Diploma in Counselling – Level 3

Course Code



Why study this course?

This course is designed for those people who wish to involve themselves in counselling either in a professional or voluntary capacity. The course will offer the opportunity for participants to examine their own personal development and enhance their self-awareness. It will include various counselling skills and methods and their application in specific practical situations, including experimental learning, taking into account ethical considerations. Group work and role-play will be included in the taught work.

The course is suitable for professionals employed in education, welfare or social services wishing to develop a counselling role. It may also be appropriate for those working in a voluntary capacity with self-help groups or other agencies.

A commitment to equal opportunities is an essential component of this course.

It will be necessary for candidates to be able to do at least 9-11 hours of reading/ research per week, at home. A reading list will be provided, and you will need to obtain two or three books. (Books will be at the candidates own expense).

Note to applicants:

In this course you will be expected to talk about yourself in a classroom environment and have mandatory attendance of at least 90% for the duration of the course. As this is an introduction to the Counselling training you need to be aware that you will be expected to do a lot of use of self-reflection and this could result in highlighting things that have happened and have impacted on your life/things that are happening and impacting on your life. You need to think carefully before embarking on this course to ensure that it is the right course for you at this time in your life as it will not be a place for you to have group therapy it will be an academic/teaching course that will help you learn and develop counselling skills.

Students will need to be prepared to seek outside help/college counsellor if it becomes apparent (or if the tutor advises) to ensure emotional safety.

Course Content

There are five mandatory units:

  1. Developing counselling skills
  2. Theoretical approaches in the use of counselling skills
  3. Working ethically with counselling skills
  4. Counselling skills and diversity
  5. Counselling skills and personal development – this is not a taught unit- students will either complete this unit doing a presentation to the group or an assignment depending on course start date – September starters will do a presentation to the group for this unit

How are students assessed?

Continuous assessment through assignments/projects/reflective journals and a portfolio of evidence

Completed Portfolio by the end of the course which will be internally and externally assessed

Candidates must submit a completed portfolio of evidence by the end of the course for final assessment.

Attendance will be monitored throughout (minimum of 90%)

External verifier may request photocopying part of your portfolio, but your confidentiality will be kept at all times.

Entry requirements

  1. Candidates will need to be 16 or above
  2. Possession of a NCFE Level 2 Award in Helping Skills/ Counselling Skills. (Proof of this will be expected at enrolment).- on-line courses not accepted (if your course was due to take place in the classroom and was moved online due to COVID please contact the Course Leader on the email address below to discuss)
  3. Written reference from your level 2 course tutor/training organisation on suitability for this course
  4. A level of IT skills will be needed to do this course

Email Sue Harvey – sharvey@halesowen.ac.uk


Writing materials, lever arch folder for portfolio

A book list will be provided and it is recommended you obtain one book from the list. (At candidates own expense).

Day, time and duration

Daytime: Tuesday


33 weeks

Evening: Wednesday


33 weeks


Start date

Daytime: Tuesday 19th September 2023 until 18th June 2024

Evening: Wednesday 20th September 2023 until Wednesday 19th June 2024



Funding your course

An Advanced Learner Loan is available for this course

If this is your first full level 3 course and you are aged 19+ years, this course may be free

For more information about funding your course, click here

Our accreditation and awards