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About Prof William West

William undertook an MA, followed by a PhD, in Counselling Studies under the supervision of Professor John McLeod at the University of Keele. He then joined the University of Manchester as a Lecturer in Counselling Studies in 1995, where he is now a Reader in Counselling Studies. Since 2012, William has been a Visiting Professor in Counselling and Spirituality at the University of Central Lancashire. William is probably most noted for his academic interest in Counselling and Spirituality, and for his work with Masters, Professional Doctorate and PhD students.


William teaches on the Doctorate in Professional Studies in Counselling and Psychotherapy Studies, and will be available for PhD supervision.


  • The role of Spirituality in Counselling, Psychotherapy and Pastoral Care;
  • The training, supervision and professional development of therapists;
  • Culture, human lives and therapy;
  • Research methodologies that are congruent with therapeutic practice.


  • £500 from the Alec Van Berchem Charitable Trust and £300 from the Quaker Higher Education Trust towards doctoral studies in 1992-1995 into 'Integrating psychotherapy and healing';
  • £1840 from the Nuffield Foundation, £1000 from the British Academy, and £250 from the Westward Trust for research into the 'Impact of therapists spiritual beliefs on their work', 1996-1997;
  • £8550 from the University of  Manchester Research Support Fund and £1036 from the Faculty of Education Research Development Fund, University of  Manchester, for research into the 'Forgiveness in counselling and pastoral care' project that commenced September 1999;
  • £1250 from ESI Research Development Fund, University of Manchester, in September 2002 to pilot research into helpful and hindering events in counselling supervision;
  • £1250 from ESI Research Development Fund, University of Manchester, in March 2004 to pilot research into informal prayer groups in schools.

PhD and Professional Doctorate Supervision

William had supervised 24 successful PhD students and 23 professional doctorate students to successful completion. Two of William’s PhD students have attracted ESRC studentships, one has gained a Commonwealth scholarship and two have been awarded University of Manchester studentships. 


  • Regular external examiner for PhDs and Doctorates
  • Member of the editorial board for the Canadian Journal of Counselling and Spirituality
  • Peer-Reviewer for Counselling and Psychotherapy Research Journal
  • Peer-Reviewer for British Journal of Guidance and Counselling
  • Peer-Reviewer for Psychotherapy Research
  • Book-Proposal Reviewer for Hodder Publications
  • Book-Proposal Reviewer for Palgrave Macmillan Publishers
  • Book-Proposal Reviewer for Sage Publications

Published Work

Authored Books

Hanley, T., Lennie, C., and West, W., (2012) Introducing Counselling and Psychotherapy Research, published by Sage.

West, W., (2004) Spiritual Issues in Therapy, Relating Experience to Practice, published by Palgrave MacMillan.

West, W., (2000) Psychotherapy and Spirituality, published by Sage.

Edited Books

West, W., (Ed) (2011) Exploring Therapy, Spirituality and Healing, 252 pages, Palgrave Macmillian.

Moodley, R., and West, W., (Eds) (2005) Integrating traditional healing practices into counselling and psychotherapy, 348 pages, published by Sage North America.

Book Chapters

West, W., (2012) ‘Counselling’ in The Oxford textbook on Spirituality and health, edited by Christina Puchalski and Mark Cobb, Oxford University Press.

West, W., (2011) ‘Religion and spirituality’ in The Sage handbook of counselling and psychotherapy, 3rd edition, edited by Colin Feltham, London: Sage, pages 49-53.

West, W., (2010) ‘Counselling, psychotherapy and religion, in Anti-discriminatory counselling practice (2nd Edition), edited by Colin Lago and Barbara Smith, Sage.

West, W., (2010) ‘On the Art of becoming a Cultural Chameleon: Pittu Laungani, Western Counsellors and Non-Western Clients’, in Bridging East-West Psychology and Counselling: exploring the work of Pittu Languani, edited by Roy Moodley, Aanchal Rai and Waseem Alladin, Sage, India.

West, W., (2009) Training matters, in Relational ethics in practice: narratives from counselling and psychotherapy, edited by Lynne Gabriel and Roger Casemore, Routledge.

West, W., (2008) Spiritual dimensions, in The therapeutic relationship: perspectives and themes, edited by Sheila Haugh and Stephen Paul, PCCS Books.

Jenkins, C., and West, W., (2006) ‘Honouring spirituality in therapy, a dialogue’ in Spirituality and Counselling: experiential and theoretical perspectives, edited by Judy Moore and Campbell Purton, PCCS Books.

West, W., (2004) ‘No future without spirituality’, Lifelong Learning and the Democratic Imagination, edited by Peter Willis, and Pam Carden, Post Pressed: Australia.

West, W., (2004) ‘Points of departure: a humanistic-spiritual view’, Carl Rogers counsels a black client, race and culture in person-centred counselling, edited by Roy Moodley, Colin Lago and Anissa Talahite, PCCS Books.

West, W., (2003) ‘Humanistic Integrative Spiritual Psychotherapy with a Sufi Convert’, Spiritual Strategies Case Studies, edited by Scott Richards and Allen Bergin, published by American Psychological Association.

West, W., (2003) ‘Counselling clients with myositis’, Living with Myositisfacts, feelings and future hopes, edited by Jenny Fenton, Thoughtful Publications, London, pp.168-172.

West, W., (2001) ‘Critical subjectivity: use of self in counselling research’, The BACP Counselling Reader Volume 2, edited by Pat Milner and Stephen Palmer, published by BACP/Sage, pp. 487-492.

West, W., (2001) ‘Counselling, psychotherapy and religion’, Spirituality and Psychotherapy edited by Simon Spooner-King and Craig Newnes, PCCS Books, pp. 5-10. 

West, W., (2000) 'Supervision difficulties and dilemmas for counsellors and psychotherapists around healing and spirituality', Taking Supervision Forward: Dilemmas, Insights and Trends, edited by Colin Feltham and Barbara Lawton, Sage, pp. 113-125.

West, W., (2000) 'Eclecticism and integration in humanistic therapy', Integrative and eclectic counselling and psychotherapy edited by Ray Woolfe and Stephen Palmer, published by Sage,  pp.218-232.

West, W., (1998) 'Counselling as a spiritual process', The Witness and Vision of Therapists, edited by Colin Feltham, published by Sage, pp. 158-179.

West, W., (1994) 'Post Reichian therapy', Innovative Therapy, A Handbook, edited by David Jones, Open University Press, pp. 131-146.

Peer-Reviewed Publications

West, W., and Christodoulidi, F., (2013) Traditional healing and modern therapy, Journal of Critical Psychology, Counselling and Psychotherapy, 13 (4) 216-223.

West, W., (2013) Making methodological choice in qualitative counselling research, Counselling Psychology Review 28(3) 52-58.

West, W., (2011) Using the tacit dimension in qualitative research in counselling psychology, Counselling Psychology Review 26(4) 40-45.

Edge, D., and West, W., (2011) Mental health and ‘The big society’: where do counselling psychologists and therapists fit in? Counselling Psychology Review 26(2) 17-23.

West, W., (2010) Applying the Johari window to qualitative therapy research interviews, Journal of Critical Psychology, Counselling and Psychotherapy, 10 (4) 221-227.

Lennie, C., and West, W., (2010) ‘Dilemmas in counselling psychology research’ Counselling Psychology Quarterly 23(1). 83-89.

West, W., (2009) ‘The (human) spirit in relationship’ Journal of Critical Psychology, Counselling and Psychotherapy, 8(3) 143-147.

West, W., and Byrne, J., (2009) ‘Some ethical concerns about counselling research’ Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 22(3) 309-318.

West, W., (2009) ‘Situating the researcher in qualitative psychotherapy research around spirituality’ Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 22(2) 187-195.

West, W., (2007) The role of the researcher and methodological choices: pragmatics, Russell, Einstein and Newton, Journal of Critical Psychology, Counselling and Psychotherapy, 7(3) 168-174.

West, W., (2007) Kenyan students’ expectations on beginning a Masters in Counselling Studies course, British Journal of Guidance and Counselling, 35(2) 237-245.

West, W., (2007) Counselling, psychotherapy and traditional healing, Journal of Critical Psychology, Counselling and Psychotherapy, 7(2) 107-114.

West, W., and Hanley, (2006) Technically incompetent or generally misguided: learning from a failed counselling research project, Counselling Psychotherapy Research, 6(3) 209-212.

West, W., (2006) ‘Being gripped by supervision: a researcher’s story, Journal of Critical Psychology, Counselling and Psychotherapy, 6(4) 234-237.

West, W., and Clark, V., (2004) ‘Learnings from a qualitative study into counselling supervision; listening to supervisor and supervisee’, Counselling Psychotherapy Research, 4(2) 20-26.

West, W., and Laungani, P., (2004) ‘Pittu Laungani in conversation with William West’, British Journal of Guidance and Counselling 32(3) 419-435.  

West, W., (2003) ‘An Introduction to the Symposium on Counselling and Armed Conflicts’, British Journal of Guidance and Counselling, 31(4) 355-357.

West, W., and McLeod, J., (2003) ‘Cultural landscapes in counselling and psychotherapy: Introduction to the Theme Section’, Counselling and Psychotherapy Research, 3(2) 83-85.

West, W., (2003) ‘The culture of psychotherapy supervision’, Counselling and Psychotherapy Research 3(2) 123-127.

West, W., and Mansor Abu Talib, (2002) ‘Hearing what participants are really saying: the influence of researcher cultural identity’, Counselling and Psychotherapy Research, 2(4), 253-258.

West, W., (2002) ‘Ethical dilemmas in counselling and counselling research’ British Journal of Guidance and Counselling, 30 (3) 261-268.

West, W., (2002) ‘Being present to the client’s spirituality’ Journal of Critical Psychology, Counselling and Psychotherapy, 2 (2) 86-93.

West, W., (2001) ‘Issues related to the use of forgiveness in counselling and psychotherapy’, British Journal of Guidance and Counselling, 29(4) 415-423.

West, W., (2001) ‘Beyond grounded theory: the use of a heuristic approach to qualitative research’, Counselling and Psychotherapy Research 1(2) 126-131.

Mackay, H., West, W., Moorey, J., Guthrie, E., Margison, F., (2001) ‘Counsellors’ experiences of changing their practice: learning the psychodynamic-interpersonal model of therapy’Counselling and Psychotherapy Research, 1(1) 229-39

West, W., (2000) ‘Counselling, psychotherapy and religion’, Changes, an International Journal of Psychology and Psychotherapy,18(3) 146-152.

West, W., (1998) ‘Developing practice in a context for religious faith: a study of psychotherapists who are Quakers’, British Journal of Guidance and Counselling, 26(3)  365-375.

West, W., (1998) 'Passionate research: heuristics and the use of self in counselling research', Changes, an International Journal of Psychology and Psychotherapy, 16(1) 60-66. 

West, W., (1997) 'Integrating counselling, psychotherapy and healing: an inquiry into counsellors and psychotherapists whose works includes healing', British Journal of Guidance and Counselling,25(3) 291-312.

West, W., (1996) 'Using human inquiry groups in counselling research', British Journal of Guidance and Counselling, 24(3) 347-355.

West, W., (1994) 'Some clients' experience of bodywork psychotherapy', Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 7(3), 287-303.

Professional journal papers

West, W., (2012) Addressing spiritual and religious issues in counselling and psychotherapy, Thresholds: Counselling with Spirit, Winter, 12-17.

West, W., (2011) ‘Different voices’ Thresholds: Counselling with Spirit Autumn, pp. 30-31.

West, W., (2011) ‘What is spirituality… and how does it relate to therapy? Thresholds: Counselling with Spirit Spring, pp. 6-7.

West, W., and Biddington, T., (2009) Towards spiritually skilled counselling, Thresholds: Counselling with Spirit, Winter 11-15.

West, W., (2009) ‘We never have music!, Thresholds: Counselling with Spirit Summer, pp. 7-12.

West, W., and Cavalcante Jr, F., (2008) ‘William West and Francisco Cavalcante Jr in dialogue’, Thresholds: Counselling with Spirit, Autumn, pp. 7-10.

Biddington, T., and West, W., (2008) ‘Spiritual Direction and Counselling’, Thresholds: Counselling with Spirit, Summer, pp. 3-8.

West, W., (2008) ‘Quaker approaches to counselling in Britain’, Pendulum, The journal of MDF the Bipolar Organisation, 24(2) 8-9.

West, W., (2007) ‘Spiritual suffering’ Thresholds: Counselling with Spirit, Summer, pp. 2.

West, W., (2007) ‘If I could… counselling, spirituality and pastoral care’, Thresholds: Counselling with Spirit, Spring, pp.16.

West, W., (2007) ‘Mind, Body, Spirit questionnaire – the results so far’, Thresholds: Counselling with Spirit, Spring, pp.5.

West, W., (2006) ‘Living with my father’s Second World War stories, The Friends Quarterly 35(10) 6-10.

Feltham, C., and West, W., (2005) ‘Impressions of Kenya and its counselling scene’ Therapy Today, 16(9) 39-41.

West, W., (2001) ‘Retreats’ Newsletter of the Association for Pastoral and Spiritual Care and Counselling, August, pp. 6-7.

West, W., (2000) 'Some of my spiritual experiences’, The Friends Quarterly, 32(1) pp. 16-19.

West, W., (1999) 'The Spiritual Space in Counselling', in Counselling and Creation: Proceedings of the 6th International Counselling Conference Centre for Studies in Counselling, Durham University, pp. 105-112.

West, W., (1999) 'What is spirituality?', Newsletter of the Association for Pastoral and Spiritual Care and Counselling, November, pp. 5.

West, W., (1999) 'Working with spirituality in therapy' Cahoots, pp. 33, 44. Autumn.

West, W., (1998) 'Critical subjectivity: use of self in counselling research', Counselling, 9(3) pp. 228-230.

West, W., (1998) 'Spirituality at work', The Friends Quarterly, 31(3) pp. 138-142.

West, W., (1996) 'Counsellors and psychotherapists who also heal', Healing Review, 63, pp. 26-27.

West, W., (1995) 'The relevance of Quakerism for counsellors', The Friends' Quarterly, 28(5), pp. 222- 22.


  • PhD Counselling Studies (Keele)
  • MA Counseling Studies (Keele)
  • BSc (Hons) Computer Science (Manchester)


  • MBACP Registered Accredited Counsellor/Psychotherapist
  • Fellow of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (FBACP)
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)