Minimum Training Standards

Minimum Training Standards for the practice of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy


BABCP sets Minimum Training Standards (‘MTS’) for accreditation as a cognitive and/or behavioural psychotherapist. We use these standards to assess whether someone meets the minimum criteria to become accredited as a CBT practitioner. People who use CBT services; employers and members of the general public can use them as a benchmark for CBT training, and can expect someone who is accredited by us to meet these standards.

The standards give details about the level of training, experience and practice that therapists must have in order to become accredited. We use these standards to assess applications for Practitioner Accreditation and CBT Course accreditation.

Applicants who successfully complete accredited CBT courses will be assessed against the Minimum Training Standards in force when they were selected to the CBT training programme. Individual applicants for accreditation are subject to the MTS that are in force at the time that they apply for accreditation.


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Minimum Training Standards [PDF]


Other documents and resources to read alongside our Minimum Training Standards are:

BABCP Standards of Conduct, Performance and Ethics

BABCP Complaints process

BABCP Core Curriculum 2021

BABCP Accreditation

The CBT Register UK and Ireland

Minimum Training Standards Summary

Section 1: Summarises the aims of the MTS

Section 2: Overview of accreditation requirements

To become accredited as a CBT practitioner, you must show that you have met the standards, as well as providing evidence that:

• You adhere to BABCP Standards of Performance, Conduct and Ethics

• CBT is one of your main psychotherapy models

• You have on-going CBT clinical supervision

• You participate in continuing professional development (CPD)

Section 3: Your professional background in mental health

• Mental health professions that we recognise as a suitable background to train in CBT

• Our process for recognising equivalence via the Knowledge, Skills and Attitudes (KSA) portfolio route

Section 4: Evidence of CBT training

• 450 hours’ specific training in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) at postgraduate level. This will be least 200 hours’ direct, structured teaching with 100 hours on core fundamentals of CBT and 250 hours’ self-directed learning

• 100 hours must be part of a single programme/course

• Trainers must be appropriately qualified CBT specialists

Section 5: Personal development

• Self-reflection and self-awareness, process aspects of therapy, reflective journal

• Anti-discriminatory practice; power; personal and systemic bias; equality, diversity and inclusion

Section 6: Assessment of knowledge, theory, research and/or publication

Section 7: Supervised clinical practice

• 200 hours’ supervised CBT clinical practice in direct contact with clients

• Clinical supervisors must be appropriately qualified

• 5 hours’ clinical supervision on each of 8 training cases (40 hours)

• Clinical supervision contract

• Assessment of competent clinical practice, including

◦ working with at least three different presentations including anxiety and affective disorders

◦ at least eight training cases with close/live supervision on at least three

◦ at least three assessed recordings of competent practice

◦ four case studies of client work

◦ Clinical supervision logs

Applying for Accreditation using the previous version of MTS 

The MTS and Core Curriculum were updated in 2021 and published in July 2022.

If you want to apply for Practitioner Accreditation using the 2012 version of the MTS [PDF] you can to do so until 30 September 2023. 

If you successfully graduate from a BABCP accredited CBT programme which started before the end of September 2023, you will be able to apply using the 2012 version of the MTS if this was taught by the course.

You will show the start date of your accredited CBT course on your Practitioner Accreditation application form.

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