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Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling

Course title

Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling

Please ensure you read all the course information carefully to ensure this is the right course for you at this time in your life.

Why study this course?

“The nature of this level of counselling course involves a high degree of self-awareness and personal development. It is important that you consider that at this time you may not be ready for this course if you have undergone any significant life change or loss in the last 12 months.”

Taken from the Halesowen College fitness to study policy.

“This qualification is not suitable for those who are currently in a state of severe emotional difficulty and/or severe psychological distress. All potential candidates need to be aware of the nature of the course, and in particular that the course involves experiential elements that will involve some personal disclosure and associated personal developmental activities.”

Information taken from CPCAB course specification.

 Becoming a Counsellor and embarking on a Level 4 course is a big undertaking and should not be taken lightly. It will place demands upon an individual’s ability to take personal responsibility and take ownership for their own process. It is not always enough to be “committed” or be a really “warm and caring” person. It also requires personal insight, resilience, and a commitment to giving and receiving feedback. Most students do not fully understand what a course like this is like until they do it. It is not enough too simply “really want” to do this course. You also need to be able to make an honest and objective assessment of whether this is the right course and the right time for you.

This course is designed for those people who wish to progress in their journey into becoming a fully qualified Counsellor from completing their level 2 and 3 in Counselling.

The CPCAB Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling is an appropriate qualification for teachers, social workers (field and residential), probation officers, nurses, volunteers from a variety of helping agencies, women returnee’s, personnel officers, managers, people preparing for a career change, psychologists. However, all applicants regardless of roles mentioned here must meet our entry requirements.

It will involve at least 90% attendance, completion of 7 mandatory units (across the 2 years), 100 hours in an approved Counselling placement (at least 51% of placement hours will need to be carried out face to face)

The course will also require a commitment to professional and personal growth- being open to giving and receiving feedback to enable growth. Time commitment to classes/completing course work/placement/supervision and personal therapy.

 To achieve this this qualification, by the end of your 2nd academic year, then you must

Be deemed Proficient (Pass) in all the qualification requirements, including all placement hours.

Internal assessment: tutor assessment of candidate portfolio evidencing minimum assessment requirements and verified by CPCAB.

Progression routes

You will need to have fully achieved all aspects of the Level 4 Diploma to be able to progress to the level 5.

CPCAB route

Level 5 Diploma in Psychotherapeutic Counselling (PC-L5)- we will be looking at obtaining approval to run this from Sept 2026 for their to be a progression route for you with Halesowen College

Level 5 Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapeutic Skills and Theory (CBT-L5)- we will not be offering this progression route at present.

Level 5 Diploma in Counselling Children and Young People (CYP-L5)- we will not be offering this progression route at present.

Level 6 Certificate in Therapeutic Counselling Supervision (TCSU-L6)- we will not be offering this progression route at present. 

The qualification currently offers routes on to the following professional body registers accredited by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA):

  • BACP – British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy
  • NCPS – National Counselling and Psychotherapy Society
  • UKCP – United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (Standards for Psychotherapeutic counselling).

Learners applying to UKCP must also acquire CPCAB Level 5 diploma in psychotherapeutic counselling.

  • COSCA – Counselling and Psychotherapy in Scotland
  • ACC – Association of Christians in Counselling and Linked Professions.

The qualification is also mapped to the Counselling and Mental Health National Occupational Standards (NOS), the BACP Core Curriculum and the QAA benchmark standards for counselling and psychotherapy.

Length of course

2 years (part time)

Compulsory Modules

7 mandatory units over the 2 years of study

Unit 1 – Working ethically, safely and professionally as a counsellor.

Unit 2 – Working within a counselling relationship.

Unit 3 – Working with client diversity in counselling work.

Unit 4 – Working within a user-centered approach to counselling.

Unit 5 – Working with self-awareness in the counselling process.

Unit 6 – Working within a coherent framework of counselling theory and skills.

Unit 7 – Working self-reflectively as a counsellor.

To achieve the qualification, candidates must be internally assessed as Proficient in all 7 units of the qualification and must be externally assessed (by CPCAB) as Proficient.

Candidates must give two pieces of evidence for each criterion. In addition, the Candidate Learning Record (CLR), when complete, must include references to all three assessment methods (documents, tutor observation and testimony) for each of the 7 units. Students will be provided with criterion for each unit that at the start of their course.-tutors will explain this in more detail at the start of your studies

Students will also be expected to write a weekly journal throughout the duration of the course of between 300 and 500 words each week which staff will request to see at points in your course.

In addition to the 7 mandatory units and minimum of 100 hours of placement students will also need to complete by the end of their 2nd year of study

Assessment 

Continuous assessment through assignments/projects/reflective journals/ documents, tutor observation and testimony and portfolio building.

Candidates must be Proficient (Pass) in both internal and external assessment and meet all the qualification requirements, including all placement hours.

Internal assessment: tutor assessment of candidate portfolio evidencing minimum assessment requirements and verified by CPCAB.

Evidence of keeping a weekly journal throughout your studies.

Evidence of at least 90% attendance for the duration of the course

A completely signed off candidate learning record (CLR) is mandatory by the end of the course for final internal and external assessment to take place.

External verifiers may request copies of your work however your confidentiality will be always kept.

Please note in accordance with CPCAB policy that you must be deemed fit to practice and have an approved placement in order to progress to year 2 of this course. If students (for whatever reason) have not secured a placement by the start of their 2nd year of study, then they will need to defer for a year and return to their 2ndyear at a later date once a placement has been secured.

If you leave or are asked to leave this course at any time students will be liable for outstanding fees.

How to apply

Part-time applicants should apply via the ‘Apply’ link on the Halesowen College website.

If your qualification(s) are not listed, please contact Halesowen College’s Admissions Team for further guidance on 0121 602 7607.

Entry Requirements

  • Prospective students for the Diploma are required to show evidence of successful counselling training in both Level 2 and Level 3 in Counselling involving a minimum of 180 class time hours over the two levels. They must be regulated courses (e.g. regulated by Ofqual or RQF. Ideally learning needs to have taken place face to face in a classroom setting however lessons that have taken place in a remote classroom such as TEAMS/Zoom or Google Classroom will also be accepted as long as a tutor has been present on every lesson to teach content.
  • Applicants with previous experience of working with people and/or counselling therapy experience out of the classroom will be at an advantage however must still hold the minimum of a Level 3 in Counselling.
  • Prospective students must demonstrate an interest in working with people.
  • Prospective students are expected to demonstrate an aptitude and interest in academic study as well as an interest in counselling.
  • Be able to provide a written academic and character reference from your level 3 Counselling course tutor/training provider. This reference will need to include evidence of above 85% attendance on your Counselling Courses/ Evidence of meeting deadlines on your Counselling Course/Evidence of being able to always remain professional in the classroom and growth in your personal development during your studies.
  • Applicants need to be aged 19 or over at commencement of the course. (Please note that all applicants (any age) will be assessed for their level of self-awareness, suitability for the course, sense of self and aptitude to complete a Level 4 qualification-entry to this course will not just depend on biological age).
  • We would appreciate it if applicants were able to produce evidence of having English Language “O” Level grade “C” or above or GCSE Eng Grade “4” or above. We also consider these qualifications as alternatives (e/g Degree in any subject/ functional skills level 2/ adult literacy /”A” levels in any subject that was essay based. However, if it is not possible to provide any evidence of English (at the grades requested), we will consider your writing skills at your level 3 Counselling qualifications.

Following your application online you will then receive an email (please note at this point you will only applied for the course- if you fully meet all of entry requirements you will considered for an interview- if successful at interview then you will offered a place) which will then request the information below- once all the information below has been received we will then be in touch to inform you as to whether you are being invited to interview.

  • 1 written reference (1 personal from a person who has known you for longer than 2 years this cannot be a family member)
  • 1 written academic & character reference from your level 3 Counselling course tutor/training provider. This reference will need to include evidence of above 85% attendance on your Counselling Courses/ Evidence of meeting deadlines on your Counselling Course/Evidence of being able to always remain professional in the classroom and growth in your personal development during your studies.
  • Students who have not completed their level 2 and level 3 at Halesowen College must also include copies of their certificates or proof of completing the course from their organisation if awaiting certificates, will need to submit at least 4 pieces of coursework from their level 3 along with tutor feedback-to be sent to Co- Ordinator via email.
  • Provide evidence from your training provider that your counselling courses took place in a classroom setting- if the course was moved online due to Covid then the ratio of classroom learning, and online learning will need to be provided.
  • Written piece of 1000 word explaining why you wish to be considered for a possible place.

We would appreciate it if applicants were able to produce evidence of having English Language “O” Level grade “C” or above or GCSE Eng Grade “4” or above. We also consider these qualifications as alternatives (e/g Degree in any subject/ functional skills level 2/ adult literacy /”A” levels in any subject that was essay based. However, if it is not possible to provide any evidence of English (at the grades requested), we will consider your writing skills at your level 3 Counselling qualifications.

Start date

w/c 9th September

Day and time

Daytime –

Tuesday

Wednesday

9am-4:30pm

Evening –

Tuesday and Wednesday (both evenings)

5:15pm-9pm

36 weeks

Please be aware that students could be asked to complete a BKSB Maths & English initial and diagnostic assessment during the induction period to assess skills at that time and to help to enhance these skills during your studies.

Course fee

£4593

19+ Advanced Learner loan  available to eligible applicants.

https://www.halesowen.ac.uk/he-finance-financial-support/

Should any applicants have questions or queries concerning finance, please contact Admissions for further guidance:

Phone: 0121 602 7607

Or via the live chat facility on the College’s website www.halesowen.ac.uk

Additional Costs

Additional Costs that students will incur.

  • BACP student membership (mandatory before students are allowed to go into placements)
  • Minimum of 10 hours per academic year of personal therapy-minimum of 6 hours as part of eligibility for placement. (this cost could be added to the learner loan however this would need to be confirmed by our admissions/loan company)

Additional Costs that students could incur.

  • Individual Supervision (if not provided by a qualified Counselling Supervisor at the placement). Please note that this could cost anything up to £45 (or above) per hour as students must have a minimum of 1.5 hours per calendar month in line with BACP requirements.
  • Personal/professional Indemnity Insurance-if not provided by the placement
  • Books (if not able to access from the College Library)
  • DBS (old CRB) checks if required by placement (this cannot be done through the college procedure for DBS checks)
  • CPCAB appeal fee if required.

Course code

H70066A

H70066B

Study mode

Part time


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