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Last modified: 25 May 2018 11:16

Course Overview

Students will have the opportunity to integrate the use of psychodynamic skills with an understanding of theory, the process of practice and individual growth and personal development. 

See 'Further Information & Notes'.

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 2
Session First Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus Old Aberdeen Sustained Study No
  • Dr Salma Siddique

Qualification Prerequisites

  • Either Programme Level 1 or Programme Level 2

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • One of CO1501 Counselling Skills 2 (Passed) or CO1511 Counselling Skills 2 (Evening) (Passed) or KL151R Counselling Skills 2 (Passed) or KL151X Counselling Skills 2 (Passed)

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?

  • CO2012 An Introduction to the Psychodynamic Approach to Counselling (Eve) (Studied)
  • CO2501 An Introduction to the Psychodynamic Approach to Counselling (Studied)
  • CO2511 An Introduction to the Psychodynamic Approach to Counselling (Eve) (Studied)
  • KL2013 An Introduction to the Psychodynamic Approach to Counselling (Studied)

Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

This is a practical, experiential course; participants must be willing to fully engage with course content and take part in counselling skills practice. There will be a mixture of presentations, discussion, activity, readings and experiential work throughout, the content of which will include:
  • Historical beginnings of the psychodynamic approach.
  • Overview of working with the individual, the couple, the group.
  • Particular theories of psychodynamic working.
  • Free association to linking and discovering meaning.
  • Attachment, separation and the family.
  • Genogram.
  • The need for relationship.
  • The couple, their family, society.
  • Developmental stages.
  • Object relations to theory.
  • Do we have a dynamic, unconscious inner world?
  • Transference and countertransference. Thoughts, feelings, identity and belief systems.
  • The need for defence systems and resistance.
  • Mirroring, splitting, introjections and projection.
  • How the process of change can take place within an individual, a dyad, a group.
  • The psychodynamic helping relationship/supervision and ethics.

Further Information & Notes

This course may not be suitable for anyone who is currently receiving counselling or has faced a serious emotional issue in the last six months.
Class size is limited to 15.  Students must be able to attend the same class at the same time over 10 weeks. There is a strict attendance requirement of at least 85%.  Students who miss more than two 3-hour classes - for any reason -  cannot pass the course.
Students will be required to pay the COSCA materials fee of £30 at the online store before the first class and before your workbook will be issued.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown


More Information about Week Numbers

Summative Assessments

1st Attempt

2000-word essay (25%), weekly 400-word reflective log/journal writing (25%), oral practice (25%) and oral participation (25%).

To achieve credit for the course overall, a pass in each element is required.


Resubmission of essay. Candidates should note that a resit is not permitted of the learning log element of the course, practical elements of the course, oral participation and oral practice.

Formative Assessment

A reflective personal learning log, between 300 and 500 words in length, will be completed by all students and submitted to tutors on a weekly basis after Week 2. The log is an opportunity for students to reflect on their experiences of learning in the class, how they relate theory to practice, as well as their own personal awareness, growth and development. Skills practice is included in each class. Tutors provide feedback on practical skills on a group or individual basis as appropriate in each of the 12 classes. Oral participation is assessed in the whole class group and with all class members and includes attendance.


Weekly: A reflective learning log will be read by tutors on weekly submission and any necessary feedback or concerns communicated to students. At the end of the course, 10 logs will be graded linked to the CGS and weighted at 25% of the overall course mark.

Oral practice: Tutors give verbal feedback to the group and individuals in each of the 10 classes.

Oral participation: Tutors will give individual feedback as necessary during the course.

Course Learning Outcomes


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