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BA Therapeutic Communication and Therapeutic Organisations

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  • Our students are extremely happy - we rank highly for student satisfaction.
  • 80% of our undergraduates find graduate-level study or employment within six months.
  • Our students learn in small groups with expert practitioners and academics.

Course options2016-17

UCAS code: LX5C
Duration: 1 year
Start month: October
Location: Colchester Campus
Based in: Psychoanalytic Studies
Fee (Home/EU): £9,000
Fee (International): £12,950

Course enquiries

Telephone 01206 873666
Email admit@essex.ac.uk

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About the course

How can you best help a troubled child in your agency? How can you work more effectively with your colleagues? How can you use your understanding to support others in their role with adolescents? How can you make your organisations for adults more therapeutic? Our course is a practical one, consolidating your knowledge and expertise from our Foundation Degree and empowering you to take a more senior role in your agencies.

We combine theoretical seminars, practical workshops, work-place learning, and a dissertation on the subject that inspires you most. Your first term concentrates on developing greater skill in working individually with adolescents and adults, whilst your second involves observing in an organisation in order to understand more fully the conscious and unconscious dynamics at work in institutions.

Your final half-term focuses on supervision and mentoring, enabling you to foster the skills and development of others in your agency. Throughout the year, you will also be able to study an area of personal interest, engaging your curiosity under the expert guidance of our staff.

“I never expected to develop such enthusiasm and passion for my chosen subject. I have acquired and built on a range of different skills, and by the end of my first year I had obtained paid employment within two separate organisations: a community interest company in Essex and a registered charity in Suffolk.”

David Bloomfield, FdA Therapeutic Communication and Therapeutic Organisation.

Our expert staff

What sets our teaching team apart is that each one blends clinical experience and expertise in their field with the academic rigour for which the Centre for Psychoanalytic Studies has such a reputation. You will be taught by lecturers who have years of experience working directly with troubled individuals and groups in specialist settings. This means they can draw upon not only the enduring academic tradition and the latest research in the field of psychoanalytic studies but also upon years of clinical experience as teachers, psychotherapists, and therapeutic community practitioners.

Dr Chris Nicholson has some 15 years experience working in residential childcare and therapeutic communities. His PhD thesis concerned the effects of war trauma upon the literary works of Robert Graves. He is the primary author and editor of Children and Adolescents in Trauma: Creative Therapeutic Approaches published in 2010. Chris sits on the Advisory Board for Children and Young People at the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ Therapeutic Communities section. He speaks at both national and international conferences and teaches here as well as in Greece.

Mr Chris Tanner is an expert and lecturer in organisational dynamics and leadership. He gained postgraduate qualifications in special education, psychoanalytic studies (MA), and organisational consultancy (PGDip). Chris brings many years experience in special education and therapeutic communities having held a number of leaderships and directorships roles. In addition, Chris is a highly regarded organisational consultant working across diverse sectors in the UK. He is a Specialist Member of the Ministry of Justice Health, Education and Social Care Tribunal.

Mrs Sue Kegerreis is both an adult and child and adolescent psychotherapist. Sue has published numerous journal papers and chapters including her book Psychodynamic Counselling with Children and Adolescents: An Introduction in 2010. Sue has a long career developing and teaching courses applying psychodynamic approaches to both clinical and non-clinical settings, and she is also a consultant offering clinical supervision.

Dr Jochem Willemsen started his career as a support worker in a residential care home for children. He later trained to be a psychoanalytic psychotherapist, and worked for years in private practice. Jochem worked for more than ten years at Ghent University (Belgium), where he completed a PhD on psychopathy. His research on psychoanalysis, forensic psychotherapy, and psychopathy is published in international scientific journals.

Our Undergraduate Administrator, Alison Evans, who will help you with many of the arrangements and technical aspects of the course, has a fantastic reputation among our students as being particularly helpful and approachable.

Specialist facilities

You will experience a lively, informal environment with many possibilities to pursue your own interests:

  • Whether in Colchester or Southend Campus, you will have access to the Albert Sloman Library, which houses a strong collection of books, journals, electronic resources and major archives
  • The Centre has its own dedicated library of specialist texts which inform and influence our research
  • At the Southend Campus, you also have access to the new Southend library and IT suite, as well as dedicated open and closed study areas and pods.

  • Free evening Open Seminars on topics relevant to psychoanalysis which are open to students, staff and members of the public.

Your future

In undertaking this course you’ll study a range of psychoanalytic concepts - applying them to individuals, relationships and organisations, which will provide you with a unique perspective of why we are the way we are, on understanding others and knowing how to relate to them, which will make you suited for further clinical training, postgraduate study in different fields, or employment.

With around 80% of our students moving on to postgraduate study or employment, this course prepares you to move successfully into your own career path.

Key areas of employment for people with these skills include marketing, advertising, human resources, management, the media, care work, teaching or health care. Our recent graduates have gone on to work in a wide range of careers, including:

  • Psychoanalytic therapy
  • Clinical psychology
  • NHS Mental Health work
  • Management Consultancy
  • Country Director (Afghanistan) with the Danish Refugee Council
  • Therapeutic Consultancy

We also work with our university’s Employability and Careers Centre to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

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Example structure

Studying at Essex is about discovering yourself, so your course combines compulsory and optional modules to make sure you gain key knowledge in the discipline, while having as much freedom as possible to explore your own interests. Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore to ensure your course is as relevant and up-to-date as possible your core module structure may be subject to change.

For many of our courses you’ll have a wide range of optional modules to choose from – those listed in this example structure are just a selection of those available. The opportunity to take optional modules will depend on the number of core modules within any year of the course. In many instances, the flexibility to take optional modules increases as you progress through the course.

Our Programme Specification gives more detail about the structure available to our current first-year students, including details of all optional modules.

Final year

How does children and adolescent counselling differ from counselling adults? You will study written material relating to counselling skills with children and adolescents and take part in workshop based learning to support your theoretical understanding. This will involve you presenting and discussing your own work with a child or adolescent to help you develop your clinical skills.

How do you use key psychodynamic concepts when working with adults? Or when working with young people? Put your psychodynamic understanding about working with adult clients into practice. Work more effectively with adults and young people by using key psychodynamic principles in your approach.

This module aims to develop your understanding of both psychodynamic and systemic thinking about organisations. Alongside theoretical reading you will set up and conduct a weekly observation of an organisation which will be written up and presented in seminars for analysis using the concepts you have learned. You also participate in a 7 week group dynamics workshop.

This module is designed to enable you to take up a mentoring or supervisory role in your organisation by equipping you with theoretical understanding of the dynamics of that role, and by considering in depth your mentoring or supervision of a colleague or peer over 5 weeks. You can also practice mentoring in workshops and gain valuable feedback to improving your skills.

This module requires you to write a long essay on a topic of your choice related to the core conceptual focus of the TCTO programme i.e. the application of psychodynamic theory and practice to work and social life. The modules main aim is for you to use the psychodynamic knowledge and skills gained on this programme and apply this either to a new area of study, or more deeply and intellectually to a familiar area. You will learn research skills and approaches appropriate to the Long Essay in seminars, learn to evaluate and present your ideas and you will receive individual supervision from a tutor to develop your essay to its highest standard prior to submission.

Want to enhance your effectiveness at work? Keen to take up a more senior role? Able to undertake practice in your own workplace? Continue with your normal work responsibilities, including supervision of others, with guidance from a mentor. Develop professionally by reviewing aspects of your work experience with your mentor.

Teaching

  • Teaching takes place in relatively small seminars and fora, with a focus on group discussion
  • Discussion in seminars includes both discussing other peoples’ work and discussing your own experiences in the workplace
  • You also undertake supervised clinical practice, participate in skills based workshops, and teach others through presentation of theoretical readings and clinical cases

Assessment

  • Your grade is made up entirely of coursework marks, including essays and reflective reports

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Qualifications

UK entry requirements

You should have passed the Foundation Degree in Therapeutic Communication and Therapeutic Organisations.

English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 6.0 overall with minimum 5.5 in each component (or equivalent). Different requirements apply for second year entry.
We accept a wide range of other qualifications from applicants studying in the UK, EU and other countries. For further details about the qualifications that we accept, please e-mail us with information about the high school qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.
We welcome applications from mature students, students interested in direct entry to the second year and students wishing to defer entry.

International and EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Email admit@essex.ac.uk for further details about the qualifications we accept. Include information in your email about the high school qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

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Visit us

Open days

Our Colchester Campus events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex. In 2016 we have three undergraduate Open Days (in June, September and October). These events enable you to discover what our Colchester Campus has to offer. You have the chance to:

  • tour our campus and accommodation
  • find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
  • meet our students and staff

Check out our Visit Us pages to find out more information about booking onto one of our events. And if the dates aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing tours@essex.ac.uk and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.

Virtual tours

If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tour allows you to explore the Colchester Campus from the comfort of your home. Check out our accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.

Exhibitions

Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.

Applying

Applications for our full-time undergraduate courses for both our Colchester and Southend campuses should be made directly to the Centre for Psychoanalytic Studies (see contact details below). You do not apply for this course via UCAS.

This course is appropriate both for applicants without a first degree who are looking for career progression and those with professional qualifications who are looking to add a psychodynamic perspective to their work. It is particularly relevant for staff looking to move towards the Masters-level teaching qualification or those interested in taking our course MA Psychodynamic Counselling.

Applications are invited from the public, independent and voluntary sectors, for example: learning support assistants; teachers; family care workers; mental health workers; residential care workers; social workers; primary care workers; youth workers; and similar.

For further information or to apply for this course, please contact:
Alison Evans, Undergraduate Administrator, Centre for Psychoanalytic Studies
T +44 (0)1206 874969
E cpsugrad@essex.ac.uk

For an informal discussion, please contact our Programme Lead:
Dr Chris Nicholson
E cnich@essex.ac.uk

Visit days and interviews

Resident in the UK? If your application is successful, we will invite you to attend one of our visit days. These run from January to April and give you the chance to explore the campus, meet our students and really get a feel for life as an Essex student.

Some of our courses also hold interviews and if you’re invited to one, this will take place during your visit day. Don’t panic, they’re nothing to worry about and it’s a great way for us to find out more about you and for you to find out more about the course. Some of our interviews are one-to-one with an academic, others are group activities, but we’ll send you all the information you need beforehand.

If you’re outside the UK and are planning a trip, feel free to email visit@essex.ac.uk so we can help you plan a visit to the University.

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Although great care is taken in compiling our course details, they are intended for the general guidance of prospective students only. The University reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University.

The full procedures, rules and regulations of the University are set out in the Charter, Statues and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.