PGDip
18 months full time, 30 months part time
Starts September 2017

Psychological Therapy

This course equips you with a critical understanding of cognitive behavioural models of anxiety disorders, depression, psychosis and personality difficulties. You’ll develop the skills to deliver high-quality and creative cognitive behavioural interventions across this range of problems.

We offer four pathways through this course:

  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Children and Young People
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Common Mental Health Difficulties
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Complex Difficulties
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Psychosis.

This course is offered in partnership between the School of Psychology at the University of Sussex and the Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

Key facts

  • Psychology at Sussex was placed in the top 10 for research in the UK in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF).
  • We are one of the largest psychology units in the UK. You’ll study in an intellectually stimulating and supportive environment for postgraduate research and study.
  • You’ll develop the skills to apply for professional accreditation as a cognitive behavioural psychotherapist with the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP).

How will I study?

The course includes flexible options. Every other week you attend two or three full days of teaching at the University and you may wish to stay in Brighton & Hove during these teaching days.

Some supervision will be delivered by telephone or Skype and does not require you to be at the University.

Our taught modules are assessed by a variety of methods including essays, clinical activity reports, clinical commentary and a portfolio.

What will I study?

  • Module list

    Core modules

    Core modules are taken by all students on the course. They give you a solid grounding in your chosen subject and prepare you to explore the topics that interest you most.

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Supervised Practice

      30 credits
      All Year Teaching, Year 1

      By the end of the module you will have gained skills required to undertake Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) across different complexities and different service settings in an ethical and collaborative manner. 

      The module runs alongside all modules following the Fundamentals of CBT course, across terms 1 and 2. 

      Throughout the module, you will gain a detailed understanding and skills required to undertake Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for people with a range of mental health presentations in an ethical and collaborative manner. Sessions will include individual and small group excercises, modelling and rehearsal using case examples thus facilitating the grounding and consolidation of skills. You will be encouraged to take part in practical and explorative exercises to start to reflect on your own CBT skill development, and how these CBT skills might be used to help you to deepen your practice of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in an ethical and collaborative manner.

      You will also be required to undertake 70 hours of supervision from a BACP accredited therapist. Half of this supervison (35 hours) will be provided by the course, half will be provided by supervisors in the students' place of work. Staff will liaise with supervisors in the your place of work to ensure quality assurance and adherance to the requirements of the module.

    • Fundamentals of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

      30 credits
      Autumn Teaching, Year 1

      By the end of the module students will have gained knowledge and skills in the fundamental theories, theorists, principles, strategies and techniques which will prepare them to undertake further training in translating theory into practice with regard to CBT assessment and practice.

      Throughout the module, students will gain a detailed understanding on the fundamental theories, theorists, principles, strategies and techniques used in CBT to treat people with a variety of common mental health problems and complex difficulties. Sessions will include theoretical teaching which will provide students with an overview of the topic area. Knowledge and skills will then be grounded and consolidated through individual and small group exercises, modelling and rehearsal using case examples in some of the clinical skills-based sessions. Students will be encouraged to take part in practical and explorative exercises to start to reflect on their own psychological development, and how the theories and fundamental skills of CBT might be used to help them to deepen their understanding of the development of common mental health problems and more complex difficulties.

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Anxiety Disorders (Complex Difficulties)

      15 credits
      Spring Teaching, Year 1

      By the end of the module, you will have developed knowledge and skills in working with people suffering from Panic Disorder, with and without Agoraphobia (PD), Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Obsessive Compulsive disorder (OCD) and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) using behavioural and cognitive interventions to help reduce cognitive and behavioural contributory factors in the maintenance of these anxiety difficulties.

      Throughout the module, you will gain a detailed understanding of assessment, formulation and treatment strategies as applied to individuals with these presenting difficulties. Each session will include thoeretical teaching which will provide you with an overview of the topic area. Knowledge and skills will then be grounded and consolidated through individual and small group excercises, modelling and rehearsal using case examples.

      You will be encouraged to take part in practical and explorative exercises to reflect on your own psychological development of CBT and to use this to help you to deepen your understanding of these particular psychological difficulties, how they may be formulated and how treatment strategies may be used to help reduce difficulties associated with the diagnoses of Panic Disorder, with and without Agoraphobia (PD), Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Depression (Complex Difficulties)

      15 credits
      Spring Teaching, Year 1

      By the end of the module, you will have developed knowledge and skills in working with people suffering from depression in the context of complex psychological difficulties using behavioural activation, and cognitive therapy to help reduce cognitive and behavioural contributory factors in the maintenance of depression. 

      Throughout the module, you will gain a detailed understanding on assessment, formulation and treatment strategies as applied to individuals with these presenting difficulties. Each session will include thoeretical teaching which will provide you with an overview of the topic area. Knowledge and skills will then be grounded and consolidated through individual and small group excercises, modelling and rehearsal using case examples. You will be encouraged to take part in practical and explorative exercises to reflect on your own psychological development of CBT and to use this to help you to deepen your understanding of these particular psychological difficulties, how they may be formulated and how treatment strategies may be used to help reduce difficulties associated with the diagnoses of depression using Behavioural Activation and Cognitive Therapy

    Options

    Alongside your core modules, you can choose options to broaden your horizons and tailor your course to your interests.

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Anxiety (Advanced)

      15 credits
      Spring & Summer Teaching, Year 1

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Children and Adolescents 1

      15 credits
      Spring & Summer Teaching, Year 1

      By the end of the module, you will have developed knowledge and understanding in the differences between undertaking CBT assessment and treatment with adults, and undertaking CBT assessment and treatment with children and adolescents suffering from mental health difficulties. You will gain knowledge of the way in which developmental processes and care giver and school relationships influnce development and maintenance of difficulties.

      Throughout the module, you will gain a detailed understanding of assessment and formulation strategies as applied specifically to working with children and adolescents. Each session will include thoeretical teaching which will provide you with an overview of the topic area. Knowledge and skills will then be grounded and consolidated through individual and small group excercises, modelling and rehearsal using case examples. You will be encouraged to take part in practical and explorative exercises to reflect on your own psychological development of CBT and its application to children and adolescents. You will then be expected to use this to help them to deepen your understanding of the particular skills, knowledge and attitudes required to work with children and adolescents.

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Psychosis (Complex Difficulties)

      15 credits
      Spring & Summer Teaching, Year 1

      On this module, you will develop knowledge and skills in working with people suffering from Psychotic Phenomena and Bi-Polar Disorder using behavioural and cognitive interventions to help reduce cognitive and behavioural contributory factors in the maintenance of these complex difficulties.

      Throughout the module, you will gain a detailed understanding on assessment, formulation and treatment strategies as applied to individuals with these presenting difficulties. Each session will include theoretical teaching which will provide you with an overview of the topic area. Knowledge and skills will then be grounded and consolidated through individual and small group excercises, modelling and rehearsal using case examples.

      You will be encouraged to take part in practical and explorative exercises to reflect on your own psychological development of CBT and to use this to help them to deepen your understanding of these particular psychological difficulties, how they may be formulated and how treatment strategies may be used to help reduce difficulties associated with the presentation of Psychotic Phenomena and Bi-Polar Disorder.

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Children and Adolescents 2

      15 credits
      Summer Teaching, Year 1

      By the end of the module you will have developed knowledge and skills in working with children and young people suffering from depression, low self-esteem, specific phobias, generalised anxiety disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, social anxiety disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder using behavioural and cognitive interventions to help reduce cognitive and behavioural contributory factors in the maintenance of these anxiety and depression difficulties.

      Throughout the module, you will gain a detailed understanding of treatment strategies as applied specifically to working with children and adolescents. Each session will include thoeretical teaching which will provide you with an overview of the topic area. Knowledge and skills will then be grounded and consolidated through individual and small-group excercises, modelling and rehearsal using case examples.

      You will be encouraged to take part in practical and explorative exercises to reflect on your own psychological development of CBT and its application to children and adolescents. You will then be expected to use this to help to deepen your understanding of the particular skills, knowledge and attitudes required to work with children and adolescents.

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Depression (Advanced)

      15 credits
      Summer Teaching, Year 1

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Personality Disorder (Complex Difficulties)

      15 credits
      Summer Vacation, Year 1

      By the end of the module, you will have developed knowledge and skills in working with people suffering with the complex difficulties related to a diagnosis of Personality Disorder using behavioural and cognitive interventions to help reduce cognitive and behavioural contributory factors in the maintenance of these complex difficulties.

      Throughout the module, you will gain a detailed understanding on assessment, formulation and treatment strategies as applied to individuals with these presenting difficulties. Each session will include theoretical teaching which will provide you with an overview of the topic area. Knowledge and skills will then be grounded and consolidated through individual and small group exercises, modelling and rehearsal using case examples. You will be encouraged to take part in practical and explorative exercises to reflect on your own psychological development of CBT and to use this to help you to deepen your understanding of these particular psychological difficulties, how they may be formulated and how treatment strategies may be used to help reduce difficulties associated with a diagnosis of Personality Disorder.

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Psychosis (Advanced)

      15 credits
      Summer Vacation, Year 1

      This module is designed to follow the 'Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Psychosis (complex difficulties)' module, providing the knowledge and skills necessary to work with more complex presentations associated with psychosis.

      By the end of this module, you will have developed knowledge and skills in working with people suffering from complex psychotic phenomena, including:

      • command hallucinations
      • high risk presentations
      • complications associated with trauma
      • bipolar disorder.

      You will also have developed knowledge and skills in brief evidence-based interventions using behavioural and cognitive methods to help reduce factors that contribute to the maintenance of these complex difficulties.

      Throughout this module, you gain a detailed understanding of formulation and treatment strategies as applied to individuals with these more complex presenting difficulties.

      Each session includes theoretical teaching that provides you with an overview of the topic area. Your knowledge and skills are then grounded and consolidated through individual and small group exercises, modelling and rehearsal using case examples.

      You are encouraged to take part in practical and explorative exercises to reflect on your own psychological development of CBT, and to use this to help you to deepen your understanding of complex difficulties associated with psychosis.

Entry requirements

All students entering at the start of the course should possess (i) and (ii) with either (iii) or (iv):

(i) a core profession qualification in a mental-health field as defined by the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP) or evidence of being able to complete the BABCP Knowledge Skills and Attitudes requirements,

and

(ii) foundation-level knowledge of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and some experience of providing structured psychological therapies or interventions,

and either

(iii) a lower second-class (2.2) undergraduate honours degree or above (or equivalent),

or

(iv) the ability to study successfully at postgraduate level, demonstrated through a portfolio of evidence of previous written work produced in a training or work context.

In order to be accepted on the course you must also pass an interview.

Applications for this course are competitive and can close early. We therefore recommend an early application - ideally by April.

English language requirements

Higher level (IELTS 7.0, with not less than 6.5 in each section)

Find out about other English language qualifications we accept.

English language support

Don’t have the English language level for your course? Find out more about our pre-sessional courses.

Additional information for international students

We welcome applications from all over the world. Find out about international qualifications suitable for our Masters courses.

Visas and immigration

Find out how to apply for a student visa


Fees and scholarships

How much does it cost?

Fees

Home: £9,750 per year

EU: £9,750 per year

Channel Islands and Isle of Man: £9,750 per year

Overseas: £15,100 per year

Note that your fees may be subject to an increase on an annual basis.

How can I fund my course?

Scholarships

Our aim is to ensure that every student who wants to study with us is able to despite financial barriers, so that we continue to attract talented and unique individuals.

Chancellor's Masters Scholarship (2017)

Open to students with a 1st class from a UK university or excellent grades from an EU university and offered a F/T place on a Sussex Masters in 2017

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Chancellor's Masters Scholarship

Sussex Graduate Scholarship (2017)

Open to Sussex students who graduate with a first or upper second-class degree and offered a full-time place on a Sussex Masters course in 2017

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Sussex Graduate Scholarship

Sussex India Scholarships (2017)

Sussex India Scholarships are worth £3,500 and are for overseas fee paying students from India commencing Masters study in September 2017.

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Sussex India Scholarships

Sussex Malaysia Scholarships (2017)

Sussex Malaysia Scholarships are worth £3,500 and are for overseas fee paying students from Malaysia commencing Masters study in September 2017.

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Sussex Malaysia Scholarships

Sussex Nigeria Scholarships (2017)

Sussex Nigeria Scholarships are worth £3,500 or £5,000 and are for overseas fee paying students from Nigeria commencing a Masters in September 2017.

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Sussex Nigeria Scholarships

Sussex Pakistan Scholarships (2017)

Sussex Pakistan Scholarships are worth £3,500 and are for overseas fee paying students from Pakistan commencing Masters study in September 2017.

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Sussex Pakistan Scholarships

How Masters scholarships make studying more affordable

Living costs

Find out typical living costs for studying at Sussex.


Faculty

For clinical courses of this sort, teaching and supervision is provided in co-operation with staff affiliated with the local NHS Mental Health Trust, the Sussex Partnership Trust (SPT), who have the requisite clinical training and teaching experience.

Careers

Graduate destinations

96% of students from the School of Psychology were in work or further study six months after graduating. Recent graduates have gone on to jobs including:

  • behavioural therapist, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS)
  • cognitive therapy psychologist, NHS 
  • psychological therapist, Time To Talk.

(HESA EPI, Destinations of Post Graduate Leavers from Higher Education Survey 2015)

Your future career

You’ll develop the skills to apply for professional accreditation as a cognitive behavioural psychotherapist with the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP).

Working while you study

Our Careers and Employability Centre can help you find part-time work while you study. Find out more about career development and part-time work

Contact us