Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy
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First Time Accreditation

Requirements for First Time Accreditation

To apply for IACP First Time Accreditation an applicant must:

1. Be covered by professional indemnity insurance.

2. Have applied for IACP Garda Vetting. Please apply for the Garda Vetting at the time of submitting your documentation for First Time Accreditation. 

If you do not hold current IACP Garda Vetting please use the tick box provided in the "Apply Now" section to complete the IACP Garda Vetting as well as your First Time Accreditation Application.

NB:  It is an IACP requirement that all Accredited Members must have current and valid IACP Garda Vetting. Vetting applications may take from 4 weeks up to 20 weeks. Waiting time depends on the level of demand in the Garda Central Vetting Unit at the time of application. Unfortunately the IACP has no control over this. If an application is not complete, incorrectly completed or additional information is required the processing time may be longer.

For more information, click here .

3. Have completed a core Counselling / Psychotherapy course - IACP Accredited Counselling / Psychotherapy Course or equivalent. The criteria for non IACP Accredited courses are listed below.

4. Have completed 450 hours of client contact work with an Accredited Supervisor (IACP, BACP or IAHIP) post 100 trainee hours required on the course.

As of 26th May 2017, Students can commence counting the 450 hours towards accreditation after full completion of the currently required 100 trainee client hours, even if still in training on an accredited course. Please note that, all other current rules will apply regarding the supervision ratio and required change of Supervisor after the 100 hours have been completed for the purpose of the student client hours ( as per the Course Accreditation Criteria 2015).  Also, Students must have finished the required 50 hours of personal therapy before they start counting the 450 hours. The new Supervisor also must be IACP, BACP or IAHIP accredited.

A) The 450 hours of client contact work must cover a variety of presenting issues

B) Complete one hour of supervision for every 10 hours of client contact work. Please see the Supervision Requirements page for full details on the supervision criteria for those working towards accreditation.

Frequency: Individual Supervision must take place at least once a month when the Counsellor / Psychotherapist is actively seeing or available to see clients

C) Applications for First Time Accreditation may be accepted between the period of 2 years and 5 years following the successful completion of a core course. In special circumstances an applicant may apply in writing to have their application for Accreditation considered where more than 5 years have elapsed, but this will be at the discretion of the Accreditation Committee. 


D) Client work for the purpose of first time accreditation may consist of couple, family or group Counselling / Psychotherapy hours as 25% of the required 450 post-trainee hours. The other 75% of hours must be individual Adult Counselling / Psychotherapy.

(Client Work refers here to specific one-to-one Counselling / Psychotherapy sessions with clients over 18 years of age – i.e. not minors)

E) Provide a Supervisors Report from all Supervisors listed on the application form.

F) Have been in on-going supervision with the same Accredited Supervisor (IACP, BACP or IAHIP) for at least 12 months immediately prior to applying. See the Supervision Requirements page for full details.



Non IACP Accredited Course

If the core course you have completed is not an IACP Accredited Course, you may still apply for accreditation. However it is at the discretion of the Accreditation Committee to evaluate whether it meets criteria.

Core Course Criteria are as follows:

A) Minimum of at least two years full or part time duration

B) Minimum of 100 hours of supervised individual client work. The student’s external supervisor must not be a member of the course staff. 

C) Minimum ratio of 1-5 individual external supervision hours to client hours. In addition, the course must include group supervision once students begin client practice hours (please check Course Accreditation Criteria for the details of external individual and internal group supervision requirements). 

D) Minimum of 450 course hours of class contact, including skills, theory and self-development

E) A detailed study of one core theoretical model of Counselling/Psychotherapy with an introduction to other theoretical models of Counselling/Psychotherapy for comparison and contrast

F) Minimum of 50 hours of personal therapy during training

As of 12 June 2015: Where the applicant has completed a course or combination of two courses, which meet the IACP Core Course criteria in all respects except for the inclusion of 50 hours of personal therapy, then personal therapy taken in parallel with the course with an accredited IACP therapist (or therapist accredited by an organisation acceptable to IACP), will be accepted.

G) Assessment of applicants for suitability before being selected onto the course

H) Certification of having satisfactorily completed the course

N.B. As of 12 June 2015, courses may be combined to make up a core course. These two courses must be completed within 5 years of each other.

If the IACP believes that the ethos promoted by the course or the course providers or their employees or agents as part of the course or as part of the environment surrounding the course is / are not compatible with the ethos promoted by the IACP, the IACP has a right to refuse accreditation to the applicant who has completed such a course.  This is a discretionary right of the IACP.

You must provide documentation, a detailed course brochure and course outline for the following:

A) Name of the course and the training organisation
B) Start and end dates of the course
C) Entry requirements for the course
D) Qualifications of staff
E) Number of hours of theory and skills training
F) Number of class contact hours on the course
G) Number of supervised client hours as part of the course
H) For client work a minimum of 1-5 ratio of supervision hours to client hours
I) Minimum of 50 hours of personal therapy as part of the course

It is the responsibility of the applicant to state where in the documentation provided, it shows this requirement was met and highlight accordingly.


What you will need to complete the application for First Time Accreditation 

1. IACP Membership Number if applicable

2. Name of your Insurance Company, your Professional Liability Insurance policy number and expiry date

3. Photocopy of your core course certificate signed by your supervisor

4. If your core course is non IACP Accredited course then you will need documentation from the course provider as indicated above

5. The number of client contact hours done over a period of time, the place of practice and nature of that client work

6. The number of supervision hours done over the same period of time, the name of the supervisor and whether supervision was group or individual supervision

7. Your Philosophy of Counselling - an essay style question between 400 and 500 words. This should describe your personal and theoretical Counselling / Psychotherapy philosophy and show it is congruent with your current Counselling / Psychotherapy practice.

8. Name, address and qualification(s) of current Supervisor. (Your current Supervisor is the supervisor you have at the time you apply for accreditation)

9. Commitment to Professional and Personal Development. This is optional. You are asked to give details of present commitment to professional and personal development such as training courses, individual counselling or therapy, study, reading, support group etc.

10. A Supervisors Report Form for each Supervisor listed on your application. This form can be downloaded from the Supervision page of this website.

11. Putting your application together
When putting your application together, you don’t need to provide it in any ‘fancy’ format – just a simple staple, paper clip or single plastic wallet is fine. Please don’t bind your application or put it in a heavy folder – we will only have to remove it. Similarly, please don’t put each individual sheet in a plastic wallet and please make sure the pages are in order. Thank you. 


The Accreditation Process

The application form for first time accreditation can be requested using the 'Apply Now' box on this page.

The form will be emailed as an attachment to the email address entered.

Payment of the application processing fee is required prior to receiving the application form. Please note that the processing fee is not refundable. 

Once an application is received an email receipt is sent to the Applicant. Please make sure that the email address is correct on your application and it is an address that you check regularly.

Fully completed applications are assessed by the Accreditation Secretary and the Accreditation Committee, if necessary.

Once approved all applications are screened by the Complaints Committee.

When approved- a confirmation email and a PDF version of Certificate of Accreditation will be sent to you. 

Please note: As of January 2016 a hard copy of certificate of accreditation will be issued only on request. 

Only fully completed applications will be processed. Incomplete applications will be rejected. 

Any inaccurate or false information or omission of information on an application form shall render that application invalid.

Application Processing Times

If there are no queries on the application this process will take approximately 3 months.

If there is a query on the application, you will be notified by email and the application will be reviewed by the Accreditation Committee. If this happens then it may take longer than 3 months to process.

If an application is not complete or additional information is required then the processing time may be longer.

At certain times of the year or if the volume of applications is high it may take longer for your application to be processed.


Post Accreditation

Accredited Members are required to:

A) Abide by the IACP Code of Ethics and Practice and are subject to the IACP Complaints Procedure

B) Meet IACP requirements for supervision for Accredited Members. See the Supervision Requirements page for full details.

C) Maintain a CPD log annually

D) IACP Accreditation is for a period of 1 year and is dependent on the annual membership fee being paid on time and obtaining the IACP Garda Vetting

E) After 1 year the IACP Accredited Member is required to make a formal application to renew their Accredited Membership

See the Renewal of Accreditation page for full details on the requirements for IACP Accredited Members.




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Timeframe for statutory registration

 

Draft regulations to designate the professions of Counsellors and Psychotherapists and to establish a registration board will be ready for submission to the Houses of the Oireachtas for their approval during the present session, the Minister for Health, Simon Harris, has told the Dail.

 

The Minister recently concluded a public consultation on  his proposal to regulate counsellors generally under the Health and Social Care Professionals Act 2005.

 

On foot of the consultation process, He has decided to proceed with the designation of two distinct professions under the Act, that of counsellor and psychotherapist. Each will have its own register under one registration board. This decision has been communicated to the Health and Social Care Professionals Council, the relevant professional bodies and all the respondents to the public consultation process.

 

Subject to the approval of the Houses, the next step will be the appointment of the 13 members of the registration board, following the submission of suitable candidates for the Minister's consideration, by the Public Appointments Service. The aim is that the registration board will be in a position early in the New Year to begin the task of drafting the various bye-laws to allow it to establish its registers.

 

 


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