Training

And CPD

It's a

Game Changer

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'An innovative, evidence-based approach to address trauma and aid recovery'.

EDUCATION, TRAINING AND CPD QUALIFICATION COURSES

Therapeutic Gaming or Game Therapy? What the difference?

Game Therapy UK recognises the need to provide comprehensive, evidence-based training in Therapeutic Gaming and Game Therapy.

Therapeutic Gaming is a purposefully healthy and positive gaming experience. It can be delivered by anybody if they have developed a curious, thoughtful, and psychologically informed approach to the game.

 

You don’t need to be a therapist, and it isn’t a ‘treatment’. Therapeutic Gaming can be ‘any game’… and if fact probably should be ‘every game’.

Game Therapy is the use of Therapeutic Gaming with additional input of a therapist (psychologist, Occupational Therapist, addiction-recovery worker) to affect a therapeutic change.

Game Therapy UK recognises that there is a need to provide evidence-base, 'best practice' training in a psychologically informed approach to Therapeutic Gaming and Game Therapy to maximize the therapeutic benefit, and minimize the potential of harm from any gaming experience.

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Training in Therapeutic Gaming

We are currently developing a comprehensive modular training programme for anybody interested in Therapeutic Gaming. And it’s also a great starting point for clinicians and professional Game Facilitators (Games Masters) interested in working in the field of Game Therapy.

Who is the training for?

This training is available to anyone; gamers, game designers, game facilitators and game players. It is also intended for clinicians interested in ultimately providing Game Therapy

Level One and Level Two training in Therapeutic Gaming is for those interested in learning a more thoughtful, and psychologically informed approach to the game.

Level Three and Level Four training in Therapeutic Gaming is for those wishing to take it further and run a Therapeutic Gaming project or even progress to a Game Therapy project.

 

Why is the training modular?

The training is modular, with each module building on the knowledge, skills and experience gained from the last. The modular approach provides the opportunity of consolidating learning and gaining real word experience before attending the next module.

There is also the opportunity for mentorship in-between modules, particularly for students who are intending to work in Game Therapy UK Therapeutic Gaming or Game Therapy projects.

Sounds great. What are the modules?

Therapeutic Gaming- basic

Module One. The thoughtful gamer.

In the right hands, all games have the potential for being therapeutic. Similarly in the wrong hands any game experience can become unpleasant or toxic.

We introduce the theory behind Therapeutic Gaming and Game Therapy, and its place alongside other creative therapies (Drama Therapy, and Art Therapy) and other formal Therapies (psychotherapy and behavioural therapies).

We explore the evidence of benefit, particularly in the areas of:

  • mental wellbeing- including generalised anxiety and depression, simple and complex psychological trauma, and addiction.

  • social wellbeing- excluded groups such as people experiencing homelessness, prison populations, children experiencing school exclusion and people with neurodivergence.

  • and cognitive improvement- including recovery from head injury, stroke and management of early dementia. .

 

We also take a realistic look at the limitations of that evidence. And of course, the possibility of harm and how to avoid or minimise ‘toxic’ game play.

We will give you the opportunity to develop practical skills in:

  • Designing a thoughtful, psychologically informed game.

  • Facilitating (Game Mastering) in a psychologically informed approach to maximise the enjoyment and benefit of the game whilst de-risk the harm or conflict caused in games.

  • Styles of thoughtful, curious and cooperative play to maximise the enjoyment of ourself and others playing the game.

This is a starting point for clinicians and non-clinicians alike.

Therapeutic Gaming- intermediate

For those wanting to take it further we have additional modules:

Module Two. The thoughtful Game Designer.

How to design a ‘positive game’ for your group. Or more commonly, how to avoid the pitfalls and traps of a toxic or harmful game. Remember- any game can be a therapeutic game. We will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the various rules systems. And discuss the advantages and challenges of a bespoke ‘therapeutic game system’ or game.

Module Three. The thoughtful GM.

Remember- any game, in the hands of a thoughtful, psychologically informed GM, can be a therapeutic game. We look at how to adapt your Game Rules and Game Design to maximise the benefit and minimise the risks of harm. We look at GMing styles- what you can do to maximise the chance of a positive gaming experience.

Module Four. The thoughtful player.

How you play your game models how others at the table will play theirs. We look at the psychology of game play, behaviour, and group dynamics.

Therapeutic Gaming- advanced

For those wanting to set-up, volunteer, or work on Therapeutic Gaming or Game Therapy projects we have specific modules designed to help.

Module Five- Designing and running a Therapeutic Gaming project.

Whilst any, and every, game can be a therapeutic experience sometimes the game is designed purposefully to be therapeutic. For example, simply playing D&D has been shown to improve the behaviour of children in Pupil Referral Units, reduce social isolation amongst the homeless, and reduces suicidal ideation amongst soldiers with PTSD. We provide an evidence-based approach to running safe, thoughtful and potentially helpful Therapeutic Gaming projects. We cover the general principles, administration, safety, cost, funding of a Therapeutic Gaming project. This should maximise the therapeutic benefit, and minimise the risk, of a Therapeutic Gaming project. We also look at specific groups such as the neurodiverse, socially excluded, psychologically traumatised, cognitively impaired.  We also look at experience of excluded groups such the sensory impaired, and those with physical challenges (be there visible or not).

Module Six. Therapeutic Gaming and children.

Module Seven. Therapeutic Gaming and de-risking the game.

Module Eight. Therapeutic Gaming and audit, data and research.

Module Nine. Therapeutic Gaming and the neurodivergent.

Module Ten. Therapeutic Gaming and people in addiction-recovery.

Module Eleven. Therapeutic Gaming and the military veteran population.

Module Twelve. Therapeutic Gaming and the prison population.

Module Thirteen. Therapeutic Gaming and the cognitively impaired.

Module Fourteen. Therapeutic Gaming and the sensorily impaired.

Module Fifteen. Therapeutic Gaming and people experiencing homelessness.

Module Sixteen. Therapeutic Gaming and the psychologically traumatised.

 

Therapeutic Gaming- mentorship

  • If you plan on volunteering or working on a Game Therapy UK Therapeutic Gaming project, there is also a mentorship programme where you can consolidate your modular learning with mentorship from a Game Therapy UK recognised Game Facilitator and/ or clinician.  

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For those who have mastered Therapeutic Gaming and have had the necessary experience you may wish to look at training in Game Therapy.

Training in Game Therapy

We are currently developing a comprehensive modular training programme for anybody interested in Game Therapy.

Who is the training for?

This training is available to those interested in volunteering or working on a Game Therapy project; you may be gamers, game designers, game facilitators and game players. It is likely that you will already have experience of Therapeutic Gaming.

The training is also intended for clinicians interested in providing Game Therapy

Why is the training modular?

The training is modular, with each module building on the knowledge, skills and experience gained from the last. The modular approach provides the opportunity of consolidating learning and gaining real word experience before attending the next module.

There is also the opportunity for mentorship in-between modules, particularly for students who are intending to work in Game Therapy UK Therapeutic Gaming or Game Therapy projects.

Sounds great. What are the Game Therapy modules?

For those wanting to set-up, volunteer, or work on Game Therapy projects we have specific modules designed to help.  This is a starting point for clinicians and non-clinicians alike and goes far deeper into the subject than Therapeutic Gaming- module one.

Module One Game Therapy. - The Curious Gamer.

We look deeper into the theory behind Therapeutic Gaming and Game Therapy, and its place alongside other creative therapies (Drama Therapy, and Art Therapy) and other formal Therapies (psychotherapy and behavioural therapies).

We further explore the evidence of benefit, particularly in the areas of:

  • mental wellbeing- including generalised anxiety and depression, simple and complex psychological trauma, and addiction.

  • social wellbeing- excluded groups such as people experiencing homelessness, prison populations, children experiencing school exclusion and people with neurodivergence.

  • and cognitive improvement- including recovery from head injury, stroke and management of early dementia.

  • We also take a realistic look at the limitations of that evidence. And of course, the possibility of harm and how to avoid or minimise ‘toxic’ game play.

We will give you the opportunity to develop practical skills in:

  • Designing a thoughtful, psychologically informed game.

  • Facilitating (Game Mastering) in a psychologically informed approach to maximise the enjoyment and benefit of the game whilst de-risk the harm or conflict caused in games.

  • Styles of thoughtful, curious, and cooperative play to maximise the enjoyment of yourself and others playing the game.

 

 

Module Two- Designing and running a Game Therapy project.

We provide an evidence-based approach to running safe, Game Therapy projects. We cover the general principles, administration, safety, cost, funding of a Game Therapy project.

 

This should maximise the therapeutic benefit and minimise the risk of the project.

 

We also look at specific groups such as the neurodiverse, socially excluded, psychologically traumatised, cognitively impaired.  We also look at experience of excluded groups such the sensory impaired, and those with physical challenges.

Module Three.  Game Therapy and de-risking the game.

Module Four. Game Therapy and the talking therapies.

Module Five. Game Therapy and Occupational Therapies.

Module Six.  Game Therapy, children, and young people.  

Module Seven. Game Therapy audit, data and research.

Module Eight. Game Therapy and people in addiction-recovery.

Module Nine. Game Therapy and the military veteran population.

Module Ten. Game Therapy and the prison population.

Module Eleven. Game Therapy and the cognitively impaired.

Module Twelve. Game Therapy and people experiencing homelessness.

Module Thirteen. Game Therapy and the psychologically traumatised.

Module Fourteen.  Game Therapy and the neurodivergent.

Therapeutic Gaming- mentorship

If you plan on volunteering or working on a Game Therapy UK Therapeutic Gaming project or Research project, there is also a mentorship programme where you can consolidate your modular learning with mentorship from a Game Therapy UK recognised Game Facilitator and/ or clinician. 

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