UK College of Holistic Training

UKCHT logoHolistic distance learning certificate
and diploma courses

Complementary therapies, self-help,
coaching, management,
New Age and spiritual fields. 
International enrolments accepted.
Start your course at any time of year.


wise owl imageProfessional Society Membership
UKCHT Graduates


This page explains the background to professional registration of private therapists in the UK and gives details of some of the societies that our graduates may apply to join.


NEWS February 2016


We are now an Organisational Member of ACCPH, Accredited Counsellors, Coaches, Psychotherapists and Hypnotherapists - see www.accph.org.uk 


ACCPH has ACCREDITED our courses in the fields of hypnotherapy, psychotherapy, counselling, coaching and stress management. It does not accredit our esoteric, spiritual and "New Age" courses as these are outside the remit of the organisation. See individual course pages for applicable accreditation badges.



The UK has remarkable common-law freedom when it comes to the talking therapies and many other complementary therapies. Basically, unless you are actually working with the body or giving remedies, anyone may practise legally as a counsellor or psychotherapist, as long as you are not diagnosing or giving medical advice. UK colleges in the private sector offering therapy and personal development courses are often linked to just one professional register or society. Frequently, this society or register is not independent and is owned by the school or founded by its principal. This means that graduates of other schools are not allowed to join the society. The result is an ever changing number of professional societies which is confusing to the general public. Health and New Age magazines, websites and media often focus on a few societies and ignore the rest, giving the misleading impression that only the societies they list (or advertise) are available. Often, the featured articles on societies are "advertorials" - i.e. sponsored by one particular organisation to the exclusion of their competitors. Attempts at setting up profession-wide registration bodies or umbrella bodies have only added further to the confusion as there are quite a few such bodies competing against each other, each claiming an important role in establishing a definitive public register.

For years there has been debate about more regulation of complementary therapies within the UK. However though certain physical therapies have or are becoming regulated, there is widespread professional opposition from all levels of the talking-therapy professions to state regulation and it is a very contentious issue. The current  government appears to have no plans to regulate the talking therapies. We will publish reports from time to time but the latest assessment is that freedom of practice for talking therapies will probably continue in the UK for the foreseeable future.

The public sector does not accept distance learning courses for employment purposes but because it is biased towards CBT, therapies with other trainings tend to find it hard to establish a niche no matter how well-qualified they are, and so most become self-employed. The cost of top therapy trainings is prohibitive and students often have to work on a voluntary basis to gain experience. Many argue that traditional therapy training has become elitist. Distance learning courses in the UK provide the opportunity for people to acquire knowledge of helping skills at low cost and without an onerous time commitment.

Certain disciplines are likely to stay outside any regulatory framework whatever may happen politically, and these include NLP, Life Coaching, Stress Management, Relaxation Therapy and Emotional Freedom Techniques/ "Energy therapies". Those disciplines tend to be unregulated overseas too, and are good choices for those who wish to use talking therapies with people in countries that have strict control over the traditional "labels" of counselling, psychotherapy and sometimes hypnotherapy.  

Guild for Stress Management and Trauma Specialists

We are sorry to report that this organisation has now disbanded.

Guild for Smoking Cessation Specialists and Therapists

We are sorry to report that this organisation has now disbanded.


Our previous linked professional association - The Institute for Meridian Psychotherapy and Associated Complementary Therapies (Inst. M.P.)

We are sorry to report that this organisation has disbanded.

Other professional societies

Counselling (a registered UK charity) http://www.counselling.ltd.uk (UK only)

Counselling is an organisation that offers UK residents the chance to register as counsellors if they have any counselling-related certificate, from introductory standard onwards, that is acceptable to the organisation. Counselling has no connection with other societies that have "counselling" in their name. Any of our qualifications bearing the word "counselling" in the title may be used to apply to Counselling for membership.  This is an ideal step onto the professional recognition ladder if you are beginning your formal counselling practice, whether voluntary or in a paid capacity. Counselling has a code of professional ethics and can recommend a professional indemnity insurance scheme. A certificate of registration is also available. ("Counselling" does not accredit UKCHT courses)

Association of Holistic and Complementary Practitioners http://www.ahcp.org/

The AHCP will consider applications from practitioners of a wide range of holistic therapies taught by various training schools. See their website for further details. AHCP does not accredit UKCHT courses and at present we have not applied to them for consideration of any course towards accreditation.

Other UK professional bodies

We may recommend other UK professional bodies to particular students, based upon our knowledge of their backgrounds, and where appropriate we will be willing to provide a suitable reference.


Certain professional organisations (for example the National Guild of Hypnotists, USA) will accept a wide range of certificates for their continuing education requirements, and our course certificates and diplomas in psychological, personal growth, therapy-related and metaphysical fields may be submitted for such purposes. NGH does not accredit UKCHT courses.

Further specialist professional organisations you should know about

The societies below do not accredit or approve any UKCHT courses at this time but they are recommended for helpers with appropriate qualifications and/or expertise. In particular, we recommend that any person providing intuitive or psychic services consider applying to join the SWA.

The Spiritual Workers Association http://www.theswa.org.uk/

"The Spiritual Workers Association is a UK based Guild of Spiritual Workers and Spiritualistic Service Providers as well as an international umbrella group for all spiritual minded people." (SWA home page).

We recommend that anyone providing spiritual, intuitive or psychic services apply to the SWA or at least browse their website for important information on UK consumer protection regulations. The SWA can also offer a professional indemnity insurance scheme for suitable practitioners.

IMPACT (International Membership of Professional Advisors, Coaches, & Trainers) www.impactforcoaches.org  IMPACT will accept applications from practitioners with relevant qualifications, and UKCHT graduates are welcome to apply.


UK College of Holistic Training is a private distance learning school of further and adult education and is not within the UK state education system. It does not itself teach national or government-recognised qualifications but instead caters for independent professionals, workers in the private sector and other students world-wide seeking distance learning for professional and personal development. In the UK, there is no compulsory recognition, accreditation or licensing system for private adult education. UKCHT certificates and diplomas are fully legal and 100% genuine United Kingdom qualifications. Our independence means that we are able to offer courses in unconventional subjects.  

If you are intending to use one of our qualifications outside the UK, you must make local enquiries regarding appropriate qualifications and any necessary licences and types of accreditation needed. Regulations differ from country to country and it is necessary to enquire with authorities and professional bodies in the country or state where you want to work. We cannot make these enquiries on your behalf and we cannot maintain accurate details of all worldwide requirements for all fields of study that we offer. 

This page last updated November 2016

Broken links or errors? Please report to contact@ukcht.uk.

This page is part of a major website update - references to the organisations on this page are being inserted in all relevant pages. Please bear with us if information on any page appears incomplete until all our update work has been performed.


Our new URL is www.ukcht.uk  (Note: this is a "dot UK" not a "dot co.uk" address)
(Our courses are by distance learning/ home study only - we have no classes in London.  All enrolments must be made by email or, post)
Email us using this link
 Tel.   020 7060 2283  International +44 207 060 2283