Jan 2009 No. 25

In this Update


”My therapist thinks I'm obsessive."

"Why's that?"

"I like sausages."

"There's nothing unusual about that. I like sausages too."

"Really? You must come and see my collection – I've got thousands!"

A psychotherapist was becoming very busy when people heard about his CPCAB qualifications. He decided it was time to have a sign put up outside his therapy room and asked a friend to paint it for him.

But, instead of his business building up, it began to slacken. He had especially noticed the ladies shying away from his shop after reading the sign board. So he decided to check it out himself. Then he understood ...

The friend had only managed to find a small wooden board so he had split the word into 3 parts :


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Updated Update!

We hope you like our new-look newsletter, with its more informal and direct style. We’ve tried to keep the style warm and appealing. More changes are in the pipeline, for the website and other documents as well as Update. Do write and let us know what you think!

CPCAB fees frozen for 2009/10

In the current economic climate it will surely be good news for centres that CPCAB has agreed to freeze all fees for the forthcoming academic year. We hope you will find this helpful during these uncertain times. A reminder of our fee structure follows. As always our thanks go to all centres for your support.

Qualification Initial qualification
approval fee
registration fee
Re-sit fee Appeals
ELSK-L2 £89 £38 £29 £38
LSK-L2 £89 £38 £29 £38
USM-L2 £89 £38 £29 £38
ICSK-L2 £119 £38 £29 £38
CSK-L2 £149 £116 £59 £116
CSK-L3 £149 £143 £89 £143
CST-L3 £149 £116 £59 £116
TC-L4 £199 Year 1: £199
Year 2: £199
£149 £199

Candidate registration fees for PC-L5, CBT-L5 and TCSU-L6 remain unchanged in 2008-09 but fees for re-sits have been increased.

Qualification Initial qualification
approval fee
registration fee
Re-sit fee Appeals
PC-L5 £199 £199 £149 £199
CBT-L5 £199 £199 £149 £199
TCSU-L6 £199 £199 £149 £199

Extensions to qualifications

We would like to reassure centres that Skills for Health, the Sector Skills Council (SSC) for counselling, are providing the necessary endorsement for the extension to all our qualifications.  This will mean that CPCAB's existing suite of qualifications will be available on the Learner Aims Database for the academic year beginning September 2009 and ending in August 2010. 

Withdrawal of Level 3 Certificate in Counselling Skills

It has been decided to withdraw level 3 Certificate in Counselling Skills from our suite of qualifications. Despite interest from a range of quarters including agencies working with substance misuse, this qualification has not attracted sufficient providers. We must therefore remove it from the National Database of Accredited Qualifications to take effect from March 2009.

Open University foundation degree

We are pleased to report that interest in the new joint foundation degree produced by CPCAB and the Open University is gathering momentum. If your centre offers the Level 4 Diploma it’s likely that you will receive enquiries from prospective students in the future.

From your point of view, you will not need to treat students planning to progress to the OU degree any differently from your usual intake. However, you might like to be as well informed as possible so you can discuss their plans with your students. Information is available on the Open University website at www3.open.ac.uk/courses/bin/p12.dll?Q01G14.

One point you might bear in mind is that CPCAB has agreed that students with the OU’s own ‘Introduction to Counselling’ certificate (course code D171) may use this in place of CPCAB’s Level 3 Counselling Studies certificate as entry level for the Diploma. They should, however, also hold either the CPCAB’s Level 2 Counselling Skills certificate or its equivalent, in the normal way.

Certificate in Counselling Skills (CSK-L2)

We are receiving an unprecedented number of enquiries about centres offering Level 2 Counselling Skills. This is a result of the large number of students who have engaged in the OU’s Introduction to Counselling course (D171). The first run of this course finishes in April 2009 and we anticipate that there will be students wishing to enrol on CPCAB Skills courses beginning in April/May. You might like to consider this when programme planning as there is still time to run an extra group in April if you move quickly!

Regulation update – news about HPC

Fiona Ballantine Dykes, our Head of Qualifications, attended the first meeting of the Health Professions Council (HPC) Professional Liaison Group (PLG) meeting on 4 December 2008. The proceedings were watched by a packed public gallery. The PLG is chaired by Diane Waller, art psychotherapist member of the HPC.

This first meeting was essentially about setting out the framework for the HPC process from consultation to legislation and offering an opportunity for participants to meet each other and to respond in general to the findings of the HPC Call for Ideas consultation. (CPCAB’s response to this consultation is on our website and can be accessed by clicking here).

After an introduction and welcome from the HPC President, Anna van de Gaag, Niall McDermott from the Department of Health (DH) gave a presentation on the legislative process for regulating a profession over approximately 18-24 months as follows:

PLG meetings between Dec 08 – Jul 09 to consider key questions on

Michael Guthrie, Head of Policy and Standards at the HPC, explained that the PLG will consider each of the aspects of the work outlined in the remit above, based on responses from the Call for Ideas. Each topic will be circulated to members before the meeting and the papers will also be published on the HPC website one week prior to the meeting. Minutes of meetings will also be available on the HPC website.

The remainder of the meeting was given over to a restrained discussion of the general comments in the Call for Ideas responses including the opposition to regulation. Peter Fonagy on behalf of Skills for Health (SfH) was invited to brief members on the progress of the development of new National Occupational Standards (NOS) in the following modalities as follows:

The chair explained that there will be a direct link between the new NOS, IAPT and HPC standards. However, in response to a question from our representative, Peter Fonagy was not able to say how these new NOS would fit with the existing counselling NOS which have recently been transferred to Skills for Health. The BACP representative, Sally Aldridge, said they would simply be mapped where appropriate.

If you want to contribute to the Skills for Health NOS consultation work you can
register your interest by emailing ptherapies@skillsforhealth.org.uk with the following
subject line in your email: “Psychological Therapies NOS Consultation – register of
interest.” You will be notified as soon as the field test drafts for each modality are
available for you to review.

If you are interested in testing the applicability of the NOS to practice, training
programmes, you can contact ptherapies@skillsforhealth.org.uk with the
following subject line in your email “PT NOS Testing” stating the modality you are
interested in. You can get further information from:

Next steps for the PLG

The focus of the next two day meeting (28 and 29 January) will be the structure of the register and protected titles.

Funding - talk by Victoria Thomas

Funding continues to be a matter of concern for centres and many tutors have contacted CPCAB to say how much they valued the talk by Victoria Thomas at last year's conference, 'Counselling training - the way ahead' . In response to a number of requests we are happy to provide the transcript of her presentation - download the full version here.

Look Ahead Housing and Care, London

Trainer Traci Postings with members of the CSC at the end-of-course celebration partyCPCAB students, like many others, sometimes have to face great difficulties to be able to undertake their training; the sense of satisfaction that results from being awarded their certificates can be deep-felt and long-lasting.

One group who overcame particular obstacles and achieved a 100% pass rate last year were the Customer Service Committee (CSC) of Look Ahead Housing and Care, a charitable housing association that provides accommodation and support to over 3,500 vulnerable people across London and the South East every year. Customers come from a diverse range of backgrounds, including homeless families or single people, sometimes with a history of rough sleeping; those fleeing domestic violence; ex-offenders; young people at risk and individuals with mental health difficulties, learning disabilities or substance misuse.

Some of Look Ahead’s success stems from its policy of involving its customers in all aspects of the service they provide. They encourage everyone to get involved, have a say and make a difference, regardless of level of need or ability. Nine members of the CSC, customers who give feedback at senior management and board level, successfully achieved CPCAB’s Level 2 Award in Listening Support Skills.

Kate Lawless, Look Ahead’s Customer Service Manager, said ‘this training course has had enormous benefits for Look Ahead. It has been hugely rewarding for the customers in question (many of whom had never completed a training course or been awarded a qualification before), who we have seen develop so much in terms of their own confidence and ability’.

As the course progressed, members of the group gave each other vital support and encouragement. They became very close and felt safe to share their feelings and experiences, which were in turn respected and heard. Perhaps most importantly, they grew in self esteem and confidence, moving past their own personal blocks to learning and achievement, sometimes for the first time.

The training has also generated many benefits for the organisation as a whole, added Kate Lawless. ‘We now have a pool of customers who have the confidence and capacity to contribute to decision making and help us to develop and improve services for the benefit of all our customers’.

The picture (above) shows trainer Traci Postings with members of the CSC at the end-of-course celebration party.