Course Information

Who is the course for?

This course is for those who:

  • Work in care, health, management and/or education related occupations/voluntary placements
  • Have their Counselling Skills Intermediate Certificate or equivalent with at least 100 hours
  • Want to extend their counselling knowledge and skills while working within a specific vocational or voluntary work setting
  • Wish to continue to higher level professional counselling training

What does the course involve?

The primary goals for participants are that they will:

  • Build on previous counselling skills training and theoretical learning
  • Acquire a comprehensive knowledge of counselling skills and theory
  • Develop the capacity to apply knowledge of theory and skills to counselling practice
  • Be able to continue professional training on successful completion of the course
  • Identify and explore personal process and developmental needs

The qualification is intended to contribute to career development in participants' own fields and/or as a part of their own personal development and as a progressive route to higher level counselling training.

Counselling Theory

Theory will be an ongoing element of the course. Candidates will be introduced to and explore in some depth three of the main core theories, which underpin counselling practice:

  • Humanistic
  • Psychodynamic
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Developing Counselling Skills

Developing Counselling Skills enables students to enhance their counselling skills whilst working in a social care/health/education setting, and prepares students progressing to Level 4/5 to work with clients in supervised placements.

Personal Development

Students will work to develop self-awareness and further their learning through experiential exercises, weekly entries in learning journals and self-exploration in skills work, exercises and group time. Students are encouraged to use theory to think about personal experience and, through personal development, begin to explore personal values and how these impact upon the counselling process.

Counselling: Towards Reflective Practice

Offers the opportunity for students to reflect upon theories of human development, difference and diversity in the contexts of self-awareness and practice in preparation towards a supervised placement (Level 4). This unit explores the main theories at more depth, as well as introducing the basic premises of Gestalt theory and techniques.

What makes this course special?

AIM Certificate in Counselling

  • The course offers a comprehensive preparation for candidates wishing to progress to further counselling training
  • The course offers a broad base of skills and theory for applied professional practice in a future or existing role
  • The course aims to comply with current British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) guidelines

Bridgwater College has an excellent reputation for its counselling courses, having been awarded second place in the National Beacon Awards for Counselling Education, as well as gaining an Ofsted Grade One. 

All our counselling courses are delivered by qualified lecturers who, in turn, are all qualified, experienced and practicing counsellors.

Placements/Work Placements

Students will require a work setting (either paid or voluntary) where they can apply their skills and knowledge in a helping context. Please note that the essay element of the course depends on the student being in placement.

Entry Requirements

What are the assessment methods?

  • Counselling theory is assessed by an externally set written examination and an internally assessed essay of 2,000 – 2,500 words
  • Developing Counselling Skills  is assessed by observed practical assessment
  • Counselling: Towards Reflective Practice is assessed through written coursework comprising a reflective course journal

How long is the course?

The course comprises 130 guided learning hours plus Saturday workshops.

What are the College attendance requirements?

Students will need a minimum course attendance of 90%. Three and a half hours guided learning hours per week over 34 weeks.

Home study will include:
  • A weekly journal of 800 words per week
  • One essay of 2,000 – 2,500 words
  • Included in the course is a Saturday workshop which constitutes part of the students total hours

Are there any additional costs for the course?

Students will receive a list of recommended reading material at the start of the course. They will be directed to key publications which they might want to purchase to support their learning.

What are the progression options?

On successful completion of the Counselling Advanced Certificate, the student will qualify for progression onto the Counselling Practice Level 4 Diploma.

Awarding Body

AIM award.

Course Details

Further Information