Psychological therapies with children, young people and families (M34)

Join us and become a capable and skilled child, adolescent and family mental health practitioner

This innovative course will equip you to work therapeutically with children, young people and families. Completion of the academic programme and clinical requirements leads to accreditation by the British Psychoanalytic Council (BPC) and the title of psychodynamic psychotherapist working with children, young people and families.

The deadline for applications to this course is provisionally set for Friday 31 May 2024. However, we encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible, as spaces are limited and can be competitive.

Please note: you may see the M34 course also referred to as PTMATP001 in communications from our application system.

About this course

You will train to offer therapy based on psychodynamic and systemic approaches, as well as other evidence-based treatments, such as mindfulness.

In year one you will:

  • study theory on assessment and engaging in therapeutic work
  • attend specialist workshops on difference, identity and diversity
  • partake in small supervision groups
  • learn how to approach research
  • have fortnightly individual supervision
  • attend evidence-based practice seminars, including on mindfulness
  • be in a work placement where you have the opportunity to see children, adolescents and families for clinical work using a psychodynamic framework, including individual psychotherapy

In year two you will:

  • study theory on the psychodynamic therapeutic approach
  • attend evidence-based practice seminars on systemic approaches
  • attend specialist workshops on working in schools or adolescence
  • partake in small supervision groups
  • have fortnightly individual supervision
  • carry out therapy in your placement

In order to be qualified as a psychodynamic psychotherapist, you will need to complete the full two years of the academic programme including all required clinical work.

If sufficient clinical work has not been completed during this time to reach BPC accreditation standards, this can often take at least one additional year. Although this is a two year master’s programme, students may exit after one year with a postgraduate diploma (PgDip).

Who is this course for?

This course is for you if you are working in a voluntary or statutory sector setting with children and families. You may be a:

  • counsellor
  • social worker
  • teacher
  • psychotherapist
  • creative arts therapist
  • child and adolescent primary mental health care worker
  • child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS) practitioner
  • occupational therapist
  • nurse

This course may also be for you if you have completed one of our pre-clinical courses but, while it will stand you in good stead, the completion of an introductory or pre-clinical course is not a guarantee of gaining a place on the next course in the pathway.

All clinical courses require an interview and our tutors ensure they thoroughly assess an applicant’s professional and personal suitability for both taking on further training and offering therapy to others.

Many people are successful in progressing on to their chosen course but it is important to note that acceptance on to one of our courses encompasses much more than fulfilling academic requirements.

Course details

In order to undertake this course, we ask that you:

  • have successfully completed our course in Child, adolescent and family mental wellbeing multidisciplinary practice (D24), or
  • have successfully completed Working with children, young people and families: a psychoanalytic observational approach (M7, daytime) to the minimum of postgraduate certificate level (previously diploma level), providing you have achieved 60 credits which include an assessed observational module i.e. 20 hours of infant observations or completion of a recognised, assessed and accredited module of systemic family observations, or completion of a recognised assessed module of institutional observations, and the necessary experience of working with children/young people, together with meeting the other eligibility criteria for the course
  • have substantial experience of working with children, young people or families where you had a remit to address their behavioural, emotional or psychological difficulties
  • hold an appropriate professional qualification relevant to your chosen career or can demonstrate that you have a significant level of knowledge and experience in a dedicated field working with children, adolescents and families
  • have at least three years’ practice experience since qualification
  • hold an undergraduate degree, degree equivalent or evidence of other relevant post-registration education/experience
  • be in a full-time or part-time post (paid or voluntary) in which you are working with children and/or families and where you have the opportunity to provide individual therapy with children and adolescents
  • are in personal therapy for a minimum of one session per week with a BPC accredited psychoanalytic psychotherapist or psychoanalyst by the time the course starts

If you are invited to interview, you will be asked to demonstrate how you meet our professional suitability and clinical eligibility criteria.

Not completed one of our pathway courses?

Applicants must demonstrate that their prior learning and experience is equivalent to the content and learning outcomes of Child, adolescent and family mental wellbeing multidisciplinary practice (D24). In particular, this must include an observational module as detailed above and participation in work discussion groups, along with 60 credits at Level 7 (PgCert).

This must be detailed within the application and will be further explored during any subsequent interviews. If you are unsure about whether your prior learning/experience is equivalent to the above course, please contact us to discuss.


£6,870 per year (2024/25)


£13,740 per year (2024/25)

You will be charged course fees for each year of your course. If your course is longer than one year, the fees that you will be charged after the first year will be subject to an annual inflationary increase. This will either be an increase of 3% or the Consumer Price Inflation as on 1 September of that year – whichever is the greater. At its discretion, the Trust may determine a figure between these two rates. Please refer to our Student Fees & Refund Policy for further information.

Financial support may be available to help you fund your studies at the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust.

Bursaries (2024/25)

This year, we are offering two bursaries, covering half (50%) of M34 course fees to new students from Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic / Global Majority backgrounds, who qualify for Home fees status.


Students will be assessed on the basis of five written submissions over the two year master’s programme. The development of students’ clinical understanding and skills will be assessed in individual and small group supervision and in workshop settings.


Wednesdays, 9:00am to 5:30pm or 10:00am to 6:30pm, plus time allowed for clinical placements and weekly personal psychotherapy.

Graduates from this course have gone on to work in school settings, voluntary sector psychotherapy services and private work, often with colleagues, as part of a co operative or individually.

Graduates with a core training have also been employed in NHS settings within CAMHS and infant mental health teams.

Why study with us?

This course has been developed by a multi-disciplinary group of clinician trainers and the course design is evidentially based, theoretically sound and committed to the development of clinical skills through practice opportunities and in-depth supervision.

It will enable you to become a capable and skilled child, adolescent and family mental health practitioner with training informed by a range of evidence-based psychological therapies for use in child, adolescent and family mental health work.

This course will equip you academically and professionally for a role that has become increasingly needed in the public sector child and adolescent workforce, child and adolescent mental health service sector, schools and other settings.


“I admire the fact that this course, which bridges different disciplines, schools of thought and modalities, has been made possible and I think it is really well taught and I am thoroughly enjoying it!”
“Practical teaching for mindfulness has been useful and different. It is impressive that this is included in our course.”
“This course has been hugely valuable to my professional development and is very relevant to apply to my job.”
“Being able to attend a course of this calibre was a long standing dream of mine that came true. The fusion of neurodevelopmental science, psychodynamic and systemic theory which was linked to clinical work in small group discussions was brilliant. Reflecting on my journey through the training, I feel truly grateful for the excellent supervision and teaching I received. ”

Course facilitators


This course has been accredited by the British Psychoanalytic Council (BPC).

Apply now

Start your application for this course.

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