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Postgraduate Certificate in Existential Psychotherapy

Postgraduate Certificate in Existential Psychotherapy

Different course options

Study mode

Part time


12 months

Start date


Key information

Qualification type

Postgraduate Certificate

Subject areas

Psychotherapy Existentialism

Course type


Course Summary


The Postgraduate Certificate in Existential Psychotherapy (PGCEP) constitutes your final year of training and leads to professional registration as an existential psychotherapist through the Society for Existential Analysis of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP).

The training programme will take you on a transformative journey that will challenge your understanding of human existence and change the way you see yourself and relate to others.

You will learn how to employ a philosophical approach to explore and embrace the complexity of human existence. This phenomenological practice nurtures enquiry, radical openness, and a fresh gaze upon the world and human beings.

Experiential encounter exercises are underpinned by rigorous academic study. This combined approach will encourage you to reach beyond your cognitive and rational understanding of human existence in order to develop a more embodied therapeutic practice. It will prepare you with the skills and knowledge to connect with others in their ambiguity and complexity, and together begin a relational process of deep exploration.

Group seminars are designed to encourage you to question your own beliefs, values and principles. In these sessions, you will need to be courageous, to balance openness with circumspection and be willing to explore moments of discomfort with others in the group.

Personal and professional development sessions serve as an important element of your learning process. Through peer feedback and critical reflection, you will develop a deeper understanding of self in relation to others as well as their relationship to and use of issues such as power, freedom, responsibility, boundaries, limitations and strengths. This critical awareness will enable you to develop into a well-informed and ethical practitioner who able to work in different settings with a wide variety of clients.

Throughout your training, you’ll be expected to work with at least three adult clients on a minimum basis of once a week. For the award of PGCEP, you are required to complete a minimum of 100 clinical hours during the taught element of the programme. For UKCP accreditation, you are required to complete 450 clinical hours in total. The total you accrue will include the hours acquired during previous training.

You will also be expected to participate in weekly personal psychotherapy sessions with a UKCP-registered therapist.

As a qualified existential psychotherapist, you will hold a privileged position which requires humility and discernment. Our training will teach you how to uphold clinical standards of practice and work competently, humanely and ethically with the most vulnerable members of society.

Please note as this is a part-time programme, we are not able to sponsor students for a Student visa.


The assessment criteria is based on a portfolio of four pieces of evidence that demonstrate that you have successfully met the programme learning outcomes. You may also be tasked with other forms of assessment including written journals, oral presentations, video and audio recordings of your practice and interviews.

You will have the opportunity to submit all sections of your portfolio at appropriate intervals throughout your training in order to receive formative feedback. This will help you to develop your final version of your portfolio, which you will submit at the end of your degree.


Upon successful completion of the PGCEP, you will be eligible for professional registration with the Society for Existential Analysis of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP).


Practice and Reflexivity
Existential Philosophy Applied to Psychotherapy

Tuition fees

UK fees
Course fees for UK students

For this course (per year)


Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


International fees
Course fees for non-UK/ international students

For this course (per year)


Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


Entry requirements

MA Psychotherapy & Counselling (taught pathway in Existential Psychotherapy) or a Postgraduate Diploma with the equivalent study of existential psychotherapy to the MAPC Existential pathway; a minimum of 200 client-contact hours in a formal clinical placement; a minimum of three years (120 sessions) regular individual psychotherapy; interview.