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The SDS Accreditation System

SDS has been providing high quality training in Psychology, Health, Social Care and Education since 1990. Over the years more than 120,000 professionals have attended SDS courses with the majority having come back for further training year after year.

SDS Accreditation is offered at a number of levels and should be regularly renewed. The system is designed to provide practitioners with a transparent and measurable record of their level of clinical competence in chosen areas and guidance on its regular maintenance.

SDS Accredited Courses are assessed against the following essential criteria:

  1. they contain evidence–based information;
  2. the amount of information provided is appropriate for the course’s duration;
  3. information within the course is updated regularly and meets currently available guidelines;
  4. the course presenter is a fully qualified practitioner in the relevant field and able to deliver the information in an intelligible and engaging way;
  5. the course has passed rigorous assessment and has been Approved by BPS;
  6. Academic Competence levels of accreditation are awarded only after assessing the student’s Academic Competence via an online test or written assignment.
  7. Clinical Proficiency accreditation is only awarded on the basis of a student’s completion of a written clinical assignment and a statement from a clinical supervisor who is appropriately qualified.

In addition to the assessment against the above criteria, SDS validates the accreditation by continuously gathering delegates' feedback, rigorously assessing courses’ ratings for all accredited courses and liaising with course presenters when changes to the course are required. The accreditation is given weight by over 120,000 professionals having attended SDS courses.

Levels of Accreditation and their renewal depend on the type of training you have undertaken with SDS:

Master Practitioner Diploma in CBT / CBT: Introductory Course Certificate

BPS Approved Certificate in Clinical Supervision

BPS Approved Certificate in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT)

BPS Approved Certificate Courses (Modular Courses):

  • - Certificate in Third Wave CBT
  • - Certificate in Resource Based Therapies
  • - Certificate in Trauma Treatments
  • - Certificate in Motivational Interviewing

SDS Accreditation Levels for CBT Training

SDS Accreditation, Level 1 (CBT Practitioner, Foundation Stage) is the level of accreditation you obtain by attending the CBT: Introductory Course, completing the relevant Evidence Reading Module and passing the online test.

This level of accreditation gives you a BPS Approved Certificate, access to the CBT Introductory course resources online, and enables you to state in your CV that you have Level 1 (Foundation) Accreditation as a CBT Practitioner, and use PCBT (Foundation) qualification in your title.

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, after which you cannot make the above statements and access course resources.

This level of accreditation is renewable by sitting an online refresher course or attending a live course/webcast on the original topic. Should you renew your accreditation within these 3 years, your access to these refresher courses is discounted by 50%.* Should you let your accreditation lapse, you pay the full price for the refresher training.

SDS Accreditation, Level 2 (Master Practitioner in CBT, Assessed Academic Competence) means you have completed all the hours required by SDS Master Practitioner Diploma in CBT and also passed all the online exams.

You obtain this level of accreditation by completing SDS’ modular Master Practitioner Diploma in CBT, by completing the relevant Evidence Reading and Case Formulation modules, and by passing all the online tests associated with the Diploma.

This level of accreditation gives you a BPS Approved Master Practitioner Diploma in CBT, as well as access to the course materials and other resources. It also enables you to state in your CV that you have Level 2 (Assessed Academic Competence) Accreditation as a Master Practitioner in CBT and use MPCBT (AAC) qualification in your title.

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, after which you cannot make the above statements and access course resources.

This level of accreditation is renewable by sitting an online refresher course or attending a live course/webcast listed as a suitable refresher course. Should you renew your accreditation within these 3 years, your access to these refresher courses is discounted by 50%.* Should you let your accreditation lapse, you pay the full price for the refresher training.

SDS Accreditation, Level 3 (Master Practitioner in CBT, Clinical Proficiency) is as Level 2, with the addition of:

  • A work-based assignment set by SDS of between 4,000 and 5,000 words. The assignment is designed to help you demonstrate your ability to apply the learning you have proved at Level 2 to a clinical situation in a considered way. You receive feedback on the case you submit, regardless of whether or not it reaches the required standard.
  • a written statement from your Clinical Supervisor confirming the regularity and duration of your supervision with them and your Competence as a clinician practicing CBT. Your Clinical Supervisor should meet our qualification criteria. The purpose of this statement is to confirm your clinical Competence as a CBT practitioner and to ensure that your practice is regularly supervised and meets required standards.

This level of accreditation gives you a BPS Approved Master Practitioner Diploma in CBT, as well as access to the course materials and other resources. It also enables you to state in your CV that you have Level 3 (Clinical Proficiency) Accreditation as a Master Practitioner in CBT and use MPCBT(CP) qualification in your title.

You will also be given an option to be listed in the SDS Register of CBT Practitioners – our Network of Qualified CBT Practitioners.

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, after which you cannot make the above statements and access course resources.

This level of accreditation is renewable by sitting an online refresher course or attending a live course/webcast listed as a suitable refresher course and by submitting a new supervision statement. Should you renew your accreditation within these 3 years, your access to these refresher courses and the written assignment is discounted by 50%.* Should you let your accreditation lapse, you pay the full price for the refresher training.

Accreditation for BPS Approved Certificate in Clinical Supervision

SDS Accreditation in Clinical Supervision, Level 1 (Foundation) is the level of accreditation you obtain by attending the SDS Essential Supervision Skills course (BPS Approved Certificate in Clinical Supervision) via live training or live/recorded webcast.

This level of accreditation gives you a Certificate of Attendance, as well as access to the course materials and other resources, and enables you to state in your CV that you have SDS Accreditation in Clinical Supervision Level 1 (Foundation).

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, after which you cannot make the above statements and access course resources.

This level of accreditation is renewable by sitting an online refresher course or attending a live course/webcast. Successful completion of the online refresher, which includes the associated exam, gives you SDS Level 2 Accreditation.

SDS Accreditation in Clinical Supervision, Level 2 (Assessed Academic Competence) means you have undertaken training as in Level 1, and also passed the online exam.

This level of accreditation gives you a Certificate of Completion with Assessed Academic Competence, as well as access to the course materials and other resources. It also enables you to state in your CV that you have SDS Accreditation in Clinical Supervision Level 2 (Assessed Academic Competence) and can use qualification, CSAccred.(AAC) in your title.

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, and is renewable by sitting an online refresher or attending a live course/webcast. Successful completion of the online refresher, which includes the associated exam, maintains your SDS Level 2 Accreditation.

SDS Accreditation in Clinical Supervision, Level 3 (Advanced) is as Level 2, with the addition of completing an Advanced Supervision Course covering Clinical Supervision for Supervisors, Group Clinical Supervision and Conducting Internet Based Supervision.

This level of accreditation gives you a Certificate of Completion (Advanced) with Assessed Academic and Clinical Competence, as well as an access to the course materials and other resources. It also enables you to state in your CV that you have SDS Accreditation in Clinical Supervision Level 3 (Advanced) with Assessed Academic and Clinical Competence and use the qualification, CSAccred.(Advanced) in your title.

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, and is renewable by undertaking the Level 3 refresher component which consists of: the online refresher (or a live course/webcast) and the associated exam.

SDS Accreditation in Clinical Supervision, Level 4 (Clinical Proficiency) is as Level 3, with the addition of:

  • Submitting a project of an acceptable standard (3,000 words). The purpose of the project is to illustrate that you can apply the academic knowledge gained from the course to practical clinical supervision situations. The project should follow one of the formats below:
    • A small quantitative research project examining an aspect of the supervision process. Prior experience and knowledge of simple experimental design and statistical analysis is required. The clinical supervision field is largely “a green field” site with multiple unaddressed questions both regarding process and especially outcomes. The “write up” should BROADLY follow the format indicated in university guides to writing up psychology research projects.
      OR
    • A qualitative report comparing either the publishedresearch and/or content of the SDS Level 1 course to the delegate’s own experience as a supervisor.
      • Similarities and differences between research/academic content and supervisor experience should be highlighted and discussed.
      • External (e.g. organisational/professional body) and internal (e.g. emotional/ethical) constraints on supervisor behaviour should be illustrated along with how those constraints were managed.
      • Similarities and differences between supervisor and supervisee experience should be illustrated along with its implications for the supervision process
      • Learning points from the above should be indicated along with how this will influence the supervisor’s subsequent practice
  • Submitting of a record of regular (no fewer than 4 times a year) supervision sessions “Supervision for Supervisors”.

This level of accreditation gives you a Certificate of Completion with Clinical Proficiency, as well as access to the course materials and other resources. It also enables you to state in your CV that you have SDS Accreditation in Clinical Supervision Level 4 (Clinical Proficiency) with Assessed Academic and Clinical Competence and use the qualification, CSAccred.(CP) in your title.

Also at this level you can gain Access to SDS’ Network of Qualified Clinical Supervisors.

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, and is renewable by undertaking the Level 3 refresher component which consists of: the online refresher (or a live course/webcast), the associated exam, and again submitting supervision records “Supervision for Supervisors”.

Accreditation for BPS Approved Certificate in DBT

SDS Accreditation in DBT, Level 1 (Foundation) is the level of accreditation you obtain by attending the SDS’ DBT Introductory Course (2 days) via live training or live/recorded webcast.

This level of accreditation gives you a Certificate of Attendance, as well as access to the course materials and other resources, and enables you to state in your CV that you have SDS Accreditation in DBT Level 1 (Foundation).

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, after which you cannot make the above statements and access course resources.

This level of accreditation is renewable by sitting an online refresher course or attending a live course/webcast.

SDS Accreditation in DBT, Level 2 (Advanced Assessed Academic Competence) means you have undertaken training as in Level 1, completed all training courses within the Module 2 of DBT Certificate and also passed the online exam.

This level of accreditation gives you a Certificate of Completion with Advanced Assessed Academic Competence, as well as access to the course materials and other resources. It also enables you to state in your CV that you have SDS Accreditation in DBT Level 2 (Advanced Assessed Academic Competence) and can use qualification, DBTAccred. (AAAC) in your title.

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, and is renewable by sitting an online refresher or attending a live course/webcast. Successful completion of the online refresher, which includes the associated exam, maintains your SDS Level 2 Accreditation.

SDS Accreditation in DBT, Level 3 (Clinical Proficiency) requires completion of the Module 2 of the Certificate in DBT plus a Module 3:

Assessed casebook assignment, consult group attendance, reports and test

Participants will be asked over a period of subsequent 6-24 months following Module 2 to:

  • Take on at least one individual DBT client
  • Provide part of a videoed session with a client demonstrating the use of at least three commitment building strategies during the commitment phase
  • Deliver at least one complete cycle of a DBT skills training group (confirmatory reference required)
  • Attend consult group regularly with monthly reports to the course tutor*
  • Complete assigned reading
  • Complete a DBT casebook*
  • Prepare a presentation of the casebook*

The course tutor will provide UNLIMITED email support during the 6 month period.

Casebooks forwarded for marking to SDS at least 14 days before meeting the course tutor again.

The meeting with the course tutor will cover feedback on casebook, consult group reports and video submission.

This level of accreditation gives you a Certificate of Completion with Clinical Proficiency, as well as access to the course materials and other resources. It also enables you to state in your CV that you have SDS Accreditation in DBT Level 3 (Clinical Proficiency) with Assessed Academic and Clinical Competence and use the qualification, DBTAccred. (CP) in your title.

Also at this level you can gain Access to SDS’ Network of Qualified DBT Practitioners.

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, and is renewable by undertaking the Level 3 refresher components discussed individually with the course tutor.

*Format of these to be provided on signing up.

SDS Accreditation for BPS Approved Certificate Courses (Modular Courses):

The Levels below refer to the accreditation you acquire by attending any SDS modular training courses – BPS Approved Certificate Courses, like:

  • Certificate in Third Wave CBT
  • Certificate in Resource Based Therapies
  • Certificate in Trauma Treatments
  • Certificate in Motivational Interviewing

We do not offer Level 1 (Foundation) for these courses as they all need to be completed in full.

SDS Accreditation, Level 2 (Assessed Academic Competence) is the level of accreditation you obtain by attending all modules of an SDS Modular course via live training or live/recorded webcast and passing an appropriate online exam after completing the whole course.

This level of accreditation gives you a BPS Approved Certificate in the appropriate subject, as well as access to the course materials and other resources. It also enables you to state in your CV that you have Level 2 (Assessed Academic Competence) Accreditation as a Practitioner in [The Course Title].

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, after which you cannot make the above statements and access course resources.

This level of accreditation is renewable by sitting an online refresher course or attending a live course/webcast listed as a suitable refresher course. Should you renew your accreditation within these 3 years, your access to these refresher courses is discounted by 50%.* Should you let your accreditation lapse, you pay the full price for the refresher training.

SDS Accreditation, Level 3 (Clinical Proficiency) is as Level 2, with the addition of:

  • Submitting a project of an acceptable standard (3,000 words) at the end of your Certificate training. The purpose of the project is to illustrate that you can apply the academic knowledge gained from the course to a clinical situation.
  • Submitting a written statement from your Clinical Supervisor confirming the regularity and duration of your supervision with them and your Competence as a clinician in the chosen topic. Your Clinical Supervisor should meet our qualification criteria.

This level of accreditation gives you a BPS Approved Certificate in the appropriate subject, as well as access to the course materials and other resources. It also enables you to state in your CV that you have Level 3 (Clinical Proficiency) Accreditation as a Practitioner in [The Course Title].

You also will be given an option to be listed in the SDS Register of Qualified Practitioners in the appropriate field – our Network of Qualified Practitioners.

Your accreditation currently lasts for 3 years, after which you cannot make the above statements and access course resources.

This level of accreditation is renewable by sitting an online refresher course or attending a live course/webcast listed as a suitable refresher course and by submitting a new written statement from your Supervisor. Should you renew your accreditation within these 3 years, your access to these refresher courses and the written assignment is discounted by 50%.* Should you let your accreditation lapse, you pay the full price for the refresher training.

Renewing your SDS Accreditation

4 reasons to renew your SDS Accreditation

  • Keep up to date. Every SDS Accredited course can be considered up-to-date for approximately 3 years. That is why after this time the accreditation expires and you are strongly advised to attend a refresher course.
  • Retain access to course resources. As long as you maintain your SDS accreditation for a course you are able to access the online resources associated with it, free of charge.
  • Maintain your accreditation at a discounted rate. As long as you maintain your accreditation level, you can say in your CV that you have that level of SDS Accreditation in the subject(s) concerned and use the appropriate title, if you do not renew your accreditation level you cannot. If you don’t allow your accreditation to lapse, your refresher courses are available to you with a 50% discount.
  • Gain Access to SDS’ Network of Qualified Practitioners. Only specialists who maintain their accreditation can be eligible to be listed in our Register.
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CBT: Introductory Course - Certificate Course.
December 2018, London
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Resilience: Prevention and Recovery from Traumatic Damage.
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CBT for Couples (2 days).
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Essential Supervision Skills.
29-30 January 2019, London —
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CBT for Child & Adolescent Disorders.
26 February 2019, London
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