Leading to eligibility to apply for BACP registration as a Counsellor

Philosophy of the course

What an amazing stage of life, with all its dramatic hormonal changes, which can turn that sweet little kid into a teenager who knows their own mind, becomes their own person and finds their own direction. If all goes well, transition to adulthood means the teenager fully engages with their drive and creativity, discovers their sexuality in the context of a loving relationship, and develops a far deeper level of social and emotional intelligence. But if things go wrong, teenagers can find themselves living with the torment of shame, anxiety or depression, low self-esteem.

About the course

This course comprises a wealth of age appropriate therapeutic interventions, clinical skills practice, fascinating theoretical underpinnings from the latest research in adolescent psychology, sociology, neuroscience and medicine. As well as working one-to-one with troubled teenagers, the course will also equip students with evidence-based psychoeducation for teenagers. This includes vital knowledge to enable teenagers to successfully process painful life experiences and make informed decisions about key aspects of their lives e.g. use of social media, drugs, alcohol, gender and sexuality, self-harm, relationships with peers and parents, how to say no and look after themselves, the skill of happiness and what to do with their life. This will enable students to be able to teach psychology-informed PSHE lessons for teenagers.

The course will train students to be able to run specific focus mental health groups in a safe highly structured way. These moving therapy groups offer teenagers the opportunity to meet others who are going through what they are going through.

All clinical skills taught on the course are underpinned with an in-depth understanding of developmental theory, relevant psychoanalytic and psychological theory and the neuroscientific research-base explaining what the emotionally-available adult does to optimise effectiveness. The training aims to support the counsellor to enable the child to move from a life blighted by mental health problems and/or troubled relationships, to being able to enjoy a capacity for a far more compassionate accepting relationship with self, for deeply fulfilling relationships with others and to know a far warmer, kinder inner world.

The Diploma is awarded jointly by The Institute for Arts in Therapy and Education (IATE) and Trauma Informed Schools UK (TISUK). IATE is a Higher Education College of over 30 years standing, member organisation of the government body Health and Care Professions Council, the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy and the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy. TISUK is a Community Interest Company providing training to over 500 schools in the country. TISUK is highlighted in the DfE Advice to Schools: Mental Health and Behaviour in Schools DfE-00327-2018, as supporting and promoting positive mental health. Sheffield Hallam University includes a compulsory module of TISUK’s training in every level and age phase of their initial teaching education (over 1000 trainee teachers to date have received the training).

Who is this course for?

The course is for people who are passionate about helping teenagers. The course qualifies delegates to work with 12 to 25-year-olds. This means being able to work in both colleges and universities. The need is great! There are so few people in this country who hold an actual qualification in counselling teenagers, so we are confident that this Diploma will open many doors.

Main Educational Aims of the course

  • Preparing students to be able to work therapeutically with the highest of ethical standards with teenagers in a variety of health, education, social services and private sector contexts;
  • Providing opportunities to explore and examine how to prevent troubled teenagers from spoiling their lives through unprocessed feelings and emotional, relational and behavioural difficulties;
  • Enabling students to acquire the ability to integrate theoretical concepts with practical skills leading to effective application of core competencies in clinical practice;
  • Enabling students to develop clinical skills to be able to assess the emotional needs of teenage clients and to respond to these effectively taking into account the identification of risk;
  • Enabling students to help teenagers process their feelings in such a way that empowers them to form meaningful and enriching connections with self and others;
  • Ensuring that students have acquired the reflective and evaluative skills necessary to monitor and appraise effectively their work with teenagers;
  • Enabling students to work with the arts, metaphor and symbol to help teenagers explore their inner worlds and connect to their creativity
  • Enabling students to run therapy groups for teenagers and psychological based PSHE sessions for teenagers on how to do life well;
  • Enabling students to run parent-teenager short term therapy sessions to improve the quality of the relationship.

Route One

First year starts 19th September 2020 (online): Module One: Therapeutic Conversations (one to one and whole school) Trauma and Mental Health Informed schools and Communities (weekend days and work based learning)

Second year starts February 2021: Module Two and Module Three: Young People’s Mental Health, Counselling Interventions and Clinical Placement (weekend days and a few three/five day modules in school holidays). Eligible to apply for BACP registration after BACP Membership and Proficiency test.

Total trainer contact hours: 200 hours


Route Two

First year training curriculum from: Level One, Dip CC year one, MA ICP or IAP year one.

Second year starts February 2021: Module Two and Module Three: Young People’s Mental Health, Counselling Interventions and Clinical Placement (weekend days and a few three/five day modules in school holidays). Eligible to apply for BACP registration after BACP Membership and Proficiency test.

Total trainer contact hours range from a minimum of 200 to 400 trainer contact time


Route Three

For qualified counsellors or therapists only

Direct entry on to Year Two. Qualification at the end of one year.

Admissions criteria: at least 100 training hours and qualification from a recognised College plus a clinical log detailing client hours under supervision signed by an appropriately trained clinical supervisor (accredited UKCP or BACP). Also as least one year personal psychotherapy (signed from and registration number of therapist required).

Please note that this route does not lead to eligibility for BACP registration as although intensive does not fulfil BACP requirement for two years part time or one year full time. In order to proceed with registration with BACP you must complete Module One: Trauma and Mental Health Informed schools and Communities, this can be done after Year Two. 

Total trainer contact hours: 150 hours

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