This two-year counselling and psychotherapy course, accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), emphasises the integration of theory, research, practice, and a commitment to self-awareness to help you develop into a competent, creative and ethically-sound counsellor. The programme has a long tradition of preparing students to be versatile and adaptable in their therapeutic practice to meet the individual needs of different client groups and work settings.
The Postgraduate Diploma Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy has been designed to serve as a professional qualification for students seeking a career as a qualified counsellor/psychotherapist working in the statutory and voluntary sectors, in business or private practice.
The Counselling and Psychotherapy course facilitates students in developing a critical understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of integrative counselling practice, with a view to them developing their own coherent, ethical and effective approach to counselling practice, which can be adapted for use in a wide range of settings for short and long term work. On completion, you will be ready to work as a trained integrative therapist.
The core integrative model taught is based on the relational pluralistic approach, comprising of three main elements: the Contemporary Relational Psychodynamic Approach, a Humanistic-Existential approach and Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy.
- Integrative Counselling Theory and Practice: Introduces the core model of the course (Relational and Pluralistic) and provides foundation theory and skills in humanistic/existential counselling practice – 20 credits
- Applied Integrative Counselling Theory and Practice: Introduces foundation theory and skills of relational psychodynamic and psychosynthesis counselling. Students begin to learn to integrate approaches in applied practice with client issues – 20 credits
- Personal and Professional Development This module runs throughout the year and places emphasis on personal and professional development, group work and skills practice within a sound ethical framework – 20 credits
- Advanced Integrative Theory and Skills Practice: Introduces foundation theory and skills of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and third wave approaches, such as mindfulness and ACT. The module also offers an overview of mental health and how the theories taught on the course can be integrated and applied to practice – 20 credits
- Advanced Applied Practice: The emphasis of this module is on integration and applied practice: showing students how the core integrative model taught can be used to work ethically with the range of client issues typically found in professional counselling practice. There is also a focus on developing research skill through the completion of a small-scale research project – 20 credits
- Advanced Personal Development and Counselling Practice: This module runs throughout the year and places emphasis on personal development group work and skills practice within a sound ethical framework.
After successful completion of the Diploma stage, which is two years, you can choose whether to proceed to the final Masters research and dissertation year.
Classes include interactive theoretical lectures, experiential workshops, personal development groups, role plays, skills groups, digital recording of skills sessions for assessment and presentations.
In addition, you will need to be in placement seeing ‘real’ clients for the duration of the course and will have to have completed a minimum of 100 hours counselling practice by the end of the two years. There is a BACP requirement that you should have fortnightly supervision for your counselling practice and a minimum of 1.5 hours supervision per month.
The postgraduate diploma is taught over 30 days each academic year. For the 2019/20 academic year, the main teaching day will be on a Thursday , with one Wednesday, which is a joint teaching day with the second year students.
In addition, students will be required to attend weekend workshops each academic year. In Year One, there is a residential weekend and a non-residential practice weekend. In year two, there are two non-residential weekends, which cover mental health and advanced practice issues.
We expect that students attend all teaching sessions, and there is a minimum requirement of 80% attendance in order to complete the course successfully.
While more practice experience will be required to build the hours to achieve personal BACPaccreditation, having successfully completed the formal training hours and assignments, graduates of the PG Diploma Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy will be ready to look for work in the field of counselling and psychotherapy.
Former students from the course have enhanced their career profile within their current employment or found new positions in the voluntary sector, in health settings, in Higher or Further Education, in Employment Assistance Programmes (EAPs), in business and in private practice.
The course has a good record of graduates developing portfolio careers, using their adaptable approach to work in a variety of settings. It is also possible to undertake further specialised training in order to work with children and young people, or to apply for a research PhD.