Professional doctorate in advanced practice and research: consultation and the organisation (D10D)

Course overview

This course will provide you with an advanced and sophisticated education in organisational consultancy in a stimulating learning community. It is designed to equip you, as a professional consultant, to work with the complexities of contemporary organisations in consulting and researching using a systems-psychodynamic framework. You will complete an original research project in an area of relevance to the profession and contribute to the knowledge base in the field.

It is uniquely arranged with other professional doctorates covering social work and social care and systemic therapy, making for a multidisciplinary student body and enriching learning experience.

Want to hear more? Join our open evening session on Tuesday 7 December and meet the course team! Book your place here.

There are two taught modules per year: Research Methods and Advanced Practice. 

The Research Methods module involves formal research teaching including lectures, seminars, research conferences and individual research supervision. 

Advanced Practice includes presentations from a range of expert practitioners in the field, practice-based and theoretical seminars, peer discussions and individual practice supervision. The emphasis throughout is on the development and integration of theory and its practical application to consultancy and research in context.

The programme will equip you with the skills to design and execute original applicable research informed by professional practice. It will enable you to contribute to a growing body of knowledge about organisational consultancy from a systems psychodynamic perspective and give you an advanced academic understanding of the field.

Research Methods is taught as part of the Tavistock and Portman's integrated doctorate programme in advanced practice and research. This will give you the opportunity to experience peer learning and support and the benefits of participation in a stimulating research community. Towards the end of year two you will finalise the design of your research project which you will then carry out with the support of supervisors and peer discussion. You may take a minimum of two years and a maximum of four years to complete your research and write your thesis. During this time, you will have the benefit of access to the Tavistock and Portman and the University of Essex online seminars and web-based learning opportunities.

This course will enable you to continue your professional and academic development to an advanced level in order to meet the increasingly complex needs of organisations  and deepen your understanding of intrinsic organisational issues. You will leave the course with the capacity to develop others in organisational consultancy.

What our students say

“Involvement with this programme has enabled me to think much more clearly and analytically about my professional work with clients, and also to confidently take on consultancy roles of increasing scale and complexity. I have found the research component particularly rewarding and exciting, as it has enabled me to develop a proposal that opens up new horizons in my intellectual and professional development.” 

"The Doctorate certainly does what it says on the box. I feel much more able to take up my role as a consultant, and near the end of completing my research, have been offered several senior positions in the consultancy world. Delighted.”

“Teaching is consistently high quality; the course design is a strength.”

“As an independent practitioner I have been able to think more clearly about my work.

This course is for you if you are an organisational consultant who has prior education and experience in working from a systems-psychodynamic approach to consultancy and you wish to question and extend your skills and deepen your knowledge. Organisational consultants looking to move into positions requiring sophisticated capacities to research organisational phenomena will also enjoy this course.

In order to undertake this course, we ask that you:

  • have either completed our Masters in Consulting and leading in organisations: psychodynamic and systemic approaches course, or have a Masters degree or equivalent in consulting to organisations or a relevant subject.
  • are engaged in work as a consultant - either employed or self-employed, or as an employee within an organisation with managerial responsibilities. As the teaching methods rely on learning from experience at emotional, social and intellectual levels, a capacity to work in this way is essential. We welcome applications from those with equivalent experience. 


Part-time, two days per month, on a Thursday and Friday.


Knowledge and understanding of research methods is assessed via a critical literature review in Year 1 and by the submission of a research proposal in Year 2, which may then form the basis  for the research project and final thesis of 40,000 words.

Students are required to carry out a minimum of four consultancy assignments throughout the first two years of the programme, in which they will either work alone or, where appropriate (and where the student has a primary role), as part of a team.  Three of these assignments are written up as detailed case studies and are assessed on the basis of application of an ethical and client centred systems psychodynamic approach, understanding of organisational function and self-reflective capacity.   Other assignments recorded as field notes as part of a practice log.  This log is then appended to a Professional Development summary report which forms the last assignment and which is assessed on the basis of a reflective self appraisal, consultancy  mindset  and the range of work presented.    

Doctorate students are invited to participate in the Advanced Practice programme for a third year and on successful completion of an additional two case studies will be eligible for the Tavistock Qualification in Consulting (TQC).


Thursday 7th October

Friday 8th October

Thursday 11th November

Friday 12th November

Thursday 9th December

Friday 10th December


Thursday 6th January

Friday 7th January

Thursday 10th February

Friday 11th February

Thursday 10th March

Friday 11th March

Thursday 21st April

Friday 22nd April

Thursday 19th May

Friday 20th May.


7/8 October 

11/12 November 

9/10 December 


6/7 Jan 

20/11 February

10/11 March 

21/22 April 

19/20 May 

16/17 June.

Karen izod edit

Karen Izod

Karen Izod, D.Phil, MA., CQSW has been working as an independent consultant to organisational change and professional development, as an educator and researcher for over 30 years.  She has a long-standing association with the Tavistock & Portman Trust and with the Tavistock Institute of Human Relations where she is a founder and former director of their professional development programmes in consulting for change, and in coaching.

Karen has extensive experience in consulting to organisations both nationally and internationally across wide ranging sectors: financial services and banking, health and social care, government, professional practice and arts-based organisations. 

She is concerned with the way individuals and working groups build and sustain connection with each other, so as to bring more effective and creative selves to their work. This relational practice involves a continuing interplay between research, consultancy and educational practices to support change, and the awareness gained from experiential forms of learning and the arts.

Karen has an an Advanced training in Social Work from the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, and a Master’s degree in Advanced Organisational Consultancy from the Tavistock Institute.  Her doctorate from the University of West of England develops theory in the understanding of group and organisational processes from a relational systems-psychoanalytic perspective.

Karen is additionally visiting tutor at Henley Business School on their MSc Coaching and Behavioural Change and a Visiting Research Fellow at University of West of England where she has been working on themes of attachment and representation. 


£ 7,210 per year


£ 14,420 per year

For more information about how Brexit may affect your fee status, please see Brexit information for EU & EEA and Swiss Nationals

Please note that course fees are subject to a 3% or CPI uplift each year, whichever is greater.

We are happy offer a range of ways to pay your fees, as well as some funding for specific courses. 

Professional Doctorate
Course length:
4 years
The Tavistock Centre, London
Admission status:
Course lead:
Dr. Karen Izod

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