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Advanced Counselling and Psychotherapy Studies

MSc/PgDip/PgCert

School - School of Health and Society

Subject area - Counselling and Psychotherapy

Start Dates(s): September

Duration:

September (full-time and part-time)

MSc: One year full-time, two or three years part-time

PgDip: One and a half or two years part-time

PgCert: One year part-time

Fees:

Part-time - £1,230 per 30 credit module

In Brief:

  • Gain advanced skills in critical evaluation for complex psychotherapeutic situations
  • Benefit from up-to-date thinking from experts in theory, practice and research
  • Conduct publishable research that creates real impact
  • Part-time study option
  • International students can apply

Course Summary

This flexible course will enable you to advance your expertise in Counselling andPsychotherapy in the areas most relevant to your practice.

You will gain a deeper understanding of a range of psychological problems of varying degrees of severity and further develop your therapeutic skills.

The course further develops your critical understanding of the theoreticalknowledge which underpins practice and enhances your ability to critically appraiseresearch evidence.

To gain entry onto this course, you will need to be a qualified counsellor or psychotherapist and in practice.

Course Structure

This course will equip you with advanced knowledge relating to Counselling and Psychotherapy. The course has been structured to present you with opportunities to learn about different aspects of the lived experience and how these can be attended to therapeutically through brief and long-term interventions. The course will provide contexts to your work, from different perspectives that will enable you to consider more complex needs than is possible during initial Counselling and Psychotherapy training. Whatever your chosen focus of practice, each module will challenge you to extend your ability to critically inform the rationales for your work with clients at an advanced level.

The below is an example of how the modules are spread over the three-year part-time option. This may vary depending on the duration you choose.

Semester 1  

This module will support you in developing a critical understanding of the nature and impact of issues relating to social justice on the emotional well-being of children and young people and their access to and use of counselling/psychotherapy. The module will facilitate your development of an informed and applied understanding of the relevant research and professional literature, will present opportunities for you to develop a critical understanding of the particular developmental issues involved in providing counselling and psychotherapy for children and young people, e.g. emotional, physical cognitive and sexual, and will enable you to critically analyse the ethical, legal, professional, therapeutic and contextual aspects of working with children and young people. Module Leader – Helen Millar.      
This module offers theoretical and experiential learning opportunities to explore the topic in a sensitive and respectful learning environment. Contemporary theories are presented by a range of counselling practitioners with a wealth of experience and specialised knowledge in the field. The module offers an excellent opportunity for participants to enhance their awareness of their own responses to bereavement and loss as well as deepen their understanding of the people they live and work with. Module Leader – Maria Kefalogianni.      
This module will facilitate your development of advanced ability to evaluate critically current research and to evaluate research methods used by others. The module will support you in developing a comprehensive understanding of a range of research techniques that can be applied to a variety of research or scholarly situations, and in strengthening your ability to critically appraise the purpose, process and products of research activity, with reference to the politics and ethics of research. The module will offer you opportunities to gain the ability to select, apply and critically appraise applied research techniques to explore identified questions, and will strengthen your capacity to reflect critically on your competence as a researcher and the implications for the development of this part of your role. A major change in the revised programme is making this module an option. We would strongly recommend taking this module if you plan to do primary research for your dissertation but if you intend to do a literature review then this module is helpful but not essential. This module is the School’s shared research methods module and the sessions are shared with a range of health and social care masters students. Module Leader – Alison Brettle. This module can be taken either in semester 1 or in semester 2.      

Semester 2  

This module will facilitate your development of advanced ability to evaluate critically current research and to evaluate research methods used by others. The module will support you in developing a comprehensive understanding of a range of research techniques that can be applied to a variety of research or scholarly situations, and in strengthening your ability to critically appraise the purpose, process and products of research activity, with reference to the politics and ethics of research. The module will offer you opportunities to gain the ability to select, apply and critically appraise applied research techniques to explore identified questions, and will strengthen your capacity to reflect critically on your competence as a researcher and the implications for the development of this part of your role. A major change in the revised programme is making this module an option. We would strongly recommend taking this module if you plan to do primary research for your dissertation but if you intend to do a literature review then this module is helpful but not essential. This module is the School’s shared research methods module and the sessions are shared with a range of health and social care masters students. Module Leader – Alison Brettle. This module can be taken either in semester 1 or in semester 2.      
Compassion Focussed Therapy (CFT) was developed by a team led by Professor Paul Gilbert based in Derby specifically to help clients with deep seated issues associated with shame. Since then the approach has been found to be helpful in a wide range of mental health contexts including trauma, anger and addiction. CFT offers a structured approach to help clients cultivate compassion for themselves and for others. This is within a neuro-psychological framework that is intrinsically de-shaming. The module offers training in how CFT approaches can be integrated into therapeutic practice. While this module is currently offered within the MSc Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy it is relevant to all professionals working in the context of mental health. Module Leader – Elaine Beaumont.      
While this module is currently offered within the MSc Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy it is relevant to all professionals working in the context of mental health and the philosophical framework draws on person-centred therapy. Mindfulness based approaches (MBAs) are increasing recognised as being helpful in a wide range of contexts including health and social care, education and the corporate sector. This module offers training in the integration of accessible and flexible MBs in the context on 1-2-1 therapy. In particular, the MBAs explored work very well as an adjunct to counselling or psychotherapeutic work as they offer clients a very safe way of cultivating the resilience and insight in the time between therapy sessions. Module Leader – Tim Duerden.      
This module offers both cognitive and experiential learning opportunities and offers ‘taster experiences’ of a range of different arts therapy approaches. A number of psychotherapies exist that offer more than just the verbal interchange of ‘talking therapies’. These approaches invite other channels of communication, as well as verbal interchange, as a means of accessing core or organismic experience. There are obvious advantages of such approaches to client groups who may not have the necessary verbal skills to describe their experience e.g. children, people with learning disabilities. There maybe further advantages of using expressive therapies, compared with purely verbal therapies, in enabling exploration with clients who may overly depend on verbal means of structuring their lives and experiences. In order to support students in learning about each expressive approach outlined opportunities will be provided for students to experience the ‘theory in action’, in this way students can find personal meaning from the particular theory being examined. Module Leader – Leigh Gardner.      

Year 3  

On successful completion of this module you will be able to critically identify and apply knowledge of research/inquiry techniques applicable to your own discipline to enhance research and advanced scholarship. You will be able to evaluate research/inquiry methods with due consideration of research, governance, project management and ethics frameworks at local, national and international levels. You will also gain skills in critically appraising and debating key concepts, methods and technical paradigms related to research. The module will support you in developing your ability to apply creative thinking and problem solving strategies within your discipline to address the challenges of research and inquiry within discipline and justify your chosen approaches to research and professional inquiry. The module will offer you the opportunity to critically evaluate current research evidence, policy and reflect upon your role as a researcher/change agent within professional, educational, clinical or organisational practice.

Entry Requirements

Normally 2:2 Hons degree or equivalent.

Evidence of professional membership (BACP/UKCP or equivalent) and currently in practice as a counsellor/psychotherapist.

You will need to have a professional qualification in counselling or psychotherapy.

To gain entry onto this course, you will need to be a qualified counsellor or psychotherapist and in practice.

Year 2 - Entry with credits degree and evidence of professional membership, currently in practice as a counsellor/psychotherapist and up to 60 credits of M-Level modules that are related to counselling/psychotherapy.

Year 3 - MSc entry PGDip in counselling, evidence of current professional membership, currently in practice as a counsellor/psychotherapist.

If you do not hold these entry requirements, you may be interested in applying for our BSc Counselling and Psychotherapy: Professional Practice programme.

If you have any queries about eligibility for the course, please contact the Admissions Tutor for the course, Tim Duerden, on 0161 295 2429 or by email.

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

We welcome applications from students who may not have formal/traditional entry criteria but who have relevant experience or the ability to pursue the course successfully. The Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) process could help you to make your work and life experience count. The APL process can be used for entry onto courses or to give you exemptions from parts of your course. Two forms of APL may be used for entry: the Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) or the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

English Language Requirements

International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.5 (no element below 5.5) is proof of this.

Suitable For

You will be a practicing Counsellor and/or Psychotherapist, with professional membership. You will be motivated to study Counselling and Psychotherapy at an advanced level, and to deepen your knowledge and critical thinking skills. You may have aspirations to influence policy-making, commissioning and service delivery as well as to strengthen your own practice.

Fees 2017-18

Type of StudyFee
Part-time£1,230 per 30 credit module

Scholarships and Bursaries

For more information please see our funding section.

Teaching

This award is aimed at meeting the needs of qualified counsellors who have already completed a professional training in counselling. Students select the combination of modules which is best geared to meeting their individual training needs, with the exception of the Research Methods Module which is necessary for completion of the PG Dip and progression to the MSc. A variety of teaching and learning strategies will be employed, particularly:

  • Didactic lecturing
  • Experiential workshops
  • Experiential group work

Assessment

Evaluation takes the form of formative and summative assessments. Formative assessments enable students to gauge their learning and development during the course of each module and to prepare them for summative assessment. Formative assessments vary from module to module and include peer and tutor review and feedback on development of written work both in class and electronically online. The learning is experientially driven and enquiry-led, with opportunities review of assimilation of knowledge, critical skills and conceptualisations. Formative assessment is conducted via a range of methods such as quizzes and tests, and face-to-face and online discussion groups.

Summative assessment strategies will include:

  • Written essays addressing issues of theory and practice
  • Portfolios addressing issues of theory and practice
  • Presentations (including poster presentations) addressing issues of theory and practice
  • Supervised research dissertation

Find out more about certain aspects of counselling with our short two minute psychotherapy lectures from Dr Mark Widdowson, lecturer in counselling and psychotherapy at the University of Salford.  

Transactional Analysis

Life Script

Ego States

Postgraduate Staff Profile

Module Leader for Module 1: Helen Millar – Academic Profile

Employability

Career Prospects

This post-qualifying course will enable you to conduct advanced studies into counselling and psychotherapy which, in turn, will enhance your career prospects. Study of counselling and psychotherapy at this level could lead you to posts such as specialist or senior counsellor, counselling service manager, as well as academic careers. Because the course focuses on a range of perspectives, this could support you in contributing to the field of health and social health in a range of ways and with higher level contextual awareness. Following successful completion of the course you may also consider studying for a PhD.

Facilities

We have recently developed a brand new special counselling suite which will be used for training students to become professional counsellors and psychotherapists.

The suite, featuring therapeutic areas where one-to-one, family and group interactions can occur, will also shortly be available for members of the local community and the University is hoping to work with local charities which will be able to use the facility.

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