Working With and Facilitating Groups

Course overview

This course is aimed at staff from a range of disciplines and teams currently facilitating a group or with the aspiration to start and facilitate a group. It will provide an opportunity to develop and increase the skills and understanding of those who are already experienced group facilitators but equally an opportunity for those wishing to run a group, to learn how they might do this with others, sharing learning and experiences over the duration of the course. 

This course will focus on thinking about group processes, the dynamics of groups at different stages of development, the position individuals can take up or find themselves allocated, consciously or unconsciously within the group, including that of the facilitator.

It will consider issues that facilitators need to consider; the dynamic context in which the group takes place and the practicalities of planning, starting and continuing with a group, the group purpose, the composition of a group, the group facilitator’s role alone or with another, gender/race/sexuality/diversity, boundaries, group agreement, expectations, attendance, timings, venue and other boundary issues; be the group face to face, or taking place over the internet. 

The programme will reflect upon multi-disciplinary working within teams and groups of staff or service users/patients. The importance of setting up suitable group supervision before the group commences, will be discussed.

The programme is divided into three strands:

  • Theory, practicalities and group discussion.
  • A work discussion session at which each participant has the opportunity to discuss  their group or proposed group and
  • Participation in an experiential group, as a group member.

By the end of the course, participants will have:

  • Explored the practicalities of starting and continuing a group


  • Reviewed their current group(s) and experiences, learning through  experience with others
  • Discussed different types of purpose for groups and their practical and clinical issues
  • Considered the referral process, reviewed referrals to the group, the composition of the group, the importance of a group agreement and desired expectations
  • Reflected on self and group boundaries, whether face to face or online
  • Identified appropriate facilitation interventions that can maximise contributions within the group
  • Explored key concepts such as the individual unconscious and the group unconscious when working with groups
  • Gained an understanding of relevant therapeutic group theory, to use and reflect upon when working with groups
  • Analysed group process through film and visual scenarios
  • Examined difficulties that can arise when working with groups in person and online
  • Experienced being in different groups
  • Identified the need for evaluation and feedback from service users
  • Understood the importance of regular supervision to review the group

The course takes place over ten weekday mornings. Course members are expected to fully attend all the training days for the entire session. This is to ensure that all participants can gain the maximum from everyone’s full participation in the programme.

During the course teaching activities, participants are expected to be in a private space, where they can engage with other participants and live course learning, without interruption for the duration of the session and with access to a device with a webcam that is turned on.

There is an expectation that participants will set aside sufficient time to read the designated course reader and other set weekly readings. These will be accessible via the Tavistock library, through an electronic platform called Moodle. This will require a minimum of two and a half hours, set aside for reading each week.  Participants will also have access to additional reading if they wish to further explore the areas discussed.

We anticipate that participants will come from the NHS, social care, local authorities, education and the voluntary and charity sector, art, music and drama psychotherapists, clinical psychologists, nurses and other medical professionals, occupational therapists, social work managers, Social Care, Children and Families, NHS teams, Headteachers, Educational professionals and many more. 

We will draw upon the members' rich experience from across these varied settings and roles within the programme, to explore the development and dynamics of groups in different contexts.

Peter Griffiths MA, BSc (Hons), SRN, RMN, Cassel Cert, IPTUK IPT Practitioner, PFHEA, MBPC,  Consultant Nurse, Couple psychoanalytic psychotherapist and IPT therapist, The Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust

Peter Griffiths has over 40 years' experience of working as a Nurse and Therapist in the NHS and in Higher Education. He has over many years developed different forms of tri-modal training for child and adolescent mental health workers and was awarded HENCEL Trainer and Inter professional course of the year awards in 2015. 

He has a deep and evolved interest in all forms of experiential and group learning, designing and directing Group Relations conferences, as well as working as a staff consultant on them within the UK and abroad. He practices as a Couple psychoanalytic psychotherapist and works part-time as a Nurse Consultant, Therapist and Supervisor in the Directorate of Children, Young People and Families (CYAF), at The Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, where he specialises in working with couples, parents and families, using a variety of individual and group therapies.

Stephanie Segal, MA, FCIPD, MBACP, BACP Registrant, MBACP Coaching, MASIIP, MEMCC UK, MAC, MISPSO,  EMCC European Accreditation (EIA) Senior Practitioner, Opus Associate, Organisational consultant, coach, supervisor and visiting lecturer at the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust and Director Stephanie Segal Consultancy

Stephanie is an organisational consultant, leadership development, executive coach supervisor and facilitator, director of Stephanie Segal Consultancy. She is a visiting lecturer at the Tavistock and Portman, she facilitates a supervision group, Working with Groups CPD and other programmes. Stephanie studied for an MA at the Tavistock and Portman and has been a visiting lecturer to the Working with Groups, Strategic Leadership and Management in the Public Sector, Team Facilitation and Conflict Resolution in the NHS, Engaging with BME and Refugee Communities, Supervision, PG, MA and CPD programmes. 

Stephanie works from a systems psychodynamic framework approach. She is an external supervisor  and executive coach to a range of different public sector professionals and  facilitates Action Learning Sets and leadership development programmes nationally and internationally with specific expertise in the NHS, Social Care and Education. She has carried out consultancy project focusing on team work, managing conflict, managing change, leadership development and managing difference.

Stephanie has a Social Care and Children, Young People and Families background and has specific expertise in Mental Health, Social Care, Children and Families, Learning Disabilities, the NHS, Education, Housing and voluntary organisations. Stephanie was a Cohort Director for the NHS Leadership Academy Elizabeth Garrett Anderson MA programme.

Good balance of taught/theoretical content and reading along with professional practice discussion and experiential group.

Very informative, good resources made available, interesting discussions and opportunity for personal and professional growth. 

Very well thought out and applied. Format provides great ‘in and out’ of group experience.

Full of information both theoretical and experiential, a very high quality course  – felt like opening a Pandora box as there is so much more to learn/study/experience.

What did you enjoy most from the course ?

The experiential group, the opportunities for self reflection and discussion, small groups discussions, learnt a lot, a great course.

Having three different kinds of spaces within the day for both personal and professional learning and meeting such a diverse group of participants and learning from them.

I will certainly take many aspects of learning back to work with me and it will inform my thinking and leadership style, when facilitating groups. Other colleagues of mine are already asking about the course and are interested in undertaking it.

I have attended trainings, courses and CPD at the Tavistock for nearly 10 years and this has been the most satisfying 10 weeks of all of them.

This course will be delivered remotely using Zoom. This is very easy and safe to use regardless of your level of IT skill.
You will need a device with a microphone and camera together with a suitably fast internet connection. Although mobile devices and tablets can be used, we recommend the use of laptop or desktop PC for the best experience. Some devices provided by employers may have restrictions in place. Please use this test link ( to check your set up before booking.
Additional resources for this course will be provided using Moodle, our virtual learning environment.
You will be sent joining instructions including all the necessary login links, passwords and guidance on how to use the relevant functionality about a week before the course start date.

Should you have any concerns about the accessibility of remote delivery please contact us at to discuss how we can best help you.

The course will last 35 hours in total.

There will be 10 sessions:

Mondays from 9.30am to 1.00pm

On the following dates:

  • 5th, 12th, and 19th September,
  • 3rd, 24th and 31st October,
  • 7th, 14th, 21st and 28th November 2022

If you are interested in joining this course, please fill in the following background form and return it to Max Fendrich at


Included in your course fee, you will receive full online membership of the Tavistock’s internationally-renowned library for the duration of your course.

Our friendly and knowledgeable library team will help to support you through your specialist CPD course, whatever your level of professional or academic experience. You will have access to an extensive range of eBooks, online journals, all the relevant key databases and our specialist audio-visual collection plus reference access to all our print books. Our Information Skills Trainer has made lots of material available on Moodle to help you to navigate our comprehensive electronic collections.  PCs and photocopiers are also available for your use.

Library staff curate various online resources, such as Audio/Video Playlists and Subject Updates, to help you stay on top of latest developments, as well as regularly sharing helpful news and research on Twitter and Facebook. Find out more on the Library website:

Certificate of attendance
Course length:
4 months
Monday mornings
Admission status:
September 2022 to November 2022

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