Duration: Two years part time

Year one: Thursday or Friday for one academic year or 18 months over 2 years on weekend days - Therapeutic and Educational Application of the Arts (Level 1)
Year two: Monday attendance for one academic year, plus two additional training days - MA Integrative Arts Psychotherapy Year 1

When: Starts October 2024


About the Course

This course is for students who wish to train as counsellors with adults, using the arts to facilitate communication, connection and in depth working through of core feelings and life experiences. Using image, metaphor or one of seven art forms, clients can quickly get to the heart of the matter, without the clutter of everyday words that so often fail to convey what they really want to say. The work is moving, powerful and deepens the client’s creativity whilst at the same time bringing about vital new insights and perspectives on self, relationships and what they want from life. Students will master ways of working with clients using art images to capture a fuller picture and deeper truth of a person's reality, bringing new ways of knowing an experience. Students also develop the ability to use imagery as part of their empathic response when appropriate. In summary, working in a counselling setting with the arts, can bring such satisfaction to both client and therapist, knowing that what needs to be said, has been said, using images as profound description.


Year One
This year is divided into two sections:

Part One is designed to enable students to tap into their own creativity in order to reach a deeper level of connection with themselves and others; to appreciate the potential of the human imagination; to develop knowledge and understanding of the nature of the inner world, of dreams and the many different forms and uses of human imagery. Key counselling skills will also be covered. 

Part Two focuses on the supervised practice of therapy skills and on the three-way communication between therapist, client and art image.

Practical Course Units
The Therapeutic Application of: Art, Drama/Poetry, Sculpture/Clay, Poetry, Sandplay, Music, Dance/Movement.

Theoretical Course Units
The theoretical course units adopt frameworks and concepts from Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy (with specific emphasis on Gestalt and Transactional Analysis) Psychoanalysis, Self Psychology and Neurobiology.(There is an exit award available from Year One : Post-graduate Certificate in the Therapeutic Arts (University of East London validated)/Advanced Diploma in Therapeutic & Educational Application of the Arts)

Year Two 
This year builds on the theory and practice of the first year with the addition of learning the fundamentals needed to offer clients ethically sound, safe and effective clinical practice. Students will develop their clinical skills on a six month supervised professional practice placement with clients in a community setting. Students will accrue a minimum of 100 clinical hours as an integral part of this training.

Admissions Criteria

All candidates must have the following:

  • A first degree or equivalent  (due to the University’s open access policy you can submit an assessment of prior learning and we will consider whether this is equivalent to a first degree) Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for details and the APL form
  • Be committed to working with the Arts and the active use of the imagination in a counseling setting in the ways outlined by the philosophy of The Institute
  • Agree to abide by the Code of Ethics, Code of Practice and Code of Conduct adhered to by The Institute
  • Undertake personal psychotherapy with approved practitioners over the duration of the course

Be able to demonstrate the following capacities and abilities on the assessment day:

  • Empathy
  • Self-awareness and the ability to be open and emotionally undefended
  • The ability to create with ease both mental and artistic images
  • Sound emotional literacy skills
  • Emotional robustness
  • A good ability to play
  • A good level of contact with others
  • An accepting, compassionate, as opposed to judgmental, attitude towards others
  • The ability to stay stable under stress
  • An engaged rather than frightened or inhibited relationship to the arts  

Changes to the curriculum, teaching staff, assignments on our courses
IATE reserves the right to make adjustments to the above due to unforeseen circumstances. 
The quality of the training will not in any way be compromised in doing so.


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