Keele University, along with the University of Reading, was the first Higher Education Institution to offer counsellor training and has been delivering programmes in counselling since the 1970s. The full-time Masters in Counselling Psychology is a professional training in counselling. This vocational course is accredited accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) as a route of professional counsellor training. Candidates for accreditation must note that they will also have to meet all other criteria outlined by BACP. The details outlined below relate to the full-time programme.
This MSc programme in Counselling Psychology is founded on a person-centred view of personhood and person-centred ways of being. In this we view the relationship in counselling as central, and support Rogers’ belief in the ‘self-therapeutic capacity and wisdom of clients’. However, we also take a strong ‘anti-schoolism’ stance which reflects our sincere respect for other, non-person-centred practices and practitioners. Our starting point for the Keele Counselling Model is thus a unifying ethos which enables us to respect and welcome a diversity of professional skills and orientations.
We employ a wide variety of teaching and learning strategies including lectures, large group work, community meetings, tutorials and small group work. Within this framework students are introduced to a range of practices which are related to relevant philosophical traditions including existentialism and phenomenology. Throughout the course, students are supported to establish a sense of coherence in their own therapeutic position in line with the course philosophy and aims.
The centrality of a secure and constantly reviewed ethical position, based on the BACP Ethical Framework for Good Practice in Counselling and Psychotherapy (Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions, from July 2016), is presented to the programme members as a major personal responsibility. We accept the overwhelming evidence of the theorists that the major factor in helping human beings change in a desired positive direction is a relationship in which they feel safe, valued and challenged.
Why study at Keele
- Keele Counselling staff have a wealth of experience in providing counselling training to both UK and international students
- Keele has a thriving counselling community with students from a range of professional, cultural, social and educational backgrounds
- Staff who are up to date with current therapeutic practice, training and research
- All staff are active practitioners in counselling
- An annual Counselling Conference with internationally renowned keynote speakers and researchers in counselling
The programme aims to equip students with the knowledge and expertise to support their work as professional person-centred/ humanistic counsellors. It aims to integrate students’ counselling skills practice with academic study at Masters Level and to facilitate student learning in the areas of psychology practice: counselling skills, counselling related theory and personal development. The programme offers to students a thorough theoretical grounding in person-centred/humanistic counselling and an introduction to research methodology. The principles underpinning the programme are empowerment, holistic development, relationships and community.
Teaching & Assessment
With the exception of a multiple-choice questionnaire classroom test, all modules are assessed on the basis of coursework.
The pass mark for a module is 50%. The dissertation is a piece of independent research written up in 20,000 words. Masters students attaining exceptional performance (course average of at least 70% including 70%+ for the dissertation) may be awarded a distinction.
- Students are required to attend a minimum of 20 hours of personal therapy to complete the course and payment for this is the responsibility of the students. An average cost for personal therapy is approximately £35 - £45 per hour.
- When completing the 100 hour placement requirement, students also have to undertake a minimum of 14 hours of supervision for which there may also be a charge. Again, an average cost for supervision is approximately £35 - £45 per hour.
- Parking is also an additional cost for students who wish to use their cars on campus. Details of student parking permits are sent out with the pre-enrolment information.
- Students are also expected to pay travel costs to and from their placements.
- Students should also be aware that possible additional costs may be incurred when attending the compulsory non-residential Conference weekend. Refreshments and lunches are provided for the students free of charge during the weekend but there will be an additional cost should students wish to attend the Saturday evening Conference dinner and also if wishing to book local accommodation.