Cognitive Behavioural Therapy MSc (top-up)


Course Code



Coventry University (Coventry)


Study mode



1 year part-time

Start date

May 2023

Course overview

Study level: Postgraduate

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a form of evidence-based psychological therapy recommended by NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) as a first line intervention for many psychological disorders.

This course is aimed at cognitive behavioural practitioners who wish to gain a master's qualification in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. Achieving this award gives students the ability to seek promotion opportunities within the psychological therapies field and improve their career prospects.

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Global ready

An international outlook, with global opportunities

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Teaching excellence

Taught by lecturers who are experts in their field

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Career ready graduates, with the skills to succeed

Why you should study this course

  • This MSc award is aimed at cognitive behavioural practitioners who wish to gain a master's qualification in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
  • Facilitates the development of skills, knowledge and competencies as psychological therapists with evidence-based interventions to maximise professional development.
  • Gaining a master's qualification in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy gives students the ability to seek promotional opportunities within the psychological therapies field and improve their career prospects.
  • Offered on a part-time basis and delivered using a combination of online and face-to-face teaching.
  • Aims to give you a direct practical experience of how to design, conduct, and report experimental research.

More than just a degree

The experience of learning on the MSc was very positive. Whilst the pace of the course is fast, the level of support is second to none. The week-to-week lectures and self-study were structured in a way which promoted engagement which great opportunities to learn new skills. I highly recommend this course and cannot praise enough the tutor support and general assistance of the university.

Stephen Queen, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy MSc (top-up) student, March 2022
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What you'll study

The MSc award has been designed to meet the needs of students who wish specifically to undertake a master’s level educational programme and is aimed at cognitive behavioural practitioners who wish to gain a master's qualification in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.

To achieve the award of MSc CBT you will need to successfully complete three mandatory modules.


  • The module aims to introduce you to some of the main quantitative and qualitative research methods used in psychology research. More specifically, the module aims to provide you with a solid grounding in the core quantitative and qualitative designs employed in the psychological sciences. In addition, it provides you with a strong sense of competence in using more advanced statistical techniques (t-tests, correlation, regression, ANOVA), and qualitative techniques (thematic analysis, grounded theory, discourse analysis, and interpretative phenomenological analysis). To promote learning and engagement, you will have the opportunity to practice statistical techniques with data provided as part of the self-practice work. In summary, this module will focus on developing your knowledge and ability of why and how to apply different quantitative and qualitative research methods.


  • The module aims to guide you through the important processes involved in developing a research proposal (e.g. conceptual, methodological, and ethical considerations). You will be encouraged integrate and practice the skills acquired during the course through the practical tasks set out at the end of each lecture. In summary, this module will focus on developing your ability to plan psychological research projects.


  • This module aims to introduce you to the concept of systematic literature reviews and for you to engage in supervised but independent work at an advanced level. You will be encouraged to integrate and practice the skills (e.g. project planning, quality assessment) acquired during the course and to investigate in-depth an area of specific interest to you. This should be comprised of a systematic review of journal articles in a format that would be suitable for publication in an appropriate review journal.


We regularly review our course content, to make it relevant and current for the benefit of our students. For these reasons, course modules may be updated.

How you'll learn

This MSc course is offered on a part-time basis, and is delivered via methods including:

  • Keynote online lectures
  • Self-study online materials
  • Face-to-face or online tutorials (student’s choice) during Research Project module
  • Guided reading

You will be encouraged to use forums to ask questions related to lectures or self-study guided materials.

Teaching contact hours

For the MSc top-up course, you will be required to attend an induction session scheduled at the beginning of the first semester – this lasts for 2 hours and will be held either on the Coventry University Coventry Campus or remotely. In addition, you will be encouraged to use an online learning platform to ask questions related to lectures or self-study guided materials throughout the course. For the third piece of coursework (systematic literature review) you will be provided with 10 hours academic supervision, either face-to-face or online.

The contact hours may be made up of a combination of face-to-face teaching, individual and group tutorials, and online classes and tutorials.

As an innovative and enterprising institution, the university may seek to utilise emerging technologies within the student experience. For all courses (whether on-campus, blended, or distance learning), the university may deliver certain contact hours and assessments via online technologies and methods.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are prepared for courses due to start in or after the 2022/2023 academic year to be delivered in a variety of forms. The form of delivery will be determined in accordance with Government and Public Health guidance. Whether on campus or online, our key priority is staff and student safety.


This course will be assessed using a variety of methods which will vary depending upon the module.

Assessment methods include:

  • Methodological assessment
  • Research proposal
  • Systematic literature review

The Coventry University Group assessment strategy ensures that our courses are fairly assessed and allows us to monitor student progression towards achieving the intended learning outcomes.

International experience opportunities

The faculty takes pride in offering a multicultural, international experience, attracting students from a wide range of diverse backgrounds and different countries, who provide global insight and experience. Many of the organisations we have links to operate on an international basis and we also collaborate with internationally renowned researchers across the globe.

Completing the MSc has given me greater confidence in my knowledge, both of the research subject and my understanding of the range of research methods and their strengths and limitations. I have felt more confident debating aspects of my work with colleagues having completed the MSc. Doing the course while working full time can be a challenge. The support and guidance from the course tutor, however, was invaluable and I would reserve my greatest praise for this aspect of the course.

Mark, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy MSc (top-up) student, March 2022
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Entry requirements

Entry onto the Cognitive Behavioural Therapy MSc top-up requires a PGDip in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy or equivalent.

We recognise a breadth of qualifications, speak to one of our advisers today to find out how we can help you.

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Select your region to find detailed information about entry requirements:

You can view our full list of country specific entry requirements on our Entry requirements page.

Alternatively, visit our International hub for further advice and guidance on finding in-country agents and representatives, joining our in-country events and how to apply.

Specific requirements

Entry onto the Cognitive Behavioural Therapy MSc top-up requires a PGDip in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy or equivalent.

English language requirements

  • IELTS: 6.5 overall, with at least 5.5 in each component area

If you don't meet the English language requirements, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course. 

For more information on our approved English language tests visit our English language requirements page.

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Fees and funding

2022/23 Tuition fees

Student Full time Part time
UK £3,533 per year Not available
International £5,650 per year Not available

For advice and guidance on tuition fees3 and student loans visit our Postgraduate Finance page.

We offer a range of International scholarships to students all over the world. For more information, visit our International Scholarships page.


As this course is taken as a blend of online and in-person teaching, a large portion of it will use an online teaching platform. Our platform provider is currently Aula, an online learning platform accessible from your phone, desktop or tablet. The design is based on existing social media platforms, so it feels familiar and easy to use. This course is also part of the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences and therefore any in-person teaching will take place in our school buildings4.

Careers and opportunities

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) has a continually evolving evidence-base with emphasis on therapy outcomes and robust, universally applicable treatment methods.

On successful completion of the MSc CBT top-up course, you will be able to:

  • Critically appraise the differences between qualitative and quantitative research methods.
  • Critically evaluate research literature.
  • Critically evaluate quantitative or qualitative research designs and methods of data collection.
  • Critically evaluate the ethics of doing psychological research.
  • Systematically review and critically evaluate a specific area of literature within the field of cognitive behavioural therapy.
  • Demonstrate the ability to work independently with minimal supervision.
  • Work within ethical guidelines and demonstrate initiative and skill in planning, problem-solving, information gathering and investigation.
  • Structure and present information in a format suitable for publication in an appropriate peer-reviewed journal.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is one of the most effective of available treatments across a range of psychological problems, specifically depression, anxiety, PTSD, OCD and phobia. As such, CBT is the basis of much mental health practice. It has become government policy for NHS Trusts to provide patients/clients with access to CBT.

Achieving this award would enable you to seek promotion opportunities within the psychological therapies field and broaden your career prospects.

Where our graduates work

Recent graduates have gained employment in a range of therapeutic services, both in primary and secondary care. Graduates of the course have successfully progressed to supervisory roles and posts in management.

What our alumni say

Having been uncertain beforehand, I am so glad that I decided to do the CBT Master's top-up. The course helped me further my academic ability in a challenging but highly supportive manner. It has been my best educational experience to date and brought out the best in me.

James, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy MSc (top-up) graduate, 2022
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How to apply

  • 1Accreditations

    The majority of our courses have been formally recognised by professional bodies, which means the courses have been reviewed and tested to ensure they reach a set standard. In some instances, studying on an accredited course can give you additional benefits such as exemptions from professional exams (subject to availability, fees may apply). Accreditations, partnerships, exemptions and memberships shall be renewed in accordance with the relevant bodies’ standard review process and subject to the university maintaining the same high standards of course delivery.

    2UK and international opportunities

    Please note that we are unable to guarantee any UK or International opportunities (whether required or optional) such as internships, work experience, field trips, conferences, placements or study abroad opportunities and that all such opportunities may be subject to additional costs (which could include, but is not limited to, equipment, materials, bench fees, studio or facilities hire, travel, accommodation and visas), competitive application, availability and/or meeting any applicable travel COVID and visa requirements. To ensure that you fully understand the visa requirements, please contact the International Office.

    3Tuition fees

    The University will charge the tuition fees that are stated in the above table for the first Academic Year of study. The University will review tuition fees each year. For Home Students, if Parliament permit an increase in tuition fees, the University may increase fees for each subsequent year of study in line with any such changes. Note that any increase is expected to be in line with inflation.

    For International Students, we may increase fees each year but such increases will be no more than 5% above inflation. If you defer your course start date or have to extend your studies beyond the normal duration of the course (e.g. to repeat a year or resit examinations) the University reserves the right to charge you fees at a higher rate and/or in accordance with any legislative changes during the additional period of study.


    Facilities are subject to availability. Due to the ongoing restrictions relating to COVID-19, some facilities (including some teaching and learning spaces) may vary from those advertised and may have reduced availability or restrictions on their use.

    Student Contract

    By accepting your offer of a place and enrolling with us, a Student Contract will be formed between you and the university. The 2022/23 Contract is currently being updated so please revisit this page before submitting your application. The Contract details your rights and the obligations you will be bound by during your time as a student and contains the obligations that the university will owe to you. You should read the Contract before you accept an offer of a place and before you enrol at the university.

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