Skip to navigation | Skip to main content | Skip to footer
Menu Share this content
Menu Search the University of Manchester siteSearch
Search type

Alternatively, use our A–Z index

Arthur Lewis and Humanities Bridgeford Street Buildings
PD Counselling Psychology
Professional training for psychologists aiming for a career in counselling psychology.

PD Counselling Psychology / Overview

Year of entry: 2018

Degree awarded
PD Counselling Psychology
36 Months. [Full-Time]
Entry requirements

The course is for those with an academic background in psychology that want to pursue a career in Counselling Psychology or related areas.  Entry requirements are as follows:

  • 2.1 honours degree in Psychology.  Candidates with a lower classification also require a Masters level qualification with a minimum grade B in the dissertation.  
  • Basic counselling skills training and professional experience of using such skills. This criterion might be met for example by completing a Certificate in Counselling Skills or through employment or voluntary experience in a role using counselling skills
  • The capacity to undertake Doctoral research
  • Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC**) with the British Psychological Society (BPS)
  • Satisfactory Criminal Convictions Check (undertaken and paid for by the University)

Accreditation of prior or experiential learning (APL) is awarded in line with University of Manchester policy.  Individuals claiming parity of experience / qualification must provide evidence of completing similar studies at Doctorate Level. Master's level work is not eligible. Case study presentations are completed using a research frame and have ethical clearance. The research proposal and practice hours are not eligible to APL.

**GBC was previously referred to as GBR (Graduate Basis for Registration). We accept both as proof of prior training.

Full entry requirements

How to apply

Apply online

Please upload the following documents with your application:

  • A supporting statement 
  • Two references
  • Copies of certificates and transcripts for all previous degree qualifications
  • Evidence of your basic counselling skills training or professional experience of using such skills
  • Evidence of Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership of the British Psychological Society
  • A CV
  • A copy of the data pages of your passport
  • Evidence of your English Language proficiency if applicable: IELTS certificate minimum overall score 7.5 with 7 in each section

Enhanced applicant advice

Programme options

Full-time Part-time Full-time distance learning Part-time distance learning

Programme description

'The course has provided incredible theoretical, practical and personal learning' (DCounsPsych student, 2016)

'I feel well-held as an individual going through what is a long-haul commitment, and our year groups likewise seem well-cared for and nurtured as working groups' (DCounsPsych student, 2016)

Trainees and stakeholders feel very well supported by the programme team. They have found that the programme team have given them high quality guidance, support and feedback on all aspects of the programme (British Psychological Society Partnership and Accreditation Team, 2015)

The Professional Doctorate in Counselling Psychology at the University of Manchester is the only Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and British Psychological Society (BPS) approved Doctoral training in Counselling Psychology currently situated at a Russell Group University.

The course offers a professional training in Counselling Psychology and has four major components. These are:

(1) The development of appropriate theoretical knowledge

(2) The development of research skills

(3) The development of therapeutic practice skills

(4) An emphasis upon personal development

We have small cohorts of between 9-12 students a year and we work closely with our trainees to support their development as reflexive scientist-practitioners. Throughout the programme trainees will be introduced in detail to a pluralistic approach of therapy, with a focus on humanistic counselling during the first year and cognitive behavioural therapy in the second. Alongside the assessed units, students will have to complete a minimum of 450 hours of supervised therapeutic practice and 40 hours of personal therapy. The University has a number of placement opportunities available for trainees. We have over 40 links across NHS settings, private health care services, educational settings and third sector organisations, working with a range of client groups. Furthermore, the programme will support individuals to utilise existing work places where they are presently delivering therapeutic work (placements must comply with HCPC and University standards).

The staff team working on the Doctorate in Counselling Psychology at Manchester are all psychologists who are active in the fields of both research and clinical practice in counselling psychology. In terms of clinical practice their work is ongoing within NHS, private health care and third sector settings. Their training backgrounds include skills in humanistic therapies, cognitive-behaviour therapy, EMDR, and psychodynamic group analytic approaches. Staff members publish their research and write widely in the fields of counselling, counselling psychology, psychotherapy, applied psychology and education, including exploring critical and methodological innovations between psychotherapy and education. In recent years they have been successful in receiving research funding to conduct work looking at topics such as how wellbeing is supported in educational settings, online therapeutic approaches, and the impact of austerity measures on the wellbeing and education of children and families. Drs Terry Hanley and Laura Winter have recently edited the 4th edition of the well-known  SAGE Handbook of Counselling and Psychotherapy  . The staff team also have excellent connections within the community of counselling psychology in the UK, as well as strong local links with voluntary sector organisations working around mental health provision for disadvantaged and minoritised populations. For example, Dr Terry Hanley was Research Lead for the Division of Counselling Psychology and Editor of Counselling Psychology Review  and Dr Laura Winter leads on the division's  Social Justice Networking and Special Interest Group.  In the wider therapeutic fields, Dr Tony Parnell is a member of the BABCP, an EMDR therapist and is a Registered Applied Psychology Practice Supervisor (RAPPS) with the BPS, and Professor Erica Burman is registered with the United Kingdom Council of Psychotherapists (UKCP), via the Institute of Group Analysis, as a Group Analyst.

Pease see the following resources for more information:

Open days

For details of the next University Postgraduate open day, visit open days and visits

The next Doctorate in Counselling Psychology open evening will be held on Thursday 1 st March in room A5.5 of our Ellen Wilkinson Building between 5-7 pm

 Please register with Postgraduate Research Admissions Officer, Christopher Kitchen at


For entry in the academic year beginning September 2018, the tuition fees are as follows:

  • (full-time)
    UK/EU students (per annum): £7,750
    International students (per annum): £18,000

Your tuition fees will cover the cost of your study at the University as well as charges for registration, tuition, supervision, examinations and graduation.

Payment of fees will also entitle you to membership of the Library, the Students' Union and the Athletic Union.

Please note that successful applicants will be considered for our SEED scholarship .

Contact details

Academic department
School of Environment, Education and Development
Contact name
Christopher Kitchen
+44(0)161 275 0807
Academic department overview
See: The School .

Programmes in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of programmes in related subject areas.

Regulated by the Office for Students

The University of Manchester is regulated by the Office for Students (OfS). The OfS aims to help students succeed in Higher Education by ensuring they receive excellent information and guidance, get high quality education that prepares them for the future and by protecting their interests. More information can be found at the OfS website.

You can find regulations and policies relating to student life at The University of Manchester, including our Degree Regulations and Complaints Procedure, on our regulations website.