Students talking
Students socialising.

Peer Support Training

Thinking about doing the training?

  • Can you commit the time to the training and attending the supervisions?
  • Peer Support Training is an extensive course of 24 hours of training, provided by the Student Welfare and Support Services (SWSS).
  • Please consider carefully whether you will be able to commit yourself fully to the training programme, as it is imperative that you attend every session.
  • Training is experiential (including the use of self-reflection and personal experiences) and practice-orientated and cannot be caught up on, as the sessions link together. This is not a didactic training, rather it involves peer to peer learning that is generated from within the training group. Also, regular attendance is essential for group consistency, to build group trust and to help establish confidentiality.
  • The commitment to the Peer Support Programme extends to attending one-hour regular supervision sessions for two terms post-training as a minimum commitment. This monitors Peer Supporter wellbeing and ensures the Programme is running smoothly and safely for those involved (including students being supported, Peer Supporters, College/ Department and the Programme generally).
  • You must have permission from your academic supervisor/ tutor and the college/ department that they are happy for you to train. Evidence of this must be provided in the application form.
  • All applicants must complete an online application form in the Peer Support Training Portal.


  • Welfare representatives.
  • Current students of the college, department or division.
  • Students can be undergraduate or postgraduate.

Content of training

  • Active listening
  • Assertiveness, boundary setting and management
  • Crisis management and prevention
  • Suicide prevention
  • Communication styles including verbal and non-verbal communication
  • Noticing, exploring and reducing assumptions including stereotypes, especially around seeking support
  • Signposting and referral pathways including wellbeing resources
  • The pros and cons of giving advice
  • Integration into college and departmental welfare
  • Diversity awareness including stereotypes, assumptions, unconscious bias, intersectionality and privilege

Length and type of training

  • Standard training
    - 3 hours over 8 weeks during term time, weeks 1 to 8.
    - 24 hours in total.
    - Trainings usually start between 2PM and 3PM and finish between 5PM and 6PM.
    - Trainings run Monday to Thursday depending on trainer availability.
  • Condensed training
    - Merton College training occurs over 4 consecutive full-days (10AM-5PM) in MINUS 1th Week, 24 hours in total.
    - Medical Sciences Division training occurs over 4 spaced full-days (Mondays and Wednesdays, 10AM-5PM) in first 2 weeks of September, 24 hours in total.
  • Each college and departmental member trains once per year, check below for details.
  • Training Schedule and further contact.
  • Table shows the training, college partner and Designated Link Person (DLP) for that college/ department/ division (table on page or embedded PDF)

Michaelmas Term

Hilary Term

Trinity Term


Balliol: Bruce Kinsey

Exeter: Andrew Allen

Trainer: Sara Hitchens

Brasenose: Julia Baldwin

Trinity: Claire Parker

Trainer: Tim Knowlson

Keble: Trish Long

Worcester: Georgie Heywood

Trainer: Melissa Barkan

Medical Sciences Division: Chris Higham and Elinor Smith

Trainer: Tim Knowlson

Green Templeton: Alison Franklin

Kellogg: Sarah O’Brien

Trainer: Tim Knowlson

Christ Church: Clare Hayns

Lady Margaret Hall: Helen Barr

Trainer: Ruth Sandford-Smith

Magdalen: Robert Gilbert and Sian Pooley

Oriel: Rob Wainwright

Trainer: Ruth Sandford-Smith

Said Business School: Rachel Keaney

Trainer: Tim Knowlson

Linacre: Jane Hoverd

St Antony’s: Filiz McNamara

St Cross: Jocelyn Larsen

Trainer: Tim Knowlson

Corpus Christi: Judith Maltby

Jesus: John Findon

Trainer: Joe Collins

Regent’s Park: Esther Mason

St Peter’s: Eleanor Tingle

Trainer: Kamaldeep Dhillon

Merton: Jenny Barrett and Simon Jones

Trainer: Tim Knowlson

Lincoln: Melanie Marshall

St Catherine’s: Richard Bailey

Trainer: Kamaldeep Dhillon

Mansfield: Gail Leckie

St Edmund Hall: Clare Woolcott

Trainer: Kamaldeep Dhillon

Wolfson: Megan Roper

Harris Manchester: Ashley Walters/ Vicki Lill

Brasenose MCR: Julia Baldwin

Trainer: Tim Knowlson


New: Katie McKeogh

Pembroke: Annette McCormack

Trainer: Joe Collins

Somerville: Jo Ockwell

St Hugh’s: Thea Crapper

Trainer: Sara Hitchens


St Anne’s: Rachel Busby/ Kirren Mahmood

St Hilda’s: Lorraine Wild

Trainer: Jane Enticott

St John’s: Elizabeth MacFarlane

Trainer: Melissa Barkan


University: Andrew Gregory

Wadham: Jane Baun

Trainer: Jane Enticott


Location of training

  • In-person training takes place at SWSS, 3 Worcester Street
  • Virtual training takes place over Teams.

Training fees

  • A training of 12 people costs £3600
  • A training of 6 people costs £1800
  • Individual attendance costs £400 per person


  • All trainers and supervisors are registered counsellors, psychotherapists or psychologists.
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