July 2009 No. 27

In this Update


...with a nod in the direction of the recent Glastonbury Festival, just along the road.

Client: ‘I keep getting these odd dreams. Sometimes I dream I’m a tepee. Sometimes I dream I’m a wigwam. What’s wrong with me?’

Therapist: ‘It’s quite simple. You’re two tents.’

Client: ‘I’m so scared of my wife! I don’t feel as if she has any respect for me.’

Counsellor: ‘Let’s think about why you might be so scared. Maybe we need to work on your self-esteem’.

Client (one week later): ‘Well, last night, in the bedroom, my wife came to me on her hands and knees!’

Counsellor: ‘That’s amazing! And what did she say to you?’

Client: ‘she said, “come out from under that bed and fight like a man ...”’

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Acknowledging success

Once again we are at the end of the academic year and that brings with it a sense of relief, satisfaction and joy, which, as tutors, we share with our students although we do acknowledge too that there will be some sad moments. There are those students who have completed their training and others who will need to do a bit more to get through their assessments. However, we all know and acknowledge the effort that everyone has put into getting through the year (or years) of teaching and learning.

As such, we would like to record and publish some of the many success stories that exist in the CPCAB centres. To this end we would like tutors to let us know about interesting or outstanding centre or student successes. Your success story might be about student accomplishments from a personal, professional or employment perspective or you might, as a tutor, have been particularly pleased with your own or your centre's performance or achievements over the year. Your stories could provide the motivating factor that others need to get them going as well as being interesting and something that we can all be proud of.

With your permission and that of the student concerned, if relevant, we would like to include the stories in our Tutor and Student ‘Updates’. If you have a story that you or your students would like to share please contact Gill Baker by emailing gill@cpcab.co.uk. We look forward to hearing from you.

HPC - where are we now?

The PLG has now finished its first series of meetings. The recommendations made by the PLG regarding regulation of counselling/psychotherapy will now go out to consultation between July and October. The consultation documents will be on their website from 13th July.

The next part of the timetable, therefore, is as follows:

The final decision about the regulation of psychotherapists and counsellors is one for the Government, and ultimately, a matter for the UK and Scottish parliaments. We will continue to keep you up to date with further developments as the situation becomes clearer - see the ‘Regulation’ section on the CPCAB website for the latest information.

Further information is regularly added to the HPC website too - see www.hpc-uk.org/aboutus/professionalliaisongroups/psychotherapistscounsellors

The Open University and CPCAB joint foundation degree

In recognition of the integrity and coherence of CPCAB qualifications the Open University has worked in partnership with CPCAB to provide the Foundation Degree in Counselling. 

Entry requirements
Although candidates can progress on to the CPCAB's PC-L5 from any Level 4 counselling diploma that meets the entry requirement for Level 5, if the Level 4 diploma was awarded by another awarding body or was started prior to September 2002 they will not be eligible for the Open University Foundation Degree.
Candidates who apply to study the CPCAB Level 5 Diploma in Psychotherapeutic Counselling (PC-L5) or the CPCAB Level 5 Certificate in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT-L5) with the specific intention of accessing the Open University Foundation Degree must have completed the CPCAB Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling and not any other L4 diploma. Detailed information about the credit transfer arrangements can be found at the following link: www3.open.ac.uk/credit-transfer/pdf/G14.pdf

The Open University now has a special website for the Foundation Degree in counselling. This can be accessed by the following link: www.open.ac.uk/socialsciences/courses-and-qualifications/foundation-degree-in-counselling/counselling.php


This continues to be a serious concern for our tutors; we are aware that several centres are threatened with severe reductions to their counselling curriculum offers. This change is generally imposed on the curriculum leaders by the centre managers as a result of financial constraints on the centre. CPCAB would like to know about these difficulties so that, where possible, we might offer some support or suggestions which might be helpful.

Further, if we are aware of the extent of the problem and the impact on local communities we might be in a position to exert some influence. It is also worth noting that as a result of the recession there are special funds provided to colleges so they can respond to increased demands from adults for alternative career training. These may be available to your department; it may be worth making enquiries.

Please email funding concerns to mmoore@cpcab.co.uk

CPCAB and the environment

You may be interested to know that here at CPCAB we have a keen interest in environmental issues and are in the process of developing a ‘green policy’ to support our work.

Some of our ideas are in place already, such as water-limiting devices, minimum energy settings on office computers and keeping paper use to a minimum; we also recycle glass, paper and tins. Still under investigation are recycled paper (if anyone knows of a good brand that doesn’t clog up printer rollers we’d like to hear from you), car sharing and ‘green’ electricity supply. Small steps ... but in the right direction.


A reminder that ALL new tutors are required to attend standardisation training during the 2009/10 academic year, as well as any tutors who didn’t attend last year. Centres must ensure that at least one experienced tutor attends each year and cascades the information to others in the team. There is no charge for standardisation training and lunch is provided; to be sure of getting a place at your most convenient venue be sure to book early.

Location Venue Date
Sheffield Novotel Sheffield Centre Saturday 26th September 2009
London School of Oriental and African Studies - Brunei Gallery - Russell Square campus Friday 9th October 2009
London School of Oriental and African Studies - Brunei Gallery - Russell Square campus Saturday 10th October 2009
Birmingham BVSC Saturday 7th November 2009
Northern Ireland Northern Regional College - Café Lamont Friday 13th November 2009
Bristol BAWA Saturday 6th February 2010

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

Please phone CPCAB on 01458 850350 on ext 2 or email Jackie Collier (stand@cpcab.co.uk) to book your place. Please remember to let her know which qualifications you teach and if you have any special dietary needs.

Black and minority ethnic groups - talking therapies

You may be interested to read the following article, produced by the ‘Connecting Communities Plus’ programme as part of their work with Support 4 Progress in Manchester (with thanks to Support for Progress for permission to publish);

‘BME individuals are less likely than white people to be offered talking therapies at an early stage of common mental ill health, and far more likely to be admitted as an inpatient when seriously unwell.  Thus developing a counselling service delivered by qualified counsellors was a preventative measure to decrease the risk of later admittance to hospital.  Support 4 Progress used its CC+ grant to develop its own training courses that are culturally appropriate and sensitive to the needs of the trainee. 

Approved as a centre by the Counselling and Psychotherapy Central Awarding Body (CPCAB), it now offers a range of certificates and diplomas up to the CPCAB level 4 Diploma. The outcomes include BME individuals accessing one-to-one and group counselling services as well as trainees gaining their qualifications.  Support 4 Progress feels that a significant achievement has been to provide a space for people with mental health issues to undertake training which, in the words of the project manager, not only allowed them “to gain an inner strength to go back into their world grounded with deeper understanding and solutions to problems, but most of all feeling valued by themselves and others,” but also to gain qualifications to use in furthering their careers.’

External assessment - dates for next year

For a list of next year’s dates please click here.

Taking external assessment outside the assessment ‘window’

From time to time we receive requests from centres to allow students to undertake their external assessments outside the allocated time frame. The severe weather at the start of the year caused problems for some centres, for example, and we are bracing ourselves for difficulties that may crop up if swine flu becomes a real epidemic.

It is, of course, essential that assessment material is kept secure and treated with absolute confidentiality. You must make every effort, therefore, to keep within the published assessment dates. However, CPCAB does have ways of offering support to centres in extreme circumstances such as these. If you think it is possible that you will simply not be able to use the dates given, please contact CPCAB for further advice (mrichards@cpcab.co.uk) and don’t simply make your own arrangements. If the integrity of the assessment is in question it may be necessary to void the results for your group.