MSc Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy

The University of South Wales has many years’ experience in teaching cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and this course is the most comprehensive CBT training available in South Wales. The MSc/Postgraduate Diploma is for mental health professionals looking for additional specialist training, or if you want to train as a counsellor/psychotherapist and have already completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Counselling Skills, or equivalent.

The MSc is a three year course, made up of two years training on the Postgraduate Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy which covers both the practical and theoretical aspects of learning to be a cognitive behavioural psychotherapist, plus one year completing the Masters (research and dissertation stage). On the Masters stage you will learn about research methods for studying cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), and will undertake a research project of your choice and write it up in the form of a dissertation.

Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Part-time 3 Years September Newport City C
Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Part-time 3 Years September Newport City C

Following successful completion of the PG Diploma, students can proceed to the final Masters stage where you’ll have the opportunity to choose between conducting research and delivering a professional project in the community.

Dissertation – You will learn about the different research methods which help develop knowledge about consultative supervision. You will then put this into action in your own choice of research project, on a topic relevant to integrative counselling and psychotherapy. You will be allocated a personal supervisor to provide expert guidance, advice and support. This route is ideal for those wanting to develop a career in research.

Professional Project – You will design, deliver and evaluate an innovative pilot project in the community, either in a charity or public sector setting. You’ll follow the planning process required by the Big Lottery, and you’ll also learn how to work therapeutically with groups. This route is ideal for those wishing to develop their careers into project management or self-employment.



The Masters stage consists of six days teaching, one day of peer learning, and nine hours of project supervision.

This course runs over seven Mondays (9.30 to 4.30), from September 2019 to August 2020. You will also be required to attend monthly supervision meetings, to be arranged flexibly.

  • Induction – 30th September
  • Conducting your Literature Review – 7th October
  • Student presentations – 4th November
  • Project planning / Research overview – 2nd December
  • Working with groups / Qualitative analysis – 6th January
  • Facilitating training / Quantitative analysis – 3rd February
  • Monitoring and evaluation / Conceptual analysis – 2nd March


Masters research and dissertation stage: Research proposal, presentation, dissertation (18,000 words).

Professional project: journal (3,600 words), literature review (3,600 words), student presentation (20 minutes), project report (9000 words).


There is no formal requirement for a placement during the Masters research and dissertation stage of the MSc, but students would usually be in practice as a CBT therapist.


A light, modern suite of rooms at Newport City Campus. IT and library facilties including access to SPSS (statistics software).


  • Hold a degree or, where relevant, evidence of working at degree level
  • Have a completed a minimum of 96 direct teaching hours in counselling theory and skills (some of which is CBT)*
  • Have completed 60 hours training in professional practice issues *
  • Evidence relevant experience in the health and social care field in the public, private or voluntary area

* this is equivalent to the Postgraduate Certificate in Counselling Skills at USW


  • Relevant professional qualification (e.g. registered mental health nurse; occupational therapist, counselling psychologist; clinical psychologist; qualified social worker; accredited/registered counsellor/psychotherapist; psychiatrist; General Practitioner or other profession recognised as core by the BABCP
  • Have completed an introductory training in counselling theory and skills, including CBT, as part of their previous training

In addition, you will need to meet the following criteria:

  • Enhanced DBS check
  • Two references uploaded with your application. One from your current/previous Counselling tutor
  • A confirmed suitable placement for counselling practice. Please note that this is essential and you will be asked to provide details of your placement before the course begins. The criteria for a suitable placement will be discussed at interview and we will be able to provide you with a list of placements previously used by students studying on the PGDip CBP


We have four interview sessions each year, see dates below, at the interview we will tell you more about the course and give you the opportunity to ask questions.

We will explore your motivation, suitability and readiness for the Programme through observation of skills, a group exercise, a written assessment and an individual interview. Applicants are asked to allow half a day for this process. If you are selected to attend an interview we will contact you by e-mail to make a booking. We strongly advise that you book yourself onto the earliest interview date to avoid disappointment as the numbers are limited for each date and are filled on a first come first served basis


Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2019 - July 2020 Fees

  • Part-time UK and EU:  £1000 per 20 credits

August 2020 - July 2021 Fees

  • Part-time UK and EU: TBC

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.


You can apply for a postgraduate loan as a contribution towards your course and living costs.

Once you’ve completed the Masters, you will have demonstrated that you have an in-depth knowledge of CBT, including specialist knowledge gained by your own research findings. This is likely to further develop your reputation and employability as a therapist in the statutory, commercial and third sector. There may also be opportunities for you to progress on to a PhD.