MSc Play Therapy

The Masters in Play Therapy course is accredited by the British Association of Play Therapists (BAPT) and provides professional training in play therapy. Successful graduates of the MSc Play Therapy course will have completed the formal elements of the training required to practise as a BAPT play therapist.

The MSc Play Therapy focuses on training students to work therapeutically with children aged three to 12 years and their families. The course takes into account current research and practice development in interpersonal neurobiology, the development and influence of the attachment relationship and the influence of environment on the developing nervous system in the early years. You will develop the skills needed to practise as a professional in a responsible and demanding clinical environment.

The MSc Play Therapy course provides theoretical and practical knowledge relating to play therapy, drawing on the experience and skills of qualified play therapists, as well as other creative therapists. The course team is actively engaged in clinical practice, and related research and publishing. Read our Essential Guide to find out more.

Study Mode
2024
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Part-time 3 Years September Newport City C
Study Mode
2025
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Part-time 3 Years September Newport City C

This is a demanding course and acceptable applicants will be interviewed to assess suitability for training. Students are also required to undertake their own personal therapy (60 hours) and clinical supervision (50 hours) as part of the professional requirement for registration as a Play Therapist. Students are expected to meet these costs in addition to the course fees.

You will study the following modules (subject to revalidation):

  • Child Development and Play
  • Play Therapy Theory and Skills
  • Preparing for Clinical Practice
  • Evidence-based Clinical Practice
  • Working with Children and their Families
  • Advanced Play Therapy Theory and Skills
  • Evaluating Advanced Play Therapy Practice

Teaching

Teaching is through lectures, seminars, workshops, reflective diaries, research project work and specialist guest speakers.

 

Assessment

Assessment uses a variety of methods, including essays, diaries, research reports, presentations, portfolios of observations and clinical notes. Clinical work placements are available as part of this course.

Placements

The MSc Play therapy teaching team supports students in identifying suitable placement opportunities. Students have found placements in a variety of settings, including schools, family centres, charitable organisations and multidisciplinary agencies.

Facilities

Therapeutic Studies students have access to the latest learning technologies, facilities and equipment, including excellent designated facilities in the USW Therapies Kegie Suite. These include a designated family room and play therapy room, and access to counselling rooms and art studios for experiential practice.

 

Lecturers

We regularly revalidate courses for quality assurance and enhancement

At USW, we regularly review our courses in response to changing patterns of employment and skills demand to ensure we offer learning designed to reflect today’s student needs and tomorrow’s employer demands.

If during a review process course content is significantly changed, we’ll write to inform you and talk you through the changes for the coming year. But whatever the outcome, we aim to equip our students with the skillset and the mindset to succeed whatever tomorrow may bring. Your future, future-proofed.

Please read our Essential Guide for more detailed information about the Play Therapy course.

 

A degree, which is also a professional qualification (such as teaching-fully qualified, social work, occupational therapy or paediatric nursing), plus a minimum of two years post-qualifying work experience in the qualified discipline.

Two references* uploaded with the application.

An Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check on the Child Workforce and Child Barring List and subscription to the DBS Update Service. (Overseas equivalent required for non-uk applicants)

 

Or

 

A degree in a relevant area (such as psychology, childhood studies, early-years development, social science), plus a minimum of five years’ experience working face to face with children, young people and their families of which the majority of this experience should be undertaken after graduation.

Two references* uploaded with the application.

 An Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check on the Child Workforce and Child Barring List and subscription to the DBS Update Service. (Overseas equivalent required for non-uk applicants)

 

 

Applicants who meet the entry requirements for the course will be invited to interview.

 

Please note that we do not accept deferred entry on to this course.

 

*The references must be on letter headed paper or the referee can send them direct from a professional/work email address to [email protected]

 

Interview dates

11th April - online

19th April - on campus

9th May - online

5th June - on campus

11th July - online

2nd August - on campus

 

 

 

 

 

International Entry Requirements

The course welcomes international applicants and requires an English level of IELTS 6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in each component or equivalent.

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 2024 - July 2025 Fees


  • Part-time UK:  £1570 per 20 credits

August 2025 - July 2026 Fees


  • Part-time UK: TBC

Student Perks

At the University of South Wales, you’re investing in so much more than a degree. We strive to provide our students with the best possible experience, no matter what you chose to study. Whether it’s access to top of the range mac books and PCs, state-of-the-art facilities packed with industry-leading equipment and software, masterclasses and events led by industry experts, or a wide range of clubs and societies to meet likeminded people, better tomorrows start with extra perks.

Each course also has their own unique student benefits to prepare you for the real word, and details of these can be found on our course pages. From global field trips, integrated work experience and free course-related resources, to funded initiatives, projects working with real employers, and opportunities for extra qualifications and accreditations - at USW your future, is future-proofed.

Click here to learn more about student perks at USW.

Additional Costs

As a student of USW, you’ll have access to lots of free resources to support your study and learning, such as textbooks, publications, online journals, laptops, and plenty of remote-access resources. Whilst in most cases these resources are more than sufficient in supporting you with completing your course, additional costs, both obligatory and optional, may be required or requested for the likes of travel, memberships, experience days, stationery, printing, or equipment.

* Obligatory

Item Cost
Additional assessment or memberships: Professional body student fees * £38 - £48
Year 1 student BAPT membership is £48, in years 2 and 3 it is £38 per year to renew membership.
Clinical Supervision * £35 - £50
Cost per session. Years 1-3; 50 hrs minimum over 3 years (ratio of 2:1 clinical practice: clinical supervision must be maintained throughout the training)
Therapy £30 - £50
Costs are per session, years 1-3. 60 hours total over 3 years (20 hours per year)
DBS * £55.42
This fee includes £40 for the enhanced DBS certificate, the Post Office Administration fee and the online administration fee.
DBS Updating Service * £13
Whilst optional at present, we strongly recommend you sign up for this service, especially if you are likely to have placements each year and wish to pursue a career post University where a DBS check is a requirement. Please note you must register with the update service within 30 days of your enhanced DBS certificate being issued.
Other: Professional Indemnity Insurance * £45 - £75
Years 1-3
Other: Placement travel *
Students have to fund their own travel costs to their placement. Costs vary, depending on location.
Other: Infant Observation travel *
Students have to fund their own travel costs to their infant observation placement. Costs vary, depending on location.
Video recording equipment *
Students are required to have a device in which to video-record play therapy sessions. They can use a video recorder, phone or tablet. The student will need to purchase this if they do not already have one.
Play materials
Students may need to purchase play materials for use on placement

Funding

Funding to help pay for (or cover) course tuition fees and living costs

Whilst you’re studying, you’ll have two main financial obligations – tuition fees and living costs. There’s lots of financial help available from the University of South Wales and external funding sources, that may provide loans (which have to be paid back) and grants, scholarships and bursaries (that don't).

To learn about course fees, funding options, and to see if you are eligible for financial support, visit our Fees and Funding pages.

 

USW Postgraduate 20% Alumni Discount 2023/24

The University of South Wales is offering a 20% reduction in tuition fees for all University of South Wales* graduates starting a taught/online*** MA,MSc, LLM,MBA or DBA course from September 2023 (this includes students starting a course in January/February 2024). T's and Cs apply. Click here for more details and eligibility criteria: USW Postgraduate Alumni Discount 2023/24

Apply directly to the University for this course.

Admissions statement 

Career opportunities for play therapists exist in many stimulating areas, such as community groups, social services, education services, the National Health Service and private clients.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.

This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.

Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.