The Foundation Fast-Track Course

provides a comprehensive and critical introduction to the field of psychotherapy and counselling, given from an integrative viewpoint.

It enables students to:
  • develop a basic grasp of the main strands of psychotherapy and counselling theory
  • acquire basic counselling and psychotherapeutic skills
  • increase their own self-awareness, their awareness of others and their capacity to relate and interact with others.

Each weekend covers an area of theory and skills practice and examines specific therapeutic concepts. Personal development groups run each training day, with a membership of no more than twelve people. Additionally students are required to be in individual personal therapy throughout the duration of the course.

This course is complete within itself and is a valuable asset for personal growth as well as professional development.

Who is it For?

This course is for people who:

  • are coming to psychotherapy or counselling for the first time
  • wish to gain skills for another career or interest
  • seek to build on previous introductory skills training
  • have related work or academic experience

When is it Held?

The Fast Track courses start in the first quarter of the calendar year and run over eight weekends to the Summer providing 112 training hours in total. This format may especially suit people who wish to start Diploma training in the coming Autumn or who live at a distance from London.

The weekends run from 10am until 6pm.

The next Fast Track Foundation course will start in February 2019.

Feb 23/24
March 16/17
April 6/7
April 27/28
May 11/12
June 1/2
June 15/16
June 29 (final tutorials day)
July 6/7


Entry Requirements

Training is open to those with a first degree or with previous training in non-degree courses – e.g. in social work or health care – or those without formal qualification who have equivalent and suitable life experience.

Practicing as a counsellor or psychotherapist, and training to be one, is a psychologically, as well as intellectually, demanding process because it requires us to be open to forming and maintaining therapeutic relationships with others, who, at times, may be deeply distressed or confused. Therapists need to be able to do this safely without harming others or ourselves. In order to prepare for this, trainees need to be able to engage in experiential learning, to reflect on their experiences and to be open to feedback from tutors and peers. This requires a degree of psychological robustness and a capacity for self reflection. Having had a mental health diagnosis or problem in the past is not, necessarily, a barrier to training and some people are able to train whilst managing a level of ongoing difficulty; however we do need to consider ,carefully ,whether there is a danger of the training exacerbating mental health problems in applicants. We also need to consider the well-being of any current or future clients. For this reason, we will ask about mental health during the application process, and the Centre reserves the right to refuse admission to applicants who we judge would not, at this time, be able to benefit from our training or for whom it might be too disturbing.

Course Description

1. Foundation Theory and Practice Seminar

Students are introduced to the field of counselling and psychotherapy from an integrative perspective, and incorporating a critical approach. In the theory component of the course, students will be introduced to major schools of thought including both Psychodynamic as well as Humanistic ideas. The skills practice component will help the student to acquire basic therapeutic skills and to connect theory and practice.

2. Experiential Training Group

The focus is the personal development of students. Sessions are entirely experiential and have no set agenda. The focus is on the personal and emotional development of the students, their sensitivity towards/awareness of themselves, others, and the interactions within the group.

Students are expected to increase their self awareness and awareness of others.

3. Individual Psychotherapy

It is essential for all students to be in individual psychotherapy at least once weekly throughout the course. Choice of therapist is made with flexibility subject to Minster Centre approval.


Assessment is by Minster Centre staff. Students' experiential and written work is assessed. For experiential elements there is continuous peer-, self- and tutor assessment within the group.

Continuing Study

Students who successfully complete the Foundation Course will be awarded a Certificate. Successful completion of the course can be an entry route onto the Diploma and MA courses in Integrative Psychotherapy and Counselling, subject to tutorial and acceptance.

Information about the Application Process

We operate a rolling admissions process – assessing applicants on a first come first served basis. Therefore EARLY APPLICATION IS RECOMMENDED.

We run regular Introductory Evenings where a senior member of staff will present pathways through training, give details about the course curriculum, and answer questions. Current dates can be found here. It is not necessary to attend an Introductory Evening in order to make an application to the course.

To apply, you must email an application form, a CV and a personal biography. Please see the “Notes for Guidance”. Applicants are offered an individual interview with a senior staff member in order to assess suitability for training. The interview fee is £60.

Notes for Guidance here in PDF

Download Application Form here in Word

Download Therapist Approval Form here in Word

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