UK College of Holistic Training

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UKCHT Diploma in Counselling and Psychotherapy
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Diploma in
Counselling and Psychotherapy

(Dip. C.P.)

Distance Learning Course Details


   College accreditation: International Association for Distance Learning.
   Course accredited by Guild for Stress Management and Trauma Specialists
   Possibility of registration with certain other UK professional bodies.

Announcement :  We are revising our provision of courses in counselling and psychotherapy. Enrolment for this course is temporarily suspended and NEW courses are being introduced. Please contact us so we can keep you up to date.

Total recommended period of study: approx. 9 months. Continuous enrolment. No time limit.


Cost: 250.00  (250 Pounds Sterling - for currency conversion see www.xe.com )

(Textbooks extra - approx. cost of textbooks 160.00) 

Mode of study: 

Textbook study. Written assignments based on textbooks and self-reflection. Assignment questions are issued by email and students return their written work by email. Grades and feedback are issued by email. Students normally buy books from on-line bookstores.

Course description

This distance learning Diploma course leads to a private UK qualification in counselling and psychotherapy. It has been created in response to demand from  students  who, due to location or other circumstances, find themselves unable to attend tutorials or classes, or who wish to pursue the subject out of personal interest.  The course will also benefit those who have been in practice for many years without a substantial formal qualification, or with qualifications other than counselling/psychotherapy, who now wish to consolidate and update their learning.  Others who will find the course attractive include those trained in highly specific therapeutic approaches who wish to broaden their horizons.

Theoretical orientation:

This course takes an integrated approach drawing from dynamic, cognitive, brief therapy and self-therapy models within a framework of counselling and helping skills.

Entry Criteria

Experience of working with people is preferable but the course may also be taken for personal interest and self-development. 

Syllabus (subject to change and improvement at any time)

۰  Introduction to Psychotherapy

۰  Counselling and Helping Skills: The Egan “Skilled Helper” Model 

۰  The Therapeutic Relationship

۰  Cognitive and Behavioural Therapy Techniques

۰  Stress Management

۰  Critical Incidents and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

۰  Supported Self-Therapy

۰  Practice Management 

Introduction to Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy is described in the set text as the use of relationships to help people with their problems. This module is an introduction to psychodynamic psychotherapy: the branch of psychotherapy which works by helping people know and understand themselves. Dynamic psychotherapy sees symptoms or problems as an expression of  inner conflict. Parts of our behaviour or feelings which we find disturbing are kept out of awareness and we say that they become unconscious. To keep those aspects of us unconscious, we engage in defence mechanisms, which may help us cope or on the other hand may create symptoms.

You will study the history of psychodynamic psychotherapy and the key mental processes which, according to the psychodynamic view, drive our feelings and behaviour. You will read about how the self develops through childhood; how psychodynamic therapists view the mind (different experts have proposed different "models" of the mind); and how psychotherapeutic relationships work.  You will read  an introduction to the various styles of psychotherapy including some of the newer therapies.  Finally there is a section on outcome, or how we know whether psychotherapy works.

Counselling and Helping Skills

The Egan model of counselling skills is widely taught and the workbook, "Exercises in Helping Skills", is one of the best ways of learning counselling skills short of actually attending classes. You will work through examples of many types of counselling situation and interaction and be able to recognise when you respond correctly and when your responses need improvement. Some learning about yourself is also involved.  The skills learnt in the Egan model can be used in formal and informal counselling situations. They form a complete method of brief counselling in themselves and they can also be used by orthodox and complementary medicine practitioners to increase communication with patients or clients.

The Therapeutic Relationship

Communication and relationship are two essential ingredients of psychotherapy. You will study the theory of the relationship between therapist and client, and at the two key processes: transference, the emotions the client feels towards the therapist, based upon the client's earlier relationships, and counter-transference, the emotions the therapist feels towards the client, based upon the therapist's feelings towards significant figures in his or her life. This module also looks at some of the difficulties of therapy which are caused by such feelings arising but not being dealt with appropriately.

Cognitive and Behavioural Therapy Techniques

This module presents in condensed form the key concepts and techniques of cognitive therapy, which is a brief therapy that seeks to help clients change the negative and irrational thought patterns that are connected with conditions such as depression and anxiety.  Studying these cognitive therapy skills will give you an extra toolkit which integrates well with the other brief interventions you will learn on this course.   [NB This unit is in the process of being updated].

Stress Management

Many people enter counselling or therapy because they are stressed, and the helper needs to have a broad knowledge of stress and also of stress reduction techniques. The set text for this unit provides an excellent introduction to what stress is and how to cope with it, plus instructions in many areas of stress reduction. The following categories of intervention are presented, each with clear how-to-do-it instructions:

Breathing exercises, Progressive relaxation, Meditation, Visualisation, Applied relaxation, Self-hypnosis, Autogenics, Brief combination techniques, Making relaxation tapes, Refuting irrational ideas, Thought stopping techniques, Worry control, Coping skills, Goal setting and time management, Assertiveness, Coping with job stress, Simple nutrition, Exercise

These techniques will give you scope for conducting classes and groups, including specific techniques in therapy sessions according to the client's needs, using some of these techniques as "icebreakers" to build rapport with the client, and using them as a complement to other therapies which you might be practising. 

You will have the textbook as a handy reference book and you can refresh your knowledge of any of the skills whenever you need to. For this course, you do not need to master all of the techniques but  you will be asked to study a selection of them.

Critical Incidents and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Many people show symptoms of stress, or have other problems, years later stemming from a trauma or crisis in their lives. This may have been a violent incident, a disaster, an accident, or an acute illness, but trauma need not only be caused by a sudden event. It can be caused by an accumulation or series of negative events such as childhood abuse, bullying or even being overworked and underappreciated at work, which has driven many people to stress breakdown (what used to be called "nervous breakdown"). Other causes of traumatic stress that are only beginning to be recognised are a difficult birth and a miscarriage.

It is important for the therapist to be able to recognise the signs of post traumatic stress syndrome, so that they can reassure clients that their symptoms are actually normal reactions to an abnormal series of events. The helper also needs to know when to refer clients on to an experienced therapist who specialises in the area of post traumatic stress. People with post traumatic stress syndrome often do not respond to "stress management" regimes and do not do self-help homework when given. They can respond to special therapeutic approaches, to sensitive counselling, and to physical therapies such as aromatherapy.

Supported Self-Therapy

Supported Self-Therapy is the core of the diploma course.  Based on Cognitive Analytic Therapy, the set textbook has many exercises and questionnaires helping you explore yourself on a deep level, and at the same time, providing techniques which you can use with others. Ideally this module should be studied in parts throughout your course. As you study the other topics, you will also spend time working with approximately one chapter of the set textbook per month - doing any of the exercises or other set work in the book.  Tutor feedback will be given.  This is the only book for the course which is to be tackled as a long-term project, because it involves self-therapy work and it might be too much for you to cram all of the work into a few weeks. By the time you have completed all of the other modules, you should also have completed the supported self-therapy work.

Practice Management

Practice management deals with the business side of setting up as a therapist: how to advertise and gain publicity, select a place to work from, run your practice, organise the financial side of the business, liaise with financial experts such as an accountant an insurance broker, and other business matters. Other considerations are how to manage a session, set up your therapy room, keep records, and so on, and how to comply with regulations.

Level of study: this diploma course includes introductory and advanced university-level material. The textbooks are chosen to be accessible to the intelligent student who is new to the subject.

Method of study

For its theoretical content, this diploma  uses the traditional 'read a book, write a paper' distance learning method widely used by various distance learning colleges. 

For each unit, the student will need to acquire one main textbook (apart from the Egan model module which needs two textbooks).  Supplementary reading is optional. After study of the textbook and carrying out any practical exercises or assignments necessary, the student will submit a written paper or report. Tutor feedback on the assignments will be given by email or post.

A great deal of care has been made to select textbooks which are accessible, written by qualified authors, and which, by including practical exercises and examples, provide the next best thing to classroom study.


The student will be expected to carry out any required exercises with other people (friends, colleagues, students, existing clients/patients, or in a voluntary setting) wherever this is feasible and wherever this does not conflict with the student's existing ethical or contractual obligations. If the student is in a remote location or cannot carry out any practicum for any reason, the situation should be discussed with the Course Director, and the student will be required to do a written assignment in lieu of the practicum.

Because students in remote or foreign locations are often in regions suffering from conflict or disaster, special attention is paid in the course to post-traumatic stress and critical incidents. Help will be given towards further study of these topics if desired.

As part of the course, the student will be asked to engage in 'supported self-therapy'. In this model, the student will be set serious self-therapy exercises and will receive feedback on them from the tutor.

Web research:

For those students with access to the Internet, there is a vast number of  authoritative websites with information on psychology, mental health and other relevant subjects. We can introduce students to many such sites, containing, in total, huge virtual libraries of information.


Successful graduates will receive the Diploma in Counselling and Psychotherapy awarded by UK College of Holistic Training which is a private UK qualification. The college is accredited by the International Association for Distance Learning. Course graduates may use the postnominal initials Dip.C.P. or D.C.P., whichever is most appropriate for their location.

The course is accredited by The Guild for Stress Management and Trauma Specialists and graduates may apply for membership.

Graduates of the course will be eligible to apply to register with "Counselling", a registered charity - see www.counselling.ltd.uk, and on successful registration the graduate will be entitled to the style "CCC Registered Counsellor." (Applies to UK only. "Counselling" does not accredit or approve the UKCHT course.)

We will also advise suitable graduates on other possible routes towards membership of professional societies.

Prospective overseas students are responsible for checking whether they need any form of accreditation or licensing to practise as a counsellor or psychotherapist in their own country. UK College of Holistic Training is unable to give advice on local regulations in your country.

If you would prefer, for professional reasons, that the diploma be awarded as a Diploma in Counselling or Diploma in Psychotherapy (but not both), that can be arranged. The course and tuition fee will be the same.

Course reading list (Updated May 2011)

Essential Reading

Bateman, Brown and Pedder.   Introduction to Psychotherapy: An outline of psychodynamic principles and practice. London, Routledge, fourth edition, 2010. 

Davis, Eshelman and McKay,  The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook. Sixth edition, 2008. New Harbinger Publications Inc, 2008.

Egan, Gerard, The Skilled Helper, Ninth Edition, Brooks/Cole 2009.

Egan, Gerard. Exercises in Helping Skills. Ninth Edition. Brooks/Cole 2009.

Kahn, Michael. Between Therapist and Client. Revised edition, 1997, New York: W.H. Freeman & Co.

Kinchin, David. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (2005 edition). Didcot, Oxfordshire: Success Unlimited, 2004.

McCormick, Elizabeth Wilde, Change for the Better: Self-Help Through Practical Psychotherapy. Third edition.  New York & London: Sage, 2008.

Neenan, Michael and Dryden, Windy. Essential Cognitive Therapy. London, Whurr Publishers Ltd, 2000.

Brookhouse, S ean and Biddle, Fiona. Building a Successful and Ethical Therapy Practice. UK Academy of Therapeutic Arts and Sciences Ltd, 2003.

Further Suggested Reading - a list of recommended reading will be given.

Further information

Please see our FAQs page for general information about practising counselling and psychotherapy in the UK and elsewhere.

We reserve the right to change the syllabus and other details of any course at any time. If any key textbook becomes unobtainable we will provide a substitute module based on another book.

Please note that this course is not accredited or approved by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy or the British Psychological Society.  It does not lead to UKCP or BACP accreditation and is not accredited by any body that is recognised by the UK government. In the UK, counselling and psychotherapy are not government-controlled and there are many routes to private qualifications & professional society memberships.




Our new URL is www.ukcht.uk  (Note: this is a "dot UK" not a "dot co.uk" address)
(Our courses are by distance learning/ home study only - we have no classes in London.  All enrolments must be made by email or post)
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 Tel.   020 7060 2283  International +44 207 060 2283  Fax service discontinued - please use email.