics teach?  I'm trying to discover how you are opening doors to a broad range of trainee opinions and backgrounds so that conversations and discussion in classes will be enriched by varying viewpoints.  Which will ultimately benefit people in Scotland asking for psychological therapies which are person-centred, to them.

I will put this FOI request into a blog post and am copying in Judy Thomson, NES, Scottish Government civil servants and ministers, plus relevant others, for their information. 

Once I receive the response I am likely to be asking more questions.

Regards, Chrys"

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