Your Questions, Answered

The Oracle The National College of Hypnosis & Psychotherapy

We love an inquisitive mind here at the NCHP and of course we are always happy to answer your questions.

There may be times when a question comes to you when we aren’t immediately available and if your question is related to the college or your study, the likelihood is that is has been asked before.

The Oracle is a collection of the questions we have asked ourselves when we were students, and have been asked by our students. It acts as a continuously updated resource for all the questions we get asked and our answers to them. It exists for your benefit.

So take a look through the sections and if your question isn’t answered please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Questions about Application

What if I don’t reach the academic entry criteria?

Whilst our application and interview process enables us to ensure that you are able to work to Masters level, we also see the enormous value in lived experience and take this into account for all of our students. We want to train great therapists and your personal qualities go a long way towards this. If you are thinking of applying but not sure how you fit the entry criteria, please contact us to discuss this and we can guide you in the right direction.

For those students who are nervous about the academic requirements of the course we do have support in academic writing to help you along the way. Please speak to our Director of Student Experience for more details.

If I am applying to study in one location, am I able to attend some modules in a different location?

Yes you can, subject to spaces being available we are happy for you to change locations should you need to. We also offer the opportunity to attend a module at an alternative location should you be unable to attend as particular module in your usual location.

When will I hear whether my application has been successful?

Once you have sent your application form to us, we will respond to you within a week to arrange an informal telephone interview. We will then contact you within a week of your interview to let you know the outcome and if you are successful to offer you a place.

I have been offered a place, what happens now?

Congratulations. Once you have accepted your place we will contact you to arrange your deposit and preferred payment method. You will also get sent our free student ebook which will tell you more about what to expect and recommend some great resources. 2 weeks prior to commencement of your course you will receive access to your personal dropbox folder with instructions as to how to use this. You will be sent some reading to get you started before the course and your suggested reading list. If you have any questions before you start please don’t hesitate to contact our Director of Student Experience.

Questions about Pathways

I am not sure which pathway is right for me, will I have the opportunity to change?

Yes. Our pathways are designed to be flexible and many of our students who sign up to do the pathway to CNHC hypnotherapist, choose to continue to study Stage 3 and 4 to as part of the hypno-psychotherapy pathway. We offer many opportunities to discuss your progress and how you see your professional development. Your tutor will also be there to support you and guide you as to the most appropriate pathway for you.

What is the difference between the hypno-psychotherapeutic counsellor pathway and the hypno-psychotherapist pathway?

The hypnosis-psychtherapeutic counsellor pathway takes 3 years to gain UKCP as opposed to 4 years for hypnosis-psychotherapist. With the hypno-psychotherapeutic counsellor pathway you are not required to do  the research methods module, dissertation or the 250 self-development hours, however you are required to do 105 personal therapy hours as opposed to 48 for the hypno-psychotherapy pathway.

Can I talk to someone about which pathway might be most appropriate for me?

Yes of course, our Director of Student Experience would be happy to go through each pathway and how your experience and career goals align with each. If you would like to speak to one of our course tutors we can also arrange this for you.

Can I record teaching sessions?

At the NCHP our training courses often touch on sensitive and personal subjects that can affect our clients and, often, ourselves. In order to develop as therapists, trainees are asked to share examples from their case work or their personal lives with the group so that they can receive clinical supervision and so that, through sharing, they can reflect on their practice and how it can be improved. We therefore ask that you treat all teaching sessions as confidential and not share what you have heard outside the room, just as you would with the details of any therapeutic conversation with a client. For this reason, we also ask that you do not record our teaching sessions (either online or in the classroom). If you have specific learning support needs (e.g. dyslexia), then an exception may be made but documentation will be required and you will be asked to sign a statement that the recordings will only be used for your own learning needs. If this applies to you, please contact the College Administrator.

Questions about Fees

How do I pay for my pathway?

The cost is £250 per module paid monthly in advance, however you can pay the whole amount for each stage should you wish.

The first module will be required to be paid as a deposit.

We accept:

  • Bank transfer
  • Credit card
  • Go cordless – staged payments

What happens if I get into financial difficulty during the course?

If you experience financial difficulties during the course which are affecting your ability to pay, please speak tot he director of student experience at the earliest opportunity. She will help you to decide the best route forward for you.

Can I get access to a loan?

Although we offer flexible ways to pay, at present the college does not offer student loans.

Can I pay for the pathway in full?

Yes you can choose to pay for your chosen pathway upfront in full prior to commencement. You may also choose to pay per stage or spread the cost over 17 months.

Will my fees change throughout the course?

The fees you sign up for will be the fees you pay throughout your course, providing there is no break in your study time. If there is a break in studies and your return is after a fee review then cases will be considered on an individual basis.

Do you offer scholarships?

At this time NCHP does not offer a scholarship scheme.

Questions about Locations

If I apply for one location can I change during the course?

Yes you can, subject to spaces being available we are happy for you to change locations should you need to. We also offer the opportunity to attend a module at an alternative location should you be unable to attend as particular module in your usual location.

Will the venue be the same throughout my time studying with you?

Whilst we aim for consistency in our venues we do regularly review our venues to ensure we are providing the best service, therefore occasionally based on feedback or due to unforeseen circumstances we may find cause to change venues in your chosen location. We always take into consideration transport options and facilities and you will always be informed with sufficient notice should this happen.

Can I buy food and drink at the training venue?

We ensure all of our training venues either have facilities to buy food and drink onsite or within easy walking distance.

Is my venue accessible by public transport?

Yes all of our training venues are close to train/tube/tram or bus stations. Please contact our Director of Student Support if you require disabled parking.

Do all venues have disabled access?

Yes we ensure that all our training venues have disabled access, please discuss with our Director of Student Experience should you require any additional support.

Questions about Stage 1

Can I progress to Stage 2 if I haven’t completed the assignments for Stage 1?

Stage 1 is where we get to know you and your suitability to progress through the course. It is not a probationary period, however it allows us to see how you interact with others and based on our extensive experience training therapists whether we think there could be any potential barriers to your completing the course.

We recommend that you complete the assignments for Stage 1 prior to beginning Stage 2 however, we recognise that sometimes personal circumstances mean that this isn’t possible and we will grant extensions where appropriate. In this case you will be able to progress to Stage 2 however you will not receive your CHP until all assessments are complete for Stage 2.

Do I receive a qualification after Stage 1?

Stage 1 is a requirement for entry onto Stage 2, whilst it is not a probationary period it does allow us to assess you suitability for clinical practice. You will not be qualified to work commercially until the completion of Stage 2.

How much self-study time is expected during Stage 1?

Stage 1 consists of 56 classroom hours and 44 self-study hours.

How will my progress be assessed?

During stage 1 there is a compulsory self-reflective document (SCARF) for you to complete throughout your training. You will be given personal feedback from your tutor within this document to allow you to get a clear picture as to how you are progressing and to tackle any issues should they arise. You will also have a 1:1 with your tutor at the end of Stage 1 to discuss your progress and how you see your career developing so that we can support you in the direction that is right for you.

Questions about Stage 2

Can I progress to Stage 3 if I haven’t completed the assignments to for Stage 2?

We recommend that you complete the assignments for Stage 2 prior to beginning Stage 3 however, we recognise that sometimes personal circumstances mean that this isn’t possible and we will grant extensions where appropriate. In this case you will be able to progress to Stage 2 however you will not receive your CHP until all assessments are complete for Stage 2 and you will not be able to start practicing commercially until you have achieved your CHP.

When I attain my CHP can I count clinical hours towards UKCP accreditation?

Yes when you have qualified and register with CNHC as a hypnotherapist you can begin working with your supervisor in a ration of 1 hours supervision to 6 client hours and count these hours towards UKCP accreditation.

How much self-study time is expected on Stage 2?

Stage 2 consists of 132 classroom hours and 213 self-directed learning hours.

Questions about Stage 3

How much self-study time is expected on Stage 3

Stage 3 consists of 70 classroom hours and 60 self-directed learning hours.

Questions about Stage 4

How long is Stage 4 expected to last?

Stage 4 is the period between the end of Stage 3 and either 3 years on the hypnosis-psychotherapeutic counsellor route or 4 years on the hypnosis-psychotherapy pathway. It must contain a minimum of 18 months supervised practice and cannot be less than 3 years from the start of training on the hypnosis-psychotherapeutic counsellor pathway or 4 years from the start of training on the hypno-psychotherapy pathway.

Will there be any face to face study in Stage 4?

Stage 4 is predominantly about you working with your clients and your supervisor in a ratio of 1 hours supervision to every 6 client hours. You will also need to complete online modules which will involve participation in online classrooms.

Where do I find my supervisor?

Your supervisor must be a UKCP registered supervisor. A list can be found from the UKCP website.

Is there any support to help me set up in practice?

Whilst a main focus as a college is to provide an outstanding educational experience, we want you to succeed in practice also. Therefore as part of the curriculum we include practice building during Stage 2. We also provide a CPD weekend with advanced practice building and marketing advice.

How long do the the online modules take to complete?

The lengths of the online modules are as follows:

Human development and sexuality: 8 weeks (80 hours)

Psychopathology: 3 weeks (25 hours)

Research for therapists in practice: 3 weeks (20 hours)

Safeguarding: 5 hours.

When do the online modules run?

The online modules run regularly throughout the year, please make sure you are on the mailing list for the college to receive updates as to the latest dates.

Can I get accredited prior learning for the online modules?

Yes, if you have completed modules which cover the topics sufficiently in other courses you have attended or through your work experience you may be able to apply for APL. Please speak to the Director of Student Experience to discuss this.

I have had self-therapy in the past, can this count for my self-therapy hours?

This depends on whether your therapist was UKCP accredited and how much time has lapsed since the therapy. Please discuss this with the director of student support to consider your individual case.

Do I have to do my self-therapy hours with the same therapist?

Your self-therapy is about making it work for you. Your therapist needs to be UKCP registered(or equivalent), however you may choose to stick with the same therapist however some students use the opportunity to experience different modalities. This is about you getting the most from the experience and the same things apply as to clients coming to you for therapy, ensure that the relationship is right.

Questions about CPD

How many hours of CPD do I need to do?

Students do not need any CPD, whereas UKCP registrants require 250 hours over each 5 years of their registration. With a minimum of 20 in any one year.

I am really interested in a particular area but you don’t seem to offer any CPD for it, is there anything you can help me with?

Talk to us. We review and adapt our CPD all the time based of demand, we can also recommend courses by other training providers should we not be able to accommodate your particular interest. We will always do our best to support your learning and development.

Questions about Student Support

I have a personal problem and need to speak to someone. What should I do?

Should you have a personal problem which is affecting your ability to progress through the course you can speak to your course tutor who may put you in touch with Carlie (our Director of Student Experience) or your can go to her directly. Everything you discuss will be handled according to our confidentiality policy and with the greatest sensitivity.

We are unable to offer a therapy service to students however if this is deemed appropriate we will support you in seeking personal therapy where required.

Who should I speak to if I am struggling to cope with my studies at the moment?

You can either talk to your course tutor who may be able to provide guidance on areas to focus or you can talk to Carlie (Director of Student Support) who will support you to find ways of making your studies work for you. We will always support you in the best way that we can to ensure you can continue with your studies, however if this means that you need to take a break we can help to arrange this in  a way that will be the least disruptive to you.

What if I need professional support?

As a student and graduate of NCHP you will become a member of The National Society of Talking Therapies which provides a supportive community to you throughout your career where you can connect with other therapists and benefit from numerous resources.

We offer continuing professional development for you throughout your career including courses in practice building to guide you in setting up your practice.

Can I suspend my studies?

If circumstances mean that your study is going to be interrupted for an extended period, the director of student experience and your tutor will support you in making arrangements to suspend your studies and recommence at a later date.

Questions about Assessments and Marking

How will my work be marked?

When you submit your assignments, we pass them through plagiarism detection software to ensure it is original work. It is then sent to a member of our pool of independent markers. Your marker/s will never be the same person as your tutor and will be a practicing therapist and/or an experienced educator, and educated to at least masters level. In addition to a grade, the marker will also give you constructive feedback that is aimed at helping you improve your academic performance and deepen your understanding of the subject. We will email you with your grades and feedback. We will get marks back to you within four weeks of submission (i.e. in time for your next weekend of study).

How do I question a mark I have been given?

If you disagree with a grade for an assignment, you can ask for it to be remarked. To do this, contact the director of student experience briefly stating the grounds on which to wish to appeal your grade. An administrative charge of £40 is applied when you submit your work for regrading.

The assignment, together with your grounds for appealing the grade, will then be sent to a different marker for re-grading. The administration fee will be reimbursed if your appeal against the original mark is upheld and a higher mark is awarded. If there is no change in the grade, or the assignment receives a lower grade, the college will retain the administration fee.

Can I ask for an extension on my assignment deadlines?

We recognise that our students have busy lives and we also know that nothing motivates students more than a fixed deadline.

All our assignments are designed on the principle of ‘constructive alignment’, which is to say that assignments are paced throughout the course so that deadlines are set at the point in your training where you are able to complete the assignment set.

However, life happens and if you find you are struggling to meet a deadline, please contact the director of student experience to request an extension, briefly stating your reasons. The director of student experience can then direct you to additional support or resources that you may need (e.g. contact with your tutor or supervisor).

Extensions are usually granted on a four-week basis and may be renewed on request.

How do I submit an assignment?

If you fail an assignment you will have to opportunity to appeal for a remark, there is a £45 administrative fee for this which will be refunded should your appeal be successful. Where it is decided that repeat tuition is desirable this will be provided to an extent decided upon by the academic board prior to further submission.

What happens if I submit an assignment late?

We understand that sometimes personal circumstances mean that a deadline is too tight for you. We recommend requesting an extension to deadlines to our Director of Student Experience.

What do I do if I have a good reason for submitting an assignment late?

Please discuss this with the director of student experience who is able to grant extensions to assignment submission depending on the circumstances which will be reviewed on an individual basis.

When will my marks be available?

Your marks will be available within 3 weeks of submission.

What happens if I fail an assignment?

If you fail an assignment you will have the opportunity to appeal it, there is a £45 administrative fee for this which will be refunded should your appeal be successful. If it is decided that repeat tuition is desirable this will be provided to an extend decided upon by the academic board.

What is the pass mark for a module?

The pass mark for all modules is 60% or where assessments are given a mark out of 20 the pass mark is 11.

Questions about Case Studies

How do I find a case study?

In order to work within ethical guideline you are not able to work with friends, family or those you have an existing relationship with. You will often find that once word gets around that you are offering free therapy for 7 sessions you will find volunteers. Friends of friends may be worked with as long as you do not have a relationship with them. Some groups of students work with friends of each other.

What types of issues are suitable for my case-study?

You need to be working within your level of competence and also at sufficient depth in order to assess the development of the therapeutic relationship. This means there needs to be a significant psychotherapeutic nature to your case study. We do not suggest working with issues like smoking as often this will not provide a suitable demonstration of the depth of your ability to build, deepen and maintain a therapeutic relationship. Issues such as phobias, social anxiety, occupational stress can all be issues that may be worked with. Discuss any potential client with your tutor to decide on the suitability.

How long should my case study be?

There is no set word limit, however you need to demonstrate a sufficient depth of understanding of the therapeutic process. This includes, why you chose certain approaches over others, the development of the therapeutic relationship, your knowledge about ethics and evidence of reflecting on your own process. Case study submissions average around 8-10,000 words however we have had submissions of 32,000.

When can I start my case study?

You must have studied the person-centred approach in module 5 (first weekend of Stage 2) and ethics in module 6 in order to begin your case study. Some students like to wait until late on to start their case study wanting to gain knowledge of different techniques. We understand this, however we are assessing your competence for the stage you are at, we are not expecting the finished article. The case study is to show us and you that you are safe and are able to build and maintain the therapeutic relationship. We are always learning as therapists and you can demonstrate in your reflections as you go along different approach that you could have used as your knowledge develops, however there is never one way to work with a client, the most important thing is the relationship.

What happens if my case study client doesn’t need 7 sessions?

We choose 7 sessions because from experience this provides a sufficient time to see a progression in the therapeutic relationship from the first session through to the final one. However, we recognise that sometimes clients make progress fast and that’s ok. In this case we advise speaking to your tutor, who will be your supervisor for your case study as to whether they would suggest seeing another client for a short period of time or whether to start a new case study client.

Do I need insurance to see my case study client?

Yes, when you are ready to see your case study client you can become a trainee member of UKCP and get insurance. We recommend using Balens who offer very low rates for students.

What happens if my case study client doesn’t achieve their desired outcome after 7 sessions?

That is ok, we are not in control of how fast clients progress. It is important that you do not leave your client at a critical point, however this should be discussed throughout your supervision so that any issues can be picked up early. Sometimes clients have more than one issue however we want to see that you can work in a time limited fashion and can suitable contain therapy by setting clear goals which might mean that you cannot work on everything the clients brings, this should be discussed with your client in the first session so they suitably prepared.

If your client doesn’t exactly reach their goal, this does not necessarily mean that you will not have a great case study. What we are looking for is that you are safe and able to develop the therapeutic relationship. We want to see that you can reflect on the process of therapy and reflections on how you might go about things differently can be really valid things to discuss in your case study.

It says in the notes that in the first session the client must sign to confirm they’re aware of our trainee status, they consent to being recorded and to discussions being shared with the assessor and discussed with our supervisor. I didn’t see a form for this in the Dropbox – are you happy for us to draft this ourselves?

The reason there isn’t a form is because we actively want you to draft it yourself so that you think it through.

I assume the recordings and case study write up will only be seen/heard by the assessor(s)  and that no one else will see it, so we can reassure the client that the recordings and notes will be kept confidential in every other respect?

The case studies are double marked . There is also the possibility that in a marking appeal, it is unlikely that the Academic Board (who would hear the appeal) would listen to anything but they may read the case. Make sure it’s covered that it could be shared with more than one assessor.

Will we be sharing the recordings and write up with the assessor via the Dropbox folder which others have access to or are these to be shared in a different way?

Case study clients recognise that they are receiving therapy in return for being used for training and therefore they must be made aware that it is to be listened to and read by assessors. If your consent form covers the assessment of your work including the audios then that meets GDPR requirements. The key with GDPR is specific consent, obtain explicit consent for sharing with/via Dropbox as well as sharing with the college for assessment.

Can I reassure my client that their personal data will be deleted after a particular length of time? Do you know how long the assessors will retain the recordings and notes for? Does the college retain anything for its records, e.g. the emails or Dropbox containing the files, or do you require students to retain the notes /recordings? Alternatively, does the college have a privacy notice or data retention policy we can refer clients to which explains how it holds their data, including any third parties it shares data with, e.g. Dropbox?

What you share with the college will constitute the client’s personal data in a legal sense. Much of the content will also concern mental health which is special category. The consent form will also need to contain their name and signature, so together the information accessible to the college via the Dropbox, that will make the person identifiable. Audio is personal data under GDPR regardless of whether it is identifiable. Explicit consent to processing/sharing is the requirement (the subject has right to withdraw consent at any time). State in the consent form that the college will process the personal data in line with its privacy policy.

What if my client withdraws and wants their data deleted?

 The client is entitled to withdraw their consent at any time to us holding their personal data, at which point you’d need to make sure all copies are deleted, including those with the assessors/the college.

I imagine we will have to explain to the client that supervision is in a small group context and we might discuss them there, but can reassure them that their name won’t be shared with the group, so it will be anonymous in that respect? Or would we ordinarily share their name with our supervisor?

You must not ever reveal a client’s identity in group supervision. In one to one, you can (but would not usually do so).

Questions about Dissertations

Can you tell me about the ethics committee?

You can read about the ethics committee by following the link below.

The Ethics Committee

How many words should my dissertation be?

The word count for dissertations is between 10,000 and 12,000 words.

Can I conduct primary research as part of my dissertation?

Yes in accordance with the college’s ethics regulations about involving human participants.

I have never written a dissertation before, do you have any support for this?

We recognise that some of students have been out of formal education for a while and the thought of writing a dissertation can feel daunting. We offer a CPD course in dissertation writing for anyone who wants to gain skills and confidence in this area before they start.

Questions about SCARF

Is SCARF compulsory?

Within Stage 1 SCARF is a compulsory element of your assessment, it offers you a space to reflect and gain feedback. We encourage you to become self-reflective practitioners from the beginning and this is a vital part of the process.

Can I continue SCARF after Stage 1?

Yes, you can continue this through Stage 2 and your tutor will provide feedback should you continue to engage with it. Please note that your tutor will only provide feedback if you engage with the process.

How is SCARF assessed.

In Stage 1 you will receive either a pass or fail for SCARF, we are looking for honesty in this document not a literary masterpiece. We want to see you reflect on your own experience and how you see your progression through the course. There is no set format for completing it, we provide some questions which may help you, however if you have something to write or a format which suits you please work through this in a way that is suited to you.

Questions about Supervision

Why is supervision important?

Supervision is considered to be an essential part of an ethically-minded psychotherapist’s practice. All practising members of the National Society of Hypnosis, Psychotherapy and Mindfulness are required to be in, either, supervision (for Student, or full members) or peer supervision (for fellows) as part of their CPD requirement. On a practical level, this means getting together with your supervisor to discuss, in a confidential manner, your current case load and treatment schedules, and talk over any problems you may be encountering. Documentary evidence of all supervision sessions should be kept in your CPD Portfolio. The National Society of Hypnosis, Psychotherapy and Mindfulness has a policy of random monitoring of supervision, as well as the five-yearly review of CPD Portfolios.

The therapeutic alliance is, perhaps, the most important aspect of any therapy, but it is all too easy for a therapist to be so involved in the therapeutic relationship that he or she cannot see it from a clear perspective. That is where supervision comes into its own, helping therapists to reflect constructively on their working relationships with clients. Details of supervision requirements are available to those applying to join the National Society of Hypnosis, Psychotherapy and Mindfulness and, for students, in the student handbook.