MA/PG Dip Professional Practice Counselling & Psychotherapy (Advanced Clinical Practice)

About the Course

This course is for qualified therapists and counsellors, who are looking for an opportunity to update their knowledge, gain a higher-level qualification and reflect in-depth on their practice. Teaching will be given via seminars on theory as well as through experiential learning sessions. Students will have the opportunity to integrate new perspectives into their clinical work with ongoing in-house supervision groups. In addition, seminars on contemporary theories will be delivered by experts in the field.

The course is designed to meet the requirements of busy professionals, with the teaching taking place in weekend blocks.

Students will be able to sign up for either the one year Post Graduate Diploma or the two-year MA programme, both of which are validated by Middlesex University.

Course Content

Two core academic modules which develop students’ in-depth knowledge of some of the most significant contemporary theories as well as advancing their understanding of the inter-relationship between theory, their own personal history and their clinical practice.

Two core practicum (clinical) modules which encourage students’ development as ethical integrative practitioners, able to draw on their own capacity to make therapeutic use of the relational encounter.

Support from a personal tutor.

Forms of assessment include case studies, client logs, self-reflective accounts, live assessment, a 40-minute presentation and a 15,000-word dissertation.

The course requires that the student completes a minimum of 60 hours supervised clinical practice with long term clients and 20 hours in-house supervision across the two Practicum modules.

 

Clinical Practice and Placements

Students will agree suitable long-term clients with their programme clinical supervisor. Students may use work undertaken with private clients, in the course of their employment (with suitable agreement with their employers), students seen in placements or through the Minster Centre Psychotherapy and Counselling Service (MCPCS).

Students are responsible for securing a placement but will receive advice and guidance from the Placement Coordinator. You will need an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. One DBS check is included within your course fees and will be organised with you in the second year. Having a criminal record will not necessarily prevent you from becoming a counsellor or psychotherapist each case is considered on an individual basis. You will be given an opportunity at your selection interview to discuss this with your interviewers. For more information about DBS checks see here.

Accreditation

Both the PG Dip and MA are quality assured by Middlesex University.

Assessment

There is one or more formal or ‘summative’ assessment associated with each module. Assessment methods include essays, portfolios, presentations, reflective accounts, case studies and live assessment of a recorded piece of clinical work, and (for the MA) a 15,000 word dissertation. Support and guidance is given for each assessment.

Assessment is by course tutors, except for the Live Assessment, which is assessed by examiners not teaching on this programme.

In addition to formal assessment of written work, tutors and supervisors assess students’ experiential and clinical work.

All marking is moderated and we also have an external examiner to ensure that marking is fair and consistent. You will receive feedback on all formal assessments to support your learning.

Course Leader(s)

Andrew Sutton

Course Dates and Times

For the Post Graduate Diploma, the teaching is delivered over 10 weekend blocks, comprising three full days on Fridays and Sundays (10am to 5.30pm), Saturdays (10am to 4.30pm) in the first year.

Students registered and continuing on for the MA will attend an extra three weekends on research awareness and methods during the first year, which lead to undertaking a piece of independent research, in the second year. This will be overseen by a research supervisor and supported by the course staff.

In addition, in the second year MA students attend a further nine days of teaching which may be on Friday, Saturday or Sunday. PG Dip students will attend a further three days of training in the Second Year.

The course dates are:
10, 11, 12 January 2020
14, 15, 16 February 2020
13, 14, 15 March 2020
3, 4, 5 April 2020
15, 16, 17 May 2020
5, 6, 7 June 2020 (5 June all students attend, 6 and 7 June are for MA students only)
3, 4, 5 July 2020
31 July and 1, 2 August 2020
11, 12, 13 September 2020
9, 10, 11 October 2020 (9 Oct all students attend, 10 and 11 Oct are for MA students only)
30, 31 October and 1 November 2020
13, 14, 15 November 2020 (13 Nov all students attend, 14 and 15 Nov are for MA students only)
11, 12, 13 December 2020

Course Length

16 months for Post Graduate Diploma or 2 years for the MA programme, part-time.

Who Is It For

Qualified therapists and counsellors who are looking for an opportunity to update their knowledge, gain a higher-level qualification and reflect in-depth on their practice.

Applicants must be able to demonstrate significant clinical experience, including at least one year of practice post qualification. Students must also demonstrate recent self-development work, usually personal therapy, and will be required to undertake weekly one to one therapy during the course.

Entry Requirements

  • You must hold a professional qualification in counselling or psychotherapy (BACP or UKCP accredited course or equivalent).
  • You must be able to demonstrate significant clinical experience, including at least one year of practice post qualification.
  • You must be able to demonstrate recent self-development work, usually personal therapy, and will be required to undertake weekly one to one therapy during the course.
  • If you do not have a first degree you will need to demonstrate that you can produce work to MA standards, either through results in previous professional training or through equivalent training or experience.
  • You must have competence in the English language. If English is not your first language you will need to demonstrate a capacity to study in English either through your written and practical work during previous training at the Minster Centre, or in your application and interview and through qualifications such as IELTS 6.0 (with minimum 5.5 in all four components).
  • You will need an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check, if you don’t already have one. Having a criminal record will not necessarily prevent you from becoming a counsellor or psychotherapist each case is considered on an individual basis. You will be given an opportunity at your selection interview to discuss this with your interviewers. For more information about DBS checks see here.
  • We are not able to consider applicants who require a Tier 4 visa to study.

Accredited Prior Experience and Learning (APEL)

We do not offer an APEL option for this programme.

Qualifications

On successful completion all academic and course requirements students may exit from the programme with either a:

  • PG Diploma in Professional Practice (Advanced Clinical Practice)

Or

  • MA Professional Practice, Counselling & Psychotherapy (Advanced Clinical Practice)

Qualification can also lead to UKCP accreditation.

Career Prospects

Graduates of The Minster Centre can be found working successfully all over the UK and abroad. As well as private practice, graduates often work with a variety of client groups in the NHS; in schools, colleges and universities; organisations such as MIND and other charitable foundations; and as tutors in other training organisations.

MA graduates could go on to higher-level study on doctoral programmes.

Fees

Fees for 2020:

PG Dip: £6506 (£5745 plus £761 Middlesex Registration).

First Year of MA: £4634 (£3873 plus £761 Middlesex Registration).

Second Year of MA: The second year fees will be the same as the first year plus any increase for unavoidable costs such as inflation and any increase in Middlesex Registration fees.

We offer a 15% discount to Minster Centre members (graduates and those who
maintain their UKCP membership through the Centre). The discount does not apply to the Middlesex University registration fee (£761).

Course fees are subject to annual inflation. Once you have started a course we will endeavour to keep fee increases in subsequent years as low as possible.

For more details on fees and financial terms and conditions click on the Fees button below.

A non-refundable deposit of £700 is payable to secure your place once offered. Fees are payable by bank transfer, cheque or card and are non-refundable if you attend beyond the first half term. Fees may be paid in instalments.

Fees include supervision of training clients, one DBS check, common room facilities and refreshments, access to the library and on-line resources, insurance for seeing client through The Minster Centre Psychotherapy and Counselling Service.

The following course related costs are not included in the fees:
personal therapy, placement supervision (usually but not always provided by the placement), any additional costs associated with placements, the provision of consulting rooms for seeing training clients, assessment of resubmitted coursework. Personal therapy can cost from £50 per session upwards in London, sometimes less outside London. In addition, you will need to budget for the purchase of key books each year (these are texts you will need to refer to frequently) and travel to the Centre, to placements and to therapy. Depending on the topics you choose for your written assessments you may need to buy books or internet access to articles, or access books, articles or other resources through the British Library or other specialist libraries. You will also need a secure means of audio recording client work, ideally this will be on a password protected and encrypted digital recorder, prices start from £215.

Accommodation and living costs are not included in fees and, as all our students are part time, we do not have on-site accommodation. The Centre has no parking available for students unless you have a blue badge. The Centre is close to public transport. We cannot guarantee that the timing of courses will not require peak time travel.

Financial Support

If you register on the MA you may be eligible for a Postgraduate Student Loan. These are Government funded student loans for students on Masters courses of up to £10,609 to help with fees and living costs. These are not based on income and are paid directly to you. There are personal eligibility requirements which are determined by the Government, for instance, you have to be under 60 and not already have an MA, you will need to repay the loan plus interest and repayments will be based on your income. More information loans and how to apply can be found here:

http://media.slc.co.uk/sfe/nysf/pgl/sfe_pgl_main_guide_1617_d.pdf

and

https://www.gov.uk/postgraduate-loan/overview.

For a full breakdown of the course fees and financial terms and conditions see here.

Venue

The Minster Centre is a 5 minute walk from Queens Park Tube (Bakerloo line) and Rail Overground Station and 10-15 min walk from Brondesbury Park Station.

How to Apply

You apply directly to The Minster Centre via the online application form below. Please note: we operate a rolling admission process. EARLY APPLICATION IS RECOMMENDED.

Please ensure each section is fully completed in order for your application to be considered for this course. If you have any further questions please see our FAQs page or email us on [email protected].

Applicants are offered an individual interview with a senior staff member in order to assess suitability for training. The interview fee is £95.

We particularly welcome applications from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) candidates and people with disabilities, as they are currently under-represented at the Minster Centre and in the psychotherapy profession.

Course Handbook

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