Postgraduate Training in Psychiatry

Psychiatry is the subspecialty of medicine which deals with persons with mental illnesses and emotional difficulties, using evidence-based treatments. It is a diverse discipline, so a psychiatrist may elect to work with infants through to the elderly in settings ranging from teaching hospitals, community clinics or outreach to homes, prisons and almost anywhere else. They may also be active in research, academic and administrative areas.

Psychiatrists work with a range of allied health workers. They are uniquely placed to integrate the various factors that contribute to mental illness, and work with the person and family or carer for the best possible outcomes.


Specialist training in psychiatry is regulated by the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) (external site). In Western Australia, Postgraduate Training in Psychiatry is accredited by RANZCP to provide this training.

Training is a five-year programme provided in accredited training posts with extensive clinical supervision. Assessment will entail structured work-based assessments and formal written and clinical examinations.

The Training Programme organises rotation of trainees through a variety of training posts in both the metropolitan area and rural mental health services. Experience occurs in a wide range of settings including adult, child and adolescent, and community psychiatry; consultation liaison: forensic psychiatry: and older adult psychiatry.

A didactic programme is offered one afternoon per week to all Trainees throughout the five years of training, to complement clinical experience and supervision.

How to Apply

Medical practitioners that are fully registered with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) (external site) and have at least one year of postgraduate experience are eligible to apply to the Western Australian Postgraduate Training in Psychiatry programme.

Intake applications for eligible candidates open in early June and close in early July each year. Interviews for successful applicants are usually held late August with successful candidates commencing in early February the following year.

Psychiatric Services Library

The Psychiatric Services Library (external site) provides resources and services for staff employed in WA public mental health services. Registered staff access resources outside of the major mental health sites using their usual network credentials.

Last Updated: 11/10/2023