City scape

Systemic Family Therapy

This comprehensive programme in Systemic Psychotherapy/Family Therapy has particular relevance for professionals in the health, social services, education, and related disciplines. This programme, which is recognised as one of the foremost psychotherapy training courses in Ireland has been running, subject to review and revision, for twenty-five years. This programme has recently been modified to fit with academic and professional training requirements emerging from both Irish and European Academic and Professional bodies.

This course is aimed at students who wish to develop their skills and knowledge in working as Systemic Psychotherapists with individuals, couples and families.

Course Features

•Enables graduates to practice as family therapists in Ireland and abroad.

•The subjects of Theory, Clinical Practice, Personal Professional Development (PPD), Research and Diversity and Inclusivity are integral to the development of systemic Practice.

•Live Supervision of Clinical Practice is a unique feature of this course and a mentorship approach to learning clinical skills.

•Clanwilliam course places a significant emphasis on reflective practices and the key supporting theoretical underpinnings of collaborative dialogical practices and systemic ideas.

•Students are provided with opportunities to reflect on practice form the outset in multiple domains including PPD groups.

•Students undertake a dissertation utilising a newer methodology 1st person enquiry which is coherent with the ideas and practices of family therapy and reflective practice.

•Students are expected to have clinical practices opportunities throughout the duration of the course.

Who should apply
Anyone who has an interest in training as a Psychotherapist. Such as:

•Addiction Counselors
•Child Care Professionals
•People in Business
•Social Workers
•Teachers and Guidance Counselors
•Those wishing to change career pathway

Direct entry routes are for graduates of the human sciences

Indirect/ Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) routes are available to other applicants who may wish to change career.

Clanwilliam's Course has had students from a wide variety of disciplines

Accreditation and and Awards

Graduates are eligible for registration with the Family Therapy Association of Ireland, the Irish Council of Psychotherapy and the European Association of Psychotherapy.

The Clanwilliam Institute is accredited by EAPTI (European Accredited Psychotherapy Training Institutes), which is an accredited Training Institute with EAP (European Association for Psychotherapy). The Clanwilliam Institute is also accredited through FTAI (Family Therapy Association of Ireland). The first three years are accredited by Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI). The Four-Year Programme is accredited by EAP and FTAI as leading to an award of European Certificate in Psychotherapy.

Entry requirements

Direct Entry

1. To be considered for admission, applicants should hold an honours primary degree (National Framework of Qualifications Level 8) in a field of study in the human sciences or its equivalent.


2. Hold an Ordinary degree (National Framework of Qualifications Level 7) in a field of study in the human sciences or its equivalent and have obtained a minimum of three years relevant post-qualification experience.

RPL (Recognition of Prior Learning) – Indirect Entry

Applicants who are not entitled to direct entry may be considered for entry based on their prior learning, that is their knowledge and skills acquired through life, work experience and study, not attested through formal certification. Applicants will be considered provided they can demonstrate equivalence to Direct Entry Requirements which can be verified through the Clanwilliam Institute RPL process. Applicants will be required to demonstrate an ability to contribute to and benefit from the programme.

Applicants who are considering application through this route are encouraged to make informal enquiries to the Head of Training. Applicants will be required to satisfy the Head of Training and the Programme Committee as to their capacity to contribute to and benefit from the programme.

Note: Under Institute RPL procedures, a Support Person is available to assist RPL applicants

RPL applications take a minimum of 9 weeks to prepare and one week for a decision. Therefore, RPL applications should commence at least 10 weeks prior to the closing date for direct entry applications. Late applications may result in less time for preparation of portfolio.

Fees for RPL applications are available on request.

For non-native English speakers tested evidence of competency in English is required.


4 years part-time

Further enquiries

Subjects taught

Year One

Postgraduate Diploma in Systemic Psychotherapy Part 1 Foundation Level Professional Training Programme in Systemic Psychotherapy

Year Two
Postgraduate Diploma in Systemic Psychotherapy Part 2 / Intermediate Level Professional Training Programme in Systemic Psychotherapy (exit award at end of Year 2)

Year Three
Masters in Science in Systemic Psychotherapy

Year Four
Professional Level Training Programme in Systemic Psychotherapy

Application date

Applications to be submitted by email to and by post.

To apply for Direct Entry to the MSc. In Systemic Psychotherapy we require a completed application form together with Curriculum Vitae including qualifications (awards), personal statement and the names of two referees who are familiar with your work and/or academic abilities, should be submitted to the Training Department.

An application processing fee of €75 is required.

The application will not be processed until the application fee is received. If incomplete applications are received they will not be processed until all documents, forms, etc. are received.

Remember to mention gradireland when contacting institutions!