Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Psychotherapy and Counselling (MSc) (2024 Entry)

Two ladies talking to each other

Explore our Psychotherapy and Counselling taught Master's degree.

Psychotherapy and Counselling, offered as a part time MSc with a clinical placement, will provide you with in-depth clinical training. Join Warwick's Centre for Lifelong Learning and work with field experts as you develop psychotherapeutic and counselling skills.

Course overview

The course will provide in-depth clinical training which integrates theory and best practice from a suitable range of psychotherapeutic and counselling approaches, framed distinctively by a holistic view of the self and human experience. The course will include a supervised clinical placement which requires a minimum of 100 hours of therapeutic client work during the master’s programme, as well as a balance of teaching and learning in theory, professional knowledge, and individual development.

You will increase your self-awareness during both your professional and personal development, as you build the skills in an intellectually stimulating, learning experience that will equip you to work with people with a range of needs. There is also a research opportunity, supported by our highly qualified team of academic staff.

Upon successful completion of MSC, students on the psychotherapist route will be eligible to complete a mandatory 1-year post Masters, after which trainees will be eligible for UKCP registration as a psychotherapist or psychotherapeutic counsellor through The Universities Psychotherapy and Counselling Association (UPCA), via Universities Training Council (UTC), which is one of the colleges of the UKCP.

We are currently confirming with the UPCA the requirements for the students on the Psychotherapeutic Counsellor route to take the additional ACP year or other suitable requirements for completion. Applicants and students will be informed as soon as we have the information.

UKCP logo UPCA logo

*In order to complete UKCP requirements for registration as a psychotherapeutic counsellor, a total of 450 hours of clinical practice with clients is needed. If you have not completed the 450 hours by the end of the 3 taught Masters years, there is a 1-2 year post-Masters Accreditation Completion Programme. On this programme, you must attend weekly teaching and supervision sessions at the University.

• 450 Clinical hours completion for UKCP accreditation
• A Supervision ratio of 1 hour per 6 hours practice with UKCP approved supervisor
• A clinical placement in a setting with a Placement Partner (varied by exception only, e.g. regarding student location and distance from University)

Although we are developing partnership arrangements with placement providers for the MSc and can offer some guidance and support with possibilities for clinical placement, we do not allocate placements to students. It is the student's responsibility to arrange their clinical placements in order to complete the 450 hours required for UKCP practitioner accreditation. We do however have a list of placement agencies that we have used before. Although in themselves there is no guarantee they will be sufficient, Warwick students have a strong track record of finding placements and completing them successfully.

In Year 1 of the programme, students undertake a work-based learning placement of 30 hours to gain experience and knowledge about how psychotherapy and counselling agencies operate, which will help them prepare for the full clinical placement which begins in Year 2. As with clinical placements, students find their work-based learning placements themselves, with support from the database of previous providers.

  Psychotherapist Psychotherapeutic Counsellor
Minimum clinical hours completion by end of Year 3 200 100
Total personal therapy hours with UKCP therapist 160
40 hours a year Years 1-4
Minimum 30 hours a year Years 1-3

Skills from this degree

  • Use a range of meaningful and effective integrative approaches to develop relational skills for application to therapeutic practice
  • Address a broad range of client need including more complex and severe mental health difficulties
  • Apply a high level of relevant academic and professional knowledge to a range of settings, which provide counselling, psychotherapy and mental health services
  • Utilise personal development opportunities to enhance interpersonal skills
  • Acquire research skills and knowledge which are relevant to the counselling and psychotherapy field, and which can inform and enhance evidence-based practice

General entry requirements

Minimum requirements

2:i (BA/BSc Honours or equivalent) in psychology, social sciences, arts-related subject; basic counselling skills training and evidence of experience, of forming and sustaining helping relationships (either employed or voluntary).

Where appropriate, applicants with significant relevant study and professional and personal development qualifications and experience which does not equate to 2.i level, will be considered on a case by case basis.

Complete an enhanced Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check through Warwick. If during the processing of the DBS check it becomes clear that you have lived for six months or more in a different country in the past five years, then we will also add the condition to provide an original overseas police check from that country.

Demonstration of personal and practical readiness to train as a practising psychotherapist or psychotherapeutic counsellor.


3 years part-time (plus up to two years on a post-master's accreditation programme for registration as a psychotherapist or psychotherapeutic counsellor).

English language requirements

You can find out more about our English language requirementsLink opens in a new window. This course requires the following:

  • Band A
  • Overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5 and component scores.

Student VISAs

The University of Warwick is not currently sponsoring students on part-time courses, including part-time courses that are akin to distance learning, with a Student visa.

Therefore, we will not be able to produce a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) for a part-time course.

Please visit our visa pages and read the guidance provided to see if your visa permits study at The University of Warwick.

International qualifications

We welcome applications from students with other internationally recognised qualifications.

For more information, please visit the international entry requirements pageLink opens in a new window.

Additional requirements

There are no additional entry requirements for this course.

Core modules

Throughout this degree, you will take 60 credits per year.

Year One

The Psychotherapeutic Relationship 1: Introduction to Theory (20 credits)

You will critically analyse and synthesise in-depth specialist knowledge of a range of cutting edge theoretical approaches and their application to therapeutic practices relevant to a holistic and integrative approach to psychotherapy. You will also critically evaluate and compare psychotherapy theories and analyse and evaluate the evidence for their effectiveness, and evaluate their relevance for a holistic – integrative approach.

You will exhibit a sophisticated level of competence and curiosity in the exploration of these theoretical approaches through exercise of generic intellectual abilities as well as a capacity to synthesise and therapeutic theory and then apply this effectively to practice and their own professional and personal development.

The Psychotherapeutic Relationship 1: Introduction to Practice (20 credits)

You will take a proactive and critically evaluative role in practising and synthesising cutting-edge psychotherapeutic skills and approaches, applying key therapeutic qualities in practice and in professional relationships with others. You will critically analyse, synthesise and apply key therapeutic theory, including integrative theory, to practice. To critically and reflectively monitor and systematically evaluate own practice and development, and integrate learning from tutor and peer feedback into practice.

You will also demonstrate and synthesise all aspects of fitness and readiness to practice therapeutically with clients on supervised placement, assessed through: practice observation, written assignments including case studies, overall presentation on the course, including personal development groups and capacity for critical reflection, and viva.

The Psychotherapeutic Relationship 1: Introduction to Individual Development (20 credits)

You will critically and consistently reflect on all aspects of personal development, including cultural competence, and proactively formulate and synthesise ideas and hypotheses to evaluate these. You will also successfully complete the Mental Health placement, and critically evaluate and synthesise knowledge of Mental Health gained to support practice and multi-professional working.

You will also understand, critically evaluate, synthesise and apply, ethical, legal and professional principles to professional and personal development in support of practice

Year Two

The Psychotherapeutic Relationship 2: Development of Theory, Practice and Individual Development (40 credits)

You will be offered every week a blend of formal lecture which includes consideration of application of theory to practice, and a clinical seminar where a student presents and critiques case material from relevant literature. There is also a weekly clinical practice development session which acts as the focus for therapeutic practice development with tutor, peer and self-evaluation and feedback a prominent feature. You will be offered some Saturday teaching sessions which will offer formal lectures, looking at applications to professional and personal development of key themes as well as being expected to fully participate fully in a personal development group.

Research in Professional Practice (20 credits)

This module aims to develop understanding of the research process and its relevance to your professional practice, including designing and carrying out research into your own practice field. This includes identifying research questions and appropriate research strategies and gathering and analysing sources using a variety of methods. It will enable you to carry out research into an aspect of career development or coaching practice of interest and relevance to you.

Year Three

The Psychotherapeutic Relationship 3: Integration of Theory, Practice and Individual Development (20 credits)

You will thoroughly and critically embed key knowledge about relevant psychotherapeutic theories and research, including holistic and integrative approaches, to a sophisticated level. You will also develop the capacity to recognise severely disturbed clients and understand when the psychotherapist or psychotherapeutic counsellor should seek other professional advice. The module also aims to facilitate a deepening capacity for reflection on therapeutic process and understanding of key principles and theory when working with clients on a short-term contract (maximum 12 sessions) as well as on a long term one (at least 40 sessions). You will also evaluate effectively this in the context of your evolving Holistic Phenomenological Integration (model of practice).

Dissertation (40 credits)

MSc Dissertation (15,000 words) is completed during year and is due to be submitted in September of each third year.

You will work on a qualitative research project, leading to the submission of a masters’ dissertation on a topic of interest to you which is also closely relevant to psychotherapy and counselling. In pursuing this you will develop the ability to successfully complete a substantial empirical research project, systematic review or systematic case study informed by wide current understandings in the discipline. This includes the ability to effectively operationalize an appropriate topic related to psychotherapy and counselling as well as relevant research questions; research methods and ethics. In turn you will be supervised in your research as you analyse, synthesise and critically evaluate ideas and applications from psychotherapeutic theory and research, including holistic and integrative approaches, and apply in writing a research dissertation to a sophisticated level

Year 4-5

Accreditation Completion Program

Depending on the training route trainees have pursued, and how many clinical hours have been accumulated during the first two years of the program, you will follow either a Counselling Psychotherapist ACP route, or a Psychotherapy ACP route. Each route will have its own curriculum organised around the accumulation of clinical hours and involved in the extended teaching and learning on mental health complexities and challenges.


Learning is via a combination of formal lecture, seminar, practice development, experiential learning and personal development groups. There is also a requirement for 450 clinical practice hours in a community based placement setting (with 1 to 6 hours supervision requirements) plus a minimum of 35 hours a year personal therapy.

Class sizes

Typical group size is around 18 students.

Typical contact hours

One evening each week (4.5 contact hours) plus one Saturday or Sunday a month (6 hours).

Location and time for 2024 cohort

The course starts with a compulsory induction residential weekend held at the University. Dates are to be confirmed.


Dates Location Time (weekly sessions) Time (monthly Sunday sessions)

University Autumn Term

30 September 2024 to 7 December 2024

University of Warwick

Thursdays 16:00-21:00

Sundays 09:00-17:00

University Spring Term

6 January 2025 to 15 March 2025

Sundays 09:00-17:00

University Summer Term

23 April 2025 to 28 June 2025

Sundays 09:00-17:00

Location and time for 2023 cohort

The course starts with a compulsory induction residential weekend held at the University, Saturday 30th September 2023 and Sunday 1st October 2023.


Dates Location Time (weekly sessions) Time (monthly Saturday sessions)

University Autumn Term

02 October 2023 - 16 December 2023

(Reading week: W/C Monday 30 October 2023)

University of Warwick

Tuesdays 16:00-21:00

Saturday 14 October & 11 November 2023 09:00-17:00

University Spring Term

08 January 2024 - 23 March 2024

(Reading week: W/C Monday 12 February 2024)

Saturday 13 January & 9 March 2024 09:00-17:00

University Summer Term

15 Apr 2024 to 29 Jun 2024

(Reading week: W/C Monday 27 May 2024)

Saturday 11 May & 15 June 2024 09:00-17:00


You will be assessed by a combination of:

  • Written academic assignments: Theory essays, case studies, reflective assignments and a 12-15,000 word research dissertation
  • Fitness to practice assessments: Practice observation, supervision and placement reports, VIVA and completion of practice hours.

Your timetable

Your personalised timetable will be complete when you are registered for all modules, compulsory and optional, and you have been allocated to your lectures, seminars and other small group classes. Your compulsory modules will be registered for you when you join us.

Your career

Our approaches to therapy are geared to the current economic climate, graduates may have the opportunity to work within a range of sectors:

  • NHS and community roles
  • Work within the third sector/private sector - (GP Surgeries, Hospices, Survivors of Domestics Abuse or Substance).

On completion of the Master’s and required hours via the UKCP either during the Master’s programme or during the post-Master’s Accreditation Programme, graduates can register as a qualified Psychotherapeutic Counsellor.

Centre for Lifelong Learning (CLL)

For more than 30 years, the Centre for Lifelong Learning has been a centre of expertise in the education of lifelong learners in different contexts. It has a focus on enabling adult learners to achieve their personal and professional goals by accessing a Warwick education, irrespective of background.

Our departmental research strategy focuses on four interconnected themes: concepts of lifelong learning; people-focused professions; wellbeing and identity; participation and collaboration. We seek to enthuse staff, students, and the wider community with this vision. More information is available on our website.

Find out more about us by visiting our website.Link opens in a new window

Our Postgraduate Taught courses

Our Postgraduate Research courses

Tuition fees

Tuition fees are payable for each year of your course at the start of the academic year, or at the start of your course, if later. Academic fees cover the cost of tuition, examinations and registration and some student amenities.

Find your taught course fees  

Fee Status Guidance

We carry out an initial fee status assessment based on the information you provide in your application. Students will be classified as Home or Overseas fee status. Your fee status determines tuition fees, and what financial support and scholarships may be available. If you receive an offer, your fee status will be clearly stated alongside the tuition fee information.

Do you need your fee classification to be reviewed?

If you believe that your fee status has been classified incorrectly, you can complete a fee status assessment questionnaire. Please follow the instructions in your offer information and provide the documents needed to reassess your status.

Find out more about how universities assess fee status

Additional course costs

As well as tuition fees and living expenses, some courses may require you to cover the cost of field trips or costs associated with travel abroad.

For departmental specific costs, please see the Modules tab on the course web page for the list of core and optional core modules with hyperlinks to our Module Catalogue (please visit the Department’s website if the Module Catalogue hyperlinks are not provided).

Associated costs can be found on the Study tab for each module listed in the Module Catalogue (please note most of the module content applies to 2022/23 year of study). Information about module department specific costs should be considered in conjunction with the more general costs below:

  • Core text books
  • Printer credits
  • Dissertation binding
  • Robe hire for your degree ceremony

Scholarships and bursaries

Scholarships and financial support

Find out about the different funding routes available, including; postgraduate loans, scholarships, fee awards and academic department bursaries.

Living costs

Find out more about the cost of living as a postgraduate student at the University of Warwick.

Find out how to apply to us, ask your questions, and find out more.

Apply to the course

This part-time course has one intake each year. Applications are open until 2nd August 2024.

Apply online

Interviews will be conducted online via Microsoft Teams.

Read our notes on how to apply

Online applicant event

Before you apply, see if you could come onto an online event to meet course teaching staff and like-minded applicants. Ask any questions you have about studying this course, and get personalised guidance to see if this is the right option for you.

Warwick Hosted EventsLink opens in a new window

Our hosted events run throughout the year, with a mixture of virtual and in-person sessions. These events are a great way to learn more about our courses and departments, chat to current students and staff, and find out more information about accommodation, careers, and how to apply.

Postgraduate Fairs

Throughout the year we attend exhibitions and fairs online and in-person around the UK. These events give you the chance to explore our range of postgraduate courses, and find out what it’s like studying at Warwick. You’ll also be able to speak directly with our student recruitment team, who will be able to help answer your questions.