Advanced Specialist Diploma in Psychotherapy

Ready to take the next step in your counselling training? This course is designed to deepen your self development and take you to the next level of professional practice.

The next course starts: 8th January 2021, fortnightly on a Friday – (full – reserve list places available)

*Our classroom based courses will be delivered via our exceptional virtual learning environment when required during Covid restrictions*


Ready to take the next step in your counselling training?  This course is designed to deepen your self-development and take you to the next level of professional practice.

This Advanced Specialist Diploma course is aimed at qualified counsellors (and those about to qualify) interested in developing and expanding their current practice to facilitate work as a Psychotherapist.

Heartwood’s theoretical approach presented on the course is both Integrative and Holistic. We will look at integrating models, techniques, theories and a range of modalities that suit the individual client. Whilst working on developing relationship skills which will aid therapeutic work.

We will focus on providing a safe and non-judgemental environment in which to practice new skills and techniques, to enhance current practice and develop confidence in working in psychotherapy.

The course delivery is through experiential and didactic learning designed to inspire and engender confidence in students to work as psychotherapists.

Course details

The course runs fortnightly (10am – 4.30pm) for 12 sessions starting 8th January 2021.

The course will be delivered at the Heartwood Centre on the Dartington Estate, where Heartwood students have access to outdoor and indoor light and warm recreational spaces with seating for break times and its own refreshment making facilities.

We create a supportive learning environment here at Heartwood and will guide learners through their studies.

Counsellors come to us from a diverse variety of backgrounds with a vast range of skills and ability, as well as an established understanding of the counselling profession. It offers the opportunity to enhance further career and life skills, and can aid in accessing specialist counselling and therapeutic professions.

A deeper exploration into ‘self’

There is a strong reflective element to this course which runs throughout the whole program. You will be encouraged to reflect on your personal journey so far, the

obstacles which you face in your ongoing practice and your fundamentally embedded ‘structures’.

The primacy of the client- therapist relationship

You will be invited to explore ways in which you can effectively establish and maintain a powerful working alliance with your clients. A range of techniques will be identified as valuable tools to access working with the therapeutic relationship at depth.

Developing an authentic and individual therapeutic approach

The course seeks to support you in developing your own emerging style and approach

Making the shift to psychotherapist

The course will provide you with a solid foundation from which to build your confidence as a practitioner, and take you to the next level of your ability as a psychotherapist.

Successful completion of the course will help you to set up in private practice and/or become a senior psychotherapist within an agency setting.

NCS Advanced Specialist Status: This course is recognised by the National Counselling Society as “Advanced Specialist Diploma” status.

Entry Requirements: Level 4 Diploma (or equivalent) including 100 supervised client hours already obtained by the start of the course.

Next Start:   January 8th 2021  – (full – waiting list places available)

Enrolment: Application form and interview

Assessment: Internal and Externally assessed case study, 60 hours in supervised practice

Minimum of 10 hours of personal therapy are required during your training.

Course Calendar:

Please click on the below link to view and download the course calendar for upcoming courses:

Psychotherapy – 8th January 2021, fortnightly on a Friday  – (full – waiting list places available)

Entry requirements

You will need to have completed a Level 4 Diploma in Counselling (or equivalent).
You will need to have completed a minimum of 100 client hours and have a supporting supervision record.
An interview with the principal or course tutor is available should you wish to take advantage of this.


Throughout the course we will use a range of experiential exercises to make accessible the theories which underpin these interventions and approaches.

Further advancing your counselling skills, personal and professional development, we will focus on the following:

  • Develop proficiency in your particular counselling approach
  • Deepen ability to work with the counselling relationship
  • Develop proficiency to work with clients at an emotional depth
  • Exploration of ‘no go’ areas; personality, personal history and interpersonal


  • Comprehension of working in different health settings
  • Effectiveness and critical reflection of psychotherapy counselling models
  • Impact of self-awareness on counselling relationship & practice work
  • Self-development and reflection
  • Developing awareness of yourself in relationship
  • Conducting assessments
  • Relate theory of diversity to client assessment and treatment choices
  • Identifying severe or complex mental health problems and support referral


  • Personal well-being, competence and efficacy


  • Difficult thought processes; fixed beliefs or negative ideas, old self-images.
  • Emotional blocks; grief, anger, sadness, regret, guilt, shame.
  • Physical blocks; insomnia, eating disorders, self-harm.
  • Spiritual cognition; dreams, aspirations, shame, hopes.
  • Complex mental health issues


  • Ethical framework & code of conduct
  • Theoretical models & concepts
  • Risk management, assessments & referral pathways
  • Personal & professional guidance and support
  • Complex dynamics in psychotherapy
  • Psychotherapeutic contracts
  • Making the most of supervision
  • Continuing professional development (CPD) pathways
  • Working within limits of own proficiency
  • Difference, Diversity & Inclusion


  • A minimum of 90% attendance on tuition days
  • Completion of a learning journals
  • Demonstration of practical skills
  • Completion of all course assignments
  • Completion of 60 client hours
  • Completion of the external case review
  • Clinical supervision and completion of supervisors proficiency statement

Fees Options

Payment options:

Full course fee £1475.

Your place on the course is only secured on receipt of the non-refundable deposit of £395:

  • The outstanding balance of £1080 can then be made in full before the course start date.
  • monthly payment plan is available at £365* for 3 months *(This includes a monthly administration fee of £5.00 for instalment payments).

What Students Say

Register your interest

To register your interest in this course without obligation, please click here


To enrol on this course, please select your payment method below and then select ‘Buy now’ to proceed.

Pay a deposit of £395.00 per item