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Family Thereapy & Systemic Practice

Summary

The programme is fully accredited for Foundation Level Training with the Association for Family Therapy and Systemic Practice. It therefore forms the first step in training to become a fully qualified Family Therapist. Graduates of the course can go on to undertake the next stages in this training - that of Intermediate Level and Masters Level. In addition to this, students working in a variety of work contexts will also benefit from supplementing their own professional skills with the systemic theory and skills learned on the course. Given the broad appeal and applicability of systemic therapy principles, this course will inform and enhance students' understanding and approach to supporting individuals, couples and organisations, as well as families.

*Please note: This PgCert programme is the same PgCert Family Therapy and Systemic Practice programme that has run on the Magee campus of the University - it is moving to the Coleraine campus and will run there from September 2018 onwards.

About

The course aims to:

Introduce the participants to the field of systemic theory, practice and research;

Introduce the participants to the basic skills, applicable to their work settin;

Increase participants' awareness and acceptance of the need for professional practice to be characterised by respectfulness and reflexivity;

Provide a basis from which the student may proceed towards intermediate level training.

At the end of the course, successful students will be able to:

Demonstrate a critical understanding of the development of systemic theory in the context of other therapies

Evaluate the various schools of thought pertaining to family therapy

Identify how stages in the family life cycle can impact on family dynamics

Reflect on the impact of culture on families

Define and apply the theories underpinning the Milan/ Post-Milan school of family therapy

Reflect on their personal and professional stage of development and the impact of systemic theory on these

Identify ways in which systemic theory/ practice can be used in other settings

Teaching and learning assessment

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, workshops, and student-led peer groups. The peer groups promote experiential learning on the programme via role-play and group tasks, designed to develop students' clinical skills and understanding.

Assessment takes the form of essays, reflective diaries, and presentations. There are no written examinations on the programme.

Work placement / study abroad

The clinical placement associated with this programme is arranged by students themselves. The training presents a number of opportunities to connect clinical placement with studies on campus, through exploring and assessing students' clinical experiences in this area of practice.

Entry requirements

Entry Requirements

Applicants must hold a degree or equivalent (either an existing health and social care qualification, or have completed a psychology degree) or demonstrate their ability to undertake the course through the accreditation of prior learning. In order to maximise access to training in systemic practice, entry requirements for foundation level training are kept to a minimum. They are:

a relevant professional training, or equivalent

an opportunity to apply systemic ideas to a current work setting, either voluntary or paid – students must arrange this for themselves

Applicants are required to provide two satisfactory references, outlining their suitability to undertake the course.

All applicants, regardless of qualifications, are advised to use the space provided in the personal statement/additional information section of the online application process, to detail any experience that may be relevant to studying a PgCert in Family Therapy and Systemic Practice.

English Language Requirements

English language requirements for international applicants
The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.

Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.

Exemptions and transferability

Applicants may be exempt from certain elements of the course if they have already undertaken some professional training in Family Therapy and Systemic Practice. Any application for the accreditation of prior learning can be discussed with the course team.

Duration

Attendance

Duration

The course runs from September to June.

The course is taught as two modules:

Module 1 is conducted as one full day (Thursdays) of teaching and seminar work per week across Semester 1 (September to December).

Module 2 runs in Semester 2 (January to June). It is composed of 6 teaching/workshop days (10.00am – 4.30pm), and 5 Peer Group/seminar days (9.30am – 1.00pm). The teaching days and Peer Group days alternate each week (on Mondays).

Placement activity

In addition to the above days on campus, you will be expected to spend at least one day per week throughout the programme in your placement or work context (pre-arranged by you), where you will apply the theory and skills from your training.

Please note:While unlikely, the above details are subject to change.

Careers or further progression

Career options

This course is fully accredited for Foundation Level Training with the Association for Family Therapy and Systemic Practice. It therefore forms the first step in training to become a fully qualified Family Therapist. Graduates of the course can go on to undertake the next stages in this training - that of Intermediate Level and Masters Level. In addition to this, students working in a variety of work contexts will also benefit from supplementing their own professional skills with the systemic theory and skills learned on the course. Given the broad appeal and applicability of systemic therapy principles, this course will inform and enhance students' understanding and approach to supporting individuals, couples and organisations, as well as families.

Further enquiries

Course Director: Professor Gerry Cunningham
T: +44 (0)28 7167 5589
E: g.cunningham1@ulster.ac.uk

Admissions Services
T: +44 (0)28 7167 5678
E: admissionsmg@ulster.ac.uk

Subjects taught

Year one

Family Therapy and Systemic Practice 1
In this module students will be introduced to family therapy and systemic practice theories and will be able to understand how problems, mental ill health and distress may be explained through the lens of systemic thinking. The main models of structural, strategic and Milan theories, along with their historical development will be explored. The process of systemic psychotherapy will be explained with opportunity to practice a systemic assessment, hypothesising and use the relevant intervention techniques, with example case studies. Issues relating to culture, the therapeutic relationship, power and gender in systemic practice will be discussed, along with case examples of how family therapy and systemic practice can be applied in various clinical settings.

Family Therapy and Systemic Practice 2
In this module students will be introduced to family therapy and systemic practice theories and will be able to understand how problems, mental ill health and distress may be explained through the lens of systemic thinking. The main models of structural, strategic and Milan theories will be reinforced, and key practice-related issues will be explored. The process of systemic psychotherapy will be explained with opportunity to practice systemic skills and use the relevant intervention techniques, with example case studies. Issues relating to bereavement, domestic abuse, and child-focused practice will be discussed, along with case examples of how family therapy and systemic practice can be applied in various clinical settings.

Application date

Application is through the University's online application system.

Enrolment and start dates

Start Date: September 2019

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