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Therapeutic groups

Take a look at the groups and courses you could get involved in.

Mindfulness for students. Introduction and four week course: Being a student can be really tough and today students are under more pressure than ever before, particularly in the current pandemic climate we are finding ourselves living in.

Mindfulness training gives you tools to help you remain calm, sustain your attention and be able to focus more consistently and appropriately, particularly in the face of these demands and pressures. Most UK universities offer mindfulness training to their students as part of their wellbeing including LJMU. There will be an introductory mindfulness session, followed by a four week mindfulness course should students wish to deepen their knowledge and experience.

Self compassion course: Ever heard of the saying “you are your own worst critic”?  Most of us can be very hard on ourselves, particularly if we feel we don’t measure up in some way whether it be career, relationships, study, body image, etc., we can have a tendency to criticise ourselves for the slightest thing. People seem to find it hard and some almost impossible, to treat or speak to themselves in a kind and caring manner. On the self-compassion course we will look at what self-compassion is all about, why it is so vital for our wellbeing and why we are great at self-criticism but struggle when it comes to self-kindness. If you identify with being your own harshest critic then join us on the journey from self-criticism to self-kindness. For more information please contact

PhD student group: Being a PhD student can be extremely demanding and stressful. Very often you are working alone, managing your own timetable and working hours. The LJMU PhD student group is a chance to get together with other PhD students also studying at LJMU. Facilitated by a member of the LJMU Counselling team, the group will provide an opportunity for you to share experiences and concerns. The group meets online twice monthly Tuesdays 5.30-6.30pm. For further information please contact

Bibliotherapy group (Book My Mind): This group has been developed to complement the ‘Book My Mind’ initiative.  The Counselling Team in connection with Library Services and with support from the Student Union has introduced its own collection of therapeutic books. Throughout the year the Counselling Service will host online group events focusing on a particular book/subject. You do not need to have read the book to attend. This group will be a way of exploring your feelings around a particular book/subject with a chance to voice your thoughts and an opportunity to provide support to others. Where appropriate some groups may also be attended by members of local organisations/community. For further information on the group please contact and for further information on ‘Book My Mind’ please visit our bibliotherapy page.

Community Connect – Social group for care-experienced and estranged students: Community Connect aims to bring together students from across LJMU who are care-experienced or are estranged from their families to meet with other students, support settling into university life and help with staying connected in these challenging times.

Sessions will be online initially due to current Covid19 restrictions but the intention is very much to be able to meet regularly in person in the future. The group will be facilitated by Phil Bakstad and Julie Irving from Student Advice and Wellbeing Services and you can choose to participate as much as you feel comfortable with. Session will take place fortnightly on alternate Wednesdays at 3pm via Zoom.

In the first session, we want to hear from you about what you’re enjoying in semester one, discuss what people have found difficult and, as a group, explore what we can do to get the most from your student life. 

All students who identify as care-experienced or estranged are welcome to attend. You can contact Phil for more info by emailing or book your spot via the website.