PgDip/MSc Cognitive Behavioural Therapy & CBT for IAPT for approved applicants only

Key information

Course Leader: Greg Rooney

Level: 7

Start date: Semester A: 2021

Mode of delivery: PgDip - part time normally over 2 years with a Semester A entry only. You will need to apply separately to top-up to a MSc.

School: Health & Social Work

Please see the download for dates of teaching as this will differ for both CBT applicants and the IAPT applicants.  
The information below generally refers to those who apply directly for the PgDip/MSc in CBT - information may differ for those who have been interviewed to undertake the IAPT route - please contact Greg Rooney directly if you have any queries with regards to your study route for IAPT applicants.

About this Course

The Postgraduate Diploma in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy course is an exciting and innovative course, delivered by an enthusiastic team of Cognitive Behaviour Psychotherapists and lecturers. The course structure is designed to give you the option to study for:


  • a postgraduate diploma (PgDip) in CBT (part-time over two years)
  • a full Master’s degree (MSc) in CBT (part-time over an additional year)


The postgraduate diploma (PgDip) is suitable for health professionals who are aiming for accreditation as Cognitive Behaviour Therapists. To be a successful candidate you will already have experience working in mental health settings, providing Cognitive Behavioural Therapy interventions. Typically our students bring significant experience in their own field of work as Mental Health Nurses, Occupational Therapists, Social Workers, Psychologists and Counsellors.

Course structure

The PgDip in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is delivered over two academic years to facilitate the development of knowledge and application of CBT in stages and one year for IAPT delegates.

To gain a Master’s degree in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy you will need to study for the third year. In this final year, you will complete a 15 credit research module and a 45 credit dissertation module. This part of the course encompasses a total of 60 credits and on successful completion, you will have an MSc in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.

By successfully completing the third year, you will be able to interpret the knowledge and apply advanced skills in specialist areas. Throughout your study, you will be facilitated to develop intellectual and critical thinking in evaluating the evidence that underpins your knowledge and the practice of CBT interventions.

To attain a Master’s award you need to complete 180 credits. There are also interim awards available: 

  • Postgraduate Certificate (PgC) (60 credits) 
  • Postgraduate Diploma (PgD) (120 credits) 

The university can direct you to some placement information but the majority of students find their own work-based learning experience where you are required to see 4-5 clients per week to meet the required 200 hours.

The study day takes place on a Wednesday (for 2020 entry), lectures and University-based supervision takes place on this day.

For students without a core profession, they are required to submit a KSA portfolio (see for details

Why Choose this Course

The course gives you the option to study for a PgDip in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) in two years. It is accredited at Level two by the British Association of Cognitive and Behavioural Psychotherapists (BACBP). It is delivered by an enthusiastic team of CBT lecturers with expertise in this area.

Professional Accreditations

When you graduate from the PgDip in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy you will be eligible to gain accreditation from the British Association of Cognitive and Behavioural Psychotherapists (BABCP), provided that you satisfy the supervision requirements including completing a portfolio of practice.


When you graduate with a postgraduate diploma (PgDip) in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy you can progress to the MSc in Cognitive Behaviour by completing the research and a dissertation module.

You will be able to apply your newly gained CBT skills in a variety of settings and environments and able to practice as a competent cognitive behavioural therapist.

Teaching Methods

Modules are facilitated by a variety of experienced lecturers from the University as well as external lecturers.

Modules are assessed by a variety of methods for example essays, presentations, reports, posters, and practical examinations.

Entry Requirements

A professional qualification in health or social care, and a good first degree (a minimum of second class) that relates to working with mental health service users, plus 3 years post qualifying practice experience in a health or social care setting to allow for consolidation of learning


A good first degree (a minimum of second class) in a health related topic or equivalent plus a minimum of four years of practice experience working within a health or social care setting.

Professionals who do not hold a first degree may have the opportunity of studying this course by successfully completing the Research Design and Data Analysis module from the MSc Psychology Conversion course that is available at our University before the start of the course.

All applicants will attend an interview with the Course Leader as part of the selection process. You also need a professional and or academic reference to ensure that your application is supported.

You will need to secure your own placement and have access to BABCP external clinical supervision. This can be in the NHS, private or voluntary sector. Alternatively, evidence needs to be provided that you can conduct CBT-sessions with clients in your current work environment.

A further requirement is that you possess a core qualification as defined by the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP). If you don’t possess a core profession you will need to present evidence that you meet KSA criteria prior to an offer being made on the course. A KSA portfolio will be required from you at the end of the first year.  All students are required to be student members of the BABCP, students will need to provide their BABCP number and placement details on the attached supplementary form on entry to the programme, these details will be required a month before the induction.

All applicants who receive an offer to study at UH will require an 
Enhanced DBS check for Adult and Child Workforece - this can be done through the University of Hertfordshire and will be charged to the individual. 

However, if you are part of the ‘DBS update service’, we can use a previous check you have had conducted, provided:

You can provide an original copy of your disclosure certificate, and

  • Your existing check is for the same workforce (i.e. you would need to have been enhanced checked for adult and child workforce), and
  •  You can provide me with photographic proof of identity (passport, driver licence)
  • You give me permission to check your status 

If all these criteria are met, then please contact either Katie Dickson (01707 284774 - DBS Administrator) or Liz Simon so that we can arrange a mutually suitable time to conduct the check.

All students from non-majority English speaking countries require proof of English language proficiency. The following qualifications and grades will be considered:

  • GCSE English language grade A-C
  • IELTS 6.5 (with no less than 5.5 in any band)

If you do not have the required level of English for entry, our academic English courses can help you to achieve this level.

Fees and Funding


The price quoted is per 15 credits for students who are studying at PGDip level. Students topping-up to MSc level will be charged £745 per 15 credits. The prices relate to self-funding students assessed as UK/EU students for fee purposes. Prices may differ for students that are assessed as Overseas, or for returning students that are on a course leading to an award. Click here for Fees and Funding information or email us. This does not reflect the fee for those coming through the IAPT route