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Practice Based Play Therapy (MA)

Course Description

As a certified play therapist, you will be aware of the importance of self-expression and creative mediums in therapy. Whether you are aiming for a promotion within your current field or want to explore a particular play therapy topic, this MA will enhance your existing skills through research, allowing you to further improve the lives of vulnerable children.

You will study the latest theories in this emerging sector, exploring the shift from traditional therapy methods to more modern techniques such as movement, breathing and sensory activities.

You can use your previous experience to choose your area of research, and at the beginning of the course you will develop a proposal for practice-based play therapy research that will form the basis for your dissertation.

Delivered by The Academy of Play and Child Psychotherapy (APAC), and validated by our University as part of a collaborative partnership, you have the option to study this course online, giving you the flexibility to fit your study around your personal and professional commitments.

Please note that all applications and queries for this course will be dealt with by APAC, and that start dates may differ depending on your location of study. Find out more on the APAC website (http://www.playtherapy.org.uk/TrainingCourses/TrainCrseAPACMA1.htm).

- Research Excellence Framework 2014: we entered an increased number of units for this assessment, up from 11% in 2008 to 33% in 2014.

Visit the website http://courses.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/practicebasedplay

Mature Applicants

Our University welcomes applications from mature applicants who demonstrate academic potential. We usually require some evidence of recent academic study, for example completion of an access course, however recent relevant work experience may also be considered. Please note that for some of our professional courses all applicants will need to meet the specified entry criteria and in these cases work experience cannot be considered in lieu.

If you wish to apply through this route you should refer to our University Recognition of Prior Learning policy that is available on our website (http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/studenthub/recognition-of-prior-learning.htm).

Please note that all applicants to our University are required to meet our standard English language requirement of GCSE grade C or equivalent, variations to this will be listed on the individual course entry requirements.


On completion of this course you will be well placed to aim for a promotion in your field, progress into a research role or enter academic work. You could also go on to take the courses you need to become a PTUK certified trainer, helping future play therapists begin their careers in this increasingly important area.

- Play Therapist
- Child Psychologist
- Community Worker

Careers advice: the dedicated Jobs and Careers team offers expert advice and a host of resources to help you choose and gain employment. Whether you're in your first or final year, you can speak to members of staff from our Careers Office who can offer you advice from writing a CV to searching for jobs.

Visit the careers site - https://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/employability/jobs-careers-support.htm

Course Benefits

We deliver our course in partnership with the Academy of Play and Child Psychotherapy (APAC), ensuring you study the latest theories in this emerging sector, including the importance of neurobiology on improving the effects of play therapy for traumatised children. When you complete the course you will have a recognised accreditation.

We also have strong links with Play Therapy UK (PTUK) and Play Therapy International (PTI), the leading innovators in the profession, offering you expert career advice and a wealth of knowledge.

Our flexible online course gives you the opportunity to work at your own pace, allowing you to fit your study around your personal commitments. You will have access to a range of training sessions run by APAC at venues across the UK, along with the support of our dedicated tutors and the opportunity to debate and share your experiences in our virtual lecture rooms and chat rooms. You will be able to join forums where you can post your thoughts and learn from your tutors and fellow students.


Developing a Practice Based Play Therapy Research Proposal
Develop your understanding of what appears to be 'normal' or a 'taken for granted' assumption, and examine the paradigm shifts that have occurred in psycho-social and therapeutic research where there has traditionally been a divide between research and practice.

Research Dissertation for Practice Based Play Therapy
You will be supported to plan and manage the research necessary to carry out the plan developed in your previous module to produce a dissertation of professional relevance and having appropriate academic rigour.

Professor Ieuan Ellis

Dean, Faculty of Health and Social Sciences

"We have a long history of providing education across a wide range of professional and academic disciplines in health, applied global ethics, social sciences and related subject areas... The Faculty has a number of areas of research excellence."

Ieuan is responsible for the strategic leadership of the Faculty of Health and Social sciences. He is also a member of Academic Board, and an elected staff representative on the Board of Governors. He is also Chair of the UK Council of Deans of Health and Co-chair of the National Allied Health Professions Advisory Board. After practicing as a chartered physiotherapist in the NHS and private sector, Ieuan entered higher education working initially at Northumbria University prior to joining our University. Ieuan has held a number of leadership and management roles across health and social care education and was awarded a personal chair as Professor in Healthcare Education.


- Library
Our libraries are two of the only university libraries in the UK open 24/7 every day of the year. However you like to study, the libraries have got you covered with group study, silent study, extensive e-learning resources and PC suites.

- Clinical Skills Suite
The £1 million suite has been designed to meet the learning needs of a range of health professionals, with specialist equipment in purpose-built rooms enabling a variety of sessions to be carried out in a suitable and safe environment.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/postgraduate/how-to-apply/

Visit the Practice Based Play Therapy (MA) page on the Leeds Beckett University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Please check our site for the most up-to-date entry requirements (View Website).

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