April 2011 No. 34

In this Update


Therapist 1: I’ve been asked to take on a client with multiple personality disorder, but I’ve said no.

Therapist 2: You have a probem with multiple personalities?

Therapist 1: Well it’s just that they never pay their bills. Every time I ask they say one of the others has already paid it ...

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Funding update

CPCAB is continuing to seek clarification about funding as we enter the new financial year. As we all know money, is short and cuts are affecting everyone. However, we all should bear in mind the following:

What does this means for CPCAB qualifications?
This means that although CPCAB qualifications may not be on a funding list they are still the qualifications of choice because:

Regulation update

In February the government published a command paper entitled ‘Enabling Excellence’ to support the earlier publication of the Health and Social Care Bill in January. This paper clearly states that the government would prefer regulation to be based on ‘assured voluntary registers rather than statutory regulation except where there is a “compelling case” based on risk to the public. Existing voluntary registers can be accredited by the overall regulator, the CHRE (to be renamed the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care - PSA) or new voluntary registers can be created and held by other regulators – such as the HPC. Consequently there are a number of possible options for the regulation of counselling and psychotherapy:

1. Statutory regulation – if there is a convincing case based on public risk. HPC itself has not yet published its final recommendations for counselling and psychotherapy; however counselling and psychotherapy were not singled out for statutory regulation in the bill.

2. A new single voluntary register - this might be created and held by HPC. This would look much like a statutory register but the HPC would have fewer powers. Employers might require practitioners to register as a condition of employment but it would not be a statutory requirement for all practitioners, nor would the titles be protected. HPC itself has not finalised its own position on the creation of voluntary registers and has instructed its own executive to look again at these issues.

3. The accreditation of existing voluntary registers by PSA. These registers would have to meet certain criteria but entry to the register and sanctions would be managed by the holder of the register, i.e. the professional bodies.

The outcome is, therefore, still far from certain. The HPC itself (to be renamed the Health and Care Professions Council or HCPC) will be discussing these issues again at its next council meeting on 12th May 2011.

The professional bodies have generally welcomed the possibility of assured voluntary registers rather than statutory regulation. However, there are issues about how the public will make sense of a landscape where there are several different but parallel registers.

CPCAB is continuing to track developments and to maintain the good relationships we developed when working on the PLG. We are being given opportunities to engage in the ongoing debate and we hope that the collaborative work done by the PLG will be put to good use in any future solution. For further information visit the professional body websites or click on the following link - http://www.hpc-uk.org/mediaandevents/statements/commandpaperrepsonse/.

Unique Learner Numbers (ULNs)

Some centres will be familiar with obtaining and using Unique Learner Numbers (ULNs) for their students.  The ULN system and the associated web-based Personal Learning Record is still an optional rather than a mandatory requirement for awarding bodies.  CPCAB has taken the necessary steps to be able to engage with this system if and when it becomes mandatory and we could obtain ULNs on behalf of learners if requested.  However, there are still a number of data protection and data management concerns which are being ironed out at a higher level.

In the meantime there is an optional field in our on-line registration system which can be used to record the candidate’s ULN if they have one.  Centres are welcome to supply us with these numbers and they will be stored in our data base. We will keep you informed of future developments.

Counselling hours - should they include working with children?

CPCAB is often asked whether trainees can undertake placements working with children when studying the level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling (TC-L4) and if so what percentage of the required 100 hours can be with children. The following updated guidance will be incorporated into the TC-L4 tutor support document entitled Guidance to Workplace Experience for September 2011.

The answer is not simple because a number of factors need to be taken into consideration. The key issues to consider are:

Courses are not all the same
The CPCAB level 4 diploma is assessed to a national standard via a common set of learning outcomes and associated assessment criteria but each individual centre has its own unique training programme. If the centre training programme (1) includes specific skills and knowledge for working with children and (2) the tutors are themselves suitably qualified and experienced in this area, they may support learners to take up placements working with children.

If the course itself does not include specialised training for working with children but the agency offers and supports trainees to work with children via their own induction and training programmes, candidates may undertake a proportion of their hours with children provided the course tutors are happy to support this.

In all cases trainees should be supported by appropriate clinical supervision. This is often provided by the agency itself.

Centres and Group Training supervision
Centres/tutors are required to run group training sessions as part of the course in addition to the candidate’s external/placement supervision. If centres/tutors do not feel confident supervising trainees working with children they are acting ethically in making it clear to trainees that they may not take up placements working with children. In addition, some tutors are happy to work with clients who are 14+ or 16+ or 18+ but not younger children. As tutors have responsibility for trainees this is ultimately a centre decision not a CPCAB decision. All information regarding the centre’s policy on placements should be clearly published and made available to trainees during the selection process and in the course handbook.

Working with adults
All trainees must undertake sufficient client hours to demonstrate their ability to work with adults. In practice this means that only a proportion of client hours can be with children. Tutors can exercise discretion as to the exact proportion in relation to their own trainees but CPCAB recommends that at least 70% of the total client hours should be with adults. The only exception is where the centre has applied for and been approved to run a diploma with a descriptor that contextualises the qualification. Where this is the case a descriptor (eg “working with children and young people”) is added to the qualification certificate and the client work would reflect this specialism.

If in any doubt please contact CPCAB for further information and guidance.

Fiona Ballantine Dykes
Head of Qualifications CPCAB

TC-L4 transition arrangements for the changeover from NQF to QCF

1. Diploma candidates taking a year out
From September 2011 candidates will not be able to register for the (old) NQF qualification. Any candidates taking a TCL4 Diploma from this date onwards, whether Year 1 or Year 2, will have to be registered on the (new) QCF qualification.

There are likely to be some candidates who, for various reasons, may have had a year off at the end of Year 1, and will be caught between the previous and current qualifications when continuing on to a Year 2 course.

Prospective applicants who fall into this category will need to be interviewed by a Diploma tutor who must carry out the RPL process in order to determine the suitability of candidates to join a Year 2 group.

Successful candidates will then need to register for the new qualification with the rest of the group they are joining, map their previously assessed portfolio work to the criteria under the new qualification (500/8088/X), and take the external assessment under the new qualification at the same time as the rest of their new group.

Client hours, supervision hours and personal therapy can be carried forward to Year 2 providing that they have been documented in the required way.

2. Diploma candidates wishing to re-sit the external assessment
There will be some candidates who have studied on the former NQF qualification, been deemed non-proficient at external assessment and need to re-sit during the academic year beginning September 2011.

There is no substantial change to the external assessment. There are only minimal cosmetic changes to the format of the 7 assessable areas for the recording, and the Review Paper will look exactly the same. Therefore candidates can be entered for the external assessment on what is essentially the ‘new’ QCF qualification even if they had previously been registered on the older NQF qualification. However, their resulting Diploma will still be an NQF qualification and not a QCF qualification.

Standardisation training

It’s time to think about standardisation training again - venues and dates are listed below.

Location Venue Date
London School of Oriental and African Studies - Brunei Gallery - Russell Square campus Friday 30th September 2011
Qualification levels 2-6
London School of Oriental and African Studies - Brunei Gallery - Russell Square campus Saturday 1st October 2011
Qualification levels 2-4
New tutors
Birmingham BVSC Saturday 15th October 2011
Qualification levels 2-4
New tutors
Bristol BAWA Saturday 19th November 2011
Qualification levels 2-4
New tutors
Northern Ireland Northern Regional College - Café Lamont Friday 25th November 2011
Qualification levels 2-6
New tutors

Click on any of the venue names above to visit their website.

Please note:
Centres must ensure that at least one experienced tutor and all new tutors attend a standardisation training session during the 2011/12 academic year. This is to ensure that they are assessing to a common standard.

CPCAB would like to draw your attention to the following:

A charge of £50 will be made to a centre for the non-attendance of a tutor who has booked a place and has not cancelled a week before the training or who has failed to attend on the day.

Qualification Development and Accreditation Service for tailor made courses

CPCAB’s Qualification Development and Accreditation Service supports the development and accreditation of unique provider specific qualifications designed by individual training providers. This process provides the candidates with certification by a nationally recognised awarding organisation which is evidence of their competence.

Unique tailor made courses can range in length from a short intensive to a programme of weekly or monthly classes. CPCAB offers the skills of professional educationists who are highly skilled in developing qualifications. We review your proposals, guide the development process and support you through the delivery and certification of candidates. We also support the marketing of your provision via our website.

The benefit of this process is that you are able to respond to your organisational and market needs in a sensitive, unique and flexible way.
What we will do to support you in the process

To find out more
Please contact Maureen Moore, Director of Qualifications Development on 01458 850350 or email her at mmoore@cpcab.co.uk.