• Health and Social Care

    HNC Counselling

  • SCQF Level

    Level 7

  • Attendance/Duration

    Full-time, one year.

  • Start Date

    Aug 2022

Start Here

Professional counsellors are needed for a wide range of settings and circumstances to help people discuss their problems and feelings, and make their own choices. To be an effective counsellor, it’s essential you can build relationships of trust and respect. You’ll also need to be a good listener, non-judgmental, patient and sensitive. 

At times counselling can be stressful, due to the personal problems of clients. However the demand for counselling is increasing, with many counsellors working part time.

If you’re interested in a career in counselling, this is the course for you.

For entry to this course you’ll need:

  • A real interest in working with people in a supportive environment

  • A minimum of two relevant Highers including English and ideally National 5 Maths/Numeracy OR a relevant NC course at SCQF Level 6 or equivalent such as:

    • NC Higher Working with Communities / Youth Work and Communities (Level 6)

    • NC Higher Social Science

    • NC Higher Health and Social Care

  • An interview with us

  • A satisfactory reference

If you don’t have formal qualifications, but have life experience or other training, then we’ll also consider you for a place, so please call us for a chat.

What's Involved

This course focuses on the three main areas required to effectively counsel people in different circumstances - counselling theories, practical counselling skills and personal development.

Here’s some more of what you’ll be doing:

  • You’ll explore behavioral and cognitive counselling theory. You’ll look at how psychological or emotional difficulties are acquired and perpetuated, and how changing thinking or behavior patterns can bring about positive change.
  • You’ll look at humanistic counselling theory, based on the humanistic approach which focuses on the uniqueness of the individual human experience as the guiding factor within the therapeutic encounter.
  • You’ll look at psychodynamic counselling theory, based on the psychodynamic approach which focuses on helping a person live a more autonomous and insightful life.
  • You’ll develop skills in group counselling. You’ll look at group theories, dynamics and norms within a personal development group. You’ll practice your own skills as a participant and facilitator.
  • You’ll have the opportunity for self-evaluation, including your relationship with and impact on others, and your strengths and weaknesses for maintaining a professional counselling role.
  • You’ll look at addictive behavior and the different types of dependency addictions, as well as treatment approaches.
  • You’ll also look specifically at substance misuse, developing skills in relapse prevention techniques, and empowerment for personal choices.
  • You’ll develop skills in counselling for loss, grief and bereavement.

You’ll also hear from a wide range of professional practitioners from local counselling and support services, such as Break the Silence, NHS, Seascape, local Addiction Agencies and Relationships Scotland, as well as speakers from private practice.

Go Anywhere

When you successfully complete this course, you’ll have the choice of:

Moving onto a relevant degree course at university, such as:

  • an undergraduate BSc Psychology and Counselling qualification
  • postgraduate Certificate in Counselling
  • postgraduate Diploma in Counselling

Post graduate counselling courses are also available from privately-financed counselling businesses within Scotland.

  • Seeking to start your career in a counselling or mentoring role

Places available



Start Date

Aug 2022

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