The Psychologist VIP Programme

We are trialling a new scheme to identify and nurture new 'voices in psychology'. Tell us why we need psychology, and what psychology needs, and you could be part of it. Updated for 2019.

We’re always listening out for ‘Voices in Psychology’. People who can take often complex ideas and communicate them in a way that will engage and inform our large and diverse audience. Writers with real impact, who are learning to avoid some of the traps of academic writing. They’re the future of our science, of our Society, of our magazine.

But perhaps you need help to find that voice. Perhaps you’ve got that certain something but you need practice, nurturing. We think we’ve made a real effort with this in recent years, providing opportunities and guidance to many first-time authors. Now we would like to begin to a develop a more formal structure to this process.

For 2018, we’ll set a question which will run until the end of the year. It’s simply this:

Why do we need psychology? What does psychology need?

[UPDATE: Read the winners here, and see our announcement of the 2019 winners]

Address either or both of these questions, in any way you see fit. You may find it helpful to focus on one example for each aspect.

We recognise it’s a real challenge: the total word limit is just 1000, and it’s absolutely vital you write with our publication and audience in mind.

Please submit by email to [email protected] and include a bit about yourself – your aspirations, and how you’re looking to engage with the communication of psychology. While we are not exclusively aiming this at students, we are mostly interested in identifying high potential amongst those starting out in their journey in psychology. One submission per person please, and unfortunately we cannot respond to everyone.

Around the end of 2018, we will publish a selection of the best responses online and perhaps in print too.

Then the fun begins… we will identify up to five respondents we feel might have real potential, and contact them about playing some kind of role in developing their ‘Voice in Psychology’, through the provision of advice and opportunities to write more in various contexts.

As this is a trial, we can’t be more specific at this stage. This will be about co-creating a Programme for the future. But, at the end of it, those selected should be able to add to their CV that they were a part of The Psychologist VIP Programme!

Get writing – and don’t be shy! If you’ve got a head bubbling with questions, original ideas about psychology beyond the lecture theatre, and a desire to make a difference, then that’s a good place to start. You don’t have to be the finished article to be Very Important to us!

Dr Jon Sutton
Managing Editor

Madeleine Pownall 
Third-year undergraduate at the University of Lincoln
Chair of the British Psychological Society Student Committee
Associate Editor for the VIP Programme

P.S. In recent years, we have published many 'new voices' articles. Search our site for them. We will continue to consider such submissions, which tend to focus on the author's own work, truly announcing themselves as 'one to watch', someone with an original perspective and a growing contribution to make to the field. But we may not badge them up as 'new voices' pieces, as we think such writers should find a place in our publication on their own terms. We also hope that the 'VIP Programme' will end up offering something more structured and beneficial to both parties.

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