from our College Principal Richard Blackwell
2018 has been a big year for the NCA as we celebrated our 30th anniversary since our first intake of students in 1988. We marked the occasion with a full day of fascinating talks followed by a great party, to which all our staff, students and graduates were invited. It was great to see so many NCA people come together, with graduates from our first ever student group mingling with current students – including students studying on our online courses. It was also a year when we created a new partnership with London South Bank University to validate our degree programmes. Validation will mean that students joining us in 2019 will receive their degree from London South Bank on successful completion of their course.
Anniversaries are a good time for reflection and one achievement we are particularly proud of is the success of our online MSc courses for practitioners. We introduced these courses in 2014 and they are now well established with a growing reputation both in the UK, via the University validation, and worldwide through the Bologna Process and the Lisbon Recognition Convention. Through these courses students are discovering innovative and creative ways to develop their practice, and building skills in research and scholarship, leading to publications and engagement in debate at the highest level. By building connections in the global practitioner community we are also contributing to the worldwide development of individuals and of the complementary medicine professions as a whole. I am convinced that the more we can work with and communicate the evidence base and our traditions of practice with confidence, skill and deep understanding, the more our therapies will thrive and bring their benefits to ever more people. By working together internationally we can also have the greatest influence on public opinion and health policy.
Over the years of running the online MSc courses we’ve also learnt a lot about helping students to succeed and the secret seems to be plenty of contact between our online students and their tutors. The courses combine a number of ways of working, from e-learning materials to forum discussions, video conference tutorials and sessions with guest presenters who are experts in their field. All of these approaches are very effective in developing strong bonds of support, sharing and humour among the student groups and allowing each individual to flourish and develop. The flexibility within the courses also allows you as busy practitioners to study alongside working in practice.
I do hope the information on our website and in our prospectus will inspire you to join one of our three online courses and take up the opportunity to develop your practice and your research skills, and gain an MSc. To find out more, do join us for one of our regular online question and answer sessions.