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Practice Based Play Therapy

Who is this course for:
The course is particularly suitable for those wishing to add therapeutic play skills to their existing psychological therapy skills, and/or those working with children including:
• Counsellors and psychotherapists or psychologists
• Teaching staff
• Occupational Therapists
• Nurses and social workers Special

Course Profile
• To focus on play therapy as a method of alleviating a child's emotional, conduct, social and mental health problems using play and creative arts therapies
• To provide an opportunity for experienced practitioners and graduates with relevant professional qualifications to study play therapy at an advanced level, fostering the knowledge, judgment and skills necessary to challenge boundaries at the forefront of the discipline
• To enable participants to apply the therapeutic perspective of play therapy to other types of work with a wider client group
• To provide participants with sufficient skills to obtain work as professional play therapists or establish their own play therapy service.

The course will be delivered during an intensive summer school course of 15 days from early July each academic year. One hundred hours of clinical work with children per stage must be achieved for the Certificate and the Diploma in addition to set written assignment work. This workload normally requires a minimum of 20 months per programme to complete spanning two academic years. Students can exit the course at the end of the Certificate stage or progress to the Diploma stage, once the Certificate has been successfully completed. Students will also attain a professional award of Practice Certificate in Therapeutic Play Skills (on completion of the Certificate), and an award of Certified Play Therapist (on completion of the Diploma).

Entry requirements

Entry Requirements
• Applicants must have at least two years' experience working with children in the relevant sectors and should normally possess a first or second class honours degree in either psychology, education, childhood studies or social work, or have a recognised equivalent professional qualification in a health, social services or education-related field.
• Candidates without a degree, or a recognised equivalent qualification, but with significant experience of working with children, who can produce a satisfactory portfolio of evidence demonstrating their ability to study at this level, may be accepted in exceptional circumstances.


Certificate stage: 20 months, Diploma stage: 20 months

Mode of study
Block release (15-day Residential Summer School)

Number of credits

ECTS Certificate (30) Diploma (30)

Careers or further progression

What career or further study opportunities are there?
The course provides an opportunity for those interested in developing their skills to work therapeutically with children and for those who wish to make a career decision to become a play therapist. The principles of play therapy are used by a wide range of professionals, such as counsellors, psychotherapists, psychologists, teaching staff, occupational therapists, nurses and social workers.

Further enquiries

Monika Jephcott

Assessment method

Assessment differs from module to module, depending on the learning outcomes. Students must also pass the practice placement, have a satisfactory report from their clinical practice supervisor and complete the required number of practice hours for each award.

Application date

The course is offered in collaboration with the Academy of Play and Child Psychotherapy (APAC). Applications are made directly through APAC.

Early application is advisable.

Applications for the programme are made directly to the programme partners – APAC.

Monika Jephcott, the Chief Executive of APAC, can be contacted for detailed information and to discuss your suitability for the course. A separate application pack will be issued from APAC following your initial enquiry.

Programme Enquiries
Monika Jephcott
Email: or
The Academy of Play and Child Psychotherapy or

Course fee

Fees: (per annum)
EU: Cert €3,700, Diploma €3,900
Non-EU: Cert €4,200, Diploma €4,400

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