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MA Psychotherapy and Counselling

Key facts

Start date September 2019

Duration/mode 36 months part time

UK/EU fees £15,000 (total)

Additional cost information

Entry requirements A bachelor degree with a 2:1 (hons) + adequate counselling skills.

Language requirements

IELTS 7.0 overall

This course is available to UK/EU residents only


The MA in Psychotherapy and Counselling provides high quality BACP-accredited training, with a strong research focus. It offers an opportunity to critically and creatively evaluate current theory and practice issues. The focus is on theories of therapy that focus on the therapeutic relationship as the crucial factor and students will have the opportunity to learn about various relational theories and are encouraged to learn more about themselves in relationships, to develop their own approach to therapy based on their own values and beliefs.

You’ll benefit from the knowledge of experienced counsellors and psychotherapists, with senior levels of registration.

Teaching staff are also active researchers, with a range of specialisms. You’ll develop the knowledge and skills to conduct independent in-depth research into a complex specialist area. In your final year, our innovative annual student conference gives you chance to share your research with peers.

The programme aims to equip you to work with self-direction and make effective decisions in complex and unpredictable situations. Many students also bring a wealth of personal experience that helps them to reflect on a range of human issues. Our excellent relationships with a range of agencies throughout the region will assist you in finding a practice placement.

For the School of Healthcare 2019 Admissions policy click here

More information

Staff research specialisms include: values and ethics, power and politics, person-centred approaches, phenomenology, reflexivity in research, autoethnography, practitioner-based research, eating disorders, addictions, cross-cultural research, maternal wellbeing and eating behaviours, mother-infant mealtime interactions, transgenerational trauma, the therapeutic alliance, co-occurring traumatic brain injury and drug and alcohol use and developing a head injury speech analysis case finder with embedded artificial intelligence.


The MA Psychotherapy and Counselling has received British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) accredited course status which, on successful completion, will allow you to be added to their voluntary assured register of practitioners.

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Course content

Over the first two years you study nine modules: four theory and four concerned with development as a reflective practitioner, plus research methods. In the third year, you have the opportunity to undertake small-scale research.

The teaching is all on one day each week (either a Tuesday or Thursday) for all modules except research methods so students can plan work around the teaching. We estimate that 2 and ½ days per week are necessary to complete the requirements of this course (teaching, private study, placement, supervision and personal therapy).

The programme leader is Dr Gillian Proctor: G.M.Proctor@leeds.ac.uk

Course structure

The list shown below represents typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

For more information and a full list of typical modules available on this course, please read Psychotherapy and Counselling MA in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

You are encouraged to develop as an independent learner and scholar. Teaching approaches emphasise reflection and reflexivity and encourage you to bring personal and professional experience into discussion as a source of critical wisdom alongside wide reading.

Students starting in September 2019 will have a teaching day of Tuesday throughout the first and second year


Assessments include essays, oral presentations, live skills demonstrations, audio recorded extracts from client work, and reports from supervisors and placement mentors.

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Applying, fees and funding

Entry requirements

A bachelor degree with a 2:1 (hons) in any subject or other proof of your ability to study at Masters level

A level of counselling skills consistent with beginning professional training and insight into psychotherapy and counselling, usually obtained by a level 3 certificate in counselling and experience in using these skills

English Language at GCSE grade C or equivalent, or IELTS overall score 7.

Two satisfactory references, one of which must normally be an academic reference.

A level of maturity associated with personal reflection on a variety of adult and childhood experiences and developed interpersonal skills, to be assessed at interview.

Satisfactory police clearance. We will send you a form for this.

Opportunities for the accreditation of prior learning and prior experiential learning exist through the School's credit accumulation and transfer procedures.

English language requirements

IELTS 7.0 overall. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for the programme may be able to study an English for Academic Purposes pre-sessional course with a progression route to the degree programme. For information and entry requirements, read Pre-sessional programmes.


How to apply


This link takes you to information on applying for taught programmes and to the University's online application system.
If you're unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

  • Applications will be shortlisted from 7th May 2019
  • Interviews will take place on:
    Monday 17th June 2019
    Tuesday 18th June 2019
    Wednesday 26th June 2019

Admissions policy

Link to admissions policy document


UK/EU fees: £15,000 (total)
International fees: Not applicable

Read more about paying fees and charges.

Additional cost information

There are additional costs for supervision (minimum 18 hours) and personal therapy (minimum 70 hours) payable directly to the practitioners concerned. Fees may vary from approximately £40-50 per hour. Students are required to become student members of BACP (currently £50 per year) and to take out professional liability insurance for their practice, the cost of which depends on the amount insured.

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There may be help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government.  Find out more at Masters funding overview.

Postgraduate Student loans
Students enrolling on the MA are eligible for a Postgraduate Student loan. Students who have applied for a PG loan do not have to pay 50% fees up front at registration but are able to pay their fees in three instalments over the academic year to match loan payments. Full details on how to apply for a Postgraduate Student loan can be found here.

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Career opportunities

Many of our graduates go on to combine counselling and psychotherapy with their existing professions, such as nursing or education. Some continue to work in a voluntary capacity to build sufficient supervised client hours to join the advanced category of individual BACP accreditation, while others set up in private practice.

Our graduates are highly sought after by employers within the region, many of whom are closely associated with the course as practice providers or supervisors. Many of our graduates have gone on to hold positions of responsibility as counsellors or psychotherapists within the NHS and voluntary bodies, and some have returned to us to undertake PhD research or teaching.

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

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