Entry requirements and training (high intensity therapist)

The first step to becoming a trainee CBT high intensity therapist is to apply for a trainee post within an Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) service. IAPT services are provided directly by NHS or third sector providers such as Mind.

Selection is carried out jointly between the IAPT service and academic course provider. If successful, you will be offered both a job and a training place on a British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP)-accredited post graduate diploma in CBT.

For a list of BABCP-approved programmes, see Your postgraduate diploma in CBT below. 

High intensity therapist and client

Trainee high intensity therapist vacancies can be found on the NHS Jobs website or may be advertised locally within newspapers or local job sites. Vacancies may also be advertised on charity websites - such as Mind, Rethink and TurningPoint.

Entry requirements

Postgraduate diplomas in CBT are usually aimed at experienced healthcare professionals. To access a postgraduate diploma in CBT, you need to have secured a high intensity therapist trainee position within an IAPT service.

These positions are open to healthcare professionals with a BABCP-recognised core professional qualification, including:

If you don’t have a core profession, you may be able to secure a trainee role by demonstrating your competency via a portfolio of evidence. Further details can be found under Your application below.

Psychological wellbeing practitioners (PWPs) are eligible to apply for high intensity therapist training when they have completed a minimum of two years of continuous employment as a PWP and passing all PWP course requirements. The only exception to this two-year rule is if a PWP holds a previous core professional qualification recognised by the BABCP.

If you are currently working within an IAPT service, speak to your manager to find out which courses are available to you.

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