Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

Course Outline
This Postgraduate Diploma in CBT provides comprehensive training in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. The programme is offered part-time over two years. The course is aligned with the British Association for Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP). Individuals who meet the criteria for core profession and successfully complete this programme will have met the minimum training standards and can apply for individual accreditation here.

Following successful completion of the Postgraduate Diploma, students can progress to the MSc in Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy. It is also possible to exit after completing the first year with an award of Postgraduate Certificate in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (although this will not meet all the requirements to be accredited as a CBT Therapist).

The Postgraduate Diploma in CBT will provide comprehensive training in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. At the end of the programme students will be competent in the delivery of CBT. Theoretical principles and competencies are covered as well as Clinical Supervision of practice with clients experiencing mental health difficulties.

Course Practicalities
Students undertaking this programme will attend for a full week in September along with one evening per week between September and May per year. Students will be required to undertake clinical supervision of their practice with an accredited Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist. The university will provide a list of accredited Cognitive Behavioural Therapists. The cost of clinical supervision will be the responsibility of individual students. Each student must ensure they have access to individuals experiencing mental health difficulties in order to undertake the clinical component of this programme.

One module (NU6005) is a Blended Learning module which will be taken alongside other postgraduate diploma students. This module consists of online coursework, shared learning using discussion boards and attendance at workshops. Support is provided by an appropriate member of staff.

Why Choose This Course
The course is relevant to all healthcare professionals, particularly those working in the area of mental health such as psychiatric nurses, psychiatrists and allied professionals.

The Postgraduate Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy involves lectures and workshops from Cognitive Behavioural Therapists and Clinical Psychologists in practice allowing students to apply CBT theory and research into clinical practice by experienced clinicians. You will learn the core principles of CBT across the lifespan and also address complexity and transdiagnostic factors and strategies to address these. Clinical practice commences in semester two of year one and involves clinical supervision of practice allowing students to develop their practice competencies in cognitive behavioural therapy supported by a strong evidence base.

Upon successful completion of the course students will be eligible to apply for BABCP provisional accreditation. The course has been given NMBI category 11 approval.

Subjects taught

Year 1 (30 credits)
• MH6001 Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Core Competencies I (5 credits)
• MH6000 Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Core Competencies II (5 credits)
• MH6139 Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Supervised Practice 1 (5 credits)
• MH6137 Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) models of Anxiety Disorders (10 credits)
• MH6136 Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) Behavioural Activation for Depression (5 credits)

Year 2 (30 credits)
• MH6003 Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Supervised Practice II (5 credits)
• NU6005 Research Methods (10 credits) (Blended learning module)
• MH6134 Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Depression and Comorbidity (5 credits)
• MH6133 Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Complex Cases (10credits)

Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our book of modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.

University Calendar
You can find the full academic content for the current year of any given course in our University Calendar.

Entry requirements

Applicants for the Postgraduate Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy will normally:
1. Have a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) or an equivalent qualification in a relevant subject (e.g. Nursing, Medicine, Social Work, Clinical Therapies, Special Needs Education or other allied disciplines);
2. Be a practising professional in a recognised Core Profession* as follows:
o Registered Nurse - Mental Health or Intellectual Disability Nursing (Registered Nurse in Intellectual Disability, RNID);
o Psychology – 1st degree plus a postgraduate qualification (MSc or Doctorate) in an applied area such as clinical, counselling, educational, forensic, health psychology. HCPC Registered as Practitioner Psychologist (HCPC registration alone is insufficient);
o Psychotherapy/Counselling (Accredited with the IACP);
o Medicine (Psychiatrist or General Practitioner, MB, BCh, BAO and usually PG training with membership of MRCGP, MRCP or MRCPsych);
o Social Work (CQSW, DipSW or BA/BSc Hons Social Work);
o Probation Services – DipPS;
o Occupational Therapy (BSc (Hons) Occupational Therapy, MSc Occupational Therapy, or Dip C.O.T and HCPC Registered);
o Arts Therapists – HCPC Registered;
o Teacher of Special Education Needs (CertEd, B.Ed, or BA/BSc with PGCE, plus additional specialist training in Special Education, with additional counselling / psychotherapy training);
3. Applicants must provide evidence of current registration with the relevant professional regulatory body as detailed above (e.g. The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland, the Irish Medical Council, the Health & Social Care Professions Council or be eligible for such registration);
4. Have a minimum of 36 months post registration experience working within a health care or education setting;
5. Applicants must provide a 250 words statement as to how cognitive behavioural therapy will be useful in their work and confirm they have access to individuals experiencing mental health difficulties in order to undertake the clinical component of this programme;
6. All applicants for the postgraduate diploma programme must provide the name and contact details of two referees; at least one of these must be from a work source, either voluntary or paid, who is familiar with their work practice with regards to their suitability for undertaking this programme. The other referee can be from a service user or an employer;

In cases where the number of suitably qualified applicants exceeds the number of places available, selection will be made by interview.

*Core Professions are those recognized by the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy (BABCP).

English Language Requirements
Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available at

For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland
Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements, available at

International/non-EU applicants
For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

Application dates

Closing Date: Non-EU Closing Date: 3 June 2022

Open for EU applications, check rounds closing dates under
How to Apply - Application Date Weblink below.

How Do I Apply
1. Choose Course
Firstly choose your course. Applicants can apply for up to two courses under one application. Details of taught courses are available on our online prospectus.

2. Apply Online
Once you have chosen your course you can apply online at the online application portal. Applicants will need to apply before the course closing date. There is a non-refundable €50 application fee for all courses apart from the Education - Professional Master of Education - (Secondary School/Post-Primary Teacher Training) which has a €100 application fee.

Applicants for the Postgraduate Diploma in Public Health Nursing must apply on the PAC website when the programme opens for applications.

3. Gather Supporting Documents
Scanned copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded to the online application portal in support of your application. • Applicants may need to produce the original documents if you are accepted onto a course and register at UCC.
• Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC
• Any supplementary items requested for your course.

Please log into the online application portal for more details.

4. Application processing timeline
Our online application portal opens for applications for most courses in early November of each year. Check specific course details.

5. Rounds
For courses that are in the rounds system (Irish and EU applicants), please check the rounds closing dates.

Additional Requirements (All Applicants)
Please note you will be required to provide additional information as part of the online application process for this programme. This will include the following questions:
• You may enter the details of professional or voluntary positions held. We strongly encourage you to complete this section with all relevant work experiences that will support your application.
• In addition to your previously declared qualifications, please outline any additional academic courses, self-learning and professional training relevant to this programme.
• Please describe your motivation and readiness for this programme.
• Please add the name and email address of 2 referees.
• Please upload certification of current registration with the appropriate professional body.
• All applicants must also submit a signed Declaration Form, to be completed by the Director of Nursing/Equivalent Authorised Manager.


2 years part-time

Post Course Info

Skills and Careers Information
If you are a caring professional who would like to develop expertise in evidence based therapy, this course is for you. This programme will enable you to become a reflective practitioner and increase your awareness and theoretical understanding of cognitive behavioural therapy. It will encourage you to adopt an informed and critical approach to the professionalisation of therapy. It will further increase your theoretical understanding and practical application of CBT by enhancing your clinical and professional skills thereby allowing you to work towards practicing as a cognitive behavioural therapist.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Postgraduate Diploma (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Part time

  • Apply to

    Course provider