Diploma in Counselling Psychology


Course: Diploma in Counselling Psychology

Start date: Thursday, 27 September 2018

Duration: 10 weeks, Thursday evenings from 6.30 to 9.30pm

Course fee: classroom-based €945 (or €995 if paying the course fee in instalments), online €845 (or €895 if paying the course fee in instalments)
Non-EU students: €1,295available-as-online-course3

A fee of £76 will be payable to The Institute of Commercial Management on successful completion of this course.

Multi-Course Discount: Students who register for two or more classroom-based courses with the School of Psychology can do so at a fee of €895 per course.


Awarding body:  The Institute of Commercial Management (ICM)

CPD Credits:This event has been approved for 9 CPD credits for members of the Psychological Society of Ireland.

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The Diploma in Counselling Psychology at City Colleges aims to introduce students to the main theories, strategies, and skills of counselling psychology. Theories covered are derived from the three main basic therapeutic frameworks; humanistic, psychodynamic, and cognitive-behavioural. Students will graduate with a sound basic understanding of these three main schools and specific examples of each from a theoretical perspective. Attention will also be paid to broad differences between counselling psychology and related professions such as counselling, psychotherapy, psychoanalysis, etc. Basic skills training will also be covered. Finally, students will gain experience of research through a project to be completed within one month of completion of lectures.

This course is offered from our Dublin City Centre location (South Great George’s Street, Dublin 2) and from our campus in Dundrum, Dublin 16.

This event has been approved for CPD credits for members of the Psychology Society of Ireland.


  • The aim of this diploma course is to introduce learners to the basic concepts involved in the clinical practice of Counselling Psychology. The intention is to provide each participant with an enjoyable and engaging entry-point to a complex and multi-faceted subject area.

    The programme will consist of lectures, classroom discussion and practical exercises.

    The course runs for ten weeks and is composed of the following elements:

    Lectures: This is the traditional mainstay of academic programmes. The lectures will provide information, explain concepts and guide the reading of the learner;

    Discussion: Participants will be encouraged to discuss important concepts and themes in a relaxed atmosphere. The emphasis here is less on defending view-points than on the exploration of ideas and the sharing of personal understanding.

    Practical Exercises: Towards the latter part of the programme we will conduct some practical exercises relevant to the clinical application of counselling. The precise form of this element will depend on the dynamic specific to each group of learners and is, as such, a somewhat organic element. It is envisaged, though, that this component will involve some form of group process and some one-to-one clinical encounters involving learners in the role of clinician and client; and,

    Essay / Project: Each participant will be tasked with writing an essay of approximately 2500 words. The topic for each essay will be discussed and agreed with the lecturer. A submission date will be given, typically about one month after the date of the final lecture. Learners will be encouraged to comply with this deadline as extensions can only be given in exceptional circumstances.

    Successful completion of the programme will require a pass grade on the essay and a pass grade for class participation. The lecturer will make every effort to assist each learner in maximising his or her performance on the programme.

  • Session One – What is a Counsellor? 

    • History and Current Trends in Counselling
    • The Nature of a Counsellor’s Work
    • What makes a good counsellor?
    • Stages of Brain Growth and Behaviour
    • DSM-V and Diagnosis
    • Medication Issues


    Session Two – Developing Basic Counselling Skills

    • Top Ten Basic Counselling Skills-Listening vs. Reacting
    • The Helping and Healing Side of Counselling
    • Is Compassion Enough?
    • Gloria-a Client Sees Three Experts: First Expert


    Session Three –Raising a Healthy Child – Understanding the importance of:

    • Attachment
    • Emotional Communication
    • Child Development
    • Normal Developmental Trends
    • Adolescent Development
    • The Role of the Parent in Discipline
    • Corrective Discipline
    • Harsh Parenting vs Permissive Parenting – Impact on Children


    Session Four – Mastering the Techniques of Counselling

    • Common Problems Counsellors are Presented With
    • Didactic Approach-Socratic Method
    • Experiential Approach-Psychodrama
    • Stages of Brain Growth-self regulation
    • Gloria sees second expert


    Session Five – Problems of Adolescence – Anorexia, Bulimia, Substance Use, Family Conflict Signs/Symptoms/Treatment

    • Introduction
    • The Adolescent Brain and Its Development
    • Significant Disorders of Adolescence
    • Gender Identity Disorders
    • Parenting and Disciplining your Teen


    Session Six – Counselling Modalities

    • Individual vs Group Counselling
    • The Counsellor and the Neurotic Agreement
    • Rational Emotive Therapy
    • Laughter – The Best medicine?
    • Paradoxical Interventions


    Session Seven-Cognitive Behaviour Therapy

    • Adler and Social Interest
    • Lazarus and Multimodal therapy
    • Assessment in CBT-a Multimodal Approach
    • CBT and Treatment of Anxiety/Depression
    • Gloria sees expert three


    Session Eight – Understanding your Child’s Social and Emotional Needs

    • The Social Brain
    • The Importance of the Visual Brain
    • Trajectory of Social Development
    • The Emotional Brain
    • The Importance of Emotional Development
    • Social/Emotional Cognition
    • Parental Role in Social/Emotional Development


    Session Nine – The Adolescent Brain

    • Maturation, Growth, Pruning, Reasoning
    • Problems in Adolescent Development
    • The Wounded Self and Interpersonal Relationships
    • Psychological Movement in Adolescence
    • Anxiety and Depression in the Teenage Years


    Session Ten –Solution Focused Counselling

    • Who Owns the Problem?
    • Counselling as Education
    • Transference and Counter-Transference
    • Psychopathy and Sociopathy
    • Oppositional Defiant Disorders


  • “The course provided positive insights into current thinking across a wide range of topics in Counselling. The lectures were stimulating and provided clear explanations on complex issues and their discussions explored current Psychological thinking.  The lecturer was excellent at stimulating debates, organising workshops and encouraged us to analyse problem situations and possible solutions. I have no hesitation in highly recommending this Diploma Course to anyone interested in this field of study.”

    Kathryn Ruszel

  • A ‘Pass’ grade on both the written assignment (Project) as well as participation in the final role-play exercise will be required for awarding of the Diploma in Counselling Psychology. A ‘Fail’ grade will result in a Certificate of Attendance for the course but without the Diploma being awarded. Students must attend at least 8 of the 10 course evenings to graduate with either the Diploma or Certificate of Attendance unless a serious and verifiable reason for further absence is provided. Likewise, the Project must be handed in on the due date unless a sound reason for lateness is provided. In such instances, an extension may be awarded at the discretion of the lecturer.

  • To download an application form click here

    Apply Online

    For more information please contact us on: 1850 25 27 40, 01 4160034 or email info@citycolleges.ie

For More Information

Please contact us on: 1850 25 27 40, 01 4160034 or email info@citycolleges.ie