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Michael Duffy

image of Michael Duffy
Michael Duffy

Michael Duffy
Senior Lecturer in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Room 2.08, 6 College Park
Ext: 3298, Email:

Qualifications and Accreditations

Diploma in Social Work, CQSW, ASW
P.G. Diploma in Cognitive Therapy
M. Phil, PhD
EMDR Level 1 and Level 2
Accredited Cognitive Psychotherapist - British Association of Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies
Accredited Mmember of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy at the Beck Institute, University of Pennsylvania.
Member of BASW
Registered Social Worker with the NISCC

‌Dr. Michael Duffy commenced his social work career in 1982 in North and West Belfast and post qualifying worked as a mental health social worker obtaining his ASW award in 1991. He trained and practiced in Analytically informed Psychotherapy between 1991-1994.  After the Omagh bombing in 1998 he was invited to lead the work of the H&SC Trauma & Recovery team. He has  trained with Dr Kate Gillespie in cognitive psychotherapy and has practised as a cognitive therapist, specialising in PTSD and related disorders. During the Omagh studies he collaborated with  and received supervision from Prof Anke Ehlers, Prof David M Clark, and Dr Ann Hackmann based at Oxford and KCL.  He also has a special interest in complex grief, panic disorder and social phobia. In 2002, he was appointed Team Leader and Principal Cognitive Therapist at the regionally funded, Northern. Ireland. Centre for Trauma and Transformation (NICTT).  In 2004, Dr Duffy was appointed as lecturer at the University of Ulster where he  designed the Post Graduate Cognitive Therapy programme and held the position of Director of CBT . Dr Duffy accepted his new position at Queen’s in March 2009 as Senior Lecturer in the Cognitive Behavioural Therapy programme.

Consultancy/ Practice/Policy Guidelines

Dr Duffy was a member of the Northern Ireland Psychotherapy Review Group 2001–2002 and a member of the DHSSPS CREST Working Group, 2002-2003, that produced Treatment Guidelines for PTSD. During 2008/09 he was  a member of the DHSS&PS Steering Group that produced a Psychological Therapy Services Strategy (PTS) for Northern Ireland. . Currently he is a member of the H&SCB Psychological Therapies Implementation Group and is Chair of the PTS Workforce Development, Training, Supervision and Outcomes sub-group.  In 2012 he was invited by the Health Services Executive to be a member of the Advisory group developing a National Skills for Practice training programme for mental health staff in the Republic of Ireland. He is also an advisor on trauma and related mental health to the newly established Victims and Survivors ervice in Northern Ireland.

Membership of Professional / Charitable Bodies

Former Committee member and former Vice Chair of the Irish Association of Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies - Irish section of BABCP . Member of the Management Committee of Threshold Mental  Health Charity.  Member of  NIASW/BASW.


Dr Duffy is responsible for the Post Graduate, (MSc  PG Dip and PG Cert ) programme in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy within the School. He has re-designed the course to  meet the minimum training standards required for accreditation by, the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP). He specialises in teaching CBT models for the nxiety Disorders, including PTSD,and he also provides training in Complex PTSD and Complicated Grief.  The new programme offers a PG Cert in CBP, a PG Dip in CBT with a specialist MSc in CBT expected in 2014.

Conference Presentations

Dr Duffy has presented papers at several national and international conferences including; The International Congress of Cognitive Therapy, Catania, 2000; The International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies Conferences, New Orleans, 2001, Chicago, 2008; The British Association of Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies Annual Conferences, Warwick, 2006; Edinburgh, 2008;; European Association of  Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies Annual Congress, Dubrovenick, 2009;  Reykjavick, 2011; World Congress of Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapy, Barcelona, 2007; Boston, 2010

In  Sept 2007 he was invited to present a paper at an international conference in Copenhagen addressing “Therapeutic responses to victims of torture; ,In 2010 he provided a keynote address  at the International conference on Social Work in Health and Mental Health in  UCD Dublin

Dr Duffy has provided many workshops on Cognitive Therapy and s on the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  In 2004, he was invited to provide a workshop in New York for mental health clinicians and psychological therapists working with survivors of the 9/11 Twin Towers attack in the USA.  In 2005, he was invited to present at a specialist PTSD workshop at the Institute of Psychiatry at the Maudsley hospital and Kings College London attended by professionals working with survivors of the London  7/11 bombings. In April 2012 Dr Duffy and colleagues provided a 2 day workshop at Queen's for therapists from Norway providing psycho-social responses for the victims of the Oslo bombing and Utoya Island shootings . In 2013 he was invited to present a workshop on CBT for complicated grief at the BABCP Spring conference and was instrumental in bringing the BABCP conference to Queen’s, the first time the conference has been held in Northern Ireland.


Dr Duffy has been part of a multi-disciplinary team that has undertaken community studies and clinical research into the phenomenology and the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and other trauma related disorder including complex or traumatic grief.

Current research projects :

  • evaluating  the practice and outcomes effects of a short CBT skill training course for mental health staff in Ireland  STAGE 1-  completed
  • a single case series clinical study of CBT for complex/traumatic grief and  PTSD with physical injuries/enduring chronic pain -  STAGE - design and grant application submitted
  •  developing  a cognitive model for complicated grief. (in collaboration with Prof A Ehlers and Dr Jennifer Wild)

Post Graduate Research supervision


PhD  (First supervisor); Title - A Cognitive Behavioural Model for Romantic post- dissolution adjustment-

D. Child Care – (Second Supervisor) Title - The involvement of young people with Asberger's Syndrome in decision making about services




DuffyM, McDermottM, PercyA, Ehlers A, Clark DM, Fitzgerald M, Moriarty J. (2013) The effects of the Omagh bomb on adolescent mental health: a school-based study. BMC Psychiatry (under review)


McDermott M, Duffy M, Percy A, Fitzgerald M and Cole, C. (2013) A school based study of psychological disturbance in children following the Omagh Bomb. Child & Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health (under revision).

Duffy M, Bolton D, Gillespie K, Ehlers A, Clark DM (2013) A Community Study of the Psychological Effects of the Omagh Car Bomb on Adults. PLoS ONE 8(9): e76618. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0076618Duffy, M., Gillespie, K. and O Shea, J 2013) How effective is a short CBT skills programme for mental health staff: an evaluation based on trainee, feedback. Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy.