Dr Helen Courtney

BA (Hons), MSc, D. Clin.Psychol, C.Psychol

Chartered Clinical Psychologist


I am an experienced and fully qualified Chartered Clinical Psychologist. I have worked within the field of psychology for over 15 years, in a range of physical and mental health settings. As an assistant psychologist I worked at the National Society for Epilepsy, in an acquired brain injury unit and in primary care psychological therapy services.  I completed my doctorate in clinical psychology in 2008 which involved assessing and treating people across the age range, presenting a wide variety of psychological difficulties and needs.  My first position as a qualified clinical psychologist was within an early intervention in psychosis service,  working with young people experiencing their first episode of significant mental health problems. I offered clients and their families a psychological understanding of their difficulties and interventions to improve their sense of wellbeing and reduce distress.

I was later promoted to principal clinical psychologist within a community mental health team and appointed to lead the psychological interventions for psychosis pathway. This has involved supervising and supporting colleagues in delivering psychological interventions, providing consultation to develop and promote psychological understanding and providing direct therapy.

I am trained to offer a range of evidence based treatments and work flexibly, often drawing upon different theoretical approaches to best suit my clients. I started using Cognitive Behaviour Therapy as part of my core training and further developed these skills when I undertook a post graduate diploma in CBT.  This approach helps people to make links between their mood, thoughts and behaviour.  Later, I trained in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy which helps people to reduce self-harming behaviours whilst developing emotional coping skills.   I have also undertaken training in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Compassion Focused Therapy which although different in approach, both aim to reduce suffering by connecting with present moment experience and nurturing acceptance of the self.  Mindfulness meditation is a core skill I use with most of my clients, which is again an acceptance based approach.

I am experienced in assessing and delivering psychological interventions and work collaboratively to support clients to reduce emotional distress and improve daily functioning. I have treated people with a wide range of psychological difficulties including: psychosis, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders (including OCD and PTSD), depression, self-harm and personality disorders.  I believe that developing a trusting, therapeutic relationship provides the foundations for effective psychological therapy and I am committed to working alongside clients to help alleviate suffering and develop psychological well-being.

Core Training

BA (Hons) Psychology, University of Bedfordshire

MSc Health Psychology, University College London

Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (D.Clin.Psychol), University of Southampton

Further Training

Working with Dissociation and Dissociative Identity Disorder (Dr Vivia Cowdrill & Dr Fiona Kennedy, British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy, Southern Branch)

Working with imagery in CBT, across diagnoses (Ann Hackman, British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy, Southern Branch)

Cognitive therapy for PTSD (Dr Richard Stott and Dr Rachel Handley)

Post graduate Diploma in Cognitive Therapy for Severe and Enduring Mental Health Problems (University of Southampton)

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (Dr Fiona Kennedy & Dr Lorraine Bell)

Supervision skills (Christine Dunkley and Dr Maggie Stanton, Grayrock Stanton Psychological Services)

Helping clients to use mindfulness skills (Christine Dunkley and Dr Maggie Stanton, Grayrock Stanton Psychological Services)

Schema Focused Work (Dr Helen Kennerley, Oxford Cognitive Therapy Centre)

Group Schema Therapy (Dr Joan Farrell & Ida Shaw, approved by the International Society of Schema Therapy)

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (Professor Sue Clark and Dr Helen Bolderston, University of Bournemouth)

Compassion Focused Therapy (Dr Deborah Lee, Berkshire Traumatic Stress Service)

Eye Movement Desensitisation Reprocessing (EMDR) (The EMDR academy)


Registered Practitioner Psychologist, Health Care Professionals Council (HCPC)

Chartered Clinical Psychologist (C.Psychol) of The British Psychological Society (BPS) and member of the Division of Clinical Psychology