Group of teenagers sat down on steps with one looking at her phone

Understanding depression in adolescence (CPD102)

Explore the fundamentals of depression in adolescence and its links with and impact on development

Depressive disorder in adolescents is an important public health concern and several studies indicate high lifetime prevalence rates. It is also associated with a range of short and long-term psychosocial consequences and is a risk factor for self-harm and suicide.

This short course will introduce you to important elements of depression during adolescence. Under the guidance of an experienced clinician tutor, you will learn about adolescent developmental processes, within psychodynamic and systemic frameworks, and contemporary clinical perspectives to achieve a greater awareness of adolescent depression. After completing the course, you will be able to identify the common signs of depression in adolescence and feel more confident in supporting young people with their wellbeing.

Aims and learning objectives

By completing this course, you will:

  • develop an overview of depression and its clinical definition
  • understand why the topic of depression in young people is important, the interface between developmental and clinical depression, and the impact this may have on crucial aspects of adolescent development such as learning and exam performance
  • have a stronger grasp of the factors – social, emotional and psychological – which contribute to depression in young people
  • understand the impact culture, religion, gender and intersectionality can have on adolescent development and its potential links with depression
  • gain an overview of professional skills and useful questions to keep in mind when thinking about young people with depression
  • develop confidence to help young people and their families or carers understand the importance of, and create, self-management strategies
  • consider practical ways to engage and offer support to young people experiencing depression

Who is this course for?

This course will provide an introduction to depression in adolescence for any professional who supports young people on a regular basis as part of their job or who has an interest in learning more about adolescent mental health. A clinical background is not essential.

For example, you may be working in:

  • a school
  • social services
  • counselling
  • the police
  • community centres
  • healthcare
  • the youth justice system
  • the voluntary sector
  • mental health support networks
  • or you may be considering work with adolescents in the future

As this is an introductory course, frontline staff with greater experience in mental health may find more advanced training a better fit. If your organisation is interested in exploring options for an advanced bespoke training in this area for your team or service, please get in touch.

Course details

This online course, delivered in English, comprises two live sessions, hosted online via Zoom. The sessions will feature an interactive presentation, followed by time for discussion and a question and answer session. At the end of each session, you will be provided with suggestions for optional further reading to continue your learning.

Timings for the session are given below:

SessionsDateStart time*End time*
Session 1/2Monday 20 November 20234pm6pm
Session 2/2Monday 11 December 20234pm6pm

*All timings are UK time

This course will be delivered remotely using Zoom.

You will need a device with a microphone and camera together with a suitably fast internet connection. Although mobile devices and tablets can be used, we recommend the use of laptop or desktop PC for the best experience. Some devices provided by employers may have restrictions in place. Please use this test link ( to check your set up before booking.

You will be sent the necessary login link about a week before the course start date. Should you have any concerns about the accessibility of remote delivery please contact us at to discuss how we can best help you.

During the course, you will hear about the different aspects, facets and understandings of adolescent depression, alongside recent developments and data in the field. You will learn about current clinical best practice and hear from the course lead on their experience of working with young people and depression.

Subjects covered in this course include:

  • the epidemiology and prevalence of adolescent depression
  • adolescent developmental processes including relationships, separation, individuation and pressures
  • signs of depression in adolescents and how adolescents who may be struggling with depression usually present
  • common contributory factors for depression
  • risks associated with depression in adolescence, including self-harm and suicide
  • the impact of depression in adolescence – including short, medium, and long-term

Course facilitators

Register your interest

Bookings are now closed. Register your interest to join our waiting list and be the first to hear when this course reopens.

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