The theme for this year’s Research Conference is striving for equality, diversity and inclusion in research, practice and policy. We welcome submissions that:

  1. address the theme of equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and focus on counselling, psychotherapy and coaching research related to age, disability, gender, gender re-assignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race and ethnicity, religion and belief, sex and sexual orientation, and wider inclusion issues such as language, learning style, class and socio-economic background, education level and any other relevant topic.

  2. do not directly address the conference theme of equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) but demonstrate that some thinking about EDI has informed either the research design and process or consideration of the research limitations or that the research findings could have future implications for EDI within counselling, psychotherapy and coaching professions.

We welcome abstract submissions from all methodological perspectives and all theoretical orientations, from students, practitioners and experienced researchers alike. We accept submissions for research papers, discussions (in-person only), methods workshops (in-person only), lightning talk, poster presentations and symposia. Unless noted, all submissions can either be delivered online or in-person. An abstract is required for every submission type as they all undergo blind peer review.

All abstracts must be submitted through our online submission form. This form follows a set structure and format to allow you to submit the relevant information and to ensure consistency across all submissions. This enables the peer reviewers to assess the quality of the research against the criteria in a fair and impartial manner.

You should also read the Terms and conditions.

To be successful, your abstract should be written in an appropriately formal and scholarly tone of voice that successfully conveys the quality and rigour of your project. It may be written in the third person or the first person, depending on the specific methodological approach taken in your research. You should prepare your submission in a text document before you complete the form so that you have all the relevant information to hand.

We’ve developed the online form to be as straightforward as possible, but if you do have any difficulties accessing or using it, please contact us at research_conference@bacp.co.uk.

The conference is a not-for-profit event, but all presenters and delegates (both online and in-person) are required to pay a delegate fee and are responsible for their travel and accommodation expenses. The attendance fees for 2022 are still to be confirmed, however it is anticipated that online attendance will attract a lower fee rate than in-person conference attendance. 

1. What happens next? 

After the submission deadline, abstracts are forwarded to a panel of experienced researchers for independent review. You'll be notified of the outcome of the peer review of your submission in early 2022 and will also receive feedback.

If your submission requires amendments, you'll be sent the reviewers’ comments with a deadline for returning the amended abstract. All decisions by the peer review panel are final.

2. Completing the submission form - standard information

When you complete the online form, you will be asked for the following standard information:

  • your details:
    - your name
    - email address for correspondence
    - email address for inclusion in the abstract booklet (optional)
    - telephone number (for use by our office only)
    - affiliation and professional role
  • names of any co-presenters or co-authors
  • title of your session
  • main abstract text (as a text file upload)

We ask for your name, email address and telephone number so that we can contact you about your submission for the conference. We'll only use this information to contact you about your submission and won't share it with any third parties unless you give consent for us to do so in the submission form.

You'll also be asked whether the research was conducted when you were a student or trainee. This is so that we can assess your eligibility for specific research awards.

Your main abstract text will be sent to the peer reviewers. To maintain the integrity of the peer review process, please make sure you don't include any details that might identify you, your co-authors, presenters, panellists or discussants, or your place of work or study. 

All submissions should be a maximum of 400 words (excluding title and sub-headings).

3. Research paper (online or in-person)

This format is suitable for researchers to present completed research projects. Accepted papers are given a 30 minute time slot, normally made up of 20 minutes presentation and 10 minutes for questions and discussion.

Paper presentations are an opportunity to share your research with peers and colleagues, particularly the findings and implications of your work for counselling, psychotherapy and coaching practice.

Paper presentations cannot be used for data collection by presenters.

You should structure your proposal using the following headings:

  • Aim or purpose - what did the research aim to answer?
  • Design or methodology - how did you do the research?
  • Ethical approval - who gave ethical approval for the research?
  • Results or findings - what did you find?
  • Research limitations - how reliable and valid are the findings?
  • Conclusions or implications - what is the take home message?
  • Considerations given to issues of equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Learning objectives - while not compulsory, we recommend that presenters provide up to three learning objectives - see our Guidance on writing learning objectives (pdf)

4. Discussion (in-person only)

A discussion is an opportunity to present research-related work which is not in itself a completed empirical research project. This format would suit researchers who have completed a review of research literature in a particular area and with a clear question.

Alternatively, the discussion format allows researchers to present an overview of research from which they have identified issues and questions relevant to the counselling, psychotherapy, and coaching research community, such as trends in research focus, gaps in activity or methodological developments.

The 30 minute slot should consist of no more than 15 minutes presentation with the remaining time used to facilitate discussion, debate and questions with delegates.

Discussion presentations cannot be used for data collection by presenters.

You should structure your proposal using the following headings:

  • Background and context - summarise the issue(s) for discussion and provide an overview of the relevant questions and debates, ensuring that you link this to relevant research literature.
  • Questions and issues to consider in the session – provide some starting points for delegates and to help structure group discussion.
  • Audience - who will benefit from attending the session? How will the session be of use to conference delegates?
  • Considerations given to issues of equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Learning objectives - while not compulsory, we recommend that presenters provide up to three learning objectives - see our Guidance on writing learning objectives (pdf)

5. Methods workshop (in-person only)

Methods workshops are an opportunity for researchers in the field to contribute to the development of research knowledge and skills in trainees and practitioners. They should introduce a particular method of data collection or analysis, which can include a focus on the ethics involved with researching a particular topic or population.

Workshops should provide opportunities for practical and experiential learning by including exercises or learning materials that allow delegates to practise the method presented. The learning should be rooted in up-to-date research examples of the method presented.

Workshops cannot be used for data collection by presenters or facilitators.

You should structure your proposal using the following headings:

  • Structure and overview of content
  • Target audience - will delegates need prior research knowledge or experience to attend? Is the workshop particularly suitable for trainees or novice researchers?
  • Considerations given to issues of equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Learning outcomes - see our Guidance on writing learning outcomes (pdf)

6. Lightning talk (online/in-person)

Lightning talks are an opportunity to present early development work of a research project and gain friendly constructive feedback from peers and colleagues. This format is ideal for anyone doing counselling or psychotherapy research that is yet to have findings and who would like feedback on developing ongoing work.

Accepted lightning talks have a 10 minute presentation slot and will normally be part of a larger session including other lightning talks. There will be an opportunity to ask questions at the end of the main session.

Rapid paper presentations cannot be used for data collection by presenters.

You should structure your submission using the following headings:

  • Aim or purpose - what did the research aim to answer?
  • Design and methodology - how did you do the research?
  • Ethical approval - who gave ethical approval for the research? If ethical approval is yet to be received, please briefly explain how, and when, you intend to obtain ethical approval.
  • Planned analysis of results – how do you intend to explore your results?
  • Challenges – what has been difficult or surprising so far and what, in particular, would you like feedback on in the session?
  • Considerations given to issues of equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Learning objectives - while not compulsory, we recommend that presenters provide up to three learning objectives - see our Guidance on writing learning objectives (pdf)

7. Poster (online/in-person)

Posters are an opportunity to share your research with peers and colleagues in a pictorial and eye-catching way. Posters are displayed together in a central conference room so that conference delegates can speak with poster presenters about their research. Each poster presenter is also given a one minute slot to introduce their research to all the conference delegates.

Presenters are also invited to provide a digital version for inclusion in the online poster exhibition which will run from the beginning of the conference to the end of October 2022.

The poster presentation format is suitable for completed research at all levels and also for ongoing research. New poster presenters may find our Poster guidelines (pdf) helpful.

You should structure your proposal using the following headings:

  • Aim or purpose - what did the research aim to answer?
  • Design or methodology - how did you do the research?
  • Ethical approval - who gave ethical approval for the research?
  • Results or findings - what did you find?
  • Research limitations - how reliable and valid are the findings?
  • Conclusions or implications - what is the take home message?
  • Considerations given to issues of equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Learning objectives - while not compulsory, we recommend that presenters provide up to three learning objectives - see our Guidance on writing learning objectives (pdf)

8. Symposium (online/in-person)

A symposium brings together a themed collection of studies in a larger programme of research, or similar studies from various researchers.

For a symposium, you'll need to submit an overview abstract, giving details of what connects the symposium papers. You'll also need to submit separate abstracts for the symposium papers. There should be a minimum of three and a maximum of four separate papers submitted, plus the overview. Although a symposium is regarded as a whole, each paper will be peer reviewed separately.

Symposium presentations cannot be used for data collection by presenters.

As well as the standard information above, you'll be asked for the email addresses of each of the paper presenters.

You should structure your overview submission using the following headings:

  • Aims of the symposium
  • Contribution of each symposium paper to the overall theme
  • Implications of the symposium theme for counselling and psychotherapy theory, research and practice
  • Considerations given to issues of equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Learning objectives - while not compulsory, we recommend that presenters provide up to three learning objectives - see our Guidance on writing learning objectives (pdf)

You should structure the abstracts for each of the papers using these headings:

  • Aim or purpose - what did the research aim to answer?
  • Design or methodology - how did you do the research?
  • Ethical approval - who gave ethical approval for the research?
  • Results or findings - what did you find?
  • Research limitations - how reliable and valid are the findings?
  • Conclusions or implications - what is the take home message?

9. Online submission form

Please send your submission using our online submission form.