Skip to main content


Psychodynamic Clinical Practice I

Module titlePsychodynamic Clinical Practice I
Module codePYCM058
Academic year2020/1
Module staff

Dr Jo-anne Carlyle (Convenor)

Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks




Number students taking module (anticipated)


Description - summary of the module content

Module description

You will be supported to find an appropriate clinical setting in which you will work psychodynamically for on average 3.5 hours per week, assuming a 42-week year, over a 12-month period. This will include a minimum of one hour per week supervision with a senior psychodynamic/psychoanalytic therapist. Normally this will be a placement in an institutional context in the NHS or tertiary care sectors. Whilst it is your responsibility to find your placement, we do have good networks and can offer support in this. This is something to be discussed with programme staff in advance of starting the programme where possible and certainly as soon as possible on commencement of the programme. You will learn through working with a range of individual clients and through hearing clients presented by others in the placement context. You will record process notes for presentation in supervision, and will also have opportunities to present your work in the Clinical Applications Seminars.

You will be drawing on your own experience of being in supervision and personal therapy, as well as discussions with your peer group in seminars in order to inform your clinical work and to complete the assignments. As all clinical work is undertaken whilst you are in your own personal therapy, in the event of any interruption in therapy, you must report this to the personal tutor. Normally clinical cases presented for assessment will be ones seen in the setting agreed with the programme team.

This module takes place in stage 1.

Module aims - intentions of the module

The aim of this module is to enable you to undertake supervised clinical practice with patients with a range of psychopathologies. You will engage in offering short and long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy with individual clients within an appropriate clinical setting. You will acquire basic psychodynamic psychotherapy competencies and understand how these may be applied in different clinical settings, with different types of patients.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. Apply psychodynamic and psychoanalytic theory to your clinical practice
  • 2. Conduct brief, medium-term and long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 3. Understand, critically evaluate and apply theoretical ideas relevant to the practice of psychodynamic psychotherapy
  • 4. Understand the principles of ethical practice, make appropriate use of supervision and consultation, understand the limits of your competence and apply all of this in your practice

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 5. Monitor and critically evaluate your own capacities and development as a clinician
  • 6. Use supervisory relationship for professional growth including learning from your countertransference and from parallel processes in supervision
  • 7. Reflect usefully on counter-transference as experienced in the clinical setting

Syllabus plan

Syllabus plan

Your case work with individual clients will include some part of the following (the balance to be completed in module PYCM061 Psychodynamic Clinical Practice II) before the full award of MSc can be made:

  • One patient seen once weekly as a long-term psychotherapy client (treatment of a patient seen for some part of a minimum length 18 months)
  • One medium-term psychotherapy client (9-12 months) or part of.
  • Four short-term clients (maximum 20 sessions each)

You are required to write up process notes for your cases and liaise when appropriate with other professionals involved (included in your placement time). You are also required to attend supervision for a minimum of an hour a week. You are required to write a report of clinical activity on completion of each case to be shared with your supervisor, for the patient’s case record.

You are also formally assessed on your clinical work at six-monthly intervals from the commencement of seeing patients on your placement. These assessments will be completed initially by both you and your supervisor separately in the manner described in the course handbook on the forms that are to be found there and may be obtained electronically from the programme administrator. You will then discuss the two assessments; the outcome of this discussion will then be recorded on the supervisor’s form along with any remaining disagreements or comments that either party wants to include. You must achieve a ‘pass’ grade on the skills outlined above in order to pass in this module. ┬áIn addition your supervisor will indicate in July whether you are ready to progress to Year 2 by indicating a pass or fail grade.

Learning and teaching

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching42Clinical supervision
Placement108Clinical practice under supervision


Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Clinical supervision reports at six- monthly intervals from commencement of clinical workn/aAllWritten and oral
Clinical case discussionsOngoing throughout moduleAllOral

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Report of clinical activity: account of a case (this assessment must be passed; failure in this assessment will lead to failure in the module and the programme)1002250 wordsAllWritten
Clinical supervision pass/fail assessment of placement in July (this is pass/fail only and must be passed; failure in this assessment will lead to failure in the module and the programme)0n/aAllWritten and oral
Case work with individual clients0n/aAllOral


Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Report of clinical activity: account of a caseReport of clinical activity: account of a caseAllFour weeks from the date that feedback was provided
Clinical supervision assessmentAdditional clinical work under supervisionAllSee notes below
Case work with individual clientsCase work with individual clientsAllSee notes below

Re-assessment notes

Three assessments are required for this module. In all cases re-assessment will be the same as the original assessment.

If you miss an assessment for certificated reasons judged acceptable by the Mitigation Committee, you will normally be either deferred in the assessment or an extension may be granted. If you pass re-assessments taken as a result of deferral, your re-assessment will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt at the assessment and the overall module mark will not be capped. The period for deferral must normally not exceed a further six months.

If you pass re-assessments taken as a result of referral (i.e. following initial failure in the assessment), the overall module mark will be capped at 50%. The period for referral must normally not exceed a further six months. If you do not meet the required competencies, we may invoke the University’s Fitness to Practise procedures.

If you fail re-assessments taken as a result of referral (i.e. following initial failure in the assessment), you will be failed in the module and as a consequence you will be failed in the programme and your registration as a student of the University will be terminated.


Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

  • Bateman, A., Brown, D. and Pedder, J. (2000) Introduction to Psychotherapy (3rd ed.). UK: Brunner-Routledge.
  • Lemma, A. (2003) Introduction to the Practice of Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy. Chichester: Wiley.
  • Holmes, J. (2009) Exploring in Security: Towards an Attachment-Informed Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy. UK: Brunner-Routledge
  • Storr, A. &, J. Holmes (Ed.) (2012) Storr's The Art of Psychotherapy (3rd Ed.) UK. Hodder Arnold

Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

  • ELE – (all resources will be made available on ELE. This includes additional material covered in the tutorials, the required readings, information about assessment and additional material (e.g., videos))

Module has an active ELE page

Key words search

Psychodynamic, psychotherapy, therapy, clinical practice

Credit value15
Module ECTS


Module pre-requisites


Module co-requisites


NQF level (module)


Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date