With the Irish State in the process of State Registration, there is growing recognition of the value of psychotherapy as a clinical intervention which invites a person to work on the questions that unsettle, depress or mentally disturb them. 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. This course is taught by very experienced practitioner- teachers and:
The course may be of value and interest to
Diverse class groups compromised of people with differing backgrounds and life experiences
This one year, two-trimester 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. It can serve as an effective basis for making a decision regarding the modality of psychotherapy one may choose to train in. UCD Psychotherapy offers four clinical training MSc programmes.
Graduates with Level 8 (NFQ) BA or BSc, or equivalent Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL), are eligible to apply for the Higher Diploma.
The Higher Diploma can provide a very important knowledge of psychotherapy practices for anyone with a role in social care, teaching or mental health services. This course will also be of great interest to those with a curiosity about the field of psychotherapy.
This course has also been recommended for psychiatrists involved in leadership of Multi-Disciplinary Teams; and for managers in the health and social care services
Graduates of this course 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.
No previous study of psychotherapy or cognate fields such as health social care or psychology is required.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
The list of Contributors to the teaching of this course includes:
Jude Bowles, Dr Richard Blennerhassett, Gerard Butcher, Aine Casey, Orla Crowley, Dr Mary Cosgrave, Mary Cullen, Dr. Michelo DelMonte, Dr Grainne Donohue, Dr. Leonard Douglas, Dr Nicola Elmer, Monica Errity, Dr. Malcolm Garland, Dr Claire Hayes, Dr Terence Larkin, Maura Leahy, Dr Rik Loose, Dr Anthony McCarthy, Ros McCarthy, Malachi McCoy, Karina Melvin, Stephanie Metcalfe, Mary O’Doherty, Dr Barry O’Donnell, Paula Rock, Dr Emer Rutledge, Dr John Sheehan, Kim Spendlove, Diarmuid Stokes, Martina Vaughan.
Further Contributors may be added to this list.
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.
The course takes place on Tuesday afternoons from 2.00 – 7.15 pm over the academic year, beginning in early September and concluding in 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.
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.
A list of FAQs for international applicants is available here.
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.