Level 3 Diploma
Counselling Skills

Delivered at Accrington and Rossendale College University Centre
Start Date September 2022 / January 2023 start dates available
Mode Part-time
Duration 32 Weeks
Cost £2,225* Eligible for an Advanced Learner Loan

* The fees charged on your course will not rise by more than inflation during your studies but the College reserves the right to increase fees annually by not more than RPIX (Retail Prices Index excluding Mortgage Interest).

If your studies are to be funded by your employer or as part of an Apprenticeship then different rates may apply, please enquire for details.

Course overview

This Diploma aims to provide learners with in-depth knowledge of the use of Counselling skills in everyday life and work and the approaches that underpin the use of these skills. This qualification does not qualify learners to practise as a Counsellor.

Learners on this course come with three different main aims:

• To progress onto a first Degree or other Higher Education course within the field (i.e. you want a career in Counselling and need a Degree)
• To prepare for a Post-Graduate qualification within the field (ie. you already have a (unrelated) Degree but want to progress onto a MA in the field)
• To increase skills and knowledge that will enhance your current role (i.e. professional development) and/or increase job opportunities

What will I learn

The Level 3 Diploma in Counselling Skills is an intensive course requiring hard work and dedication. To achieve the best possible grades, we expect you to:

• Attend every timetabled lesson. We understand that occasionally you may need to miss a lesson, but we expect you to have at least 95% attendance
• Submit all assignments on time
• Ask for help if you are struggling or unsure- we are here to support you to achieve the best grades possible
• Undertake your college work, including additional reading.
• Research your next steps. It is important that you start researching your degree options as soon as possible. A good place to start is www.ucas.com
• Treat staff and fellow students with respect

In return, you can expect of us:

• Experienced, dedicated teaching staff
• Lessons that will stretch your thinking and help you achieve high grades
• Online resources to help you complete your assignments
• Support to develop academic skills for progression
• Support with helping you decide your future plans
• Support with UCAS applications
• Additional workshops
• To be treated with respect

Should you have any additional questions about your application, the course or the interview process, please contact the HE Office on he@accross.ac.uk or 01254 354 047 or 354 117.

How will the courses be assessed?

Throughout the course you will take part in a range of activities, for example, presentations, group work, research, independent learning, triads etc. You will be taught by experienced tutors, who will model their Counselling skills and show you practical examples. You will use your learning log to reflect on your learning journey.

This includes tasks you conduct outside of the classroom.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements are assessed on an individual basis. However, you should have GCSE/Level 2 Functional Skills in English in place before beginning the course and good IT skills. Ideally you should have Level 2 Maths and an ICT qualifications, or willing to study these alongside the Counselling Diploma.

For those who already have a Degree, we need you to check and provide evidence of the entry criteria to study an MA. Some universities require specific GCSE/ Level 2 Functional Skills qualifications and grades. It is a good idea to check with your chosen universities before beginning the Level 3 Diploma in Counselling Skills.


Learners who achieve this qualification could progress to Level 4 Counselling qualifications. Those who already have a Degree but desire to study for an MA in the field are urged to contact universities to ensure this is the right qualification that meets entry criteria.

Nelson and Colne College Group offers the FdA in Counselling Studies and BA (Hons) in Counselling and Psychotherapy Studies.

After successfully completing the FdA, you have the opportunity to top-up to a full BA (hons) Counselling and Psychotherapy.

Both qualifications are validated by Liverpool John Moores University.

Other opportunities within the college Group that might be of interest are:

  • BA (Hons) Health and Applied Social Studies
  • FdA Mental Health Work
  • FdA Alcohol and Substance Misuse Work
  • FdA Criminology and Criminal Justice
  • FdA Teaching and Learning Support
  • CertHE
  • FdA Working with Children Young People and Families.