Do you have a background in counselling or psychology and want to gain the practical knowledge and interpersonal skills you need to pursue a career as a gestalt counsellor?
On this Gestalt Counselling DipHE, you'll learn how to help people reflect on their current thoughts, feelings and behaviours so they can better understand their current situation. This can help them deal with relationship problems and mental health issues such as anxiety, depression and stress.
In year 1, you'll develop foundational counselling skills and explore all the counselling approaches available to practitioners, including humanistic counselling and cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT).
In your second year, you'll focus on developing the practical skills you need as a gestalt counsellor, putting what you learn into practice by conducting 100 hours of supervised counselling. You'll also learn about mental health issues and develop skills you need to work with different types of clients.
When you complete the course, you could top up your diploma to a Bachelor's degree. You could also work as a gestalt counsellor in areas such as education, the police service, the prison service and the voluntary sector.
This course shares the same 1st year modules as our DipHE Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and DipHE Humanistic Counselling.
It's simple to switch courses at the end of year 1 if you change your mind about which counselling specialism to study.
This course takes place at Eastleigh College. While studying at Eastleigh College, you can access the University's student support services and community including study support, the Students’ Union and our library's online resources.
What you'll experience
On this course you'll:
- Learn from experienced, industry-trained staff who've worked in organisations or run their own private practices
- Study modules that give you a strong foundation for your studies and future career, covering topics including counselling skills, ethics, counselling theory and professional skills and development
- Focus on developing specialist gestalt counselling skills and knowledge in year 2
- Apply your knowledge and skills with at least 100 hours of supervised counselling on a placement in the community
- Build a foundation to help work towards a further professional accreditation with the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) following completion of the course
- Learn research skills, which you can apply in your career and in degree-level study after the course
- Develop transferable skills you can apply in all aspects of your life and career in areas such as problem solving, communication, group working, planning, effective feedback and IT
- Study at Eastleigh College with access to University of Portsmouth support and services
- Apply for membership of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and get access to member resources including journal subscriptions, free courses and job boards
Work experience and career planning
You can get help, advice and support from our Careers and Employability service for up to 5 years after you leave the University as you advance in your career.
Supervised counselling placement
You'll complete 100 hours on a supervised counselling placement. You'll enter into a written contract with the placement provider and Eastleigh College. Assessment of your practical skills as a counsellor will be by case study and portfolio.
Recent students have taken placements at CRUSE Bereavement Care, Portsmouth Abuse and Rape Counselling (PARCS), Yellow Door (counselling for sexual and domestic abuse victims) and other counselling services.
We'll help you secure a work placement that fits your aspirations. You'll get mentoring and support throughout, including regular supervision and skills clinics every other week.
All placements provided are evaluated to ensure the setting provides a suitable learning environment for you.
What you'll study
On this course, you'll study modules worth 240 credits.
- Core modules:
- Development of Counselling Theory
- Development of Counselling Skills
- Professional Issues for a Counselling Practitioner
- Personal Development
There are no optional modules on this course.
- Gestalt Counselling Theory
- Gestalt Counselling Skills
- Professional Development
- Mental Health Issues
- Counselling Specific Clients' Groups
- Introduction to Research Methodologies
There are no optional modules on this course.
You'll gain skills, knowledge and competence through learning methods that include:
- Work-based learning
- Saturday workshops
- Skills clinics
- Personal development groups
- Module handbooks
- A virtual learning environment (VLE)
You'll also complete a minimum of 30-hours personal therapy. You'll demonstrate your personal learning and awareness from this process in a learning journal.
Teaching staff include experienced experts who have industry experience in paid counselling roles in organisations, or who run their own private practice.
How you're assessed
On this counselling diploma, you'll be assessed through:
- Live skills assessments (role play scenarios)
- Individual and group presentations
- Portfolios of evidence
- Case studies
- Personal learning journals
- Professional requirements (a 'Fitness to Practice' assessment)
- Supervised work-based learning
You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.
Feedback is central to this course. You'll get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future, as well as on your application for the 'Fitness to Practice' assessment. You'll also practice giving feedback during live skills assessments, where you'll receive feedback from your peers, as well as the assessment tutor.
Careers and opportunities
Gestalt counselling is a tool for helping people deal with difficulties including anxiety, depression, stress, self-confidence issues, bereavement, relationship difficulties or family problems.
Increased awareness in society about mental health and events such as the coronavirus pandemic have increased the demand for counselling and therapy services. As a counsellor, you can have a significant positive impact on people's health and wellbeing, and help take the pressure off other health services such as GPs and hospitals.
Public, private and charity sector settings you could work in after the course include:
- Alcohol and drug services
- Eating disorder services
- Mental health services
- Police and prison services
You could also top-up your diploma to a Bachelor's degree on our BSc (Hons) Gestalt Counselling top-up course.
When you complete the course successfully, you can sit the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) Certificate of Proficiency to become a registered member of the BACP.