BACHELOR OF ARTS (Hons) in Holistic Counselling and Psychotherapy
QQI validated, 4-year, part-time, Level 8 programme – 240 ECTS
This QQI validated, 4-year, part-time, Level 8 Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Holistic Counselling and Psychotherapy programme is offered in both Athlone and Galway.
Since its foundation, ICPPD has taken the steps necessary to ensure the delivery of a quality service in an environment that is characterised by an attitude to adult learners that is supportive and encouraging. We aim to provide an experience of learning that will develop in learners a hunger for both heart-centred wisdom and critical analysis. Our programmes are designed to be participative, experiential and to draw whenever possible on prior lived experience. The programme’s academic value is enhanced by a learning environment that is warm, vibrant, and genuine. Learners and staff interact in a mutual effort to engage in and promote the concept of lifelong learning. ICPPD’s holistic ethos underpins all interaction. This programme has been designed and is delivered, by staff who are passionate and inspired about the merit of personal development and excellence in professional counselling and psychotherapy training and education.
The main aims of this 4-year, part-time, Level 8 Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Holistic Counselling and Psychotherapy is to provide adult learners with the opportunity to explore and develop their interest in the field of holistic counselling and psychotherapy and to, thereby, become competent, compassionate, ethical, professional practitioners. At ICPPD, self-awareness is seen as vital to personal and professional development and is encouraged and promoted throughout this and all programmes offered.
The objectives of this 4-year Level 8 programme are to:
- develop and expand the learner’s self-awareness, knowledge, skills and clinical experience through
engagement with, and immersion in, the programme.
- provide comprehensive education and training in the theory, skills and related therapeutic processes
required for holistic counselling and psychotherapy practice.
- enable the learner to explore and deepen their knowledge of mental health issues, including addiction, and trauma matters, supported with an awareness of the complex ethical implications and good practice involved.
- introduce and broaden learner’s comprehension and experience of the use of creative processes and bodywork in holistic counselling and psychotherapy.
- promote evidence-based practice through robust research in the field of holistic counselling and psychotherapy.
- facilitate the learner in achieving relevant client work to meet requirements of the QQI Awards Standards – Counselling and Psychotherapy (2014)
ICPPD invites you to join us in the discovery of wisdom and compassion in your own life and in your professional work as a psychological therapist.
The programme aims and learning outcomes provide adult learners with the opportunity to explore and develop their interest in the field of holistic counselling and psychotherapy and to, thereby, develop into competent, compassionate, ethical, professional practitioners.
Who should consider this Degree Course?
- Persons who wish to embark on a career in counselling and psychotherapy.
- Persons who are seeking a recognised academic qualification.
- Those who have completed a course of study, or experienced profound personal insights, and yearn for greater knowledge, structure and experiences leading to a professional qualification.
- Anyone seeking an integrated holistic understanding of the human condition, intimacy, and meaning in life.
- Any person who wants to expand and deepen their communication skills to enhance their current professional and personal life.
- Health professionals and human service providers such as doctors, complementary medical therapists, nurses, teachers, gardaí, allied health professionals, ambulance officers, solicitors and others who are interacting with the public daily and wish to improve their interpersonal skills and self-awareness.
- Those who seek a high level of skills which are effective in stimulating and supporting transformative change and community building.
- Mature persons who are seeking to gain personal development, transformative knowledge and communication skills.
Programme Admission Information
Application is limited to mature learners who have evidence of a minimum of ONE of the following:
- being a professional working in the field, or related disciplines
- being able to demonstrate a level of maturity of being able to reflect on their personal development experience (evidenced through a portfolio of prior learning, personal development, life experience, community work, etc)
- successful completion of an Introduction to Counselling and Psychotherapy programme, or equivalent
- successful completion of an Irish Leaving Certificate (with 5 O6/H7s (ord pass), including English and Maths), or equivalent.
Applicants are also required to have appropriate IT skills and English to facilitate their engagement with the programme and have a computer with internet access to facilitate some online delivery of programmes if scheduled.
ICPPD is responsible for ensuring learners’ ongoing Fitness to Practice, in terms of health, behaviour and character. Therefore, progression is at the discretion of the College.
Entry is by submission of an Application Form and all applicants are subject to interview.
All participants on this programme will be required to undertake National Vetting procedures (Form NVB1) prior to commencing their Clinical Practice.
NOTE: Health screening may additionally be required.
4 years, part-time, delivered every second weekend during the academic year: Saturday and Sunday (9.30am-5.00pm).
Clinical Practice support may be scheduled on a Friday evening.
Please Note: There may also be two course/progression meetings on a weekday; these dates will be identified to learners on their timetable at the commencement of each academic year.
One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making
the darkness conscious.
This programme supports participants to develop self-awareness, knowledge, skills and competencies of counselling and psychotherapy from an integrative perspective and is unique in its holistic/spiritual/creative focus.
The programme consists of the following modules:
BAHCP8_101 – Learning to Learn
BAHCP8_102 – Personal Development
BAHCP8_103 – Introduction to Theory of Counselling and Psychotherapy
BAHCP8_104 – Person-Centred Approach
BAHCP8_105 – Counselling Skills and Practice
BAHCP8_106 – Lifespan Development and the Journey Principle
BHACP8_107 – Holistic Approaches
BAHCP8_108 – Cognitive Behavioural Approaches
BAHCP8_109 – Group Process
BAHCP8_201 – Gestalt Approach
BAHCP8_202 – Ethics and Legal Issues
BAHCP8_203 – Research Skills
BAHCP8_204 – Loss and Bereavement
BAHCP8_205 – Advanced Counselling Skills
BAHCP8_206 – Psychodynamic Perspectives
BAHCP8_207 – Group Process
BAHCP8_301 – Psychosynthesis Psychotherapy
BAHCP8_302 – Abnormal Psychology and Mental Health issues
BAHCP8_303 – Family and Systemic Processes
BAHCP8_304 – Professional Development
BAHCP8_305 – Research Methods
BAHCP8_306 – Group Process
BAHCP8_307 – Clinical Practice 1
BAHCP8_401 – Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy
BAHCP8_402 – Trauma and Body Psychotherapy
BAHCP8_403 – Understanding Psychopathology
BAHCP8_404 – Research Project
BAHCP8_405 – Clinical Practice 2
Additional Programme Information
The College reserves the right to amend the list of modules being offered on this programme.
Academic and Professional Requirements
In addition to meeting the academic requirements of the programme, learners are required to meet all of the relevant professional requirements, including those which determine fitness to practice.
Learners are required to have completed a minimum of 80 sessions of personal counselling with an acceptable accredited therapist during the 4 years of this programme. A minimum of 20 hours in each academic year is required and a minimum of 40 sessions of which must be completed before clinical work commences.
Note: An additional fee is payable by the learner for personal therapy (to the therapist).
During Clinical Practice, learners are required to complete 1 hour of supervision for every 5 hours of client work, with a minimum of 1 supervision session/month.
By the end of year 4, learners are required to have completed a minimum of 24 supervision hours and 1-hour initial consultation with an acceptable accredited external supervisor.
ICPPD also provides in-house group supervision, as required by the relevant professional bodies.
Note: An additional fee is payable by the learner for supervision (to their external clinical supervisor).
Additional (Integrated) Personal Development
During the programme, learners are invited to lead mini reflections/retreats as part of their creative and spiritual development. Throughout the first 3 years of the programme learners participate in, and experience group process as part of their personal and professional development.
There will be a mandatory 3- day integration event scheduled at the end of year 4. This event may be residential and will incur an additional fee (to be advised prior to academic year commencement).
From the beginning of year 3 to the end of year 4, learners are required to have completed 120 client sessions, under supervision in a suitable placement, and meet all other modules’ requirements. ICPPD provides Insurance cover for learners while on Clinical Practice as part of their programme. As part of, and to support Clinical Practice ICPPD provides In-House Supervision, with an accredited supervisor, as required by IACP/professional bodies.
ICPPD provides external research supervision to learners in year 4, during the Research Module.
Registration with Professional Bodies
Successful completion of the programme does not equate to professional registration. It is recommended to prospective learners that they check the criteria of any professional body to which they may wish to seek future accreditation
This IACP link illustrates the route to professional accreditation and membership of IACP (Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) – https://www.iacp.ie/accredited-membership-iacp.
Learning and Teaching Strategies
The experiential environment and holistic focus of this programme support academic frameworks and theoretical input. The programme and individual module learning outcomes are achieved through the following learning and teaching methodologies:
- Class Presentations
- Clinical Practice
- Creative Portfolio
- Creative Projects/Exercises
- Discussion Groups
- Dream Journal
- DVD-Recorded Skills Practice
- External Clinical Supervision
- External Research Supervision
- Formal Scheduled Classes
- Group Process
- Group Works
- Guest Lectures
- Holistic Reflections
- Independent Learning
- In-House Group Supervision
- Modelling/Demonstration by Lecturer
- Personal Therapy
- Reflective Journaling
- Role Play
- Study Groups
ICPPD uses Moodle, a virtual learning environment (VLE), to disseminate class material and share course-related resources, as well as news, assignment details, discussion fora, etc.
The College also provides access to e-Library resources through Moodle.
These resources facilitate the support of learners at outreach centres, and through out-of-hours times.
Learners will be shown how to access these facilities at their Induction session and in the first module.
Assessment Strategies for this programme include:
- Keeping a reflective journal during the programme, creative portfolios.
- Written essays, assignments, reports and reflective pieces on topics related to the holistic counselling and psychotherapy theory and skills presented.
- Role-playing and scenarios demonstrating your holistic counselling and psychotherapy skills.
- Ongoing and continuous assessment by programme lecturer.
- Examination of one module in year 2 through a formal two-hour examination.
This Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Holistic Counselling and Psychotherapy, 4-year, NFQ-Level 8 programme – 240 ECTS – is validated by Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI).
NOTE: Learners who successfully complete the first year of the programme and no longer wish to continue their studies on this programme may apply for an exit award of Certificate in Holistic Counselling and Psychotherapy (60 ECTS, part-time, Level 6, Minor (exit) Award).
National Award Standards – Counselling and Psychotherapy
In 2014 Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI published Award Standards for programmes leading to qualifications in Counselling & Psychotherapy at varying levels of the National Framework of Qualifications.
The publication of these standards represents the most significant development in terms of the professionalization of Counselling and Psychotherapy in recent years. Most of the Professional Associations in Counselling & Psychotherapy in Ireland agreed in 2008 that Degree and Masters level qualifications will be the future minimum requirements for entry to the practice of Counselling & Psychotherapy. These recommendations are likely to inform the standards which will apply when Counselling & Psychotherapy become regulated by CORU, and the titles of Counsellor and Psychotherapist become protected in law.
All of the Degrees at ICPPD meet the QQI Award Standards.
As a holder of this Level 8 Bachelor of Arts (Hons), QQI-validated qualification in Holistic Counselling and Psychotherapy, you will possess the necessary theoretical, skills and competence to enable progression to Level 9, within other third-level institutions.
Learner protection for this programme is provided in accordance with Part 6 of the Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Act 2012.
ICPPD reserves the right to cancel, suspend or modify in any way the matters contained in this publication.
The College reserves the right to amend the list of modules being offered for any programme.