Level One


Level One training explores the theories that inform narrative therapy and the practical skills for using them in your work.

It offers workers opportunities to develop skills relevant to their working contexts and is also a foundation for the Level Two training course.

There are two course formats for Level One training: 1 teaching block of 5 days OR 1 X 3 day teaching block AND 1 x 2 day teaching block. Both formats offer the same teaching time and course content.

Course Details

Course Content

The story metaphor in therapy

How our lives are storied and how the stories that we and others tell shape our lives and the lives of others.  How the development and rich description of alternative stories can re-shape lives. The role of context and social discourse in forming the stories that are told.


How externalization separates people from the problems that beset them. How this separation enables people to stop being the problem and instead to start taking responsibility for their relationship with it in ways that enhance the sense of personal agency.

Unique outcomes/ Exceptions

Exceptions as points of entry into alternative accounts of life and identity. How to turn seemingly small initiatives into substantive developments from which problem-solving skills emerge.  How to spot nuggets of gold in the midst of unremitting difficulties and how to find hope in dire situations.

De-centred practice

How to develop collaborative and respectful ways of relating to clients that makes them the expert on their lives and honours the skills, experience, knowledge and significant relationships of the people who come to meet with us.

Re-authoring lives

How to use any piece of information to identify a person’s strong values.  How to connect these with other events and figures in people’s lives to clarify a sense of identity so that entirely new perspectives are possible.

Question structures

How to structure conversations: maps to guide conversations; questions that can rescue conversational cul de-sacs; questions that avoid those “yes, but…” replies; question structures that have profound effects on a person’s thinking; questions that make small improvements much bigger; ways to respond when someone says “I don’t know”; questions that consistently move conversations forward; how to understand conversations so that you’re never stuck for a question; how to chart conversations that reveal where and why they got stuck.

Norms and power

How to question taken for granted norms and integrate an ethical approach. Understand Michel Foucault’s critique of cultural norms and how they affect all our lives. How to discern and appreciate the power of these norms without getting captured by them. How to use language to avoid applying norms to people’s lives.

Wider contexts

How to take account of and make visible the wider social, economic, cultural and political contexts of people’s lives

Outsider Witnessing

How to provide moving and powerful acknowledgements of people that unstick them from repetitive processes. How to use imagery to evoke strong and positive feelings.

Writing Letters and Documents

How to write simple letters that have powerful therapeutic effects and get changes widely recognised.

Re-membering Conversations

How to trace the history of what people value or belive in so that it connects them to important figures from their past. How to make these figures more present in people’s lives in ways that sustain them.

N.B. Courses will aim to respond flexibly to participants and topics covered may vary with each particular group

Entry Requirements

No prior knowledge of narrative therapy or practice is required


The cost of the course is £575 + VAT and does not include accommodation and travel arrangements.

Individuals paying for themselves and unable to set the course fee against tax are eligible for a 20% discount. This should be indicated on your application form and will then be applied to your invoice.

Please note, prices will increase for all application received after January 1st 2020 to £600 + VAT


There are two course formats for Level One training: 1 teaching block of 5 days OR I X 3 day teaching block AND 1 x 2 day teaching block around four weeks apart. Both formats offer the same teaching time and course content. Days commence at 09.30 and finish at 16.30.

Upcoming courses


One teaching block of three days and one of two days

16 – 18 Oct

14 – 15 Nov 2019


One teaching block of five days

21 – 25 Oct 2019


One teaching block of five days

27 – 31 Jan 2020


One teaching block of five days

2 – 6 Mar 2020


One teaching block of five days

12 – 16 Oct 2020


One teaching block of three days and one of two days

  • 29 April – 1 May 2020
  • 4 – 5 June 2020

“Without a doubt the most interesting and well-delivered training I have experienced”

Level One student

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