The University of Roehampton Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy MA is a three-year part-time postgraduate course.
Students complete a range of taught classes along with practical workshops and training. The course awards a full UK Master of Arts degree.
This programme provides the training in counselling and psychotherapy necessary to become eligible for BACP (British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy) individual practitioner accreditation.
The course, accredited by the BACP, is based on an integrative relational approach to counselling and psychotherapy, which has been developed over many years by our cutting-edge teaching team. Our integrative approach, at the forefront of counselling and psychotherapy theory, practice and research, incorporates aspects from three main therapeutic traditions; person-centred, cognitive and psychodynamic. You will be encouraged to explore psychological processes and experiences from these different perspectives, and recognise the theoretical, personal and cultural assumptions which influence your work.
As well as cognitive and reflective skills, you will also learn practical ways of working with your clients in a therapeutic relationship to address conscious and unconscious needs and produce a change in emotional and cognitive processes and behaviour. This involves integrating complex and advanced skills, and responding creatively to complex, novel and unpredictable situations.
Our teaching includes life-span developmental theories, therapeutic skills practice in small groups, supervision of client work in small groups, critical analysis of approaches and research into counselling and psychotherapy. You will develop a critical understanding of the role of research in the development of the counselling and psychotherapeutic disciplines, and be able to incorporate research knowledge into clinical practice. You are required to be in personal therapy throughout the course, which will help you to develop a high level of awareness of self and the therapeutic process, to be able to use this constructively in therapeutic encounters. You will be equipped with the necessary skills to work with a wide range of people with a range of psychological issues in a variety of settings.
The Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy programme is taught by means of interactive lectures and seminars, experiential skills workshops, small clinical supervision groups, and personal development work. Much of your learning will be by a process of reflection on the experience of skills practiced and the use of demonstration, observation, self, peer and tutor feedback as well as a more traditional academic study.
The course emphasises the central importance of the therapeutic relationship, and builds your understanding of a variety of theories and practices, to make informed choices about therapeutic interventions suitable for the problems which clients present. Central to developing your therapeutic skills is a sustained effort of attunement to the client as well as openness to and awareness of their and your internal processes. As well as having a theoretical understanding of these processes, from the first year you will have modules allowing you the opportunity to practice your counselling skills.
Later modules in the course will familiarise you with a variety of forms of psychological assessment, so that you are able to critically evaluate the appropriateness and limitations of the procedures and underlying concepts. As many students will go on to work in a multidisciplinary team, in particular within the NHS, they need to have an understanding and working knowledge of psychiatric diagnoses and classification systems, while being aware of their acknowledge limits and critiques.
You will have the opportunity to work with a placements co-ordinator to find a suitable counselling/psychotherapy placement in which to gain the depth and range of experience necessary to become a competent practitioner. Information on over 500 different counselling placements is available.
The following postgraduate funding may be available to study the Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy MA at The University of Roehampton.
Normally a minimum of one year’s full-time experience (or p/t equivalent) of work in a caring capacity or equivalent. Relevant care work includes: nursing assistant, project worker, arts instructor, care work in a community setting, art teaching, or facilitating art workshops. Some experience of personal art psychotherapy or psychodynamic psychotherapy, or experiential workshops in creative therapies is desirable. In the absence of a degree, work experience of 8-10 years in one position will be considered for entry.
International: Where your honours degree has not been studied in English, you will be required to provide evidence of English language competence at no less than IELTS 7.0 and no individual component score below 6.5.
Home applicants are expected to attend an interview at QMU and will be required to submit their art portfolio electronically. Interviews will take place normally between December and May. Interviews for international students will be conducted over Skype.
A satisfactory criminal records check will be required
The discipline of art psychotherapy draws upon the visual arts, psychotherapy and psychology and is applied within psychiatry, special education, social services and the voluntary sector. Art psychotherapists work with individuals, groups and communities. Art psychotherapists enable clients to access their own image-making abilities. The therapist and their client jointly explore the meaning of the process and image/art object in the light of personal experiences and/or interpersonal relationships that may sometimes be distressing or troubling. The aim is to facilitate the intra-personal and interpersonal communication of experiences that the client may initially find difficulty in discussing verbally.
The art psychotherapist’s task is to support processes of emotional integration by providing a safe, reliable and containing therapeutic environment within which the client can create and use art making to develop insight and promote change. This course is designed for people who usually have at least one year’s experience of, or are currently, working in a caring capacity such as psychiatry, special education, social services and the voluntary sector.
You will attend classes, work in groups and carry out independent learning. Assessment methods include reports, essays, and presentations. Each year group contains 25-30 students. However, most classes take the form of supervision, seminar, lectures and interpersonal learning groups with a maximum of 15 students. You will undertake 110 days supervised practice placement over the training period; placements are allocated by QMU. All students are required to be in personal psychotherapy throughout the duration of the course. Students will attend supervision on site at the practice placement setting and at QMU throughout the training.
Full-time students attend practice placement two days per week and part-time students attend one day per week over two semesters.
Year One classes for full-time students take place usually from 9-5pm on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Year Two classes take place from 9-5pm on Thursdays only. Part-time students attend classes on Tuesdays, 9-5 pm and Wednesdays, 9-1pm for Year One and in Year Two, Wednesdays and Thursday only for Year Three and/or Four of the part-time route. You will also be required to carry out independent learning. Full-time students attend practice placement two days per week and part-time students attend one day per week over two semesters. Part-time students wishing to complete their Clinical Project in Year Four will attend personal academic tutorials by appointment. All students will be required to the training programme. The Art Studio will be open for art practice on Mondays, Fridays and weekends.
Graduates are eligible for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council as Registered Arts Therapists (Art) and are eligible for full membership of BAAT (British Association of Art Therapists).
Level 1 (f/t -year 1; p/t-years 1 & 2) Art Psychotherapy Practice Placement 1/ Art Psychotherapy Therapeutic Skills & Inter- Personal Learning Groups 1/ Interdisciplinary Studies 1/ Pre-registration Research Methods
Level 2 (f/t- year 2; p/t- years 3&4) Art Psychotherapy Practice Placement 2/ Interdisciplinary Studies 2 & IPL Groups 2/ Clinical Project.
All modules are 30 credits, except Clinical Project, which is 60 credits.
Art psychotherapists work with a wide range of clients and communities, individually or with groups, within the public and private sectors throughout the world. The course meets the requirements of the Health and Care Professions Council Standards of Proficiency for Art Therapists. This degree carries 240 credits/120 European Credits which are transferable across Europe and attracts students from all over the world. Graduates work in a wide variety of different settings across the globe including health, education and the voluntary sector.