Diploma in Existential Psychotherapy


About the Course

Available Study Modes
Intensive Study, Online, Saturday Weekly or Wednesday - Weekly

Course Description

The Existential Academy collaborates with the New School to create a full clinical training, the Existential Psychotherapy Training (EPT). This exciting training combines two courses: the MSc in Psychotherapy Studies, and the Diploma in Existential Psychotherapy (DEP).

Successful completion of the New School’s flagship MSc in Psychotherapy Studies and the Academy’s ‘Diploma in Existential Psychotherapy’ (DEP), is the full Existential Psychotherapy Training (EPT) programme, the clinical pathway to becoming a fully qualified practitioner. Upon successful completion of the EPT you will be eligible for full clinical registration with UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) as an Existential Psychotherapist. A helpful formula to understand the course is: MSc+DEP=EPT

This course is all modular and designed to be very flexible in the sense that it can be done in-person and online. This means you can complete the training in the most manageable way and alongside other responsibilities in your life. The theoretical components of the course are studied online with seminars; so you can complete the majority of the study where you live or work, rather than having to travel to London. There are three practice modules, each over 5 intensive days, which are completed in-person in London at the Existential Academy (EA). This will be an excellent opportunity to meet and connect with your fellow trainees.

The EPT can only be completed in conjunction with the MSc in Psychotherapy Studies on which you will also be enrolled. The MSc in Psychotherapy Studies has been validated by Middlesex University and provides a comprehensive theoretical training drawing from philosophy, psychology, sociology and anthropology.

In addition to the MSc modules, the DEP comprises of six additional theoretical modules and clinical training. The clinical aspects of the training involve completing 450 hours of supervised practice with clients in placements, and having weekly personal psychotherapy. Clinical group supervision, beginning in the second year of the programme, can be provided entirely online through video conferencing.

This rich programme will train you to apply the principles of existential philosophy to human suffering. Existential philosophy encourages us to engage with the big questions of life, and an existential psychotherapist attends to a person grappling with the predicaments of their life, and to make sense and meaning of it. Existential psychotherapy eschews the medical categorising and labelling of distress, and instead views people as unique, autonomous individuals with the potential to overcome their problems and dilemmas.

This programme is designed to take four years but can be extended up to eight years.

The EPT course leader is Dr Neil Gibson neil.gibson@nspc.org.uk

Submit your application for this programme via the application for the MSc in Psychotherapy Studies at NSPC.


Programme of Study

MSc & DEP modules


Year 1

Existential Theory [DEP]

Existential Practice 1: London (5 days) [DEP]

Psychoanalytic Theory [DEP]

Existential Practice 2: London (5 days) [DEP]

CBT Theory [DEP]

Existential Practice 3: London (5 days) [DEP]

Year 2

Existential and Human Issues [MSc]

Clinical supervision 1 [DEP]

Theories of Personal Change [MSc]

Clinical supervision 2 [DEP]

Development through the lifespan [MSc]

Overview of research methods [MSc]

Clinical supervision 3 [DEP]

Year 3

Conflict and reconciliation [MSc]

Programme planning

Clinical supervision 4 [DEP]

Social, cultural and ethical issues [MSc]

Research supervision [MSc]

Clinical supervision 5 [DEP]

Wellbeing and health [MSc]

Research supervision and submission of thesis (marks the end of MSc)

Clinical supervision 6 [DEP]

Year 4

Critical psychopathology [DEP]

Clinical supervision 7 [DEP]

Families & Systems [DEP]

Clinical supervision 8 [DEP]

Gender and sexualities [DEP]

Clinical supervision 9 [DEP]


What to Expect

This programme is designed as a hybrid model of teaching, which means you can Alongside the MSc online modules, you will be embark upon the full clinical training as follows:

Year one 

In this year you will be introduced and critically examine the existential, psychoanalytic, and CBT theory. You will be given skills training, in three intensive blocks, in the first year which allows you to apply theory to practice using an existential approach.

The theory introduces the key concepts of existential philosophy and existential psychotherapy. It will provide you with opportunities to start building practitioner skills in a supportive environment. Skills are developed in triads consisting of other students and sessions are led by a qualified existential psychotherapist. You must complete the following 5 modules before you can progress to a clinical placement:

Year two 

From year two the MSc online modules run alongside the DEP modules. The MSc modules are moodle based with online seminars. They are intellectually stimulating and varied modules, aimed at challenging how you see the world and encouraging the development of critical thinking. Information on the MSc can be found here

In this second year of the EPT you will begin in clinical placement, and attend weekly clinical supervision either at the school in London, or online via Zoom (you choose!) The supervision is run as groups of up to 5 students. All our clinical supervisors have many years’ experience and are registered with the UKCP or BPS. The purpose of supervision is to have an experienced practitioner, and fellow colleagues, oversee your clinical work from an existential perspective and support you through the placement experience. The clinical work and supervision is the bedrock of your training and the most challenging personally and professionally. You will be responsible for finding your own placement but will be given direction and support by the clinical coordinator.

Years three & four 

In year three you will complete the MSc, and continue in the rest of your training with your clinical placement and supervision. The clinical work and supervision is the focus on your final year, accompanied by three additional DEP modules: Critical Psychopathology, Family and Systems, Gender and Sexualities. Successful completion of DEP and MSc modules will mean you are put forward to the UKCP national register and will be able to practice independently as a bona fide Existential Psychotherapist.

Personal psychotherapy: Throughout your training you must be in weekly personal psychotherapy with a UKCP registered existential psychotherapist. This is a clinical requirement of the UKCP and the Existential Academy. This is at arranged at your own expense.

Fees 2023-24

This is a four year clinical training programme. To attain UKCP registration students must also be registered on the MSc in Psychotherapy Studies at NSPC. There are additional fees for the MSc.


DEP (Diploma in Existential Psychotherapy) modules to be completed *

Fee payable per year (if no modules have to be repeated)


6 modules

£6408 (£890 + VAT = £1068 per module)


3 modules

£3204 (£890 + VAT = £1068 per module)


3 modules

£3204 (£890 + VAT = £1068 per module)


6 modules

£6408 (£890 + VAT = £1068 per module)


Per submission


Students are required, at their own expense, to be in personal psychotherapy with a UKCP registered Existential Psychotherapist for the duration of their studies.