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Insights into Counselling - Introductory Course

This 10 week, part-time introduction to counselling skills provides a valuable initial training in counselling skills. It will appeal to those who wish to develop greater sensitivity to human relationships, to become more self-aware and to improve their communication skills.

What will I learn?

Counselling skills can help you gain insight into how to interact effectively with others. On this course you will learn the basic counselling skills, such as how to accurately reflect back what the person is saying, summarising and asking open-ended questions. This involves using what are sometimes called the 'core conditions. These conditions involve being genuine in our interactions with others and expressing empathy and unconditional positive regard. You will begin to develop the ability to be with the person without introducing your own agenda, to accept on their terms what they are saying, and at the same time to be genuine in the person you are.

Course sessions will cover:

  • Creating and maintaining a working contract
  • What counselling is and is not
  • Relating counselling skills to our daily lives
  • Ethics and values
  • The Therapeutic Relationship
  • Boundaries and containment
  • Philosophy of Humanistic Practice
  • Core Conditions Acceptance, Empathy & Genuineness
  • Presence
  • Effective Listening
  • Non-verbal communication
  • Reflecting
  • Paraphrasing
  • Using questions
  • Difference and diversity
  • Developing own counselling skills

How will I learn?

Class sizes are limited to a maximum of 21 participants per course. The learning will take place in a variety of ways with an emphasis on learning through experience. You will be required to take part in group discussions and interactive activities. Skills exercises will take place in pairs or in groups of three in which appropriate practice will enable gradual acquisition of first level listening, reflecting and counselling skills.

Who are the tutors?

The course tutors are experienced teachers and practising counsellors. Tutors are involved in teaching on the FdA Counselling degree and related courses.

What are the entry requirements?

You do not need any previous qualifications or training, although you will need to be fairly comfortable about your ability to work with others in pairs and small groups. The main requirement is an interest in people and a desire to work with change, growth and development. No formal interviews are required.

How much is the course?

Each 10 week Counselling Insights course costs £100.

When are the courses offered?

Due to the ongoing impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic the decision has been taken to cancel the Insights into Counselling courses planned for June and August 2020.

  • 20 June - 11 July 2020

  • 29 August - 19 September 2020

In light of this, the University will also be removing the requirement of attendance on the Insights course for students joining the BA (Hons) Counselling and the MSc Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Counselling programmes starting in September 2020.

Currently the course scheduled for 12 October - 14 December has not been cancelled and will remain open for bookings. 


October - December 2020 course

Mondays 18.30pm - 9.00pm

Offered for 10 consecutive Mondays

Start:  Monday 12th October 2020  Finish:  Monday 14th December 2020

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How will I be assessed?

Course participants are expected to keep a reflective diary/journal.

This will include:

  • Thoughts and feelings about the sessions
  • Theoretical and practical learning
  • Aspects of personal awareness

If you successfully meet the criteria for the learning journal and have attended 80% of the course, you will be issued with a University of Suffolk Certificate of Attendance.

What are the Progression Opportunities?

Tutors will be on hand throughout the course to discuss progression opportunities with you. Students who successfully complete the Insights into Counselling course may wish to discuss the possibility of applying for the two year, full-time, FdA in Counselling. Tutors will be able to discuss the entry criteria with you.

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Where is the course being delivered?

Courses will be delivered at the University of Suffolk Ipswich campus, based in the Waterfront Building on Neptune Quay.

How do I apply?

To register and pay for a place on this course please visit the University of Suffolk Online Shop and select the course that you are interested in.

As the number of places on these courses is limited, we recommend early booking.

For further information about this course please contact:

T: 01473 338647