Cognitive Behaviour Psychotherapy

Anxiety and depression are among the most common mental health disorders experienced by all ages. Cognitive Behaviour Psychotherapy (CBP) is currently the key recommended psychological treatment for these and other mental health conditions. It is essential that practitioners are prepared with the necessary knowledge, skills and attitudes to deliver CBP competently. This course is written to the requirements of the lead organisation in the UK which sets the competency standards for Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy. The teaching at the University is of the highest standard. This course will fundamentally alter the way clinicians work in practice.‌

The Postgraduate Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy is jointly offered by the School of Nursing and Midwifery and the School of Social Sciences, Education and Social Work. It is a rationalisation of two separate postgraduate diplomas in CBP/CBT which were previously offered by the two Schools. The programme meets the minimum training requirements for accreditation as a CBP therapist by the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP).

Please note that this course is not eligible for a Student route visa.

Closing date for applications: 13th May 2024. Late applications may be considered.

Course Structure
The Postgraduate Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy (CBP) consists of 6 x 20 credit modules, which are linked to the BABCP Minimum Training Standards for therapist accreditation (Level 2) and the Specialist Level award for social workers.

Students undertake 3 core modules and 1 optional module in Year 1 and 2 core modules in Year 2.

Students attend one day per week with small group supervision provided in the morning, followed by workshop teaching for the remainder of the day.

The course is delivered over three semesters during an 18 month period and provides training in the evidence based CBT models including those recommended in NICE guidelines. Throughout the course, training supervision is provided each morning in small groups before teaching commences. Trainees will be expected to provide therapy with a minimum of 8 clients during the course and arrange their own clinical supervision within the agency providing the clients for the trainee.
Therapy sessions should be recorded on camera for supervision purposes and to facilitate self-reflection on practice development.

Teaching and supervision are provided each Thursday in Year 1 and on Friday in Year 2 and trainees should plan for a second day to provide therapy with clients, receive supervision at base and critically review their own performance.

Each module is taught one day per week over 3 x 12-week semesters at Queen’s campus. Students must attend small group training supervision sessions at Queen’s. Where possible, these will be delivered during the teaching days. They are designed to facilitate the integration of research and theory with practice, and the development of skills in CBT. Clinical accountability for CBT clinical practice remains with the agency responsible for the patients.

Subjects taught

The information below is intended as an example only, featuring module details for the current year of study (2023/24). Modules are reviewed on an annual basis and may be subject to future changes – revised details will be published through Programme Specifications ahead of each academic year.

Year 1
Core Modules
Core Concepts and Skills of Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy for Depression (20 credits)
Training Supervision - application of CBP Models and Skills for Depression and Anxiety Disorders. (20 credits)
Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy for Anxiety Disorders (20 credits)
Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy for Complex Disorders (20 credits)
Training supervision for the application of CBP Models and Skills for Complex Disorders (20 credits)

Optional Modules
Self-Practice / Self Reflection in CBP (20 credits)
Evidence Based Practice (20 credits)

Entry requirements

Applicants must hold a 2.2 Honours degree or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in a cognate area, such as Mental Health Nursing, Psychiatry, Applied Psychology or equivalent recognised professional qualification(s).

In addition, you should have:
• At least two years' clinical practice / experience in a relevant area (statutory or independent sector) working with clients with mood and anxiety disorders, AND
• Be employed in clinical practice in a suitable area (where CBT approaches are employed) with the support of your management for study on the course, AND
• Have access to a minimum of eight suitable clients and supervision by an experienced BABCP accredited Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist while on placement in your own clinical area.

The eight clients must represent a minimum of at least three different types of mental health condition.
• A minimum of four cases will have been closely supervised.
• You must have access to your supervisor and be under supervision while you are seeing clients.
• You must spend a minimum of one hour per week engaged in face to face supervision; some of this must be ‘live’ supervision.
• All assessment and therapy sessions, with client consent, must be video recorded; this is both for supervision and assessment purposes and meets the requirement for ‘live’ supervision.

Applications are accepted from non-core professions such as counsellors. Non-core professionals, however, will be required to provide a portfolio of evidence in line with KSA guidelines as provided by the BABCP. Applicants who meet the academic criteria but who are non-core and unable to provide KSA evidence will be required to enter through the School's KSA pathway. In this instance if all other requirements are met the applicant will be offered a place on the one year certificate programme to allow time for the KSA portfolio to be completed. On successful completion of this course and the completion of the KSA portfolio, the student will normally then be eligible for application to the PGDip programme.

Applicants who do not meet the entry requirements should contact the School for advice.

Closing date for applications: Monday 13th May 2024. Late applications may be considered.

Applicants are advised to apply as early as possible and ideally no later than 31st July 2023 for courses which commence in late September. In the event that any programme receives a high number of applications, the University reserves the right to close the application portal. Notifications to this effect will appear on the Direct Application Portal against the programme application page.

Assessment Info

Presentation or practical demonstration
Written assessment
Clinical practice portfolio
Videoed clinical work


2 years (Part Time)

Enrolment dates

Entry Year: 2024/25

Post Course Info

Career Prospects
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy services are an expanding area of mental health services due to an increasing demand for evidence-based psychological therapies. The award of the PG Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy will enable students to apply for professional employment as fully accredited Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapists.

Queen's postgraduates reap exceptional benefits. Unique initiatives, such as Degree Plus and Researcher Plus bolster our commitment to employability, while innovative leadership and executive programmes help our students gain key leadership positions both nationally and internationally.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Postgraduate Diploma at UK Level 7

  • Attendance type

    Blended,Part time

  • Apply to

    Course provider