September 2021

Counselling Studies and Working with Children, Young People and Families BA (Hons)

Honours Degree, September 2021

Key Details

  • BL95 Course Code
  • 3-4.5 Years
  • 96 Typical UCAS Tariff
lecturer talking to students

Overview

Counselling Studies and Working with Children, Young People and Families is a popular course combination involving the study of two different disciplines to give students the knowledge and understanding needed for a range of career opportunities. The Counselling Studies element of the programme focuses largely on working with individuals and using therapeutic interventions in order to facilitate change and promote psychological well-being. The Working with Children, Young People and Families subject focuses holistically on broader factors that may impact upon an individual’s quality of life including environmental, and economic factors. Together, both subject areas critically consider factors at both an individual, family, social, political, and sociological level that may impact upon an individual’s quality of life and the potential need for interventions to promote well-being.

Why study this course?

  • Students on the Counselling Studies and Working with Children, Young People and Families programme gain an in-depth understanding of counselling theory and its application, along with the acquisition of a range of communication skills
  • Whilst it must be emphasised that this course does not provide a professional counselling training, and that graduates will not be qualified as counsellors, it does provide an excellent basis for postgraduate training as a counsellor or psychotherapist
  • The course is also designed to give students a ‘rounded’ understanding of work with children, young people and families through interdisciplinary study, drawing on a number of social science traditions in social policy, sociology and politics – all studied in an applied way
  • The programme will develop graduates who are familiar with and able to critically analyse concepts around professional judgement and risk in working ethically with others
  • Students will learn how to negotiate the relationship between academic theory and their understanding of workplace settings and their roles within these settings

What does the course cover?

What does the course cover?

Students are introduced to counselling and counselling related skills and professions in the UK including the range of settings in which helping takes place professionally. The programme also introduces students to social science understandings of key concepts such as childhood and family and explores the ways in which these terms have contested meanings. In Counselling Studies the programme is underpinned by a sound understanding of ethics related to counselling approaches and the ways in which ethics needs to be embedded in any practice is introduced in the Humanistic and Psychodynamic Counselling modules and threaded throughout the programme. The study of counselling begins with an exploration of theories with a brief overview of the models studied on the course and then focusing on Humanistic counselling approaches and skills. In the Working with Children, Young People and Families element of the programme students are introduced to ideas around the social construction of attitudes to children, young people and families and social policy issues that shape the working agenda around children, young people and families.

In the second year, students will gain a deeper understanding of research methods and develop the skills and knowledge to prepare them to engage ethically and effectively in their own research or work-based projects. In doing this, students have the choice of one of two research-focussed modules: either led by Counselling studies, or by Working with Children, Young People and Families. In Counselling Studies, the programme builds on the introduction to theories with an exploration of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) Counselling, and current debates on the use of this approach. Students then develop their competence in the use of basic counselling skills through an introductory counselling skills module. This is positioned alongside modules in Working with Children, Young People and Families that examine ideas around discrimination, working in partnership “with” children, developing understanding and analysis of disability, and developing effective relationships for working with young people. Students will have the opportunity to apply and explore knowledge within a work-based context, through the mode of workplace learning.

In the final year options are intended to broaden and deepen critical thinking around Counselling and Working with Children, Young People and Families and prepare students for employment or further study. Dissertation modules and the negotiated work-based project provide students with the opportunity to select an area of interest to them within the field of Counselling or Working with Children Young People and Families. The module on Therapeutic approaches to supporting children and families provide an insight into therapeutic work with different client groups and systems. Students can learn about mindfulness-based approaches to wellbeing, working therapeutically with bereavement and loss, working with addictions or coaching and mentoring through the application of evidence-based interventions. The Applied CBT module further develops students’ understanding of how to apply cognitive behavioural approaches to practice, and critically reflect upon third wave cognitive behavioural concepts.

In Working with Children, Young People and Families students can select from a range of option modules relevant to different potential career choices, including exploring issues around safeguarding and Child Protection, Working Creatively with Children, Young People and Families, Working in Partnership with Organisations and Communities, Developing anti-oppressive practice, Children, Young People and Adults with Care Experience, Working with Families Facing Violence and Harm.

How will I be assessed?

The course uses a variety of assessments to help develop a range of different skills including essays, portfolio, learning statement, commentary, summary, case studies, reflection, resources, recording of counselling skills, transcript and commentary, report, proposal, reflective statement, literature review, project, poster presentation, dissertation, document for practitioners, critical comparison, timeline, group presentation, critique, rational, desk-based research, policy or practice response, group seminar, action and implementation plan, Information booklet, digital story, project

Assessments are designed to introduce and develop both academic and practice related skills within these disciplines.

What careers could I consider?

The Counselling Studies and Working with Children, Young People and Families programme is designed for students considering careers in roles requiring the skills of communication, understanding, care and support.

As a graduate you will be furnished with valuable transferable skills and an understanding of multi agency working. Many Graduates go on to a wide range of careers within education, youth work and health and social care or undertake further training for a career in which counselling skills may be useful including teaching, social work, nursing, psychotherapy and counselling. The learning on this course will benefit those considering postgraduate training in social work or professional training in counselling and psychotherapy.

Studying and living in Birmingham

Newman University is located in Britain’s second city – Birmingham. With one of the youngest city populations in Europe, it is a vibrant and dynamic place to study.

Studying at Newman University, you have the advantage of being near to the city, but living in, or commuting to peaceful and comfortable surroundings on campus.

Dining out

Birmingham has lots of wonderful places to dine out with a range of different cuisines. Places where you can dine out include; Brindley Place, Mailbox and Hagley Road (just 10 minutes’ from Newman).

Entertainment

Whether you like to go to; the theatre, gigs or clubs, or enjoy: sports, shopping visiting art galleries or exhibitions – Birmingham will not disappoint and you will be spoilt for choice!

Location

Getting around Birmingham is easy via train, bus or by car. Birmingham has excellent transport links to the rest of Britain, making it easy for those weekend getaways!

Why not explore the city for yourself by visiting one of our Open Days?

Want to find out more about Birmingham? Then take a look at some Birmingham City Secrets.

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Contact Details

Entry Requirements

You must achieve at least 96 UCAS points including a minimum of CC at A level or equivalent (e.g.MM at BTEC Diploma; MPP at BTEC Extended Diploma) towards the total tariff.

Access Students can achieve the requirements with the following combination of Distinction, Merit and/ or Pass grades at level 3 achieved from a completed Access course. 96 UCAS Points: D21-M3-P21; D18-M9-P18; D15-M15-P15; D12-M21-P12; D9-M27-P9; D6-M33-P6; D3-M39-P3; D0-M45-P0.

Five GCSEs at grade 4 (or C) or above (or recognised equivalents), including English Language, are also required.

For applicants who are unsure that they will achieve the above UCAS tariff, Newman University offers Counselling Studies and Working With Children Young People and Families (with Foundation Year) which enables such applicants to access a university degree via a four year route. Upon successful completion of their foundation year, students will progress to Year 1 of a named degree. Whilst not a condition of entry onto the Foundation Year, students wishing to follow particular named routes with additional entry requirements, will need to meet these requirements before they make the transition from their foundation year to year 1.

Applying Direct Option

You can apply direct to Newman University for the full-time route for this course if you have not previously applied to Newman University through UCAS and you are not applying to any other universities.

Simply click on this Direct Application link to do this.

N.B. will need to enter ‘New User’ account details when first accessing this portal.

Course Fees

Fees per academic year:
Full-time UK/EU students: £9,250 *
Part-time UK/EU students: £5,400*

* Fees shown are for 2021/22 academic year. The University will review tuition fees and increase fees in line with any inflationary uplift as determined by the UK Government, if permitted by law or government policy, on enrolment and in subsequent years of your course. It is anticipated that such increases would be linked to RPI (the Retail Price Index excluding mortgage interest payments).

Additional Costs

Students are expected to purchase a copy of the programme core text:

Reeves, A. (2018) An Introduction to Counselling and Psychotherapy. From Theory to Practice. London: Sage.

 

As part of the core dissertation module there may also be additional costs associated with data collection depending on the research undertaken for example printing of questionnaires.

 

Find out more about the other additional costs associated with our undergraduate degrees. 

 

 

Modules

Please be aware that, as with any course, there may be changes to the modules delivered, for information view our Changes to Programmes of Module Changes page.

Timetables: find out when information is available to students

 

  1. This module introduces students to counselling and counselling related professions in the UK. The module considers the range of settings in which helping takes place professionally and different remit and skills of different helping professions. Students will develop, practice and reflect on their own use of basic helping skills. The module considers a range of key theories in addition to considering issues of difference and equality. Basic academic skills will be developed appropriate to study at level 4 using a range of group-based explorations of key texts relating to the content of the module.
  2. This module will encourage students to think about the centrality of inclusive practice and how this is influenced by practitioners’ own value base. It will look at how and why children, young people and families can become socially excluded and will look at the implications for inclusive practitioners. There will be the opportunity for formative assessment within this module. This will take place in the first part of the semester
  3. This module will introduce students to the three main theories of counselling used in the UK, but with a particular focus on the Humanistic Approach. Alongside which, students will develop their ethical and professional awareness.  There will be opportunities to begin to develop the process of self-reflection.  Students will have the opportunity to practice using Humanistic Skills in a counselling skills scenario.
  4. This module will introduce the idea of the social construction of attitudes to children, young people and families. By drawing on historical and cultural studies approaches, it will give students the chance to critically reflect on the values, meanings and ideologies embedded in popular discourse and cultural products. It will explore the ways in which cultural production, including music, art, photography, film and literature act as a site of struggle and a testing ground for competing constructions of childhood, youth, old age and family in response to political, economic, demographic and technological change. It will also ask students to consider how these processes have shaped, and continue to shape, the contexts of professional practice in Working with Children, Young People and Families
  5. ‘Advantaged Thinking’ is an assets or strengths based approach to working with children, young people and families that puts the emphasis on identifying talents rather than weaknesses. It also and allows us to think about our own strengths and talents as professionals and encourages us to think about the positive role we play in the workforce. It is about using the advantages we possess as individuals (or talents, assets, resources, abilities) to create the conditions for a society in which everyone can thrive.   The module therefore aims to introduce students to the Advantaged Thinking philosophy and prepare them for work-related learning. Equipping students with an Advantaged Thinking approach can help turn the disadvantaged narrative of a person’s life experience into personal opportunities and positive outcomes and give students a chance to think about how they do this in an economy where the models of employment are also changing rapidly.   This module will also enable an introduction to the careers service and support that it can provide to the students (such as careers progression coaches, finding placements etc) during their degree and upon graduation.
  6. This module aims to equip students with the knowledge and self-management skills to make informed choices in preparing for work placement and the transition to employment or further study on graduation.  Learners will be provided with the opportunities to develop awareness of the workplace, identify different career and study options, recognise and articulate their own experience, accomplishments and talents and plan and implement career management strategies for the short and long term.
  7. This module extends students’ knowledge and understanding beyond the humanistic approach to include a second major therapeutic tradition: the psychodynamic approach. Following a grounding in the historical influences of this approach, students will gain an understanding of core psychodynamic theory and associated practice, with emphasis on those that are most applicable to counselling, and to include the central focus on unconscious communication.
  8. This module will examine some of the over-arching social policy issues that shape the working agenda around children, young people and families. To do this it will be structured around the key issues identified by William Beveridge as the ‘giants’ of social policy – education, poverty, housing, health (including safeguarding and protection of the vulnerable) and work. These topics will be analysed in the context of the challenges that face professionals working within the current model of the welfare state.
  1. This research module aims to develop students’ research literacy, knowledge and understanding of research theory with a view to helping them understand where, why and how research was developed and its relationship to practice. It will also explore the choices of methodologies used for different research projects and consider the constraints and influences that have led to the research being undertaken in the way it was.
  2. This module will build on the knowledge and understanding of research theory that was developed in Module WWU521.  It will focus on strengthening the knowledge, understanding and skills needed for students to proceed with their Capstone Research Project at level 6.  The module will help students to explore the Capstone Research Project options so that they can make informed decisions/choices.  The module will identify what the options are and will introduce a range of appropriate research and/or communication tools for each option.
  3. This module aims to enable students who already have a foundation in counselling theory and skills to fully appreciate the role and application of research in this area.  In the course of the module students will be introduced to a variety of methods and approaches, which will be examined with a highly practical focus.  Emphasis will be placed on the kinds of issues and research questions which are commonly addressed in counselling, and which might be addressed using different research approaches. Students will demonstrate their acquisition of the knowledge by carrying out a small research project and writing a research proposal suitable for a final year dissertation.
  4. This year-long module offers learners the opportunity to apply and explore knowledge within a work-based context, through the mode of work place learning. The placement supervisor in the work place will negotiate the focus for the learner’s role on placement, with the learner. Students complete 100 hours in the work setting. The learner will reflect critically on different dimensions of the work place setting. This module provides an opportunity for students wishing to attain National Professional recognition with the Teaching and Learning Academy (TLA) to complete an AMTLA project. The module will also provide the opportunity for those students interested in going on to the PGCE programme to gain support and guidance with the PGCE application process.  
  5. This module gives students knowledge of the most recent developments within the Cognitive Behavioural Approach.  Students will gain an understanding of the historical influences of this approach and the theoretical assumptions.  There will be a focus on how to apply cognitive behavioural approaches to practice, and an opportunity to critically reflect upon cognitive behavioural concepts in light of other counselling theories.  There will be opportunities for students to continue to develop their ethical and professional awareness, and opportunities to continue the process of self-reflection.
  6. Discrimination exists in many forms in British society, having a negative impact on the lives of children, young people and families. It is therefore essential that practitioners understand discrimination. This module will explore the historical context for discrimination in the UK, who has the power to discriminate and how discrimination is experienced. The module will also critically evaluate theories of discrimination, including Critical Race Theory, Feminisms and the Personal, Cultural and Structural model of understanding discrimination. The module will focus on exploring discrimination of different groups in society and the intersection and overlap of inequalities. A central focus of the module will be on the policy response to discrimination in the UK, the roles and responsibilities of institutions in relation to discrimination, and examining the extent to which the issues have been addressed
  7. This module will focus on developing an understanding of the need to work in partnership “with” children, young people and families in different contexts in order to promote participation and to challenge deficit assumptions about those with whom we work. It will critically analyse different theories and approaches to participation and begin to challenge the power that practitioners exercise when making decisions that affect children, young people and families.
  8. This module will enable students to develop an understanding and analysis of disability that builds on the issues they engage with in the Level 4 module entitled ‘The Inclusive Practitioner’. The content of the module will be based on a human rights model and will encourage students to see issues relating to both physical and learning disabilities in their social, political and ideological context. The module will enable the students to understand that issues of disability are best understood through an anti-discriminatory, values-led approach and not via a diagnostic or medical perspective.
  9. This module will provide students with the opportunity to explore theoretical and practical notions of therapeutic working with young people in order to develop effective relationships. Students will consider the contrasts in professional roles regarding training, expectations and methods of working therapeutically. While not offering a therapeutic qualification, the module will consider aspects of best practice regarding the working alliance, ethical guidelines and the importance of support and supervision. Consideration will be given to the benefits and challenges of working in groups, using creative approaches and working with families.
  10. The module guides students through the counselling process from the point of referral, to the first session, middle stages and ending of the counselling relationship. It also introduces students to the role and importance of supervision.
  1. This tutored double module provides students with the opportunity to select an area of particular interest to them within the field of Counselling. Students design, plan and execute an in-depth empirical research project in their chosen area. Students will be required to produce a brief initial research proposal, for discussion with their supervisor. The proposal is then used as a basis for developing an application for Newman University ethical approval, which must be achieved prior to commencing data collection. The research design should include either quantitative and/or qualitative analyses and draw upon and critically evaluate a range of both classic and contemporary research findings throughout.  A poster presentation detailing the research process and findings will also be assessed.
  2. This tutored double module provides students with the opportunity to select an area of particular interest to them within the field of Counselling. Students design, plan and execute an in-depth Literature Review with a systematic search strategy and methodology and a narrative synthesis. Students will consider applications for counselling practice. Students will be required to produce a brief initial research proposal, for discussion with their supervisor. The proposal is then used as a basis for developing an application for Newman University ethical approval, which must be achieved prior to carrying out the Systematic Literature Review. The Systematic Literature Review should draw upon and critically evaluate a range of both classic and contemporary research findings through a clearly identified systematic search strategy using the following databases: PsycINFO, Psychology and Behavioural Sciences and PsycARTICLES.  A poster presentation detailing the review process will also be assessed.
  3. This module offers students the opportunity to build on their level 5 work placement through the more developed application of a negotiated work-based research project. Students will agree with their placement tutor and workplace mentor a brief for a project which addresses a need within the organisation. Learners should complete a minimum of 100 hours in the work place. It is in the spirit of this module that wherever possible, the focus will be on social or community / sustainable development.
  4. This module provides students with the opportunity to explore an area of particular interest through undertaking a small scale research project supported by a member of staff from the subject area (or elsewhere) with appropriate specialist knowledge.
  5. This module provides students with the opportunity to explore an area of particular interest through undertaking an evaluation of a particular policy or practice areas related to ‘professional practice’ Related to working with children, young people or families
  6. This module examines child and adolescent development in the context of family, society and culture, and explores a range of issues that arise in relation to therapeutic work with children and young people. The principles of multi-agency work will be explored. Students will study models of development and attachment as well as factors that contribute to resilience and vulnerability.
  7. This module is for level 6 students who wish to select this module option. The module will explore secular Mindfulness-based approaches to wellbeing including Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction and Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy. Students will explore the historical development of these approaches and their application to working therapeutically with counselling clients and other service users. This module will be substantially experiential, providing regular experiences of practice.  It will draw upon relevant literature and research in the field as well as a comprehensive module handbook and meditation audios for the experiential part of the course. Students will be expected to engage in meditation classes.
  8. This module is for level 6 students who wish to select this module option to explore therapeutic understandings surrounding bereavement and loss. The module will explore counselling theories of bereavement, complications of grieving, therapeutic approaches to grieving, mourning across cultures and other kinds of losses. It will draw upon relevant literature and research to consider these areas.
  9. This module will provide students with the opportunity to explore historical and contemporary concerns that have served to shape policy and practice. Students will explore current legislation and its implications for practice for all those working with the young and vulnerable adults. A clearer understanding will be gained of the different roles and responsibilities of those working in the area of safeguarding. Consideration will be given to the impact that abuse can have on the lives of victims and their families.
  10. This module will explore the role of creativity and play in how children and adults make sense of their lives and worlds, and the role of practitioners in facilitating this process. Working with children, young people and families is a holistic and participatory discipline. Good practice should seek to develop a social pedagogy which treats children’s, young people’s and families’ cultures as inherently valuable, and practitioners should support, in a person-centred way, those they work with to optimise their dignity, choice and wellbeing in their own lives. Creativity is foundational in this process.   The module will seek to give students a broad foundation in the theory and practice of creative working current in the field. Drawing on concrete examples of children and young people’s cultures and making use of arts, crafts, life skills, sports, games, religion and the natural world, it will help students to build their confidence in this mode of working. The key threshold concept will be an awareness of the tension between valuing children’s’ activities as developmental or therapeutic and valuing them for their own sake. It will encourage students to hold this tension through a reflective remembering of their own childhood lifeworld.
  11. Given the changing nature of children’s services in line with a neoliberalist agenda, understanding both how organisations and communities function and the roles that individuals play within each of those is important. Therefore students need to understand both the role of values at an institutional level, and how partnership working is developed and sustained across organisations and communities.
  12. This module will provide students with knowledge and understanding of coaching and mentoring and how to promote positive change using solution focused, evidence-based interventions. Students will develop knowledge of theoretical concepts underpinning coaching and mentoring through the application of theory to practice. Students will learn about recent evidence-based developments within coaching, mentoring and positive psychology and identify conditions required to facilitate growth and success. There will be opportunities for students to continue to develop and critically reflect upon their ethical and professional awareness and continue the process of self-reflection.
  13. This module gives students knowledge of the most recent developments within Cognitive Behaviour Therapy.  There will be a focus on how to apply cognitive behavioural approaches to practice, and an opportunity to critically reflect upon third wave cognitive behavioural concepts.  There will be opportunities for students to continue to develop and critically reflect upon their ethical and professional awareness, and continue the process of self-reflection.
  14. This module will introduce theories of addictions, and ways of working therapeutically with addiction. Definitions and explanations of addiction and addictive/compulsive behaviour will be explored, alongside knowledge of common drugs of abuse. Contemporary approaches, methods of assessment and treatment plans will be considered. A range of effective ways of working therapeutically with addictions will be introduced and critically evaluated.
  15. At levels 4 and 5 students will have been introduced to notions of inclusive practice, the effects of discrimination and the need for practitioners to understand what lies behind the concept of social justice when it comes to working with children, young people and families. This module offers students at level 6 the chance to develop their thinking about how they can best work with children and families to alleviate or overcome barriers to equality and justice in service design and delivery. The context for this will be an exploration of the concept of ‘anti-oppressive’ practice and will include an examination of the skills needed to work in this way.
  16. This module will provide students with the opportunity to explore current legislation and its implications for practice for all those working with children, young people and adults with care experience.  The module will seek to examine the rhetoric within policy and initiatives concerning children who are in Care and the underlying political ideologies around the role of the state in caring for children.  Students will investigate the range of provision for people with care experience including models popular in other countries.  A wide view of the diverse needs of children, young people and adults with care experience will be presented, underlining the challenges in balancing protection and support with learning and development and the associated importance of partnership and collaborative working.
  17. This module explores some practical challenges of working with families where there are concerns around violence, harm and/or abuse.  It seeks to explore different ways of thinking about vulnerability and risk and how this relates to the ways in which families are constructed in policy and practice. It also seeks to look at key practice issues around working with family members and other professionals.

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