I'm currently enrolled for a professional doctorate but want to transfer to the QCoP. How do I do this?

Although both routes are underpinned by the same competencies, there's no direct transfer process from a BPS accredited professional doctorate to the QCoP due to the differences in structure.

If you're planning to leave a professional doctorate and wish to complete your training on the QCoP, you'd first need to confirm with your course leader the exact name of the award with which you would exit (e.g. PgDip, MSc) and which modules would appear on your transcript.

These components of the professional doctorate can be used as the basis for an AEC application when you apply to enrol for the QCoP.

No other components of the doctorate can be used towards the QCoP as they do not form part of an awarded qualification.

You'd also need to include a plan of training with your enrolment application detailing your plans for completing the remaining components of the QCoP. Please note the restrictions on AEC in the Candidate Handbook.

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If you have any queries, please contact the Qualifications Team


Frequently asked questions
  • What's the difference between the QCoP and a HCPC approved, BPS accredited professional doctorate?

    Both routes are underpinned by the same competencies and lead to the same endpoint in terms of eligibility for HCPC registration (which enables the use of the legally protected title of counselling psychologist) and BPS Chartered Membership.

    The way in which the two routes enable a trainee to reach this point varies considerably.

    Professional doctorates

    Professional doctorates are based at a university and follow a more traditional approach to training.

    You'll attend lectures, study the models of therapy as dictated by the course and have support from tutors and peers.

    Upon successfully completing the course, you're awarded a doctorate and can use the title of Doctor.

    Qualification in Counselling Psychology

    The QCoP is an independent approach to training.

    You'll put together your own plan of training in conjunction with your Co-ordinating Supervisor.

    You can choose your own models of therapy via two postgraduate courses, providing that they fit the definition in the Candidate Handbook and are within a coherent and suitable plan of training.

    Other choices

    You also have a choice around your placement settings and supervision arrangements, again so long as they meet the requirements in the Candidate Handbook, which are broad to encompass as many different circumstances as possible.

    As the BPS is not an awarding body, we're not currently in a position to award a doctorate to candidates who complete the QCoP.

    However, this shouldn't negatively affect your eligibility for jobs as these will be advertised for Counselling Psychologists.

    The advantage of the QCoP is that you may be able to fit it around your existing commitments more easily than a taught programme.

    Some taught programmes (i.e. professional doctorates) offer part-time options, and it's important to fully explore both routes before making a decision so that you choose the route that is most appropriate for your circumstances and your preferred way of training.

    Contact us

    If you have any queries, please contact the Customer Support Team