Certificate in Reflective Practice


Course Philosophy

The church in our current climate is at a time of both crisis and opportunity. Reduced clergy numbers mean that the tasks of ministry are needing to be reviewed, prioritised and structured as never before and that appropriate support to parish ministers, who are having to manage change and take on additional responsibilities, is more vital than ever. The new Clergy Terms of Service Measure, with its emphasis on support to and appraisal of office holders means that the church needs senior clergy who have supervisory and consultancy skills to be able to offer a safe as well as challenging enough environment for creative reflection on the priorities and tasks of ministry to take place. In addition, the changing nature of ministry at local level means that full time clergy are increasingly the leaders of teams and, among other skills, need to develop skills in line management supervision and reflective practice.


The Certificate in Reflective Practice has been developed to address this cluster of training needs. It is a substantial course which draws on both theological and psychological understandings of the mission and ministry of both lay and ordained Christians.


Learning and assessment

The course operates as a learning community where participants’ ministerial experience is valued as the raw material for learning, and is built on through a variety of learning activities, including teaching input, student-led seminars and exercises, reflective practice groups and peer support groups. Within these groupings, participants will support and assess their own and others’ development, through self, peer and tutor assessments, essays, seminar presentation,  peer supervision exercises and audio taped and transcribed sessions. Assignments are designed to contribute to your practice and will form part of a portfolio of evidence of professional competence in reflective practice and consultancy.


The award of the Certificate in Reflective Practice will be made by the Institute of Pastoral Counselling on successful completion of the course.


Prospective participants

The course is designed for clergy and spiritual directors who:

  • are currently engaged in pastoral work in their context
  • have incumbent status or supervisory responsibilities within this setting.
  • have at least 2 separate situations (group or individual) in which they offer reflective practice or consultancy
  • have taken a pastoral module as part of their training and have learnt and practised good listening skills.
  • comply with their Ethical Code



The 2010-2011 Certificate in Reflective Practice is being offered in partnership with the diocese of Southwell and Nottingham. It will run over the course of a year and will be delivered in a series of six two day workshops. As each workshop builds on the learning of the previous one, a commitment to all 12 days is essential. The dates of workshops for 2010-2011 are:


6th and 7th Oct 2010

24th and 25th Nov 2010

2nd and 3rd Feb 2011

16th and 17th March 2011

11th and 12th May 2011

29th and 30th June 2011


Cost and venue

The cost of the course is £300 and lunch, tea and coffee will be provided during each training day.

The venue is yet to be decided but will be within the diocese of Southwell and Nottingham.



Application forms can be obtained from Catriona Gundlach (catriona@southwell.anglican.org) and applicants will be expected to attend an interview day on 2nd September.



Photos above by David Green                                                                         Last updated: 15/10/10