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MSc Integrative Counselling and Coaching

Course overview

Start date

September 2018

Subject area





On campus

Course summary

The MSc in Integrative Counselling and Coaching offers professional training for those who aim to integrate various counselling approaches and coaching in their one-to-one practice.

Broadly speaking, counselling concerns itself with the resolution of internal conflicts and psychological changes. Coaching deals more with goal achievement and behavioural changes that can be measured and perceived.

For example, counselling would deal with the reasons why someone had a drink problem, while coaching would deal with the habit itself.

Although there is some overlap between these two approaches, they are not interchangeable. However, they can be complementary.

This course is answering an urgent need that reflects a general trend towards more open-minded, integrative practice.

You can apply to do the course with a wide range of degrees.

The first year is taken up with counselling training. The second year offers coaching training and an introduction to a specific model of integration, Personal Consultancy. The third year consists of a module on research methods and dissertation.

As a successful graduate you will be able to apply for membership of and eventual accreditation by the BACP (which would require additional practice hours).

Contact us

If you have any questions, talk to a member of our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0) 20 8223 3333 or email

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Course of its kind in the UK

This groundbreaking course is unique. It is the only postgraduate course in the UK, and possibly the world, that offers integration of counselling and coaching practices.

Top 15

Of all modern universities in the UK

The School of Psychology, of which Integrative Counselling and Coaching is based in, is one of the top departments of Psychology in the UK for student satisfaction (NSS, 2017)

Structured in line with the BACP

The three-year master’s is structured in compliance with the individual accreditation requirements of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).

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What we're researching

UEL’s School of Psychology was ranked equal first in the country in terms of the impact of its research, beating Oxford and Cambridge.

The Research Excellence Framework is a six-yearly review by the Higher Education Funding Council for England.

In 2014 it rated 43 per cent of our research as ‘internationally excellent’ and a further 25 per cent as ‘world-leading’ – the highest accolade. It added that UEL’s School of Psychology was one of only four in the country whose research had a ‘100 per cent impact’ at the highest level.

Dr Francisco Jose Eiroa-Orosa researches the understanding of psychosocial wellbeing in the context of complex multi-dimensional problems such as addictions, trauma, migration or social change.

Dr Tim Lomas has explored the impact of meditation on men’s wellbeing, using a mixed-methods design comprising narrative interviews, cognitive testing, and EEG measurement.

Dr Christian van Nieuwerburgh is an internationally recognised academic and consultant whose ground-breaking research concerns his specialist area of coaching and mentoring, in which he conducts numerous international collaborations.

Dr Kate Hefferon’s work was the first to link participation in physical activity with post-traumatic growth. She has conducted several evaluation studies on the role of physical activity during and following breast cancer.

Among last year’s publications by Principal Lecturer Donald Ridley, who is a specialist in organisational development in the public sector in the former Soviet Union, are Safety management - the lessons of experience and The unspeakable and the sublime - the relationship between Stalin and Shostakovich.

Over the past few years Dr Aneta Tunariu has delivered psychological interventions in the UK and abroad working with disenfranchised young people to foster the development of positive identities, emotional resourcing and positive future perspectives.

Currently, Dr Tunariu is engaged in projects focusing on individual capacity for growth and resilience as a means of      combating the risk of young people adopting radical belief systems.

Making a difference

UEL is one of the UK’s leading modern research universities. In the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF), 17 per cent of our overall research submission was classified as ‘world-leading’ for its quality and impact – almost double our previous REF score. A further 45 per cent of our work was considered ‘internationally excellent’.

Entry requirements

Minimum 2:2 Honours

We would normally expect you to have Grade C in GCSE English and Maths. 


(Including European Union)

We accept a range of qualifications from across the world. Please see our country pages for information on specific entry requirements for your country.

Applicants will  be interviewed and required to demonstrate:
  •     Self-awareness, maturity and stability
  •     Ability to cope with the intellectual and academic requirement
  •     Ability to form a helping relationship
  •     Ability to be self critical and use both positive and negative feedback
  •     Awareness of issues of difference and equality
  •     Competence in generic skills including: literacy, numeracy, information technology, administrative skills, self-management skills, communication and interpersonal skills

Overall IELTS 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in Writing, Speaking, Reading and Listening (or recognised equivalent).

As an inclusive university we recognise that applicants who have been out of education for some time may not have the formal qualifications usually required for entry to a course. We welcome applications from those who can demonstrate their enthusiasm and commitment to study and have relevant life/work experience that equips them to succeed on the course. We will assess this from the information provided in your application (particularly your personal statement) and may ask you to attend an interview or submit a piece of work to help us decide on your eligibility for the course. Our pre-entry Information Advice and Guidance Team are able to provide further advice on entry requirements and suitability for study.

You can speak to a member of our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0)20 8223 3333, Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Alternatively, you can visit our Information, Advice and Guidance centre. Please click here for details.

What you'll study 

Year 1

  • Core counselling theory and practice (30 credits)
  • Counselling application (30 credits)

Year 2

  • Evidence-based coaching as a part of integrative practice (30 credits)
  • Personal Consultancy: an integrative framework for counselling and coaching (30 credits) 

Year 3

  • Research methods and dissertation 1 (30 credits)
  • Research methods and dissertation2 (30 credits)

How you'll be assessed

All courses are continuously assessed: there are no exams but you complete assessed work for each module. Assessment requirements include a range of professionally relevant activities in addition to the more traditional essays, reports and case studies. We also assess you on how you evaluate your own performance, through reflective practice.

Course specification

How you'll learn

The school has a strong reputation in both counselling and coaching, so students will benefit from excellent teaching practice.

The course provides a variety of teaching and learning methods, including lectures and workshops activities, seminars and facilitated group discussions, and support through our virtual learning environment (Moodle).

You will also benefit from skills practice sessions and group and individual tutorial and supervision sessions.

The course gives students the knowledge, skills, attributes and confidence to work in an innovative way.

You will be expected to complete 100 hours of placement work (from Term 2 in year one). During each teaching week, you will attend an hour and half of facilitated peer supervision in groups of maximum six students. The purpose of peer supervision is to give you another opportunity (besides your individual supervision) to discuss and improve your work.

If you proceed to proceed to the third year you will have an opportunity to undertake research and write a dissertation on a topic of your choice.

What you'll learn

The MSc is a three-year part-time course.

In your first year you will undertake two counselling modules. In your second year you will study the practice of evidence-based coaching and the integrative framework of Personal Consultancy.

In the third year you will complete the research methods module followed by a research project.

All these modules are core to the course, and worth 30 credits each.

The course combines academic rigour with practical skills to ensure that all graduates are both highly effective and credible professionals.

It will prepare you for practice in the area of integrative counselling and coaching drawing on the distinctive perspective and expertise of the staff.

To obtain a master’s you will need 180 credits.  Students also have the option to exit earlier with a PG Diploma (120 credits).

Your future career

With this qualification you will be able to work as an integrative practitioner and personal consultant, either independently or within organisations that offer such services. The demand for integrative practitioners is steadily increasing in private, public and voluntary sectors.

After completing the diploma or master’s level you can apply for the membership of BACP as well as the Association of Integrative Coach-Therapist Practitioners (AICTP). Both are relevant for your career in this field. 

This is, at the moment, the only postgraduate course of its kind in the UK, which makes this qualification highly sought-after.  During this course you will also develop an understanding of real life application of skills and theory as well as capabilities of pursuing successful, ethical and useful careers.

As a way to encourage you to publish your work, dissertations are required to be written in a format of a journal article. You will also draw upon the self-motivation required to undertake this degree when you are undertaking your independent learning and research away from the campus.

All our staff are very much involved and engaged in the integrative movement, some of them being funding members of the AICTP. So you will be working at the very centre of the integrative movement.

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Our international team travel overseas regularly to meet prospective students and attend recruitment fairs. Our academics also give regular lectures overseas and are happy to speak to prospective students. In addition, we have a large worldwide network of advisors who can provide guidance and support with applying to study at the University of East London.

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