Clinical Psychology

Evidence-based Psychological Interventions for Children and Young People

This course will explore a range of evidence-based interventions that promote psychological wellbeing in children and young people.

Course dates Semester 2 - Monday afternoons, January -  March
Course credits 20
Course delivery On Campus
Course organiser Villas Sawrikar

Please note

This course is a option course  on the MSc Mental Health in Children and Young People: Psychological Approaches programme

Course description

The need to train more front line professionals in evidence-based approaches to enhance children’s mental health and psychological well-being is a high level policy priority of both the Department of Health (DH) and the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF).

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) has been identified as one of the most evidence-based interventions available currently and is a priority area for increased training provision.

The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines on depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder all recommend CBT and other psychological interventions as a key treatment of choice.

This course will provide participants with knowledge and understanding of the evidence-base for psychological interventions to promote psychological well-being in children and young people. The strengths and limitations of cognitive behavioural, interpersonal and family based approaches, and how, drawing on systemic and other approaches, they can be adapted to work with young people will be covered.

The course will also provide teaching on methodologies used to develop, test and critically appraise evidence-based psychological interventions and clinical research. This will include some teaching on quantitative and qualitative research methods commonly used in clinical treatment research and how to interpret such findings.

This course aims to provide participants with the knowledge and theoretical understanding of effective, evaluated interventions for children and young people experiencing a range of difficulties with social and emotional aspects of their development. Crucially, participants are encouraged to take an outcomes-based approach in ascertaining the interventions most appropriate to promote psychological wellbeing. We also aim to develop participants’ skills in evaluating the impact of their own work in order to be able to reflect on and modify practice in future. The course will facilitate a forum for developing and sharing creative and flexible practice with colleagues from a range of professional backgrounds.

Intended learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate a full, critical and integrated understanding of the developmental and psychological theories that underlie effective psychological interventions as these are applied to some of the most common problems of childhood.
  • Be familiar with, and able to critically review, the empirical evidence for the effectiveness of psychological interventions with a number of the most common mental health problems of childhood.
  • Demonstrate a flexible and critical understanding of child development that allows for adaptation of the widely used psychological therapy techniques and applications for use with children of different ages and abilities.
  • Understand a range of methodologies used in clinical treatment research and demonstrate skills in critical appraisal of the evidence for psychological therapies.

Course delivery and assessment

This course will run in Semester 2 (January-May). It is a blended learning course and is delivered using face-to-face and online methods.