I work with the Open University as a tutor and academic consultant (which includes occasionally writing some course materials, mentoring/monitoring staff etc). I currently teach on their Psychology and Counselling programme.
Aside for my Open University work, I've now retired from offering ongoing teaching and training to institutions. However, I am open to discussing the possibility of offering one-off talks/presentations as part of my academic consultancy work. My particular interests include exploring existential phenomenological ideas and relational-centred, reflexive therapy or research. And if I unable to offer the teaching/training required, I may be able to recommend others.
I also offer individuals (time-limited) mentoring/advice re: how to do (qualitative) research and I provide support for academic writing.
I have a particular interest in qualitative research and writing – specifically reflexive and/or phenomenological research and how research might be applied to psychotherapy. While I no longer offer ongoing research supervision, I do offer individuals one-off mentoring sessions and I am open to helping institutions develop relevant packages for training, support, and mentorship.
For many psychotherapy practitioners, the word ‘research’ can evoke a cocktail of uncomfortable responses, including uncertainty, avoidance, resistance, boredom, and shame. We are a relatively young profession, and frequently lack the opportunities and confidence to engage in the world of research. These difficulties are compounded by the gap – chasm, rather – that exists between academia (theory/research) and clinical practice (Finlay & Evans, 2009). However, things are slowly changing. With the growing demand for evidence-based practice, the proliferation of university-validated training courses, and the ready access to research via the internet, psychotherapists are increasingly aware of the value of engaging in research and are getting involved.
A key question arises. How can we psychotherapists carry out systematic scholarly work (i.e. research) that is meaningful and enables us to find answers to questions raised in practice? My own interest is to engage in qualitative phenomenological research to explore clients’ lived experience. And what do therapists themselves experience when immersed in the therapy process?
I want to nurture the next generation of researchers and if you are looking for some courage, ideas and/or inspiration then I would be happy to dialogue with you to explore how you might embark on some research.
As Editor of the European Journal for Qualitative Research in Psychotherapy (an open-access online journal which aims to promote qualitative research in psychotherapy), I see part of my role as nurturing a new generation of practitioner-researchers. If you are interested to contribute to this journal as either an author or peer reviewer please feel free to contact me directly: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Otherwise, I am open to offering budding authors advice and support for their academic writing projects. Part of my work as a journal editor involves encouraging potential authors to write articles and submit them for publication. Time and again I get the same response: “I’d love to write, but I don’t know how” or “I’m not academic; I can’t write” or “Why would people be interested in what I have to say?” Perhaps the most common response is a nervous laugh, along with a “No way – you must be joking!” Sadly, practitioners seem to see journal and research activities as being exclusively for academics and that is not correct.
My approach with any writing starts with me working out a structure for the different sections and an approximate word count for each (which can be adjusted later). Then I focus on drafting a section at a time. It’s much better to just write just a small section of a few hundred words rather than feel overwhelmed by the thought of having to write several thousand words! Then comes the editing and re-editing. In other words, both ‘craft’ and ‘graft’ are involved.
See: Finlay, L. (2020). How to write a journal article: Top tips for the novice writer. European Journal for Qualitative Research in Psychotherapy, 10 (1), 28-40. Retrieved from https://ejqrp.org/index.php/ejqrp/article/view/108/65
In addition to my post-graduate Diploma in Integrative Psychotherapy, I have a post-graduate Diploma in Psychotherapy and Counselling Supervision awarded by the European Centre for Psychotherapeutic Studies which is approved by the UKCP. Also, my experience of research supervision and the teaching I have done on various degree programmes over the last 40 years, plus my work with the Open University (including my doctorate), gives me a solid understanding of academic procedures and processes.
My fees are negotiated with individuals or with the institution involved and depend on the nature of work required. An invoice can be supplied following the work and I prefer payment via BACS (bank transfer).
Finlay, L. and Evans, K. (2009) Relational-centred research for psychotherapists: exploring meanings and experience. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell.
I take data protection and confidentiality seriously. If you contact me by email, I will hold onto your data only while processing your communication. I will not copy, share or use your personal information without your consent. Once you have signed a contract to begin therapy, then please note that personal data and brief notes related to our psychotherapy work are collected. These notes are stored safely and securely. You can have an electronic copy at any point upon request. Our email communications will be deleted after we are no longer working together.