iCBT via Kelty's Key

Kelty’s Key Online Therapy Practicum Information Form

The BCPA has partnered with the UBC Okanagan (UBCO) Psychology Training Clinic and Kelty’s Key to offer free email- and internet-based cognitive behavioural therapy to any BC resident aged 19+.


Are you looking for a one-time support phone call instead? Please see the BCPA Psychological First Aid service here (https://www.psychologists.bc.ca/covid-19-resources).


What is iCBT?

Kelty's Key is an online therapy using the principles of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). This method focuses on learning new skills and developing effective coping strategies. CBT has been widely studied and clinically proven to work. We offer CBT in an online format via email. You can do it from your home or wherever you have a computer.


Psychologists from Vancouver Coastal Health have developed this program. The program was modeled on other successful Online CBT programs. This practicum is intended to bring this excellent program to British Columbians who do not live in the Vancouver area.


If you live in the Vancouver Coastal Health catchment area (i.e., Vancouver, Richmond, the North Shore and Coast Garibaldi, Sea-to-Sky, Sunshine Coast, Powell River, Bella Bella and Bella Coola), please access Kelty’s Key online therapy directly through Vancouver Coastal Health by calling their intake line at 604-875-4111 extension 23614.


Purpose and Mission of the UBCO Psychology Clinic

The UBCO Psychology Clinic is a training site associated with the UBCO graduate program in clinical psychology. Your therapist will be a PhD student in psychology who is working under the supervision of a Psychologist who is Registered with the College of Psychologists of British Columbia. 


How does it work?

If you complete the form on this page and indicate you would like to learn more about this service, you will be contacted by email by Dr. Claire Sira. Dr. Sira is a Registered Psychologist and Program Practicum Coordinator. Dr. Sira will send you an email with a consent form attached, and she will arrange a telephone call with you to go over the form so that you can provide informed consent. To protect your privacy, make sure you are in a private location when you speak with us.

Please note that as many people are now working from home, they may be using their personal phones to contact you - be on the lookout for a call from a blocked number as this may be Dr. Sira or your student therapist calling.

If you consent to take part in the service, Dr. Sira will do a brief telephone interview to make sure the program will be a good fit for your needs. If it seems like Kelty's Key Online Therapy provided by a PhD student therapist is a good fit for your needs, there will be a few additional steps:


1. You will complete an online assessment of your mood and other symptoms. The assessment will assist us in understanding some of your strengths and vulnerabilities, which will inform treatment.


2. Your student therapist will contact you by telephone to introduce themselves and they will give you an encrypted email address. Your email address will be temporary, private, and secure. You will only use it to email your therapist. Encryption will scramble your emails so that outsiders cannot read them.


3. Your student therapist will work with a Registered Psychologist to provide you with email-based psychological treatment and they will assign you online lessons. Over the weeks, you can email your student therapist as often as you like. You can write about your week and any issues you are having with the lessons. Your student therapist will review all your emails with their supervisor and they will work together to write back to you at least once a week. Your student therapist will give you support and guidance in therapy.


Time Commitment

Your email based psychological treatment will take 5-10 weeks, depending on your symptoms. The online lessons and worksheets take about 30 minutes to an hour to do per week. These modules include reading, listening to audio clips, and filling out exercises. Some people spend extra time with the materials, so your weekly time commitment may vary. The same is true for writing emails.


You will also be asked to fill out questionnaires about every 4 weeks. Some questions will help your student therapist track your symptoms and progress. Others allow you to give feedback on your satisfaction with the program. Your student therapist will receive a summary of your results. Results from many patients may be pooled together and presented to show the effectiveness of the program.


Risks and Benefits

You may feel unsure if you'll get the same benefits from emailing a therapist as by seeing them in person. Considerable research has been done on this subject. Studies have found that email therapy works just as well as in-office therapy. It is a legitimate alternative and used around the world. There is no difference in outcomes.


All psychological treatments include the potential for both risks and benefits. Because treatment involves discussing unpleasant aspects of your life, you may experience uncomfortable feelings, which may be temporarily distressing. However, psychological treatment has been known to produce many benefits such as a reduction in distress, solutions to specific problems, and better relationships. Although there can be no guarantees, the UBCO Psychology Clinic strives to maximize benefits and to minimize risks by providing well-supervised, trained student therapists and frequent evaluations of client progress/status.


Kelty's Key Online Therapy Practicum is not a crisis service. We cannot guarantee immediate responses to your messages or calls. If you need help immediately while in our program, please go to https://crisiscentre.bc.ca/ or call 1-800-SUICIDE. If your crisis is an emergency, call 911. You must get the help you need without delay during an emergency. As we are providing this service by email, we will ask you to provide an emergency contact. Psychologists are required to collect this number in case of emergency.  


Concerns, Complaints, or Questions

If you have concerns that this service has not met professional standards, you may contact the College of Psychologists of British Columbia. For further information about the complaint process, please review the College's website at http://www.collegeofpsychologists.bc.ca


General inquiries about this service can be directed to the BC Psychological Association at [email protected]


By entering my information and completing this form, I am confirming that I have read and understood the information above, and that I consent to being contacted by email to set up a phone call with the Practicum Coordinator to discuss the Kelty’s Key Online Practicum.


Request more information about Kelty’s Key