Introduction to Counselling

hello my name is Lorna Carrick I'm the counseling courses program director today I'd like to do a short introduction to our new MSC in counseling and psychotherapy this new MSC is a combined professional qualification which allows you to practice as a therapist and also to complete a research dissertation which produces a master's in counseling and psychotherapy this course is fully accredited by the British Association of counseling and psychotherapy this means that the course gives students access to being able to become accredited through a straightforward and slightly faster route the course has been specifically structured to meet the evolving demands for evidence-based practice rising educational standards and increased professional regulation and economic change the course deviation is 11.5 months beginning in September of 2017 running into August of 2018 the course will also prepare students for the demands of becoming a professional in the field of psychotherapy and the helping professions this full-time training course is very intense and demanding the pace often is described by students as being like a pressure cooker or like being on a roller coaster few students exit the course without feeling that they have completed a real journey of personal development and most of the students that we train are very happy with this a few students do not leave time in their lives to fully engage in the training and this can leave them feeling dissatisfied so we have put together a series of health warnings which are intended to help you to prepare the training before you get there so the first element of the health warning is personal confidential and ethical work in practice means that within the field of psychotherapy it's not possible to tell friends family and other close contacts about what happens in the course of work this also applies to what happens on the training course it can be very difficult for those around us to actually fully understand that where they may have had really good access to us in the past and we came to be very relational people that they will not have the same level of X access to what we are know doing awful the experiential nature of the courses is part of this life-changing process and it needs considerable waste resources time space that came to reflect and enough time to study and to consolidate the work that's done on the training course the effects on our significant others are that they often need help to understand the journey that we're on so it can be very important to talk a bit before the training begins about how different it will be and that you might be experienced of slightly different when I was in training my then partner wanted to start a support group for the partners of people on the training he found it very difficult to fully understand why it wasn't possible to talk about absolutely everything and I think that he had a point the large group process which takes place in the training and other unstructured species like experiential workshops and skills practice involve us in not only working with each other but also bringing all of ourselves unlike in the previous training that you may have done a certificate level on this course we will ask you not to roleplay most of the time in fact to bring your own personal life experience so that when you are in skills practice and when you are working in workshops and other groups you're able to fully bring yourself in a real and person-centered consistent way it's very important also to note that when we do skills practice we are trying to get sufficient experience before settling our readiness to practice assessment this will happen towards the end of November before you go to your counseling opportunities placement so what happens with these groups is that we ask you to collect fibers of counselor 5 as the person who's being the speaker and 5 is observer this combination comes together and allows people to begin practice in a way that is likely to engage with real clients much more effectively and we've had lots of feedback from our many placements on this aspect of the training we also suggest that in some ways this way of working whilst it's fosters marvelous self-awareness personal development it's important to know that it may sometimes cause us to need additional support I'll talk a bit more about that in the financial health warning but this personal development alongside rigorous academic learning and research development means that you need a great deal of processing time in your life we do not recommend that you are in employment whilst you are doing this MSE and but you do not engage in other activities which are likely to be draining of your resources when we right now on no to the financial health warning supervision costs are perhaps the most substantial additional cost over and above the course fees all counselors are expected to be in individual supervision throughout the entirety of their training and for the rest of the professional life we will ask you earlier in the course to attend the supervision workshop to look at the aspects of supervision which are important when choosing a individual supervisor it's important that you interview them spend some time thinking but whether they fit well with you as this cost is as I said the biggest additional one over and above the fees most supervisors charge in the region of 35 to 45 pounds an hour and you require to be in supervision throughout training not less than once a fortnight the ACP has a ratio of 1 hour of supervision to every eight hours of client work so it's a considerable investment in addition to that there is also a residential on the course which 3d workshop which takes place away from the University usually in the central built Scotland and the fee for that will be roughly 150 to 170 pounds in addition to that there are books and you will also need a recording device it's important to take a bit of time buying a good quality recording a device that you have tried out as you will be required to bring the recordings of real clients to the supervision group within the course and it's very important that you get something that takes up water what you are saying and what the client says in addition to this the there is travel and other expenses may include personal therapy unlike many training courses we do not make personal therapy mandatory we believe that choice is very important in this particular matter however many of our workshops and I can give you the titles of some of those we do workshops on abuse loss and change the inner child and many more areas that are likely to activate anything that you may not have fully explored for this reason we suggest that you try to make sure you have a small pot of money put aside in case you need to go into personal therapy waiting lists in the public and NHS sector are very lengthy and this can cause a developmental delay so it's important to properly resource yourself by having this possibility at your beck and call the last part of the health warning is professional not all students go straight into employment for having left the training course most of them will continue to stay in their placement to build up the number of client errors that they have the course requirement is a hundred errors across the MSE year and after that students will be eligible to work toward the ACP accreditation this means acquiring a further three hundred and fifty errors before the accreditation takes place across another two years beyond the training course many of our students have a very mixed portfolio when they actually begin to work a lot of students start with telephone counseling or employee assistance work or part-time jobs in the voluntary or the health sector most counselors build a mixed portfolio throughout their working life which is actually a really healthy balance if you were to counsel all the time you might well more Moute eventually as they become more experienced its input it is possible to apply for more lengthy jobs to work in the NHS the private sector and also some students become supervisors about three years down the line after training as well so the important thing is to think of building a strategic portfolio working towards accreditation and gaining as broad-based experience as possible another aspect of that is continuing professional development and this helps to reassure employers that you will have the capacity to work with specific groups so I know like to spend a few moments talking about my place which is the Moodle based learning environment that we use for the submission of assignments it's where we place the handbook and other policy documents from the University notices and discussion groups it's a very important part of the training and it has lots and lots of different kinds of information you'll find the supervisors list there and and that's another thing that I it's important to mention is that we have an approved supervisors list and you will need to select your individual supervisor from that list supervisors on it all meet the basic requirements to support you through training so that's just one example of the many pieces of very useful information we'll also place on my place the powerpoints the handouts and other resources that you will read on the training and where possible those will be there in advance of any courses that you're taking so also just to mention the handbook I think it's important that I see that there's probably your biggest resource it's quite a lengthy document but please read it it's full of information that if you don't read it you're likely to miss deadlines or make wrong turns so it's it's there for your guidance and it's taken a lot of years and a lot of work to get it to the place that it's at so I can thoroughly recommend it during training you also become part of a series of consultations that lead towards the production of your self appraisal which is a fairly lengthy document that you produce at the end of training and part of the course is self assess in that we ask you to use the products of the consultations that you have with tutors and with your peers and your own experience of being in training to produce a document that appraises your readiness to take the Bene see and your developmental readiness it's a very important part of this course and in many ways is very unusual in academic training these consultations happen in the early part of the course in the first semester and also in the second semester neither to the self appraisal process and they give you access to each other unto the tutors to actually have a bit of personal time to do this appraisal work let me move on now to talking about the research component of the MSC in the course from November onwards you will have taught research sessions which feed into the dissertation which will take place throughout the course as well as to your assignments which are a mixture of academic theoretical learning the use of the products of research and significantly your own experience as a therapist and as an individual so it's an unusual mixture which marries all of the elements of the course into the assignment process to go back to the research dissertation these dissertations are likely to be predominately done in small groups so you'll be part of a small research team working together with an academic supervisor and the research dissertation will predominantly use data from our counseling units research clinic this clinic was started back in 2006 and has amassed a considerable body of data this will make it possible for you to complete the research dissertation within the parameters of the training and not having to go and collect the data yourself so we're hoping to streamline things so that it is perfectly doable to acquire the dissertation by the end of the training throughout training you will have a series of formative and summative assessments there are assignments which are marked and there are also assessments which take place in a more consultative way with your teachers and peers early on in the course it's important to see that we will focus very much on skills practice this is so that you will be ready to go and meet clients from about the end of November onwards and we will also teach the core conditions of a person-centered approach beginnings of professional practice the ethics and some risk management skills all in the early sections of training for this you will need your recording device and we'll also do some videoing of your practice which will be taken into supervision groups placements commands after the readiness to practice has taken place and we have a counseling opportunities coordinator who's Maggie McGregor and we also have a database of counseling opportunities that are possible where possible we ask you to organize your own placements but you will be given assistance and we will help you to do this in the first week of July this year we're going to have what we call the agency's Market Day and we're hoping that as many of you as possible will come along to this event it's usually a very interest in be but most significantly some of our placements will be there and they will be demonstrating with in the stalls what they can offer you as a placement provider in addition to that it's a fabulous networking event and gives you the opportunity to talk to other students both from the cohort that you will be joining on the MSE and from previous courses so it gives you an opportunity for us to have some very good helpful information from people who have also been through the course before that will be and I within the next week last but not least I'd like to move on to the interview itself the interviews will be in three days in me and you will be contacted within the next week whistles if you've been offered a place the interviews are structured in a particular way which we learnt helps us assess whether people are ready to undertake the training so the air the interview lasts for three errors and it begins with a now the first error is an opportunity for us to introduce ourselves to each other so we'll be sitting in a large group and we will go around introducing ourselves and staff will join in this part of it as well there'll be a short question and answer session if there's anything that's come out of listening to this that you need to ask more questions about and then we move on to the second section of the interview which is an hour of skills practice and that sounds really daunting but we're not going to ask you to do a full hour of skills we will ask you to spend five minutes in the counselor's chair and five minutes as the person who's speaking you'll be asked to talk from your own experience and there'll be someone paying keeping for you and be about seven in that small group and we'll go around everybody until every person has an opportunity to demonstrate their skills now thinking of behind this is that we would like to see something of yourself as you are the speaker and in the tenth last year we hope to see that you've remembered what you learnt in your certificate counseling training and that you're able to offer our empathy and unconditional positive regard to the speaker this session will be rated by the tutor who's in the room against a preset marking grid and it will be put together with your paper application and what we see in the large group sessions with you the third day of the interview is a large group session where we will come together in an unstructured space and the purpose of this is to see if you're able to work in this unstructured way and relate to each other in this setting one of the biggest challenges of the training is that we work in unstructured settings where there is no agenda and many people find this developmentally the most difficult challenges of the course at the end of that time once the whole of what we've seen has been assessed we will decide for the to offer you a place on the course for a few of you we need invite you back for an individual interview sometimes we see that people struggle in large groups and so we may end up with some questions but you will be informed as soon as possible if this is necessary if you invite it to a second interview it's because you've done well enough that we want to see a bit more of you and so this is a kind of getting to know you SEC section and we hope that by the end of it we will have a sense that you're ready to engage with us so we very much look forward to meeting you and thank you for listening

Glenn Chapman

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