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Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Children and Young People - MSc/PGDip/PGCert

Course Description

This programme provides training for individuals in outcomes-based CBT interventions to promote psychological wellbeing in children and young people. This Master's programme is aimed at professionals already working in the field of children's services, including social care, education and health, who hope to gain skills they can practise in the workplace.

Degree information

The programme will develop participants’ knowledge and skills in cognitive behavioural based interventions with children and young people experiencing a range of difficulties in social and emotional aspects of their development. Participants will also develop skills in evaluating the impact of their own work, in order to be able to reflect on and modify practice in future.

All candidates should initially enrol for the Postgraduate Certificate (modules 1-4, 60 credits).

On completion they should make a decision to terminate their studies at that point or enrol to take further modules for the Diploma (modules 5–8, 60 credits) and MSc (dissertation module, 60 credits). There are no optional modules for this programme.

Core modules
PG Certificate:
-Introduction to Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in Context
-Assessment and Engagement for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in Context
-Basic Skills (Developing Understanding)
-Basic Skills (Methods of Change)

PG Diploma:
-Introduction to Disorder Specific Approaches
-Disorder Specific Approaches
-Complex Problems
-Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in Context

-Research Dissertation

All MSc students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a substantial dissertation.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered at the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families, and taught by leading practitioners in the field. Teaching is a combination of lectures, workshops and seminars. A core component of the programme is videoing of students' CBT practice which is discussed in small practice tutor groups during each teaching day.


The programme is aimed at applicants in relevant employment and supports career progression.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-Educational Psychologist, Hampshire County Council
-Consultant Clinical Psychologist, Unspecified Healthcare
-Primary Mental Health Worker, NHS Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust

CBT for children and young people is one of a number of evidence-based interventions for common childhood problems and disorders. The demand for professionals with skills in this area in known to be high and is likely to grow. Students will have a (Certificate/Diploma/Master's) UCL qualification in CBT with children and this will be much valued by employers looking to develop this type of intervention within their service. Several of our students have been funded by employers who want to increase their supervisory capacity in CBT and this is likely to be a trend that will continue.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The programme is based and taught at the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families, the leading national charity supporting young minds through innovative therapeutic practice, training and research. The vision of the centre is a world in which children, young people and their families are effectively supported to build on their own strengths to achieve their goals in life.

Students benefit from the centre's collaboration with UCL; they gain the advantages of studying within the intimate and vibrant environment of the centre, together with access to the facilities and resources of UCL - an internationally renowned university.

Visit the Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Children and Young People - MSc/PGDip/PGCert page on the University College London website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Normally a minimum of a second-class UK Bachelor's degree or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard in a relevant subject (e.g. psychology) and/or professional qualification in a relevant subject. Additionally, applicants must have experience of working with children in education, health or social care settings and a work context that enables them to fulfil the programme requirements (including time to attend, and undertake case work and CBT with children). Please see 'who can apply' for further information.

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