AdvDip(CPD) Level HE7 Using CBT with Clients with Persistent and Distressing Long-Term Health Conditions

People with long-term physical health conditions or medically unexplained symptoms frequently develop mental health problems such as anxiety and depression. If you are a qualified or trainee high intensity therapist or CBT therapist who is currently working in a clinical setting with clients who have long-term physical health conditions, this 20-credit course offers focused and practical professional development for this specialist area of therapy.

This course is 'Subject to Approval' and has not yet completed the University’s approvals process. Whilst we are confident that the course will be approved, there is the possibility that the course may not run or may be subject to alterations. This course is due to be validated by July 2018 after which we will write to all applicants who have applied for the course to let them know the outcome and of any changes. In the event that a course is not approved the University will make reasonable efforts to offer an alternative course at the University.

AdvDip(CPD) Level HE7 Using CBT with Clients with Persistent and Distressing Long-Term Health Conditions

Course details

Two thirds of people with a long-term physical health condition also have a co-morbid mental health problem, most often anxiety and depression. In addition, up to 70% of people with medically unexplained symptoms also have depression or anxiety disorders. These common mental health disorders are detectable and treatable. This bite-sized advanced professional development course offers practical, intensive and detailed skills training for this vital area of therapy.

Our expert and dedicated team will guide you as you develop your theoretical and research knowledge for working with people with anxiety disorders or depression in the context of long-term physical health conditions and people who experience persistent and distressing medically unexplained symptoms. We’ll explore a range of topics organised around medically unexplained symptoms (MUS), and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), chronic pain, diabetes, coronary heart disease (CHD), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and cancer.

We’ll support your as you learn about the adaptation of psychological therapies for working with these groups, as well as how to conduct effective clinical assessment of people with long-term health conditions and use this to inform your clinical decision making. You’ll then be expected to undertake a period of clinical practice under specialist supervision where you learn to apply your new knowledge and adapt therapy sensitively, promoting your clients’ capacity for adjustment and self-management.

  • Location: The University of Bolton
  • Award: AdvDip(CPD)
  • Duration: 36 weeks

Course highlights:

  • The aims and objectives of this advanced professional development module are consistent with the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) National Curriculum for Long Term Persistent & Distressing Health Conditions (NHS England, 2016).
  • Lecturers for this course include current consultant clinical psychologists, clinical psychologists, health psychologists and CBT therapists who are specialists in their fields, as well as former CBT clinical leads and long-term health condition clinical leads from the NHS.
  • We’ll encourage you to develop skills in multi-agency and inter-professional working and collaboration.
  • On successful completion of this course you will be awarded an Advanced Professional Development qualification in Using CBT with Clients with Persistent and Distressing Long-Term Health Conditions worth 20 credits at Level HE7.

Key features:

  • Our dedicated academic team has a wealth of experience working in therapeutic mental health settings and engaging in relevant research, bringing their expertise and passion to their teaching.
  • You’ll have the opportunity to learn from guest lecturers who are currently working in physical health settings to deliver psychological therapies adapted for persistent and distressing long-term health conditions.
  • The course curriculum is regularly reviewed to ensure that content remains contemporary and relevant.
  • We promote research and critical enquiry helping you learn to make sound, evidence-based independent judgements.

Entry requirements

  • Location: The University of Bolton
  • Award: AdvDip(CPD)
  • Duration: 36 weeks

You must be either a practicing CBT therapist who has passed a postgraduate CBT programme or a trainee CBT therapist who is at least one full semester into their training and currently on a Level 2 BABCP accredited training course.

You must also have at least an Upper Second Class (2:1) Honours degree (or equivalent) in a related discipline, as well as a qualification in therapy practice, such as Level 3 Counselling Skills or equivalent (particularly if you are a trainee CBT therapist).

You’ll also need evidence that you’ve completed work experience in a helping or therapeutic profession equating to a minimum of 200 hours of clinical practice (particularly if you are a trainee CBT therapist.

To successfully complete this course, your work setting must give you access to clinical practice opportunities with clients who have common mental health problem/s and persistent and distressing long-term health condition/s, as well as specialist supervision provided by your employer.

You’ll be required to attend an interview and/or provide a portfolio of work.

You must be able to provide two satisfactory references.

This course involves working unsupervised with children and/or vulnerable young people and adults and you must gain an Enhanced Disclosure certificate from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) before starting your studies. Charges are payable to cover the cost of the DBS Enhanced Disclosure application and annual registration with the online Update Service. Find out more

If English isn’t your first language you’ll also need IELTS 6.5 with normally no less than 6.0 in any band (or equivalent). We also accept a range of other English language qualifications – please visit our English Language Requirements web page for more details. Find out more

Career opportunities

As set out in the government paper ‘Implementing the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health’, psychological therapy services will increasingly focus on people with long-term conditions or medically unexplained symptoms. New psychological therapy provision will see physical and mental health care provision co-located with therapy services being integrated into existing medical pathways and services in primary care, or secondary care services (such as diabetes, cardiac, and respiratory). There is therefore an increasing need for high intensity therapists and CBT therapists with specialist training, skills and knowledge in this important area of therapy.

What can I do with this qualification?

Professional recognition

Fees & funding

No fee information is currently available, please contact Student Data Management on 01204 903059 or for more information

The fees for a student’s course of study will be set for the normal duration of that course subject only to inflationary increases – measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) recorded in March each year to take effect for subsequent start dates.

The University is currently awaiting Government guidelines as to EU fee charges for students commencing study in 2019/20.

UK undergraduate tuition fees are subject to UK government approval and are subject to the outcome of the Teaching Excellence Framework.

No hidden extras

  • There may be some additional or optional costs associated with this course. These will be published after approval of the programme. ()

How to apply


Call Admissions

Please contact Admissions by telephone on 01204 903903 or email

University of Bolton
Deane Road
Bolton, BL3 5AB
United Kingdom

Tel: 01204 903903


International applications are not possible for this course

As an international student you are not allowed to study this course because of the restrictions on your visa.

We offer a wide range of full-time courses in lots of different subjects, many of our courses start in September and January. If you would like to see what courses are available please visit our Course Search.

Teaching & assessment

Teaching, learning and assessment

You will be expected to attend an intensive period of University-based training at the beginning of the course, including methods such as lectures, workshops, tutorials, e-learning and group discussions. This will be combined with up to six months’ further clinical practice under specialist long-term health condition and medically unexplained symptoms supervision, which will be provided by your employer or associated specialist services. As this is a master’s level course, you’ll need to engage in a substantial amount of independent study, such as library research, practical activities and further reading.

You’ll need to complete a range of assessments such as completion of at least two clinical cases where CBT has been delivered in the context of a long-term physical health condition or persistent and distressing physical symptoms, evidence logs reflecting learning from the training and supervision applied to these cases, and a written case study assessed by the University of Bolton. Please see the programme specification and module specification for full details.


The university will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver your course as described in its published material and the programme specification for the academic year in which you begin your course. Please be aware that our courses are subject to review on an ongoing basis. The content of course modules and mode of associated assessments may be updated on an annual basis. This is to ensure that all modules are up to date and responsive to employment and sector needs. The published course material and the programme specification contain indicative ‘optional modules’ that may be subject to change due to circumstances outside of our control. For this reason we cannot guarantee to run any specific optional module.

Contact The University

Key facts

  • Course type:
  • Location:
    The University of Bolton
  • Award:
  • Duration:
    36 weeks

Contact us

Mel Greenhalgh
Programme Leader
Telephone: +44 (0)1204 903508

Enquiry Team
University of Bolton
Telephone: +44 (0)1204 903903