Dr. Gillian Rayner

Reader and Principal Lecturer in Counselling and Psychotherapy

School of Community Health and Midwifery

Brook Building, BB321

+44 (0) 1772 89 5599


Subject Areas: Allied Health, Psychology, Education, Nursing and Midwifery

Gill is an Adult and Mental Health Nurse, Integrative Counsellor and BABCP accredited Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist. She is currently discipline lead for Counselling and Psychotherapy at UCLan. She has over 18 years of Academic experience and leadership in Higher Education and 30 years of Psychotherapy and Nursing. She is Reader in Counselling and Psychotherapy with specific research interests in self-harm, interpersonal processes, Psychotherapist self-care and compassion.

Google Scholar


  • 2011  PhD University of Salford, 2011


  • 2001  Post Graduate Certificate in Education at Salford University
  • 2000  Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy Training, (Post Graduate Diploma) Chester College
  • 1998  Foundation year in Group Analysis, Red House, Manchester
  • 1995  Master of Arts in Counselling (BAC Recognised course, Manchester University)
  • 1991  Registered Mental Nurse
  • 1988  Registered General Nurse

Employment history

  • 2017 - present  Reader and Principal Lecturer Counselling and Psychotherapy UCLAN
  • 2010 - 2017  Senior Lecturer in Mental Health, University of Salford
  • 2000 - 2010  Lecturer in Mental Health, University of Salford
  • 1997 - 2000  Team Leader Liaison Psychiatry Stoke-on-Trent
  • 1991 - 1997  Senior Clinical Nurse Therapist, Ashworth Hospital, Merseyside.
  • 7/91 - 10/91  Staff Nurse (RMN) Community Integrated Care, Dutton Grange, Northwich.
  • 1989 - 1991  Post-reg student (RMN) Fazakerley Hospital, Liverpool
  • 1988 - 1989  Staff Nurse, Surgical ward, Broadgreen Hospital. Liverpool.
  • 1985 - 1988  Student Nurse (RGN) Broadgreen Hospital, Liverpool.


Rayner, G, Blackburn,J, and Ousey, K (2018) Compassionate wound care: an integrated physical and psycho-social intervention for people who self-injure. Nurse Prescribing TBC

Rayner, G, Blackburn,J, Edward,K, Stephenson,J and Ousey, K (2018) Emergency department nurses attitudes towards patients who self-harm: A meta-analysis. International Journal of Mental Health Nursing,

Rayner, G. & Warne, A. R (2016) Interpersonal processes and self-injury. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental health Nursing, Vol 23, Issue 1, P54-65

Beaumont, E., Iron, C & Rayner, G (2016) Compassion Focus therapy training for Healthcare educators and providers: Does this increase self-compassion and reduce self-persecution and self-criticism? a preliminary investigation. The Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions, winter, 36(1) P4-10.

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Teaching Activities

Gillian teaches a variety of sessions on the MSc CBP and many other courses in the team.


Franchised suite of Counselling and Psychotherapy courses to ICPS in Athens, 2018.


  • NMC registered Nurse and Tutor, BABCP accredited Psychotherapist Trainer and Supervisor.
  • HEA Senior Fellow

Additional Clinical work

  • 2018  Staff Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist UCLan Human Resources
  • 2015 - 2017  Volunteer Counsellor/Psychotherapist Women’s Centre Salford
  • 2016 - 2017  CBT for student nurses who have simulation phobia (project with MSc CBP students)
  • 2015 - 2016  Voluntary CBT for military staff
  • 2003 - 2005  Cognitive behavioural psychotherapist 5 Boroughs Mental Health Trust. (Two 20 session contracts for 3 clients per week)
  • 2000 - 2002  Honorary Contract Pennine Care (Bury) 12-month Psychotherapy group for people with a Personality Disorder. (Integrative approach)
  • 1992 - 1995  Voluntary Staff Counsellor Aintree Hospitals

External Affiliations

Gillian is a member of the BABCP Programme Approval Committee and Chairs accreditation visits.

Gillian has previously been external examiner and advisor for Derby University, University College Cork and Gestalt academy of Scandinavia, Stockholm. Gillian is presently external examiner for the Professional Doctorate Counselling and Psychotherapy at the University of Derby.

Peer reviewing roles:

  • Peer reviewer for the Journal of Counselling Psychology Quarterly and the Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing
  • Book reviewer for Sage and Routledge publications.

Business and enterprise

2017 - 2020 Monahan (PI) Rayner (PI Salford) and team (£360,000 total, Salford £37K).
STRENCO - Strengthening multi-professional competencies in mental health in an international context, through co-production with academics, students, service users and professionals. This is an Erasmus+ project. The aim of this project is to strengthen collaboration between academics and students, service users and practitioners and to develop tools to assess multi-professional competences for mental health students in an international context. The project will run over three years with collaborating partners from Tampere University of Applied Sciences (TAMK), Finland; Jyväskylä University of Applied Sciences (JAMK), Finland; Vives University (Zuid), Belgium; the Technological Educational Institute of Athens (T.E.I. of Athens), Greece and the University of Salford University in the UK.

2012-2013 (30K) Foster (PI), Rayner and Allen.
Business and Enterprise Project for the University of Salford. This was undertaken in Partnership with Knowsley Municipal Borough Council/NHS Mersey for Oversight and Scrutiny by College Research Ethics and Governance Committee. This involved a literature review, development of a good practice resource (leaflet), Practice based action learning sets and consultation with senior management steering group to enhance policies and practice.

Conference and enterprise organisation

  • 2013 - 2016  1st, 2nd, 3rd & 4th Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy Symposium. University of Salford.
  • 2007 - 2008  Independent trainer for Linkworks and put together and provided a successful bid for regional training for National Institute of Mental Health in England, North West. (£100K)
  • 2007  Advanced class on Personality Disorder at Salford University. This was organised in partnership with Ashworth Hospital, Merseycare.
  • 2004  “Personality Disorder”: A move towards integrated solutions for people with complex needs. National conference, Manchester. University of Salford. (£9K)
  • 2004  Therapeutic Interventions in Self-injury. National conference, Pavillion Publishing. Manchester . (£5K)
  • 2005  Two training days for Oldham crisis interventions services in Pennine Trust. (£1.5K)       
  • 2006  Advanced class on Personality Disorder at Salford University. This was requested and endorsed by NIMHE This class focused on Borderline personality disorder and had professionals from different disciplines and also service users presenting.
  • 2003  A four evening CPD course on self-harm for the University of Salford.(£1K)
  • 2002  A four evening CPD course on self-harm for the University of Salford. (£1K)
  • 2002 “Personality Disordered” or People with complex needs?. National conference, Manchester (£2K)
  • 2001  Therapeutic Interventions in Self-injury. National conference Pavillion Publishing. Manchester (£2K)
  • 2001  4 days of education on working with people who self-harm for two different mental health trusts in Blackpool and Halifax. (£2K)

Research Activities

Gillian supervises and examines PhD students, PhD via publication, Research or Prof Doc.

Completed PhD Supervisions

Alyousef, S.M. (2017) – The extent and impact of mental Health stigma on people with mental health problems in Saudi Arabia. (International full time student). University of Salford

Beaumont, E. (2017) – “Being kinder to myself” through the use of Compassionate mind training/Compassion focused therapy in times of suffering: can cultivating self-compassion act as a remedy to self-critical judgement in clinical and student populations? (Staff PhD by publication). University of Salford

2017 - 2018 Rayner (PI) Bluff & Bowling (£15K) A compassionate Cognitive behavioural psychotherapy group for people who self-harm. Salford Clinical Commissioning Group Innovation award.

2016 - 2017 (£4K) McAndrew (PI) Rayner. Vicariously supporting the mental wellbeing of students: A Report on Action Learning Sets. Bury College

2015 - 2016 (£36K) Foster (PI), Rayner and Allen. East Cheshire Emotionally Healthy Schools project evaluation. The pupil and staff online questionnaires about mental health and stigma have been intellectually copyrighted to all three authors. This project involved monitoring of Tier 3 CAMHS referrals via retrieval, collation, comparison and statistical analysis of data, a Salford designed staff online survey (personal and perceived mental health stigma, knowledge confidence and helpfulness), a Salford designed online survey for young people (confidence and self-esteem, mental well-being and resilience) and collation and analysis of pre and post routine outcome measures (secondary data) from the teams providing mental health interventions in the schools.

2013 - 2014 (5000 Euros total, 25000 Euros to Salford.) G Rayner (PI) Educational Needs and Wants of Mental Health Nurses: a comparison of Irish and UK focus groups. Joint bid with the National University of Ireland Galway (NUI Galway) and University of Salford.


Rayner, G (2017) Interpersonal Processes and Self-injury: A qualitative study using Bricolage. Berlin 6th European Conference on Mental Health (ECMH)

Rayner, G. & Bowling, G (2017) Compassionate Mind Training enhances Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy training for students. Concurrent session 45th Annual International conference, British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy (BABCP)

Rayner, G (2017) Self-harm and eating disorders conference organised by Self-Harm Awareness for All (SAFA). The cycle of shame in self-harm and connections with personality Disorder. Penrith

Rayner, G (2016) From Cycles of Shame to compassionate Psychotherapy groups. Concurrent session. 22nd International network for Psychiatric Nursing Research Conference. Royal College of Nursing (RCN).

Rayner, G (2015) Interpersonal issues and self-injury. Concurrent presentation. 21st International network for Psychiatric Nursing Research Conference. RCN.

Foster, C. Rayner, G. & and Allen,S. (2014) Self harm and suicide amongst children and young people in Knowsley: A collaborative workforce development project. NET 25th International Networking for Healthcare Education, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom.