Research course

Psychotherapeutic and Counselling Psychology

University of Surrey · Department of Psychology

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Entry requirements

  • A first or 2.1 honours degree in psychology and Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) from the BPS
  • Sufficient personal maturity, robustness, and stability to cope with the demands of doctoral level studies
  • Satisfactory check by the Disclosure and Barring Services (DBS), formerly known as the Criminal Record Bureau (CRB)

Months of entry


Course content

Our programme has been running for over 20 years and was the first programme accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS) to confer Chartered Counselling Psychology status. Upon successful completion of the programme, you’ll be eligible to apply for Chartered Membership of the BPS and register with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) as a counselling psychologist.

Our programme embraces a pluralistic approach to theory, practice and research. Throughout the three years, you will gain in-depth exposure to the main psychotherapeutic traditions (namely humanistic, psychodynamic and second and third wave cognitive behavioural therapy) and you will be supported with training and supervision provided by established professionals in the field.

During your studies you will benefit from the University’s excellent learning resources and support network, as well as many events that will contribute to your personal and professional development. In addition, our small cohorts mean that you will enjoy a close relationship with staff, who will monitor your development throughout your training on clinical, academic and research levels.

Our team has seven counselling psychologists and psychotherapists, who have a wide range of academic, research and clinical interests. We are also home to a number of visiting lecturers who contribute to the teaching and learning of our trainees. In addition, we are one of the few programmes organising placements for trainees throughout the three years while also following their development on placement with a mid-year placement visit that facilitates the monitoring and development of strong therapeutic skills and professional identity.

In line with counselling psychology philosophy and ethos, our programme is firmly rooted in humanistic values and a pluralistic stance to theory and practice.

At the heart of our training’s philosophy lies an interdisciplinary, relational attitude that is grounded in the negotiation of a thoroughly holistic and contextualised understanding of clients’ experience, presenting issues, and concerns.

To assist you in becoming a reflective scientist practitioner, our programme emphasises integration of theory, research and practice and the development of a phenomenological attitude that is characterised by openness, respect, curiosity, critical self-awareness, and a commitment to ethics, equality, diversity and social justice.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PsychD
    full time
    48 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Postgraduate Admissions
+44 (0)1483 682 222