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Certificate in Therapeutic Communication Skills for Children and Young People Course Details

Communication with Children

course 1

IATE / UEL Certificate in Therapeutic Communication Skills
(Undergraduate Associate Certificate UEL)


This course introduces students to holistic approaches to the child in context, applied therapeutic thinking, creative, relational skills and therapeutic counselling skills. Emphasising the importance of principles of professional practice, inter-disciplinary perspectives, multi-agency approaches, therapeutic theory and philosophy as well as relational play and creative counselling skills, this course runs on nine weekends over three terms in a period of one year.

Supervised reflective practice with an appropriately qualified and registered therapeutic professional is a key component throughout the duration of training.

Students also complete 50 hours of personal therapy throughout the training.

Course Content

Holistic Approaches to the Child in Context


Holistic Approaches to the Child in Context introduces students to the basic core values of inter-disciplinary professional work with children and young people including: holistic child-centred philosophy, children’s rights, child protection and safeguarding, the therapeutic relationship, wellbeing capacities, ethics and conduct, anti-discriminatory and anti-oppressive practice as well as sensitivity to working with difference, including: race and culture, gender, sexuality, disability, age and religion.

Applied Therapeutic Thinking ​

Applied Therapeutic Thinking introduces students to a range of therapeutic key concepts which can be applied to creative and relational communication with children and young people. This includes influence from attachment theory, child development, mentalization, mindfulness, compassion, family/systemic, psychoanalytic/psychodynamic, cognitive/behavioural, person-centred, humanistic and integrative perspectives.  Understanding the value and significance of creativity and play in child development and wellbeing including symbolic communication, creativity and self-expression for emotional regulation. 

Creative and Relational Skills

Creative and Relational Skills introduces students to the role of play in child development and the value of creativity in the fulfilment of human potential. It aims to support students to develop necessary therapeutic core competencies to enhance the quality of dialogue, communication and reflection with children and young people.  The role of the imagination as a primary resource for cognitive, social and emotional development is fundamental to this experiential approach to teaching and learning through a wide range of interactive media including drama, art, music, movement, sand-play, puppetry and poetry.

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"Journeying on this course was not only transformative professionally, as I explored and learned a new therapeutic awareness and an array of skills, but personally profoundly integral to my development and progress as a human being. Amazing support and tuition. Thank you"


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Overall Aims and Outcomes of the Course

The Certificate in Therapeutic Communication Skills for Working with Children and Young People:

  • Inspires students with the vision and imagination to make a difference to the lives of children and young people increasing their capacities for wellbeing 

  • Values originality and innovation in promoting creativity for individual and community wellbeing 

  • Informs students with the knowledge, experience and skills required for promoting child mental health and emotional wellbeing   

  • Educates students in holistic and child-centred, therapeutic philosophy and the values and principles of multi-disciplinary practice 

  • Provides students with core competencies required for working safely and effectively with children and young people

  • Enhances quality of creative and relational dialogue and contact in therapeutic communication with children and young people

  • Engages students with the creative process towards enabling and encouraging children and young people to fulfill their unique and individual human potential

  • ​​​Enables students to apply creative and relational skills for communicating with children and young people informed by cognitive, social and affective neuroscience

  • Encourages multi-disciplinary perspectives maintaining the participatory voices of children and young people in accordance with their rights and responsibilities

  • Underlines the importance of transparency and accountability in research-informed and evidence-based practice 

  • Promotes principles of professional practice and ethical standards for working with children and young people, including child protection and safeguarding

Criteria for Entry to IATE/UEL Certificate Course
  • A willingness to be informed by the course’s principles of professional practice.

  • A commitment to supporting children in managing the challenges and difficulties.

  • The ability to be a safe and effective role model for children and young people.

  • The capacity to be reliable, trustworthy, dependable and consistent in approach.

  • An ability to work flexibly in complex situations and changing contexts.

  • The capacity to work within an inter-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary team.

  • Good quality communication skills, empathy and the capacity to play.

  • A willingness to engage with children’s feelings and enter into their imaginative life.

  • An interest in promoting the emotional health and wellbeing of children and young people.

  • A commitment to the creative potential of children and young people.

  • The capacity to be emotionally literate, sensitive, responsive and resilient.

If you are interested in one of our courses, you can attend a Taster Day (9am to 5.15pm) at IATE including presentations, workshops and interviews.  To access this you will be required to book by completing an online application form via the IATE website.  Please also ensure you register your interest here so that we can follow your application process.

Join the next Taster Day at IATE

Explore the other 2 courses


course 2

IATE Diploma in Wellbeing Practice for Children and Young People (Undergraduate Associate Certificate UEL)


Community Orientated

course 3

IATE Diploma in Community Wellbeing Practice for Children, Young People, Families and Organisations
(Undergraduate Associate Certificate UEL)


"Words cannot describe the huge, transformational journey this course has instigated in me.  My work has gone from strength to strength and am now more convinced in and confident to, apply the Arts therapeutically."


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Course Costs

Course fees for three distinct levels of training

Fees: £4,500 for each course

This includes a non-refundable deposit of £960

Payment installment options are available


Additional Costs Include: 

£695 registration fee for the University of East London

£250 per term Reflective Practice.

Please note, IATE courses do not qualify for government education funding

How to Apply

Attend a Taster Day at IATE

Applicants can access the IATE Taster Day which includes presentations and information about the courses, workshops and an interview.  All students are required to complete an application form in advance of attending the Taster Day.


Following the Taster Day at IATE and the successful offer of a place on the Child Therapeutic Wellbeing Practice Training, applicants will have an opportunity to obtain further consultation via Zoom with the Wellbeing Faculty to talk more about working with children and young people, personal and professional development needs as well as placement requirements and opportunities.  Each student will be linked directly through referral to a supervisor / reflective practice facilitator to accompany them on the training.

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