Grandparenting Route

ACTO background for headers on pages  grandparenting route

Grandparenting Route

The ‘Grandparenting’ route to ACTO Membership is for therapists who have CPD and experience in delivering online therapy – but have not completed an ACTO approved training. It is also for ACTO members who wish to upgrade their Membership level.

We realise that many therapists have been working online for years, maybe since before there were training courses available. For those who fall into this category ACTO has developed a ‘grandparenting’ process.

This is a work in progress. Keep an eye out on different membership levels rolling out. In June 2021 the grandparenting for ACTO professional members went live.

The levels

If the level you want doesn’t appear below, the process has not been finalised.

Please email us to discuss how we can process your application.

ACTO will conduct the grandparenting in-house, reviewing the following:

Below is a short list of what we will be reviewing: 

  1. F2F diplomas
  2. Portfolio of online counselling courses and CPD – to be assessed against ACTO competences
  3. Total of (in the region of) 80 hours study on online therapy
  4. Review the experience of the individual in working with clients online
  5. A supervisor’s report
  6. Essay minimum 1500 words to demonstrate understanding of ACTO competences in own practice;

Your CPD and courses done combined with your online experience must come to 80 hours.

Your essay must show that you understand and practice towards the ACTO competences.

  • The fee for Grandparenting to ACTO Professional Membership is £60; it is non-returnable.   You will also have to pay your membership fee seperately.
  • The ACTO Grandparenting Panel assess the following:
  • F2F diplomas (you need a core F2F certification)
  • Online counselling courses and CPD portfolio
  • Online experience
  • A supervisor’s report
  • Your online practice information pack (e.g. contract, “about me”, assessment forms etc)
  • Write an essay (using ACTO compentences) about your practice
  • Case study (Using ACTO competences)

Case study should:

  • include at least two different clients
  • show examples from actual case work

Marking of the essay and the case study to be assessed against ACTO Competences

Points system of assessment against 10 Competences:

2 points pass; 1 point partial; 0 points fail; 15 points to pass.

After the panel have assessed the portfolio, the applicant will be invited to a 30 minute video meeting to discuss case study.

  • The fee for Grandparenting to ACTO Professional Membership
  • The fee for Grandparenting to ACTO Professional Membership £140 not including membership and is non-returnable.

Upgrading from ACTO Membership to ACTO Professional Membership (for individuals without a top up course):

ACTO will conduct the grandparenting in-house, reviewing the following

  • F2F diplomas (you need a core F2F certification)
  • Online counselling courses and CPD portfolio
  • Online experience
  • A supervisor’s report
  • Your online practice information pack (e.g. contract, “about me”, assessment forms etc)
  • Write an essay (using ACTO compentences) about your practice
  • Case study (Using ACTO competences)

Case study should include at least two different clients

Should show examples from actual case work

Marking of the essay and the case study to be assessed against ACTO Competences

Points system of assessment against 10 ACTO Competences

2 points pass; 1 point partial; 0 points fail; 15 points to pass.

After the panel have assessed the portfolio, the applicant will be invited to a 30 minute video meeting to discuss case study.

  • The fee for Grandparenting to ACTO Professional Membership is £200; it is non-returnable. This includes one year of membership and directory entry.

  1. For applicants with an ACTO OTP ACTO Membership (Level 1) training, ACTO outsources top-up courses to the OTP which provided the original training.

The ACTO Grandparenting Panel and the have OTP agreed

  1. The content of the top-up course, assessments, marking frames etc;
    1. That ACTO Grandparenting panel sample 10% of course graduates.
    1. Upgrading from Level 1 to Level 2 membership attracts a one-off ACTO administrative charge of £25 – but no change of Membership fee until the next renewal date.

An ACTO Senior Professional Member is someone who has demonstrated a significant expertise in online therapy – in addition to the competence shown to become an ACTO Professional Member. 

There are several ways of demonstrating this expertise: 

  1. A practitioner can complete an ACTO Training course – such as: 
  1. An ACTO Online Training Provider Diploma (which will be >250 hours in total); 
  1. An ACTO Supervisor’s course (which will be >130 hours duration); 
  1. An ACTO Specialism course (e.g. CYP Trauma therapy, EMDR (>130 hours); 

This route will be evidenced by a certificate from an ACTO Online Training Provider. 

There is no additional membership fee for upgrading in this manner. 

  1. A practitioner can provide evidence of expertise in online therapy in areas such as: 
  1. Original Research; 
  1. Publications; 
  1. Educational activity such as creating and teaching courses in online therapy; 
  1. Supervision; 
  1. Significant expertise in the development of an aspect of online therapy such as CYP, avatar therapy, EMDR. 

This route will require the practitioner to demonstrate that their expertise has required >130 hours of time specifically dedicated to online therapy (which might be a part of other work). 

The ACTO Grandparenting Panel will negotiate with you an individual way of demonstrating this expertise. 

The fee for upgrading to Senior Professional Membership in this manner is £75 and is non-returnable. 

  1. A practitioner wishing to join ACTO directly as a Senior Professional Member may do so via the Grandparenting Panel. They will have to provide evidence of: 
  1. Core training 
  1. F2F diplomas  
  1. Portfolio of online counselling courses and CPD – to be assessed against ACTO competences  
  1. Total of (in the region of) 100 hours study on online therapy plus evidence of a specialism in online therapy (see B above); or 
  1. Total of over 100 hours of CPD plus 150 hours of online experience 
  1. Review the experience of the individual in working with clients online  
  1. A supervisor’s report  
  1. Information used for online practice information pack [e.g. contract, “about me”, client information requested]  
  1. Essay minimum 1500 words to demonstrate understanding of ACTO competences in own practice;  
  1. Case study between 2500 and 4000 words  
  1. 30-minute Zoom meeting with an assessor to discuss case study and essay. 

Applications will be assessed by the Grandparenting Panel against the ACTO Competences. Further details will be provided on application. The fee for Grandparenting to ACTO Senior Professional Member is £140 and is not refundable. The ACTO Membership fee is also payable. 

Document to be revised in June 2024 

Please contact ACTO if you need more information otherwise please download the form you need here and fill it in. Please return to the grandparenting department.