How To Apply
UCP Diploma in CBT Therapeutic Counselling

Diploma in CBT Therapeutic Counselling

Pearson Edexcel

course overview

This diploma prepares you for an exciting career in counselling, where you can make a meaningful impact. The Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) provides a comprehensive educational experience focused on understanding and applying CBT techniques. This programme equips students with the knowledge and skills needed to help individuals effectively manage their emotional and psychological well-being. You will explore the core principles of CBT, learning to identify and address cognitive patterns and behaviours that impact mental health. The curriculum emphasises the development of strong communication and active listening skills, enabling you to establish productive and supportive therapeutic relationships with clients.

In addition to the theoretical foundations, the programme covers practical aspects such as assessment, case management, and the ethical considerations essential to CBT practice. Cultural competence and an awareness of diversity in counselling are also integrated into the curriculum. Moreover, self-awareness and self-care are emphasised to ensure that you can maintain your well-being while assisting others. This diploma programme includes opportunities for supervised practical experience, allowing you to apply CBT techniques in real-world scenarios. It prepares you for a rewarding career as a CBT practitioner, whether in private practice or in various healthcare, mental health, and social service settings, where your skills can make a significant positive impact on the lives of those you work with.

If you are applying to start in September 2023, you must meet the following entry requirements:

5 GCSE grades C/4 or above, including English, Maths and Science and 88 UCAS points, which should be from a related subject in one of the following:

  • A-levels
  • BTEC Level 3 National Diploma
  • IB Diploma
  • Access to HE
  • Related work experience
  • Overseas qualifications are judged to be equivalent to the above.

Students who do not qualify by any of these qualifications may be offered an interview to discuss equivalent qualifications and previous experience.
We accept A Level General Studies and AS levels when combined with other full qualifications.
If English is not your first language, you will require an IELTS score of 6.0 or above or an equivalent English Language qualification.

Applicants must have a Certificate in Counselling Skills and Theory (Level 3)
Mature students or students who do not have the above qualifications can contact our admissions team on 01733 214466 or to discuss equivalent qualifications or relevant work experience.

An enhanced DBS check is required.


We can accept a wide range of overseas qualifications and use UK NARIC to compare qualifications. For advice about overseas qualification conversion call the Admissions Office on 01733 214466 or email


APCL relates to learning completed through an earlier course of study. If you have previously completed a course which is relevant to your proposed course you should make this clear when you apply. For this to be eligible for consideration you must be able to provide certification, which shows your success in a final assessment for that course. Learning must be completed in the last five years or further evidence of updating will be required. Simple participation in a course or an attendance certificate is not sufficient.


We offer students flexibility in their studies, by recognising learning they may have completed elsewhere before they apply. The Accreditation of Prior Learning process ensures that we can take this into account when determining the modules you must study. It is important that you identify any relevant prior learning when you apply. If your previous study specifically relates to modules on the course you wish to undertake we may approve a reduced programme of study, thus shortening the time it takes to obtain your award. Where this relates to learning completed through an earlier course of study, this is called Prior Certificated Learning, and where learning has been achieved through relevant work or experience, this is referred to as Prior Experiential Learning. Claims must be approved before you commence a course.


It is important to understand that the APEL process does not award academic credit for experience alone, but for learning which can be shown to have been achieved through that experience. Students are required to prepare an individual case for the credit arising from their learning experiences. This normally means that a student receives support in the preparation of a portfolio, which evidences their claimed exemptions for entry. This portfolio of evidence is then submitted for assessment and the possible award of academic credit. Alternative methods of assessment of evidence may be available but needs to be discussed with the Admissions team or Course Leader.

Level 4 overview

In year one of the CBT Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling, prospective students can look forward to a well-rounded educational experience that prepares them for a fulfilling career in cognitive-behavioural therapy. In Module 9, students will delve into CBT Counselling Theory, gaining a deep understanding of the fundamental principles that underpin this evidence-based approach. They will learn to identify and address cognitive patterns and behaviours that impact mental health, a crucial skill for helping clients effectively manage their emotional and psychological well-being. Module 10, CBT Counselling Practice, takes the theory to the practical realm. Students will learn to apply CBT techniques in real-world scenarios, honing their ability to establish therapeutic relationships, actively listen, and communicate empathetically. Practical exercises and supervised sessions provide hands-on experience, allowing students to put their knowledge into action.

Modules 3 and 4 of the CBT Diploma expand the horizons of students. Module 3, Theoretical Perspectives in Human Development and Counselling, offers a broader perspective by exploring the complexities of human development and its relevance to counselling. Understanding how clients’ life experiences intersect with CBT principles is crucial for providing tailored and effective treatment. Module 4, Integrating Other Counselling Approaches and Creative Therapies, introduces students to different counselling modalities and creative therapies, allowing them to enhance their counselling toolbox. This year equips students with a profound knowledge of CBT theory, practical counselling skills, a nuanced understanding of human development, and the ability to adapt and integrate various counselling approaches. As a result, they are well-prepared to begin their journey towards a successful career in cognitive-behavioural therapy, making a meaningful impact in their clients’ lives.

Level 5 overview

In the second year of the CBT Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling, students can anticipate a profound expansion of their knowledge and skills. Module 11, Relationship Counselling Theory and Practice, will equip them to address the complexities of human relationships. They will gain a deep understanding of the theories and techniques essential for helping individuals and couples navigate the intricacies of their connections. This module not only enhances their theoretical knowledge but also hones their practical skills, allowing them to offer valuable support to those seeking guidance in matters relating to relationships with other people.  The focus here is on any relationship, not just romantic.

Module 12, Addiction Theory and Practice, delves into the world of addiction and substance abuse. Students will acquire the insights and tools necessary to assist individuals grappling with addiction. This module will empower them with the knowledge of addiction theory and the practical skills required to support individuals on their journey to recovery. As they move forward, Module 7 explores Understanding and Addressing Mental Health, with a specific focus on Anxiety, Depression, and Phobias. This comprehensive understanding of common mental health challenges will enable them to provide effective interventions and help clients manage their conditions. Lastly, in Module 8, students will engage in Integrating Theory, Practice, and Self. This module encourages self-reflection and personal growth, ensuring that they not only become proficient practitioners but also compassionate and empathetic counsellors. The second year of the CBT Diploma provides a well-rounded and comprehensive education, preparing students for a rewarding and impactful career in counselling.

Year 1

Module 9 CBT Counselling Theory  – level 4

Module 10 CBT Counselling Practice – level 4

Module 3 Theoretical Perspectives in Human Development and Counselling – level 4

Module 4 Integrating Other Counselling Approaches and Creative Therapies  -– level 4

Year 2

Module 11 Relationship counselling Theory and Practice – level 5

Module 12 Addiction theory and practice – level 5

Module 7 Understanding and Addressing Mental Health Anxiety, Depression, and Phobias – level 5

Module 8 Integrating Theory, practice and Self – level 5

This course is timetabled into one full day a week over two semesters per year or one afternoon and evening on the same day over two semesters per year We are able to offer this convenient timetabling to our students as we are a smaller institution so we can timetable our staff and resources more efficiently.

There are two semesters per year and each semester is up to 16 weeks.

When studying you will be in classes, seminars and tutorials for approximately 7 hours per week and will spend the rest of your time in independent study and extra-curricular activities including work. We recommend that full-time students allow an additional 15 hours per week for additional study.

The campus is open Monday to Friday term time and you will also have 24/7 access to a virtual learning environment (VLE) with e-books, journals and abstracts plus teaching resources and interactive tools.

Timetables are available at least 6 weeks before registration and you can refer to the academic calendar for examination weeks and resit periods.

The days of the week you study may change each year and in some circumstances one of the full days might have to be split into two half days, but we aim to keep these as full days where possible.

Throughout the duration of your course you will be assessed using a variety of assessment methods. These include essays, case studies, role play, reflective journals and a placement portfolio.

Year one (Level 4)
100% Coursework
Year two (Level 5)
100% Coursework

We will provide, by the beginning of the first week of each semester, a current module guide with all the information you need for each module, including details of assessment tasks, the deadlines for these tasks, the required format and any relevant guidance.

Students must have the ability to secure 100 hours of counselling practice.

As the course is timetabled on the same day during the week this also gives you the flexibility to find a work placement. A work placement handbook is provided and UCP can provide a list of possible work placements providers. An enhanced DBS will be required for your placement. This will be arranged in conjunction with your placement provider.

Cal Gilchrist is a highly qualified and experienced educator, mentor, and counsellor. With an array of academic achievements, including an MA in Education with a focus on Mentoring and Coaching, a Postgraduate Certificate in Supervision, and a Level 5 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling, she brings a wealth of knowledge to her teaching and mentoring roles. Cal has a passion for personal development and has continuously expanded her expertise with certifications in areas such as EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques), addiction studies, and life coaching. Her extensive teaching experience encompasses various levels and subjects, including therapeutic counselling, psychology, and health studies. As an Academic Course Writer and Curriculum Lead in Higher Education, Cal excels in academic management and curriculum development, ensuring that students receive the most up-to-date and relevant education. Furthermore, her research interests in areas like domestic violence, addictions, and witness experiences demonstrate her commitment to making a positive impact on society through education and counselling. Cal’s dedication to excellence and her broad knowledge base make her an invaluable asset to our courses, providing students with the opportunity to learn from a passionate and accomplished educator. Join our courses to benefit from Cal’s expertise and embark on a transformative educational journey.

After successful completion of the Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling, you have the opportunity to complete the Level 6 of the BA (Hons) Person Centred and CBT Counselling & Psychology (Top-up) course to obtain a full honours degree with a further year of study.

This course qualifies you at practitioner level as a Counsellor. You could gain employment in the counselling field or related psychological professions.


This course is for 2 years.
Option 1: 1 full day a week over two semesters per year)
Option 2: 1 afternoon and evening a week on the same day over two semesters per year

The course costs £6,500 for the whole course. The course fully covers levels 4 and 5 of the subject, giving a comprehensive understanding of the topic. For those who require financial assistance, there is the option of taking out a student loan (dependent on your eligibility).

In this prospectus we will give you clear and accurate information so you can make the best choice for a successful future

Download Prospectus
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