The year-long Postgraduate Diploma in Evidence-based Psychological Treatment gives students the opportunity to learn the latest evidence-based psychological therapies for a range of mental health problems from experts in the field.
Workshops are taught by national and international leaders who specialise in research and dissemination of best practice. This allows students studying at the Charlie Waller Institute to develop advanced knowledge and competence across a range of clinical presentations.
Flexibility in the choice of workshops allows postgraduate Diploma students to tailor their course experience to their own interests and practical needs. Students will be part of a lively community where staff are active researchers into evidence-based psychological therapies.
Teaching typically takes place on Wednesdays or Thursdays, and supervision and Clinical Skills on Fridays during term-time at the University of Reading, with the exception of the intensive four-day introductory module at the start of the programme. This timetabling allows students to plan their other commitments around the course.
Students choose up to 14 full-day workshops from the CWI programme to attend as part of their formal teaching requirements, and can optionally attend up to three more. The other teaching days will be practically-focused combining supervision and clinical skills sessions.
A sample of areas covered by the teaching programme includes:
- Fundamentals of CBT Theory
- Assessment skills
- Formulation skills
- Structuring sessions
- CBT and the therapeutic relationship
- Cognitive interventions in CBT
- Behavioural interventions in CBT
- The fundamentals of working with older people
- Anxiety disorders
- Complex presentations
- Bi-polar disorder
- Body dysmorphic disorder
- Personality disorders
- Eating disorders
- Long term conditions
- Chronic fatigue
Supervisors will assist student development through a number of active methods including case discussion, role-play, reflective practice and review of session recordings. We aim to provide an environment in which students can refine their skills through role-play and guidance in supervision while receiving valuable feedback on their ‘live’ practice. Over the course of the Postgraduate Diploma, students will develop advanced skills and knowledge of CBT in practice.
Clinical knowledge assessments
The clinical knowledge assessments comprise one 90 minute exam and three short essays.
In addition to the clinical knowledge assessments, Diploma students also complete one clinical case report, two extended case reports and one case presentation during the programme. Three video recorded treatment sessions accompanying the case report and extended case reports are also required for summative assessment. All submitted recordings are rated using the Cognitive Therapy Scale – Revised (CTS-R) to support students in their implementation of CBT. Recorded sessions are also routinely used for monitoring clinical work and skills-development feedback during supervision sessions.
As part of the course, all students receive teaching on academic writing. Students are also invited to access further support in the form of individual academic tutorials, study skills advice sessions and by looking at previous exemplary coursework. If you have concerns or queries about the academic component of any of our courses, please contact Dr Katherine Simons, Deputy Director of Training (firstname.lastname@example.org) to discuss further.
Entrants to the Postgraduate Diploma programme are normally required to have:
an Honours degree in a discipline connected to mental health/clinical qualification in mental health
a postgraduate-level qualification in mental health
evidence of contact with client groups relevant to mental health.
Applicants without these qualifications but with extensive clinical experience in mental health will be considered on an individual basis.
Our students come from a range of backgrounds and include clinical psychologists, occupational therapists, registered mental health nurses, social workers, psychiatrists, counsellors, other mental health workers and therapists trained in other modalities working in public or private healthcare settings.
The Postgraduate Diploma is accredited at Level 1 by the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP). For students with prior professional training in CBT it can be used to top-up their training and supervision requirements in order to apply for BABCP accreditation as a CBT therapist.
For those with no prior CBT training, the course allows significant progress towards the accreditation requirements. Course staff are experienced in assisting those students who decide they wish to work towards BABCP accreditation to plan how they will meet the remaining requirements. Typically students attend some additional workshops, engage in ongoing CBT practice with supervision from a BABCP accredited therapist and successfully complete one additional case report.
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