Training as a Humanistic Integrative Psychotherapist
All HIPC Training Courses meet the Standards set out in the Document “Training Standards of Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy”. Each Course is subject to a rigorous quality check against these Standards on a rolling basis every five years. Entry to these courses is at a post-graduate level of competence and all courses take a minimum of four years before accreditation can take place. Central to HIPC trainings are the four pillars of Psychotherapy training: an understanding of theoretical concepts, personal psychotherapy throughout training, clinical work and the supervision of clinical work. Both the training and practice of psychotherapy require adherence to strict codes of ethics and practice.
Within the HIPC umbrella of 30 Member Organisations there is a choice of a wide variety of psychotherapy approaches providing training for adult psychotherapy including Transpersonal, Gestalt, Body Psychotherapy, Psychosynthesis, Humanistic Psychotherapy, Transactional Analysis and Psychodrama. Four Organisations offer training in Humanistic Integrative Child Psychotherapy.
Common values and philosophical assumptions underpinning all of these approaches are the importance of the therapeutic relationship and the integration of mind, body, feeling, soul and spirit. There is also a fairly wide geographical range across the UK plus a choice of size ranging from larger multi-course institutions to smaller, intimate trainings.
Each course has its individual pre-requisites but all courses are conducted at a post-graduate level for a minimum of four years.
For further information you should contact the training administrator or secretary of the organisations themselves. Contact details and links to the organisations can be found under Member Organisations Adult Psychotherapy Training
Updated: April 2015 (JC)
Training Standards of the Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy College (HIPC) of UKCP
The College includes a wide variety of psychotherapy approaches within the humanistic and integrative tradition.
Common values and philosophical assumptions underpin these approaches, including a belief in one or more of the following:
- the importance of the therapeutic relationship as the medium for change
- the importance of interdisciplinary dialogue and exploration, with emphasis on integration, respect for difference and an ability to work with diversity
- a spiritual dimension to an individual's life and problems, the self-healing capacity of the individual and the individual's sovereignty and responsibility
- the centrality of social relationships in setting the framework in which individuals shape their lives
- the importance of political awareness and an understanding of the individual's experience, personal beliefs and values in problems of living
- the integration of mind, body, feeling, soul and spirit
- The College's training standards reflect this diversity and are intended to create a sound framework for good practice that is flexible and can encompass the different needs of member organisations.
UKCP Guiding Principles
The following Guiding Principles have been agreed
- Trainings should recognise the existence of different psychotherapies, based on different theories, and should promote respectful understanding of differences between theories
- Training should be theoretically informed and practice based
- Training should be related to clinical work in the individual’s work context. This may apply to a multiplicity of occupational settings and environments
- Trainings should provide transparency and accountability in their assessment processes
- Trainings should operate within an equal opportunities framework
1.0 Entry Requirements
- The HIPC Training Standards requirements need to be read in conjunction with the UKCP 2003 Training requirements.
1.1 Entry is at a postgraduate level of competence. Training organisations should have in place appropriate procedures for assessing applicants' ability to undertake such a training. These should normally include one or more of the following entry requirements
- an undergraduate degree
- a relevant professional training
- an independent assessment
- Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL)
- Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL)
- APL procedures are to enable training organisations to devise criteria that acknowledge formally a person's relevant prior professional and life experience.
1.2 Applicants will normally demonstrate the capacity and commitment to develop the following qualities that will make them suitable for the profession of psychotherapy
- a lively and enquiring mind
- a capacity for critical reflection and
- self-directed learning
- an ability to listen and respond with compassion and respect
- awareness of prejudice and the ability to respond openly to issues of race, gender, age, sexual preference, class, disability, ethnic, spiritual / religious and cultural difference, and diversity
- awareness and sensitivity in relation to the political, socio-cultural and religious /spiritual contexts of people's lives
- in-depth self-reflection
- self-awareness and commitment to self-development. Applicants should have sufficient emotional competence and the internal resources necessary to engage with the demands of the training and the work of psychotherapy
1.3 Candidates should have relevant experience of working with people in a responsible role. Training organisations should be able to substantiate the relevance of a candidate's experience.
Training organisations should have in place
- appropriate procedures for acceptance and refusal of applicants including appropriate and published criteria and procedures for the selection of applicants
- an equal opportunities policy or procedures to ensure that applicants are not discriminated against on grounds of race, gender, age, sexual preference, class, disability or ethnic, religious and cultural difference
2.0 The Minimum Curriculum
2.1 The study of the theory and practice of humanistic and/or integrative and/or transpersonal psychotherapy from assessment to termination. A core theoretical and philosophical basis for therapeutic practice is required.
The curriculum should include the following
- a model of the person and mind
- a model of gendered and culturally influenced human development
- a model of human change and ways in which change can be facilitated
- a set of clinical concepts to relate theory to practice
- an extensive engagement with existing literature which includes a critique of the core model
- an exploration of the philosophical foundations of the approach being taught
- a critical awareness of the multiple layers of human experience and the multi-dimensional nature of the therapeutic relationship
2.2 Understanding of basic research techniques and their application to the investigation and evaluation of psychotherapeutic practice. Acquisition of a critical understanding of the relevance of studies and research findings in human development, psychopathology, neurophysiology, memory, diversities, ethics, legal issues in relation to psychotherapy and social science.
2.3 Training should include supervised practice of psychotherapy of an intensity, frequency and duration congruent with the form of psychotherapy being learnt and sufficient to ensure that the trainee achieves the capacity to perform effectively and safely as an autonomous practitioner.
A balance should be found between
- the stage of training and supervised practice
- the frequency (weekly, fortnightly, monthly) and length (hours)
- individual or group supervision
- number of supervisees in the group
- And agreed with the supervisor. Candidates may be required to undertake additional supervision than the minimum requirement.
Minimum requirements for accreditation and registration
- 900 Tutor Contact hours (comprising training and supervision)
- The total number of supervised client hours accumulated should be not less than 450. Each client hour is regarded as an individual/group contact hour
- The ratio of individual supervision hours to overall client hours should be a minimum of 1:6
- Group supervision should reflect this ratio (minimum 10 minutes supervision per client hour)
- Supervised hours should be made up of client contracts that reflect the approach to be practiced and demonstrate that the trainee has the appropriate experience and competence for the model of psychotherapy that they will be practicing.
- If the nature of the training precludes these minimum requirements a special case may be made to the assessment board, such as for those organisations that specialise in short-term/time-limited clinical work.
2.4 Candidates should show that they have established themselves in practice with substantial experience in the kinds of psychotherapy that they intend to offer. In supervised psychotherapy practice, they should have demonstrated their competency for a minimum of a two-year period.
- For solely long-term modalities – a regular caseload of which at least two should be long-term contracts and that they are able to manage closure
- For solely time-limited modalities – completion of at least 12 cases, with evidence of efficacy and appropriate use of model and its frameworks
- It is recommended that candidates have experience of working with clients in both long-term and time-limited psychotherapy contracts.
2.5 Training shall include arrangements to ensure that candidates can identify and manage appropriately their personal involvement in and contributions to the processes of the psychotherapy approach they practice.
2.6 Candidates must have an experience of psychotherapy congruent with the psychotherapy in which they are in training, a minimum of 40 hours per year for four years, and normally be in psychotherapy throughout their training. This personal psychotherapy must normally be undergone with a UKCP registered psychotherapist, or equivalent.
2.7 An introduction to the range of psychotherapies and counselling so that trainees may have
- an awareness of alternative treatments
- a critical introduction to other models distinct from the theory that forms the core of the curriculum
- a critical consideration of the value system, theory of the person and underlying philosophy of these other approaches so that trainees may locate their own approach within the overall field of psychotherapy and have an awareness of the alternatives
2.8 An opportunity for trainees to develop
- skills in assessing and responding to the range of responses to shock and trauma, bereavement and spiritual crisis and differentiating these from severe mental illness
- the capacity to recognise severely disturbed clients and when the practitioner should seek other professional advice
- an understanding of the procedures used in psychiatric assessment and liaison with other professionals involved in mental health
- The above should be read in conjunction with the HIPC May 2003 Mental Health Familiarisation Placements requirements set out by the Assessment Board.
3.0 Basic Requirements of Training courses
3.1 The training shall be at postgraduate level. The programme of training should
- demonstrate integration between academic learning, experiential and skills-based learning, personal awareness and supervised practice
- a balance between tutor contact hours, personal study, self-support and peer group work should also be demonstrated.
3.2 The length of training shall be appropriate to permit the consolidation and integration of theoretical knowledge and clinical experience and shall not normally be shorter than four years part-time.
3.3 Each training course shall be validated by the College to which the organisation belongs through the Training Standards or Accreditation Committee.
3.4 Training programmes shall be reviewed for the purposes of re-validation by the College at intervals of no more than five years
3.5 All Training courses shall have published criteria and procedures for selection of trainees. Training organisations should have published selection criteria and procedures.
The selection of applicants should normally include
- completion of an application form
- written personal statement
- an interview with two or more members of staff
- two or more references
3.6 Training courses shall publish the Code of Ethics and Practice to which they adhere.
3.7 Training courses shall have mechanisms for safeguarding the rights of students including consultation procedures and complaints and grievance procedures
3.8 Training courses shall publish a Trainee's Handbook that has clear information on the length and time frame of courses, a definition of supervised practice with clients, details of course requirements, curriculum and modes of assessment.
3.9 Training organisations shall have methods and regulations for the processing of Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL), Assessment of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL), Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) and Credit Accumulation Transfer System (CATS) claims where relevant.
3.10 Training organisations shall have clear criteria for the selection and ongoing eligibility of supervisors, tutors and trainers involved in the development of trainees to the point of initial registration.
4.1 Each training course shall have a properly constituted body for the assessment of students.
4.2 Training programmes should publish the full curriculum and assessment procedures and candidates in training should be made fully aware of these. It is recommended that specific learning outcomes or intentions be identified for each component of the training programme (theory, skills, client work, personal awareness) and how these will be assessed and / or monitored. The modes of assessment, such as supervisors' reports, portfolios, written examinations, essays and writing in papers, and the criteria of assessment, must be clearly set out and made available to trainees.
4.3 Assessment must be linked to clearly set out Training Outcomes, both generic and College specific, relating to the knowledge base, clinical skills and the context of practice.
This should be read in conjunction with the HIPC Learning Outcomes Guidelines.
4.4 The objectives of assessment are to ensure clinical competency within the context of a chosen theoretical model and sound ethical practice. Assessment of candidates should focus on the integration of theory, skills and personal awareness, the effective and responsible handling of client work and adherence to the values of humanistic and integrative psychotherapy as outlined in the introduction. Continuous assessment is recommended during training in order to give due weight to the nature of psychotherapy and allow for the termination of training in unsuitable cases. These procedures should be transparent. Assessment should include and be substantiated by objective evidence such as written work, audio or video recordings, and retained for external assessment or scrutiny.
4.5 Assessment design must be fair to candidates and consistent across different orientations and training routes.
4.6 Training organisations should ensure that a range of assessments are internally verified (e.g. by cross marking or double marking). The whole assessment process should be moderated by at least one independent moderator external to the training programme. In addition to shorter assignments set during the training programme (such as essays, case studies, verbatim reports etc), candidates are required to complete at least one substantial piece of written work (dissertation / research thesis / extended case study) of at least 8,000 words. This should demonstrate the candidate's capacity for reflecting in depth on their own work and the approach in which they are training.
It is recommended that this should be marked by at least one independent examiner and where possible by an independent UKCP registered practitioner.
4.7 Trainees must be provided with sufficient regular feedback to allow them to assess their own strengths and developmental needs.
4.8 Training programmes should have properly constituted bodies for ensuring the rights of candidates in training. These should normally include a system of scrutiny by an external moderator, an exam board, candidate representation (for example on a board of studies or programme board), published complaints and grievance procedures and appeals procedures.
5.0 Qualification and Registration
5.1 Training organisations shall specify whether qualification (or graduation from one part of the programme) coincides with recognition of candidates as eligible for registration by UKCP
5.2 Where qualification or graduation from one part of the programme and registration do not coincide organisations are required to specify what further professional development is required for registration.
5.3 The definition of such further professional development might include considerations relating to the nature of supervision and the range, quantity and intensity of practice and/or study.
5.4 Where qualification and Registration do not coincide, the process of assessment of readiness for Registration shall correspond in general to the requirements of Section 3 above.
6.0 Continuing Professional Development
6.1 Training and/or Accrediting organizations should have in place a CPD policy in accordance with UKCP guidelines. This should be read in conjunction with the HIPC Continuing Professional Development requirements and minimum standards final version of 10 March 2004.
6.2 Training organisations shall bear in mind a commitment to life long learning and the need for monitoring practice for the best protection of the public.
6.3 Each training organisation should make provision for an ongoing graduate body either as an integral part of the organisation or clearly linked to it.
6.4 Training organisations should encourage their graduates actively to consider their continuing professional development needs.
Amended, January 2011
Edited, September 2013