Certificate in Counselling Skills & Theory (Levels 2 and 3)

Basingstoke Counselling Service, based in North Hampshire, offers a Level 2 and 3 Certificate in Counselling Skills & Theory, which takes place annually, starting in September of each year.


What does the course cover?

This course has multiple aspects to it, including:

  • to provide a basic training in counselling skills and theory
  • to develop understanding of counselling and the counselling situation
  • to develop understanding of the psyche
  • to develop awareness and understanding of self in relation to others
  • to develop understanding of human development
  • to develop study skills 

To gain a more in depth understanding of what the course involves please click here.


Is this course for me?

People’s motivations for undertaking this course varies, such as:

  • an interest in a career in counselling and psychotherapy
  • a desire to gain a deeper understanding of yourself, your personal relationships and how you interact with others
  • a curiosity in group dynamics and your own position within a group
  • an interest in exploring counselling skills from the perspective of people’s life experiences and how they have impacted them
  • a wish to enhance skills in a profession or helping role where listening and communication skills are important
  • a desire to develop your professional potential in a management role through the use of counselling skills in the workplace

If any of these reasons resonate with you, please see below to find out more about achieving your personal and professional goals and how to apply.

A Certificate in Counselling Skills is also a prerequisite for those wishing to pursue further counselling training. It is a mandatory step on any progressive training journey, including that offered by Basingstoke Counselling Service, which leads to status as a qualified counsellor.


Entry Criteria

The selection process is by means of application form and interview. No formal qualifications are required. The selection of candidates will be based upon an individual’s personal attributes and their intellectual and emotional capacity to work with the content of the course.

Completion of an Introduction to Counselling course prior to applying for the Certificate in Counselling Skills and Theory is recommended but not essential. Please click here for more information.


Course Structure

The course takes place over one academic year. There are thirty once-weekly sessions which take place on a Thursday evening and two Saturday workshops spread over three ten-week terms. There is a half-term break in each term in line with Hampshire school holidays.

The sessions take place between 6.15 and 9.30pm. Each evening is split into two sessions; the first of these is a seminar, whilst the second part of the evening is an experiential group.

There will be one Saturday workshop in the autumn term and one in the summer term. The workshops run from 10am to 4pm.


Seminar Leaders and Teaching Methods

All seminar leaders are experienced counsellors or psychotherapists and skilled trainers. They all adhere to the BACP Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions or an equivalent ethical body. Teaching is through seminar leader presentation, experiential exercises, role-play, and small and large group discussion.


The Experiential Group

This part of the training offers an opportunity in which to explore feelings and relationships within the group. The content of the course can be emotionally challenging and this group supports participants in their journey to gain a deeper understanding of themselves and the group dynamics involved. Many people find this a rich and personally rewarding experience. The group is facilitated by a skilled group psychotherapist.


Reading and Written Work

Students are expected to engage in reading relevant to the course and will need to either purchase the core course books or borrow them from a library. Further reading suggestions will be provided at the beginning of the course and electronic copies of papers for discussion are also distributed throughout the course where appropriate.

There is one written assignment of 1,500 words which is completed in the final term. Students are also asked to keep a record of their personal learning journey throughout the course. An 800 word summary of their learning is submitted at the end of the academic year.

Students will be supported throughout their learning by a personal tutor and will have a formal tutorial at the end of each term.



In addition to the above academic requirements, assessment of a student’s personal development is continuous throughout the course and consists of self, peer and staff evaluation.


Counselling and Therapy Requirements

Students are not required to be in their own counselling or therapy during the Certificate course. However, this is encouraged at this stage if you are considering going onto further counselling training.


Award of Certificate

Students must demonstrate to a satisfactory degree an ability to use counselling skills and an understanding of self and the counselling process. They must also attend and participate in seminars, workshops, groups and tutorials. All written work must be completed to a satisfactory standard. This course does not give qualified status as a counsellor.


Course Fees

Standard fee:                                                                                    £1495.00

Applications received by 10th May 2021:                                         £1345.00

Attendees of a BCS Introduction to Counselling Course:                 £1195.00


Course Dates

Autumn Term 2021

Thursdays 23rd September 2021 – 2nd December 2021 (inclusive)

Reading week: Thursday 28th October 2021 – no sessions

Workshop: Saturday 13th November 2021


Spring Term 2022

Thursdays 13th January 2022 – 24th March 2022 (inclusive)

Reading week: Thursday 24th February 2022 – no sessions


Summer Term 2022

Thursdays 28th April 2022 – 7th July 2022 (inclusive)

Reading week: Thursday 2nd June 2022 – no sessions

Workshop: Saturday 14th May 2022


Application process

The application process for the Certificate is now open. To download the application form, please click here.


Any questions

If you have any questions about any aspect of the course or the training journey we offer, please contact us on 01256 843125 or training@basingstokecounselling.org.uk


Terms and Conditions


Payment for the course can be made in two ways:

  1. Full payment of the course fee by yourself or your employer upon acceptance of a place on the Certificate course.
  2. Payment in three equal instalments. The first of these is due upon acceptance of a place on the course. Two further payments are then due at the beginning of the second and third terms.


Basingstoke Counselling Service makes a commitment to each student who accepts a place on this course. We therefore require a reciprocal commitment from each student.

Acceptance of a place on the course enters a student into a financial contract with Basingstoke Counselling Service. This commits the student to payment of the full course fee. Should a student not take up an accepted place or leave during the course of the training for any reason, no refund can be given and any outstanding fees will remain due to Basingstoke Counselling Service.


Basingstoke Counselling Service reserves the right to modify its training courses in line with BACP requirements.

Should exceptional circumstances arise Basingstoke Counselling Service reserves the right to cancel the course. In this situation any students already enrolled on the course would have their full fees refunded.