Do you aspire to teach MBCT?

Do you aspire to teach MBCT?

The OMC is now accepting applications for our Foundational Training in the fortnightly format. Professor Ruth Baer explains what's involved and Annemette Frosh provides a student's perspective.

Foundational Training is Step 1 of the OMC’s teacher training pathway – you can see a diagram of the full pathway here. The fortnightly format requires approximately one training day every two weeks over an academic year, along with a residential retreat of four consecutive days. The next fortnightly program will begin in October 2019 and continue to June 2020. The retreat will be held in February 2020.

The fortnightly program is designed to be practical, efficient, and accessible. It brings together the OMC’s unique expertise in research, clinical innovation, and training. The course integrates deepening of personal practice, knowledge of underpinning theories and the evidence base, and the development of teaching skills and professional competencies. Training days are led by experienced MBCT teachers, trainers, and researchers. Each student is assigned a mentor who provides individual guidance for questions about mindfulness practice, the development of teaching skills, and planning for continued progress on the pathway. Successful completion of the fortnightly program provides a solid foundation for Step 2 of the pathway: co-teaching as an apprentice with supervision.

2018 Foundational training students on the fortnightly programme

Who completes the fortnightly program? Some are health or mental health professionals wishing to add MBCT to their repertoire of therapeutic interventions for clinical settings. Others come from a variety of different backgrounds with intentions to teach MBCT in nonclinical settings such as workplaces. Those without a mental health background will be asked to complete some brief supplementary training in psychological disorders and cognitive behavioural therapy.

Our alumni tell us that this course is very helpful in developing their potential as teachers of MBCT. If you meet the pre-requisites  and would like to join us on this exciting journey, we hope you will complete an application. More information about how to apply and important dates can be seen here.

Doing the Foundations course has been a journey – and without wishing to use big words such as ‘life changing’ or ‘transformative’, it has genuinely been the most nurturing and mind stretching experience I could have wished for.

Foundational Training alumna Annemette Frosh shares her experience of the course.

The teaching on the course is truly excellent, and being a teacher myself, it is such a pleasure to experience highly skilled, engaged and knowledgeable teaching in an environment characterised by great warmth, humour and supportiveness. The structure of the course is carefully thought through, starting with the shared experience of the eight-week course, before gradually being exposed to more and more demanding tasks, first teaching in pairs and then teaching to the group. Whilst we all felt nervous about being in the ‘spotlight’, we never felt exposed or unsupported, with feedback always being constructive and helpful.

The combination of theory and hands-on teaching is such a great format, and the opportunity to further one’s personal practice throughout the year, and in particular at the four-day retreat, is second to none. Like many of my fellow group members, I had never done a silent retreat before and was naturally apprehensive, but it was one of the most powerful and insight giving experiences I have had. Whilst I was planning my ‘escape’ after the first day, I ended up not wishing to leave at the end of the retreat! I will definitely be going again.

Last, but not least, the group itself was a key factor in the success of the course. We started out as 24 individuals from many different backgrounds, and thanks to the warm and caring environment created by the OMC teachers, we grew into an immensely close and supportive group, that followed each other’s journey with all the challenges and successes this brought. And thanks to our WhatsApp group chat, we are still in touch!