Please note: there may be some adjustments to the teaching arrangements published in the course catalogue for 2020-21. Given current circumstances related to the Covid-19 pandemic it is anticipated that some usual arrangements for teaching on campus will be modified to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff on campus; further adjustments may also be necessary, or beneficial, during the course of the academic year as national requirements relating to management of the pandemic are revised.

Counselling skills course ADED1020E

  • Academic Session: 2020-21
  • School: Short Courses
  • Credits: 40
  • Level: Level 1 (SCQF level 7)
  • Typically Offered: Full Year
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No

Short Description

This introductory course provides an opportunity for students to understand the theoretical approaches and reflective practices required to apply counselling skills across various inter-personal and professional contexts. This course seeks to assess students' understanding of applying these skills drawing from theory as well as counselling skills practice.


Block 1, 2, & 3: Tuesdays 18.00-21.00 (20 meetings + 8 additional Saturdays).

Block 1, 2 & 3: Fridays 10.00-16.00 (28 meetings) 

Requirements of Entry


Excluded Courses





(1) 2000 word written review of learning incorporating evaluation of counselling theory (Linked to ILO 1 & 3) (34% weighting);

(2) 1500 word written reflective commentary on practice counselling session- students will provide a written personal reflection of the counselling skills they utilised (in role as responder) on an audio taped (transcribed) practice counselling session (Linked to ILO 2 & 3) (32% weighting);

(3) 2000 word written review of learning incorporating evaluation of counselling theory (Linked to ILO 1 & 3) (34% weighting);

Course Aims

The aims of this course are to:


■ Provide students with an introductory understanding of the range of theories which underpin different counselling approaches

■ Encourage students to explore and clarify aspects of the human condition that can be enhanced by counselling

■ Provide multiple opportunities for students to develop and practice their counselling skills with other peers in a safe and supportive environment.

■ Support students to engage in self-reflective activity based on the counselling skills training offered

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:


■ ILO 1: Describe and evaluate how theory has informed the development of different counselling approaches and practices, and can be incorporated into practical counselling skills sessions 

■ ILO 2: Describe and evaluate the broad application of counselling skills across many different personal domains (e.g. health, sexuality)

■ ILO 3: Critically reflect on the counselling skills that they have developed in terms of changes in students' own knowledge base, self-awareness and ethical awareness


Transferable/key skills


■ Preparation for entry into diploma course in counselling 

■ Interpersonal skills e.g. giving feedback to peers, group work, formative presentations

■ Academic writing e.g. integration of theory into practice. Developing critical writing skills

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

A minimum attendance requirement of 85% must be met in each of the four modules to meet the requirements set out by COSCA. Students who do not meet the minimum attendance requirement will not be permitted to progress to the next module and will be recorded as Credit Refused (CR) and will be unable to continue on the course. If a CR is recorded there will be no opportunity to complete reassessment, continue on the course as Audit Only (AU) or to receive a refund.  

Students must pass the practice- based counselling skills sessions which run in parallel to the course.