Cognitive behavioural therapy courses

cognitive behavioural therapy courses

About the course

The MSc Cognitive Behaviour Therapy course is an exciting and innovative course, delivered by an enthusiastic team of Cognitive Behaviour Psychotherapists and lecturers. The course structure is designed to give you the option to study for:

  • a postgraduate diploma (PgDip) in CBT
  • a full Master’s degree (MSc) in CBT

The postgraduate diploma (PgDip) is suitable for health professionals who are aiming for accreditation as Cognitive Behaviour Therapists. To be a successful candidate you will already have experience working in mental health settings, providing Cognitive Behavioural Therapy interventions. Typically our students bring significant experience in their own field of work as Mental Health Nurses, Occupational Therapists, Social Workers, Psychologists and Counsellors.

Overview of the Postgraduate Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

The PgDip in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is delivered over two academic years to facilitate the development of knowledge and application of CBT in stages.

The first year of the course is focused on giving you the clinical skills and academic understanding that you need in order to function as competent cognitive behavioural therapists. Typical modules include:

  • Foundations in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy,
  • Common Mental Health problems 1
  • Beginning with CBT supervision

In the second year, you develop competence in more complex client presentations and you also develop greater competency in clinical skills. Typical modules include:

  • CBT for common mental health problems 2
  • Continuing with CBT supervision

The use of the CTS-R is prevalent throughout the PgDip Behaviour Therapy (CBT) course to measure and provide feedback for your development. For eligibility of the British Association of Cognitive and Behavioural Psychotherapists (BABCP) accreditation, you must satisfy the supervision requirements including completing a portfolio of practice.

The postgraduate diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is accredited at Level two by the British Association of Cognitive and Behavioural Psychotherapists. This means that the course fulfils all requirements so that you can gain provisional accreditation. For more information visit

How you can gain a Master’s degree in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

To gain a Master’s degree in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy you will need to study for a third year. In this final year, you will complete a 15 credit research module and a 45 credit dissertation module. This part of the course encompasses a total of 60 credits and on successful completion you will have an MSc in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.

By successfully completing the third year, you will be able to interpret the knowledge and apply advanced skills in specialist areas. Throughout your study, you will be facilitated to develop intellectual and critical thinking in evaluating the evidence that underpins your knowledge and the practice of CBT interventions.

Why choose this course?

  • The course gives you the option to study for a PgDip in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) in two years
  • It is accredited at Level two by the British Association of Cognitive and Behavioural Psychotherapists (BACBP)
  • It is delivered by an enthusiastic team of CBT lecturers with expertise in this area

Entry requirements.

The entry requirements for the course are:

  • A professional qualification in health or social care, and a good first degree (a minimum of second class) that relates to working with mental health service users, plus 3 years post qualifying practice experience in a health or social care setting to allow for consolidation of learning
  • A good first degree (a minimum of second class) in a health related topic or equivalent plus a minimum of four years practice experience working within a health or social care setting.

Professionals who do not hold a first degree may have the opportunity of studying this course by

successfully completing the Research Design and Data Analysis module from the MSc Psychology Conversion course that is available at our University before the start of the course.

All applicants will attend an interview with the Course Leader as part of the selection process. You also need a professional and or academic reference to ensure that your application is supported.

You will need to secure your own placement and have access to external clinical supervision. This can be in the NHS, private or voluntary sector. Alternatively evidence needs to be provided that you can conduct CBT-sessions with clients in your current work environment.

A further requirement is that you possess a core qualification as defined by the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP). If you don’t possess a core profession you will need to present evidence that you meet KSA criteria prior to an offer being made on the course. A KSA portfolio will be required from you at the end of the first year (for more information visit ).

Course experts

Liz Simon


  • University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield

Please note that whilst this course information is believed to be correct at the time of publication, it is subject to correction or update at any time.


When you graduate with a postgraduate diploma (PgDip) in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy you can progress to the MSc in Cognitive Behaviour by completing a research and a dissertation module.

You will be able to apply your newly gained CBT skills in a variety of settings and environments and able to practice as a competent cognitive behavioural therapist

Professional Accreditations

When you graduate from the PgDip in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy you will be eligible to gain accreditation from the British Association of Cognitive and Behavioural Psychotherapists (BABCP), provided that you satisfy the supervision requirements including completing a portfolio of practice.


Year 1

  • Foundation in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Skills

    This module will be of interest to MH practitioners involved in delivering therapeutic interventions for people experiencing mental health problems, their carers and their families. It will also be attractive to those who wish to include cognitive behavioural therapies in their clinical intervention repertoire. It has been designed to introduce students to the principles and practice of CBT. The module will analyse the principles of cognitive behavioural therapy and how these are used in a variety of common mental health problems. It will focus on facilitating students to develop a sound understanding of the theory that underpins CBT. The teaching of the module will involve course participants taking an active part in role play, group work and case presentations. Students will be expected to go through a process of personal growth using CBT principles. Service user and carer/family perspectives of therapeutic interventions will also be critically considered.

    Year 2

    This module is designed to enable practitioners working in mental health to gain an understanding of cognitive behavioural therapy models of treatment resistant depression and various anxiety disorders (social phobia and PTSD) including co-morbid issues. The module will cover principles and practice in cognitive behavioural therapy, the scope of application in practice and accountability. It will focus on facilitating students to apply cognitive- behavioural interventions in their clinical practice with anxiety disorders. Practitioners will be required to reflect on and evaluate the CBT based interventions that have been delivered.

    Year 3

    Core Modules

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Dissertation

    The module is designed to enable students to engage in independent study and apply further skills to undertake a substantial project which will be of value to the student's application of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy in their area of work. The project will be an evaluation of the application of cognitive behavioural therapy which will require the student to evaluate critically the relevant literature and conduct a systematic investigation using appropriate and rigorous methods.

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