Cognitive Behaviour Therapy High Intensity Postgraduate Diploma

This High Intensity Diploma is core funded by West Midlands NHS and is designed to provide a postgraduate training for a group of the Improving Access to Psychological Therapy (IAPT) High Intensity Cognitive Behaviour Therapists.

The Diploma aims to teach students to achieve the level of knowledge and clinical skills to operate effectively as psychological therapists, using evidence based cognitive behaviour therapy methods routinely in their work.

Following the success of the IAPT initiative in Primary Care Mental Health Services, work is in progress to maintain existing IAPT services and to extend into other services whose users could benefit from psychological therapies. This may include a range of mental health services, addictions services, and physical health care services. For trainees to be successful, they will attend university two days per week and two days per week clinical placement, with supervision. Placements are most successful within an IAPT service, so it is hoped that provider sites will be able to work in partnership with IAPT to foster this mutually beneficial arrangement.

Course fact file

Type of Course: Continuing professional development, taught

Study Options: Full time

Duration: 12 months full-time (2 days at University, 3 days in clinical practice)

Start date: January

Details

Details of training

  • There are three courses, each of one year’s duration, based at the Universities of Birmingham, Coventry and Staffordshire providing a Postgraduate Diploma in CBT. An academic screening exercise will take place at the University of Birmingham for the three courses on 8th September 2015, followed by interviews w/c 21st September 2015 at respective universities. Each course starts week commencing the 18th January 2016. The awards provide an excellent foundation for achieving accreditation with the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP) as a Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist.
  • Individuals successfully completing these awards develop the theoretical knowledge, reflective abilities and practical skills to become skilled and independent CBT practitioners. These aims are achieved through a combination of didactic teaching, skills practice with feedback and supervised clinical practice.
  • To enter training, individuals must hold a relevant core mental health profession or be able to demonstrate the equivalent knowledge and experience. They must also have access to a work setting in which it is possible to undertake at least two days per week of face to face, supervised CBT practice and audio/video record client sessions for assessment in the academic setting.

Key Features

  • To equip practitioners to offer ‘high intensity’ CBT for people with moderate and moderate to severe depression and anxiety at Step 3 within the primary care settings.
  • To equip practitioners to function as skilled, and relatively independent cognitive behaviour therapists, in accordance with the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP) guidelines for good practice.
  • To equip practitioners to reach the necessary standards required for provisional accreditation as a CBT practitioner to the BABCP on successful completion of the course.
  • To facilitate the development of a critical knowledge of the theory and research relating to CBT.

 

The Diploma will provide a significant component of the current requirements for accreditation as a cognitive behavioural therapist by the BABCP – but those applicants who may eventually wish to take this path should note that there may be additional requirements to fulfil BABCP accreditation criteria.

All prospective students are strongly advised to look at the BABCP website PRIOR to applying to ensure that they understand the Minimum Training Standards for the Practice of CBT in particular those relating to the core professional qualification requirements. Applicants without a core profession will need to satisfy the requirements of the Knowledge, Skills and Attitudes (KSA) framework, details of which can be found on the BABCP website.

NB. this advice applies whether a potential applicant intends to apply eventually for BABCP accreditation or not, as the BABCP Training Standards information provides a good overview of CBT related skills and competences in general – which is relevant to ALL those even considering applying for a Diploma in CBT.

Related links

School of Psychology

More Cognitive Behaviour Therapy courses

Why study this course

Comments from past students

"The course was very well organised and delivered."

"The use of the practical exercises was helpful."

"Consistantly of high standard and always very interesting, useful and stimulating."

"Thank you – The chance to speak to a person who experiences OCD and the privilege of being able to ask questions."

"It has increased my understanding of CBT, the model how to formulate and use a range of techniques much I can apply in my practice."

"An excellent, but punishing course! The quality of the lectures were excellent and the teaching provided an excellent basis for clinical practice."

Modules

Course structure

Module number Module title Days Credits
1 The fundamentals of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy 20 40
2 Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Anxiety Disorders 20 40
3 Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Depression 20 40

Total days:60
Total credits: 120

 

Module Summaries

Module 1: The fundamentals of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

This module will focus on the fundamental principles of CBT. Trainees will be encouraged to develop a critical understanding of the theoretical and research evidence for cognitive models, and an ability to evaluate the evidence. The module aims to enable trainees to have an understanding of how scientific principles inform CBT clinical practice. This module will focus on core clinical competencies (skills) necessary for undertaking CBT. It covers cognitive models, maintenance and developmental conceptualisations of cases and the core aspects of the cognitive and behavioural processes of therapy. Clinical workshops will address the most up-to-date evidence for the effectiveness of CBT and provide direct training in applying CBT. The lectures and workshops will consist of information giving, role-play, experiential exercises, and video and case demonstrations; the experiential exercises encourage self-reflection, increase self-awareness and skills acquisition. Sessions will also incorporate a focus on therapists’ beliefs.

Aims of Module 1:

  • To develop practical competency in the fundamentals of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy;
  • To develop critical knowledge of the theoretical and research literature underlying CBT.

Module 2: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Anxiety Disorders

This module aims to develop skills in CBT for anxiety disorders to an advanced level, improving proficiency in the fundamental techniques of CBT, and developing competencies in the specialist techniques applied to anxiety disorders. Specific models, evidence base, assessment and specialist treatment strategies will be covered in workshops on specific phobia, panic disorder, social phobia, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) and health anxiety. The clinical workshops will provide practitioners with a strong foundation in the evidence base for working with CBT and anxiety disorders, and address the most up-to-date research developments.

Aims of Module 2:

  • To develop critical knowledge of the theoretical and research literature of CBT with anxiety disorders;
  • To develop practical competency in CBT for anxiety disorders.

Module 3: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Depression

This module aims to develop skills in CBT for depression to an advanced level, improving proficiency in the fundamental techniques of CBT and developing competency in the specialist techniques used in the treatment of depression. Specific cognitive and behavioural models of depression, empirical evidence, and assessment and specialist cognitive and behavioural treatment strategies will be covered in workshops. The clinical workshops will provide trainees with a strong foundation in the evidence base for CBT with depression, and address the most up-to-date research methods.

Aims of Module 3:

  • To develop practical competency in CBT for depression;
  • To develop critical knowledge of the theoretical and research literature informing CB theory and treatment of depression.

Taught modules offered include:

Learning within the High Intensity Diploma course is comprised of:

  • Supervised clinical placement within the IAPT service;
  • Academic lectures;
  • Skills workshops, including skills practice, small group work and various forms of experiential learning;
  • Individual and group clinical supervision, both within the IAPT site, and within the University;
  • Guided self study;
  • Individual tutorials;

Fees and funding

The course fee is £9,500.

What funding is available?

  • For new posts in IAPT services, including one year fixed term posts - 100% salary costs for 12 months and 100% course fees paid
  • Replacement posts in IAPT services - 100% course fees paid
  • Existing posts in non-IAPT services who wish to develop expertise in high intensity interventions - 100% salary costs for 12 months and 100 % course fees paid

We also accept applicants who wish to self-fund or from those who would be able to access funding from organisations outside of the NHS.  Such applicants would need to demonstrate their ability to access a placement in which the clinical components of the training would be undertaken, as well as access to clinical supervision from a BABCP accredited therapist. For further information about this option, please contact the Programme Administrator on cbtprogramme@contacts.bham.ac.uk.  

Learn more about fees and funding

Entry requirements

Core funding for this Diploma comes from West Midlands NHS and the course is designed to provide postgraduate training for a group of the Improving Access to Psychological Therapy (IAPT) high intensity cognitive behavioural therapists, and, as such, is only primarily to West Midlands NHS staff. Enquiries and applications are welcome from privately funding individuals and organisations, provided certain criteria relating to access to appropriate clinical work and CBT supervision can be met.

More information can be found via the NHS website.

Applications are welcome from those able to self-fund or from those who would be able to access funding from organisations outside of the NHS.  Such applicants would need to demonstrate their ability to access a placement in which the clinical components of the training would be undertaken, as well as access to clinical supervision from a BABCP accredited therapist. For further information about this option, please contact the Programme Administrator on cbtprogramme@contacts.bham.ac.uk.

How to apply

The deadline for applications is 31 August 2015. Consideration may be given to late applications and nominations on a case-by-case basis, subject to availability of places. 

Applications are NOT assessed until after the closing date.

The application has two stages:  

  1. Academic test at the University of Birmingham (to take place early September)
  2. Interview with Programme Leader (to take place late September)

When clicking on the Apply Now button you will be directed to an application specifically designed for the programme you wish to apply for where you will create an account with the University application system and submit your application and supporting documents online. Further information regarding how to apply online can be found on the How to apply pages

Apply now

Assessment methods

There are 10 assignments to be handed in during the Diploma.

  • Essay x 2
  • Case study x 4
  • OSCE audio assignment (30 min role play with 1,000 word reflective summary)
  • Audio assignment x 2 ( 50 min session with 1,000 word reflective summary)
  • Practice portfolio