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Therapeutic and Reflective Writing

The course

Know yourself through words.

This long-established and ground-breaking course for personal and professional development will provide you with an understanding of therapeutic and reflective writing techniques for working personally or with groups.

The course explores the main approaches in therapeutic and reflective writing by encouraging you to explore your own life through writing. Weekly readings offer a theoretical background for those intending to apply their learning to others.

Delivered online over eight weeks, the course has been designed by tutors who are pioneers in their field as well as highly experienced online teachers.

You will finish the course with new skills and practical techniques for personal exploration and use with clients and groups.

This is a certified CPD course and those who successfully complete it will receive a Certification of Completion confirming their learning and study hours.

You can book a place on the course as an individual, or if you would like a bespoke version of this course for your team please contact us at [email protected]

Also suitable for beginners. 

Meet your course director

Anne Taylor

Anne Taylor is a writer, teacher, Feldenkrais practitioner and writing group facilitator. She worked for many years as a journalist and university lecturer before embarking on an MA in Creative Writing and Personal Development and the facilitation of writing groups with various organisations and universities.

Meet your course director

Victoria Field

Victoria Field is a pioneer in the use of writing for health and wellbeing and is a qualified biblio- poetry therapist. She has published several poetry collections and a memoir, has edited three books on therapeutic writing and has contributed to many academic and popular publications.

CPD accreditation

This course has been independently accredited for integrity and quality. It reaches globally recognised CPD standards and benchmarks for active learning that develops professional skills, competence and career aspirations.

How it works

We give you the theory in the form of videos, podcasts, written lectures and reading extracts. In the case of our live workshops, this includes a live online seminar.

You put it into practice by completing the writing assignments.

You share your work with the small group of fellow writers and the teaching team.

Your tutor and fellow learners read your work and give professional-style feedback on your submission. Giving feedback notes helps to build your skills as an editor - a critical part of the writing process.

You reflect on the exercises with the group and share what you’ve learned.

You use what you learned from the feedback and discussions to review your work and improve it.

Things to know

This course is for anyone looking to develop their understanding and skills in therapeutic and reflective writing for personal development and/or for use in their professional practice.

It’s suitable if you:

  • Want to explore therapeutic and reflective writing for your own well-being and personal development
  • Are a counsellor or therapist and would like to use writing with your clients
  • Are interested in how fiction, life-writing and memoir can benefit well-being
  • Would like to include techniques such as journaling, biblio-poetry therapy and metaphor in your toolbox for self-care or use with clients and facilitating groups
  • Are seeking a CPD (Continuing Professional Development) course (20 hours didactic learning, 20 hours peer learning)
  • Are looking to grow your creative skills
  • Enjoy the discipline of deadlines and peer learning
  • Want to join a friendly and supportive small group of learners
  • Can dedicate a minimum of 5-7 hours per week to the learning (at a time to suit you).

Members of Lapidus can claim a £50 discount* for this course. Please get in touch with us at [email protected] for more information.

*This discount cannot be used in conjunction with the early bird discount or any other offers.

This professional training allows you to:

  • Learn skills suitable for personal exploration and to use with clients and groups
  • Gain an overview of therapeutic and reflective writing
  • Learn ways to use journaling and expressive writing
  • Explore the theory and practice of biblio-poetry therapy
  • Look at how personal experience can be transformed into memoir, fiction, poetry or drama
  • Understand the value of metaphor in writing for personal development
  • Learn key coaching techniques
  • Gain insight into the value of being in writing groups
  • Expand your faciliation skills
  • Feel confident in using a range of resources and exercises
  • Nurture your creativity
  • Develop transferable professional skills (discipline, attention to detail, ability to work to deadlines)
  • Increase professionalism in working with others
  • Feel more confident in responding to other writers’ work and receiving responses to your own work
  • Build greater independence, autonomy and judgment as you self-direct, self-manage and realise assignments to the course briefs.

Each course is divided into sessions. These sessions are released one by one (weekly or fortnightly, depending on the course). 

There’s no need to log on at a set time. You can work through the learning materials whenever suits you, day or night, wherever you are in the world. Just complete the assignments and join forum discussions by the session deadline. 

Our teaching method is based on the science of active learning: you read/listen/watch, try out, share and reflect. It’s a social experience – you become part of a small group, feeding back on each other’s writing to build a supportive bunch of readers you trust. Find out more here.

Sessions become available on Monday morning each week. While there are set deadlines for posting your work and giving feedback to fellow classmates, our 24/7 digital campus means you can work through the course materials at your own pace. This course is flexible, with no pre-recordings or live classes. All the interaction is via the online forums, so you can dip in and out, fitting study around your work or family commitments, and making it easy to participate from anywhere in the world. See our FAQs for more information on the learning journey and how we teach.

Session 1: Introduction – What is therapeutic and reflective writing and how can it be used? This session will introduce you to the genre, the course and to one another through a series of practical assignments, readings and writing exercises.

Session 2: Journal Writing – What are journals and how can they be used creatively and therapeutically? We will explore this question and how to use expressive writing effectively through a series of tutor-led writing exercises and reflections.

Session 3: Biblio-Poetry Therapy – The practice of biblio-poetry therapy includes reading and responding to texts as a way of exploring our lives. This session will introduce some of the theory of biblio-poetry therapy and how it has developed into a distinct practice, and explore a number of classic poetry therapy texts and exercises.

Session 4: Writing Your Self – We will focus on how the material of our personal experience can be transformed into fiction, drama and memoir. We will look at how shaping expressive writing into something more formal can increase a sense of mastery and enable transformation.

Session 5: Reflective Writing and Practice – We’ll consider what we mean by reflective writing and its relationship with reflective practice and other forms of therapeutic writing for educational or professional development as well as transformation in our personal lives.

Session 6: Writing, Metaphor and Coaching – Metaphor has the power to transform our thinking through coaching and writing. You will be invited to engage in a series of exercises and reflections using a range of methods including the ‘clean language’ coaching model.

Session 7: Writing in Groups – We will focus on therapeutic writing in groups and how it offers such a rich and nuanced opportunity for personal growth. We will explore the reasons for this through some key texts and theories. There will be opportunities to discuss facilitation skills as well as the process of being in writing groups.

Session 8: Creating Your Future – We will draw the course to a close with some final writing and reflections on your personal writing journeys and individual portfolios. We’ll look at the many ways you can take your learning and reflective-writing experience forward.

At the end of the course, you will be well prepared to move onto our follow-on course Running Writing Workshops.

Join our alumni community 

After your course finishes, you can join our online alumni community – a friendly group of writers supporting each other as they continue to explore and develop their writing. There’s no cost for this. It’s easy to access via the online classroom, where you can:

  • Revisit all your course materials, including tutor notes, feedback, videos, podcasts and forum posts
  • Rejoin your classmates, and continue working together in a private space
  • Meet alumni from other courses to find beta-readers and share work on our critiquing forum
  • Network with other writers working in your genre or area of interest
  • Take part in regular ‘sit and write’ Zoom sessions, to push forward with your work-in progress
  • Join our monthly live alumni events with our expert tutors and industry guests, including agents, editors, publishers, competition and festival organisers, and prizewinning writers.

Taking things further
If you’d like to continue on to another Professional Writing Academy course, please get in touch for more details.

The team

Meet your course team

Anne Taylor

Healing with Words

Anne Taylor is a writer, teacher, Feldenkrais practitioner and writing group facilitator. She worked for many years as a journalist and university lecturer before embarking on an MA in Creative Writing and Personal Development and the facilitation of writing groups with various organisations and universities.

More about Anne Taylor

Victoria Field

Poetry Therapy Pioneer

Victoria Field is a pioneer in the use of writing for health and wellbeing and is a qualified biblio- poetry therapist. She has published several poetry collections and a memoir, has edited three books on therapeutic writing and has contributed to many academic and popular publications.

More about Victoria Field

Kate-McBarron

Kate McBarron

Tutor

Kate is a writer, editor and writing for wellbeing practitioner & researcher. She is passionate about words and their ability to enhance our daily lives, from relaxation to self-discovery and workplace wellness.

Kate is cofounder of WritingForLife.co.uk and founder of WriteToRelax.com.

More about Kate McBarron

Course Alumni

Meet our writers

Laura Steen

Therapeutic & Reflective Writing Alum

I kept hearing stories about the efficacy of writing for well-being schemes and the enrichment they can provide for prisoners and those with mental health difficulties — the type of people I would one day like to work with. Over these eight weeks, I found myself learning and writing in ways that were completely unfamiliar to me, yet allowed me to process and make sense of my experiences more effectively than I ever had through talking.

Read more

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