PYMBAS-Basic Skills

Module Provider: Psychology
Number of credits: 60 [30 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring / Summer / Autumn module
Non-modular pre-requisites: No formal pre-requisites are required but students must be able to demonstrate familiarity with diagnostic systems (ICD and/or DSM) as a helpful shorthand to describe symptom patterns and syndromes and familiarity with standard models and approaches for anxiety disorders, depression, and other disorders with a CBT evidence-base for both the models and the treatment.
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Dr Hannah Whitney


Type of module:

Summary module description:

This module will cover the basic knowledge and clinical skills for delivering evidence based psychological treatment with children, young people and their parents. Basic knowledge and skills in CBT and parenting will be covered, as will basic knowledge of IPT-A and SFP methods and principles. Specific knowledge and skills with respect to anxiety disorders, depression, self-harm, eating disorders and conduct problems will be covered in subsequent pathway-specific modules.


To provide clinicians working with children and young people with the essential, basic necessary skills that form the foundation of an effective intervention. These specific skills are described in the competence framework developed by Roth, Calder and Pilling (2001), published at psychology/CORE/competence frameworks. The skills are divided into three parts: a. The key features of CYP-IAPT practice b. The clinical knowledge base for CAMHS c. CYP-IAPT modalities of therapy. A) The Key Features of CYP IAPT Practice 1. Introduction: Expectations for students 2. The core values of CYP IAPT 3. CYP IAPT collaborative case model (incl. goals based practice) 4. Young people’s and parents’ participation 5. The CYP IAPT Active Outcomes Framework 6. Evidence based practice/Practice based evidence 7. The process of organisational change. B) The Clinical knowledge base for CAMHS 1. Ensuring the delivery of services that support equality of access, respects diversity and minimises disadvantage or discrimination 2. Fundamentals of therapy adapted to CYP IAPT principles 3. Shared aspects of evidence based practice with children. C) CYP IAPT Modalities of Therapy 1. Cognitive Behaviour Therapy for children and young people (CBT-CYP) 2. Parenting programmes 3. Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Adolescents (IPT-A) 4. Systemic work with families.

Assessable learning outcomes:

1.    The key features of CYP IAPT Practice – assessed by essay.

2.    Acquisition of an intellectual framework for measuring outcomes – assessed via portfolio.

3.    Understanding and appreciation of how to work in partnership with the child and family contextually, taking into account such factors as culture, personal identities, family dynamics, and interfaces with different systems of social life, the presence of difficulties that may create inequality for the child or family developmental stage/level, communication – assessed by written assignment.

4.    Ability to implement shared decision-making approach – assessed by written assignment.

5.    An understanding of the child, young person, family and their thoughts, feelings and motivation, and the full context taking into account personal identities (race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, gender, age, religion or belief and other equalities issues) – assessed by written assignment.

6.    Adopting a collaborative approach to evaluating outcomes – assessed by written assignment and portfolio.

7.    That clinicians can make decisions with the CYP IAPT framework about the best measures and tools to use for different children, young people and families and circumstances – assessed by written assignment and portfolio.

8.    That clinicians understand how to interpret data from outcomes measures and service user feedback tools and to understand the limits of any interpretation – assessed by written assignment and portfolio.

9.    That clinicians are trained to make use of information from client reported outcomes to support their work and their own development, and not purely as performance management tools – assessed by written assignment and portfolio.

10.    To use the information from the outcome measures and service user feedback tools to inform and guide therapeutic interventions – assessed by written assignment and portfolio.

11.    Students will gain confidence in the assessment and treatment of children and young people with mental health problems – assessed by essay, written assignment and portfolio.

12.    Academically, students will develop skills in critical appraisal of research and develop theory-practice links – assessed by essay, written assignment and portfolio.

13.    Reflective practice will be integrated as part of all training within the module – assessed by essay, written assignment and portfolio.

Additional outcomes:

1.    Understanding of the nature of the course and its requirements.

2.    Knowledge of the close interplay between the services and HEI and the need to follow their host organisation’s processes as well as those of the HEI.

3.    Ability to use the HEI’s e-learning system and other resources.

4.    (Understanding of) The rationale for evidence-based approaches to treatment and implementation.

5.    Understanding of approaches to improving value in health care systems.

6.    Knowledge of the methods of quality improvement that increase productivity and ensure rapid interventions (‘prevention’ or ‘pre-emptive treatment’).

7.    Knowledge and understanding of the collaborative stance.

8.    Making a principled commitment to participation.

9.    Knowing when to adopt each level of participation, from consulting and equal partnership to children and young people and families leading as ‘active citizens’.

10.    Knowing a range of participation models and how to apply them to achieve the best outcomes with young people.

11.    Taking children and families seriously, treating them with respect, being authentic, hearing and acting upon what children tell us.

12.    Addressing specific cultural or environmental needs (e.g. same sex parents) and having an understanding of these variations.

13.    Understanding the strengths and limitations of different measures and tools and how to use them clinically, including challenges presented by the full range of contexts within which they practice (e.g. learning disabilities).

14.    Ability to engage children, young people and families where appropriate in the use of outcome measures so that the measures are meaningful and contribute to the overall outcome of the intervention.

15.    Understanding the importance of personal identities that relate to race, ethnicity, gender, disability, age, sexual orientation, religion or belief that will have an impact in any intervention or outcome measure.

16.    Knowing the evidence for common mental health presentations for children, young people and their families.

17.    Knowing NICE Guidance in relation to all CYP disorders.

18.    Knowing the strengths and limitations of practice based evidence and available data in relation to this, including evidence regarding and the experience of specific equality groups within protected characteristics and those with particular vulnerability such as looked-after children.


Outline content:

The module will comprise of in-class teaching, clinical skills practice/supervised clinical practice, supervision in-service and independent study. Teaching and supervision will be provided by experienced and suitably trained therapists (e.g. supervisors will fulfil BABCP therapist accreditation criteria).

Note that certain teaching is mandatory (highlighted on timetable) for all students. Any student that misses a mandatory teaching session must attend a termly top-up meeting as scheduled in the timetable.

Clinical Supervision

• Each student will have clinical supervision weekly in a group of no more than 6 with occasional individual sessions in place of the group sessions.

• Recorded material from all training cases should be included at some point during a significant majority of supervision sessions.

• At the end of the course when clinical work has been completed the supervisor will be asked to complete a pro-forma assessment form and indicate whether or not a student has reached a satisfactory level of clinical practice.

The teaching will be supplemented by an equivalent number of hours of clinical practice in the workplace under supervision of an experienced practitioner and supervisor.

Global context:

The content follows a national curriculum.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The aims of this module will be achieved through a series of workshops, which will incorporate lectures, role-plays, and small group discussions. These will last from 9.30 to 4.30 p.m. Unless otherwise stated, all teaching days comprise of 50% clinical skills practice. In addition, they will be supplemented by e-learning material and experience of assessment and treatment of clients within the workplace. Teaching will be provided by course tutors, with some national and international experts where appropriate. 

Contact hours:

•    Teaching contact hours: average minimum of 100 hours; the total minimum teaching contact hours (including clinical skills workshops) summed across all course modules is over 200 hours.

•    Supervision contact hours: average minimum of 12 hours in University and 12 in the workplace; the total minimum supervision contact hours summed across all modules is 70 hours.

•    Total contact hours for this module will be a minimum of 600, to include lectures and clinical skills, university and work-based supervision, clinical skills practice and guided independent study.

Days will be split between in class theoretical teaching and clinical simulation, and in the workplace undertaking practice-based learning and supervision.

For the purposes of the table below

Seminars = University supervision

Lectures = Teaching & Clinical skills

Contact hours:
One day counts as 6.25 hours) Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures   62.5  
Tutorials/seminars   62.5  
Other contact (eg study visits)      
Total hours   125  
Number of essays or assignments   The assessment has four parts

1. One essay (4000 words)

2. One case report (2500 words) based on an assessment and formulation

3. Assessment of their video-recording of an assessment using a standardised rating scale

4. Assessment of their video-recording of a treatment session using a standardised rating scale

Other (eg major seminar paper)      


Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 66.6
Portfolio 33.4

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

The assessment has four parts:

1) Written assignment 1 on their therapeutic modality (CBT or PT).

2) Written assignment 2 based on the assessment and formulation of a client (for CBT students this must be a client with anxiety).

3) A practical skills assessment of an assessment session marked using a standardised rating scale. The recording is rated by the assessor and self-rated by the student using a standardised measure of clinical competence. The recording must be of work with a different client from those submitted for PYMTHA, PYMTHD, PYMPAR/PY3PAR and must be linked to written assignment 2 (item 2 above).

4) Portfolio elements 1 including audit of cases, clinical log, training log, reports on feedback from supervisors and young people and/or parents on their experience of the therapy offered and report of the therapist’s clinical outcomes over the course.

All practical skills assessments are assessed using a standardised measure and must pass at 50% with no autofail criteria.

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy. Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information:

Assessment requirements for a pass:

50% in each piece of assessed work for 1, 2 and 3. The Portfolio must be marked as a pass. A minimum of 80% attendance is required.

If, for any reason, a student does not complete the required attendance for their programme or requires further study in a particular area then they will be expected to attend the relevant top-up days.  The exact nature of the top-up days will be flexible in response to the needs of the individual students whereby they catch up on missed teaching, or assessments.  The top-up days require attendance in person.  Additional learning and self-study will take place remotely.  Students must ensure they are available to attend the University in person for all the top-up days, and not make any other arrangements during that time (e.g. book annual leave).  In practice, full attendance for all the top-up days may not be required.  If attendance falls below 80% for any module it will not be possible to use top-up days to compensate for missed sessions; this will need to be attended with another cohort.

Level 7 students will be expected to evidence in-depth understanding of the topic and critical analytic skills in academic assessments.

Reassessment arrangements:

Students who do not obtain the required pass mark in the assessed work will be given the opportunity to resubmit, on one further occasion, any individual assessment that has been failed. The re-sit grade cannot exceed 50%.

Completion of studies is dependent on employment within a CAMHS partnership of the Central and South CYP IAPT Collaborative and ongoing access to a CYP IAPT appropriate clinical caseload. Students must successfully pass all modules of the training programme. Therefore a student’s studies may be terminated if they are no longer working in a partnership service, no longer have access to an ongoing CYP IAPT appropriate caseload, or fail coursework at second attempt.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
1) Required text books:
2) Specialist equipment or materials:
3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
4) Printing and binding:
5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

Last updated: 19 December 2018


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