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Psychotherapy Studies

Course Features
Offers an introduction to the psychotherapies and prepares students for further specialist training.

Provides an academic foundation in the theoretical and clinical literature in the field.

Tailored not only to trainees or practitioners in disciplines within the mental health arena but also to applicants from non-cognate areas who may be considering embarking on a clinical training in psychotherapy.

Taught by experienced practitioners.

Course Overview

This one year full-time Higher Diploma programme provides an introduction to the major modalities of psychotherapy, to psychoanalysis and to psychiatric/mental health practice. It can be a very solid foundation for clinical training in psychotherapy. UCD Psychotherapy offers four clinical training MSc programmes.

Who Should Take This Course?

Graduates with Level 8 (NFQ) BA or BSc, or equivalent Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL), are eligible to apply for the Higher Diploma. Academic qualification at postgraduate level is becoming an integral part of a professional career path in psychotherapy and a knowledge of the different modalities of psychotherapy is strongly recommended. The Higher Diploma can provide a very important knowledge of psychotherapy practices for anyone with a leadership role in mental health services, whether clinical or operational. It has been recommended for psychiatrists in, or heading towards, consultant posts involving leadership of Multi-Disciplinary Teams. Graduates of the Higher Diploma can make an informed decision on a modality of psychotherapy in which to train and may be interested in applying for one of the four clinical training MSc programmes offered by UCD Psychotherapy.

Course Description

This one year programme can provide a solid foundation for subsequent clinical training in a specific modality of psychotherapy through the provision of an academic foundation in the theoretical and clinical literature in the field. It can also serve to provide comprehensive knowledge of psychotherapy practices for anyone for whom such knowledge will enhance their leadership and clinical decision making.

It is taught by practitioners in the field and is suited not only to trainees or practitioners in disciplines within the mental health arena but also to applicants from non-cognate areas who may be considering embarking on a clinical training in psychotherapy.

Programme Aims
Students will achieve an understanding of the complex theories and concepts that underlie the main modalities of psychotherapy, of psychoanalysis and of current psychiatric practice. As well as psychoanalytic psychotherapy, child art psychotherapy, group analytic psychotherapy, systemic family psychotherapy are covered in detail. Students learn about psychotherapy based on theories of development, humanistic psychotherapy on the integrative model, dramatherapy, cognitive behavioural psychotherapy, interpersonal psychotherapy and other current forms of psychotherapy practice. is the exemplar, the cognitive therapies, the integrative therapies and family and group therapies. Graduates of the Higher Diploma can make an informed decision on a modality of psychotherapy in which to train and may be interested in applying for one of the four clinical training MSc programmes offered by UCD Psychotherapy.

Entry requirements

Overview
Open to applicants with a Honours Level 8 (NFQ) qualification or equivalent experience-based prior learning.

Most relevant to workers in the field of mental health practice and health work generally as well as those involved in education and social care provision but applicants from outside these fields are also most welcome.

Relevant professional experience and qualification is welcome but not a prerequisite.

Applicants will be interviewed and will be expected to show evidence of a commitment to the study of psychotherapy.

International applicants should contact the academic programme director for a full list of entry requirements.

Duration

9 Months

Schedule
Sept-May. Block teaching: Tuesdays 2.00-7.15pm

Programme Structure

The course takes place on Tuesday afternoons from 2.00 – 7.15 pm over the academic year beginning early September and concluding mid May. There are breaks for mid-term in the first Semester and for Easter in the second as well as the Christmas / New Year break.

Number of credits

60

Careers or further progression

Career Opportunities
Postgraduate psychotherapy degrees are becoming an integral part of a professional career path, which requires recognition of formal psychotherapeutic study. The Higher Diploma is taught by practitioners in the field and is suited not only to trainees or practitioners in disciplines within the mental health arena but also to applicants from non-cognate areas who may be considering embarking on a clinical training in psychotherapy.

Further enquiries

Programme Coordinator:
Dr. Barry O'Donnell
Course Director
E: barry.odonnell@ucd.ie
T: +353 1 2213396

Subjects taught

Course Description

This one year programme offers a route to clinical training in the domain of psychotherapy through the provision of an academic foundation in the theoretical and clinical literature in the field. Serving as a 'foundation' year, students are well placed on completion, to make an informed decision on the modality of psychotherapy in which to train.

It is taught by practitioners in the field and is suited not only to trainees or practitioners in disciplines within the mental health arena but also to applicants from non-cognate areas who may be considering embarking on a clinical training in psychotherapy.

Programme Aims

Graduates will achieve an understanding of the complex theories and concepts that underlie the main modalities of psychotherapy. These include the transference-based therapies - of which psychoanalytic psychotherapy is the exemplar, the cognitive therapies, the integrative therapies and family and group therapies. The course aims to inform a graduate's subsequent choice of psychotherapy strand in which to train. As part of continuing training in a specialised strand, graduates will be eligible to apply for one of a suite of MSc programmes currently on offer in the UCD School of Medicine and Medical Science.

The course is delivered in 6 modules (5 taught and 1 dissertation), all of which are core requirements for the award of Higher Diploma. Assessment is by continuous assessment for the taught modules and a mark for the thesis. There are no written examinations. For four of the modules assessment takes the form of essays and class presentation with written reports. One module is assessed on the basis of a learning journal compiled week by week over the course of the year. Students submit a 6,000-word dissertation for which they receive both group tutorial support and individual supervision.

Theoretical Overview of the Psychotherapies

Beginning with a historical introduction, the fundamental concepts and premises of the major approaches in psychotherapy will be explored. Commonalities and differences between the major traditions of psychotherapy are indicated with a tolerance of very diverse and non-complementary principles underlying these very different practices. Classical theories of development from infancy to old age will be examined as will the psychoanalytic position founded on the existence of unconscious mental processes. Awareness of mental health and psychiatric diagnostics will be developed and the potential for the development of psychotherapeutic interventions in the context of the mental health and primary care services will be identified.

The Therapeutic Relationship in Psychotherapy

The module represents different perspectives on the notion of the therapeutic relationship using the psychoanalytic concept of transference a base for appreciating the dynamics of a situation in which one person addresses another on account of some difficulty or perplexity or on account of a question.

Psychotherapies I

This module introduces Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), child art psychotherapy, infant observation and dramatherapy. It represents further applications of psychoanalysis in contexts such as addiction, psychosis, psychiatry, college counselling services and criminality.

Psychotherapies II

Group Analytic Psychotherapy and Family Systemic Psychotherapy are covered in this module. Humanistic Psychotherapy in the integrative model, Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT), Constructivist Therapy, Jungian psychotherapy and solution focussed brief therapies are also introduced in this module. The module concludes with a presentation of the principles of Group therapy and Family therapy.

Research and Clinical Applications Seminar

Emphasis will be placed on the challenges, both ethical and logistical posed to research in the field of psychotherapy. Research methodologies suitable for the investigation of psychotherapy practice and its effects will be studied. The challenge of appropriately relating research in the field of psychotherapy to the research paradigms of the social sciences is addressed.

Dissertation

Students will submit a 6,000 word thesis at the end of the year. Direction in formulating their proposal and in progressing their written work will be supported in designated seminars interspersed in the research and clinical applications seminar. Students will also have an individual thesis supervisor assigned to them.

Comment

How and Where Will I Learn?

Programme Location

All teaching takes place in the School of Psychotherapy within the Department of Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Mental Health Research, St Camillus Ward, Lower Ground Floor, St Vincent's University Hospital, Elm Park, Dublin 4.

Assessment method

Attendance must be 80% or higher for the duration of the course. Assessment is by continuous assessment for the taught modules and a mark for the thesis.

There will be no written examinations. The continuous assessment for each of the 5 taught modules has both formative and summative components. The summative assessment in modules 1 and 2 will be in the form of two 2,500-word essays and two 'in-class' group assessments . In modules 3 and 4 assessment is by 'in-class' group assessments only. This assessment type will be informed by case vignettes presented by the teaching staff leading to small group presentations and subsequent submission of short written reports. For module 5 students will be evaluated on the basis of a learning journal compiled week by week over the course of the year.

Enrolment and start dates

Next Intake September 2018

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised.

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