York College

Who is this course aimed at?

The SEG Awards ABC Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling is designed for those learners who are seeking to be professionally qualified counsellors. SAG ABC expects York College to recruit with integrity on the basis of a learner’s ability to contribute to and successfully complete all the requirements of a unit/s or the full qualification. This qualification should involve experiential learning in small group situations. This is often powerful and it is sensible to remind potential learners of the kind of experience they can expect.

Overview of the course

This qualification is made up of credit rated units developed in association with Skills for Health, the Sector Skills Council for the Health and Social Care Sector. When combined with the ABC Level 3 Certificate in Counselling Skills, or an equivalent qualification, it meets the basic training requirement for recognition as a qualified counsellor and also contains supervised placement hours. Learners will complete this qualification with a comprehensive and full understanding of the following:

  • Ethical frameworks, including the importance of setting, supervision and casework management in counselling
  • The impact diverse culture and heritage can have on the client/counsellor relationship in a multicultural society
  • One major therapeutic model
  • How to conduct a counselling session with a client in an ethical, effective and safe way
  • How to increase self-awareness
  • The purpose and importance of Research in counselling

Entry Requirements

As a prerequisite for admission to the Diploma course learners must possess the SEG Awards ABC Level 3 Certificate in Counselling Skills or an equivalent qualification (YSJ Certificate in Counselling is accepted as entry to the level 4) obtained elsewhere. You must demonstrate your suitability to undertake this Level 4 qualification course. You will take part in an interview with a course tutor and must pass a skill test.

Dates and Times

The 2021/22 academic year start dates are being finalised, applications/pre-enrolments for this course will open around May, please check our website around this time and apply/pre-enrol online. If you have any questions in the meantime please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Course Length

64 - 70 weeks depending on dates.

Course Modules/units

The SEG Awards ABC Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling qualification covers the following seven topics:

CDL4U1 - Professional Organisational Issues in Counselling – In this unit, learners will develop an understanding of the essential relationship between counsellors, as professionals, as well as the organisations and other people with which they may work. They will explore areas of potential conflict, especially through the existence of different ethical standards and principles. They will also reflect on the importance of casework supervision and understand assessment and risk in relation to safeguarding in counselling.

CDL4U2 - Counselling in a Diverse Society – In this unit, learners will explore the impact that diverse cultures and heritage can have on the client / counsellor therapeutic relationship in a multicultural society. They will also examine power issues within the counselling process.

CDL4U3 - Counselling Theory – In this unit, learners will analyse one major theoretical approach to influence, inform and empower their practice as a counsellor. They will also compare other theoretical approaches alongside the major approach.

CDL4U4 - Advanced Counselling Skills – Learners will demonstrate a range of skills illustrating their development as practitioners. In addition, they will learn that counselling is a managed activity, with emphasis being given to the importance of opening and closing a series of sessions.

CDL4U5 - Self-awareness for Counsellors – This unit aims to enable learners to increase self-awareness by analysing and evaluating the impact that their own counselling philosophy, counselling theory and practice has on self and relationships.

CDL4U6 - Research Methodologies in Counselling – In this unit, learners will explore the importance of research in counselling. They will develop their research skills and will learn how to present findings.

CDL4U7 - Counselling Placement – Learners will complete this unit linked to a supervised counselling placement practice of 100 hours. They will analyse how their theoretical approach has influenced their practice, and evaluate learning gained from supervision.

Learners are expected to have personal therapy/counselling whilst working towards this qualification.

Whilst you will gain personal benefit from these courses, they are not for personal therapy.  If you are having personal therapy or receiving psychiatric treatment, then it is advised that evidence will be sought from an appropriate person, as to your suitability for the course

Teaching Method(s)

Classroom based with some E-learning through York College Blackboard and Microsoft Teams. The teaching team will adopt a delivery approach which supports the development of all individuals. The aims and aspirations of all the learners, including those with identified special needs or learning difficulties/disabilities, will be considered and appropriate support mechanisms put in place.


This course encourages feedback from peers and tutors and also a process of self-reflection using weekly journals. There is a mandatory 100-hour work placement (assessed externally by ABC) and a residential weekend.  Internal assessment, internal and external moderation. Specific requirements and restrictions may apply to individual units within qualifications.

Course Fees

£2225 spread over two years (£1112 and £1113 respectively)

Additional costs

In addition to the course fees there will be supplementary costs for compulsory clinical supervision, personal therapy, residential learning weekend and BACP membership that will be discussed at interview. In addition students must have a DBS and indemnity insurance as well.

Reasons to choose this course

Outstanding college and learning environment. Highly qualified and accredited Counselling tutors.

Skills you will develop

The course can be a valuable introduction to communication skills, critical and thinking skills, interpersonal skills and team working transferable into a range of career and educational opportunities.

Course progression

Learners who complete this qualification may progress to the level 5 Diploma in Counselling or  a Postgraduate and Post Qualifying courses in counselling studies. Many learners progress towards national accreditation status with professional lead bodies.

Career progression

When combined with the ABC Level 3 Certificate in Counselling Skills, or an equivalent qualification, it meets the basic training requirement for recognition as a qualified counsellor.

About the course tutors

Susan Simpson: PgCert Counselling and Psychotherapy; PgCert Applied Positive Psychology; Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Authority; PGCE in the Lifelong Learning Sector; BA(Hons 2.1) Counselling Theory (CBT, Coaching and Mentoring); FdA Counselling Skills and Theory.

I am a qualified professional counsellor in private practice and member of the BACP.  I have taught counselling from level 2 to level 6 in various universities, colleges and adult education in the community.  I had the pleasure of teaching concepts of positive psychology to people with mental health issues with great success, such as, change your mindset, developing the best possible self and mindfulness in the moment.

I endeavour to help individuals to recognise that they are their own best resource, facilitating a process of self-direction and empowerment, enabling them to become fully functioning.  I also hope that I am able to pass this passion and excitement onto students, based on clinical and theoretical experience.


Contact Us

If you would like to enrol, you can do so via our Enrol Now page.

If you have any further questions about York College please email info@yorkcollege.ac.uk or call (01904) 770770.

Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this webpage, the content is subject to change where necessary.


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