MSc Conversion Course in Psychological Wellbeing, Counselling and Psychotherapy Specialist Practitioner
The MSc Conversion programme is a one-year part time programme available to individuals who have completed a Post-Graduate Diploma in Counselling at SCQF level 11 in the last five years (i.e. 5 years prior to resuming their study) wish to develop their clinical practice in a particular area of counselling specialism. The programme is designed to support counsellors to develop and strengthen their clinical practice and deepen their knowledge and understanding of contemporary perspectives on the provision of psychological therapies for specific client groups. The programme is non-residential and delivered at weekends, either the full weekend or single study day. The programme is validated and awarded by the University of Aberdeen.
Three specialist pathways are offered to reflect advances in research and the demands of the profession:
Option 1 Counselling in a Health-Care setting; working with anxiety and depression - COURSE STARTING IN AUTUMN 2018
Option 2 Counselling Couples; working with relationships - this option will not be available in 2018
Option 3 Counselling Children and Young People; working in educational settings - COURSE STARTING IN AUTUMN 2018
What does the course involve?
The programme is structured around three modules which represent an integration of theory, clinical competence and reflective practice and each module has an assessment component.
Option 1 Counselling in a Health-Care setting; working with anxiety and depression
This option specifically focuses on anxiety and depression which is the single biggest category of difficulties in the area of psychological well-being and mental health and will often be a feature in the outlook of many client groups. This module considers current practice in the NHS/IAPT programmes and examines at depth different bodies of research which explore the causal factors of anxiety and depression and considers different forms of treatment which exist and the research evidence for each. This option also includes training in Mindfulness and a consideration of the effectiveness of Mindfulness Based interventions.
Option 2 Counselling Couples; working with relationships
This option will focus on examining at depth key theoretical frameworks for working therapeutically with couples and providing an advanced investigation of evidenced based interventions in the area of family and couple work. It will build on the knowledge base of the Post-Graduate programme by providing a specialist consideration of the theories and their applications in relationship counselling.
This option will integrate humanistic experiential, systemic and attachment theories and will provide a context for an advanced examination of theories in this area. It will also encourage students to engage in their own examination of theories particularly examining relationship and theories of attachment. The programme is designed by practitioners and trainers with expertise working with this client group. The programme is also supported by a national organisation who provide supervision and placement opportunities for students taking this specialism.
Option 3 Counselling Children and Young People; working in educational settings
This option will focus on an in-depth study of key theoretical frameworks for working therapeutically with young people and children and will provide an advanced investigation of evidenced based interventions with this client group. It will build on the knowledge base of the Post-Graduate programme by providing a specialist consideration of the theories and their appropriateness in working with young people and children. This option will examine the development from child to adolescent to adult, looking at physiological, emotional, behavioural and mental development. It will consider the signs and symptoms of when mental health and/or wellbeing are adversely affected. It will investigate how counselling can support the young person to develop their own resilience when dealing with difficulties and adversity.
Students are required to have a clinical placement working with the client group from the specialism they are studying. Group supervision is integrated into the programme, but students are expected to engage an individual supervisor to support the development of clinical competence in the chosen specialist area
The programme also integrates reflective practice groups into the programme which provide a context for discussing the challenges experienced by students from their client work. The reflective practice group discussions will provide a framework for the therapist to develop a reliable self-critiquing ability together with robust self-analysis which can be tested in reflective exchanges with others.
Each module is formally assessed and students are required to demonstrate their learning through written assignments, a clinical placement portfolio which includes an audio recording of client work, maintaining a reflective journal and providing a self-assessment statement which has been verified through peer and tutor review.
Applicants will be invited to submit a completed application form which is required to be supported by two references.
How much does the course cost?
Course fees are approximately £3,000 per annum but are subject to inflationary costs. Current fees for the programme are published when the course is available for applicants.
Payment of a non-refundable deposit is required to secure a place on the programme. Fees are required to be paid in advance at the beginning of the academic year. Payment Plans are available.
Additional costs: the cost of individual supervision is not included in the course fees. Although it is not a mandatory requirement of the course the vast majority of students choose to engage in personal therapy during the programme. The cost of personal therapy is also met by the individual student.
How do I apply?
Interested in Persona Development & Training?
“Being a student on the Persona PG Counselling Diploma was the best and most important decision I have ever made. It has been life changing. The group process and emphasis on self- development was instrumental in my journey of self-discovery.”
“Being on the programme opened up new insights into who I was - an awareness to change certain things and an acceptance of those things in me that I could truly cherish. This wouldn't have been possible without my peers and tutors. A great learning experience indeed! “
Sarah 2014 – 2016
'Persona offers a substantive and truly immersive training in counselling; I have found that my experience and learning from being on the course has given me a solid and proper foundation on which to build my counselling career.'