Post Graduate Diploma in Psychological Wellbeing, Counselling and Psychotherapy

Further Information:

If you have an enquiry or want to request further information: either complete the form on the ‘Contact Us’ page, or email or call us on 0330 202 0283

Programme Overview

The Post-Graduate Diploma in Psychological Wellbeing, Counselling and Psychotherapy is a two-year part-time programme awarded to students who exit the MSc programme at the end of the second year. The programme is validated and awarded by the University of Aberdeen and professionally accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy. The programme has an annual intake starting in September or October every year.

The programme is an advanced training programme in the Person-Centred approach providing students with the opportunity to engage in professional and personal development to the standard that BACP requires for professionally accredited counsellors. The course is specifically designed to accommodate people who have work commitments during the week which make weekly attendance difficult and for that reason the course takes place mainly at weekends or week-long blocks over three years. Residential attendance on the programme is a requirement of the course.

Module 1
Theory and Practice of Therapeutic Change
Year One, Term 1

Module 2
Personality Theory, Psychological Wellbeing and Psychopathology
Year One, Term 2

Module 3
Reflective Practice, Developments in Counselling and Complex Clinical Issues
Year Two, Term 3

Module 4
Research Issues and Research Methods
Year Two, Term 4

Module 5
Clinical Competence, Supervision  and an in-depth analysis of the Counselling Process
Years One & Two
Terms: 1, 2, 3, 4

Module 6
Developing the Reflective Practitioner
Years One & Two
Terms: 1, 2, 3, 4

What does the course involve?

The training programme is designed to integrate personal and professional development. The structure of the programme offers a balance between theoretical understanding, personal development and clinical competence.

The aims of the programme are:

  • To provide the opportunity, environment, resources and support for individuals to undertake advanced accredited training in professional counselling.
  • To offer a programme which supports and respects the learning process of students by incorporating a variety of training approaches relevant to counselling.
  • To provide a learning and assessment process which is informed by the Person-Centred philosophy and encourages students to take major responsibility for their learning.
  • To provide a programme with a primary focus on the central concepts/theories of the Person-Centred approach in counselling but which also consider other theories of human growth and development and related therapeutic approaches, models of psychopathology and mental health issues
  • To provide a learning process within which students can consider their own reflective processes, reactions, thoughts and feelings in support of their development as reflective practitioners.
  • To provide a programme which supports the development of clinical competence and ethical practice through the integration of:
    • clinical and professional competence
    • underpinning knowledge of therapeutic models and processes
    • personal reflectiveness and understanding of intra-psychic and interpersonal processes


Students are required to submit written assignments, audio recordings of client, both as a focus for their personal research and to provide an opportunity to demonstrate their learning. Each Module is formally assessed, most require written assignments which are tutor assessed, but others have a blended assessment requiring a presentation which are tutor, peer and self-assessed.

  • Theoretical understanding: is monitored through discussion groups and written assignments
  • Clinical Practice: is monitored through live practice sessions, recorded sessions and participation in group supervision
  • Self-reflectiveness: is monitored through participation in Course Community Meetings, Process Reflection Orientated/Experiential Workshops, Encounter Groups and Process Reflection Groups

Student Support

Each student is assigned a personal tutor whose role is to be a point of connection and a touchstone for the student to discuss how they are handling the different demands of the course: completing assignments, understanding theory, managing placements, preparing recordings or personal development issues.


Since this course is an advanced training, applicants must have completed a basic training in counselling/counselling skills as a minimum entry requirement. Where applicants can make a case for themselves on the basis of equivalent experience that will also be considered. Applicants are invited to submit a completed application form which is required to be supported by two references.

How much does the course cost?

The overall cost of the programme involves course fees and the cost of residential accommodation.

Course fees are approximately £3,500 per annum but are subject to inflationary costs and accommodation fees also vary from programme to programme.  Current fees for the programme are published when the course is available for applicants.  Payment of a non-refundable deposit is required to secure a place on the programme. Fees are required to be paid in advance at the beginning of the academic year. Payment Plans are available.

Additional costs: the cost of individual supervision is not included in the course fees. Although it is not a mandatory requirement of the course the vast majority of students choose to engage in personal therapy during the programme. The cost of personal therapy is also met by the individual student.

We are a Professional and Career Development Loans registered Learning Provider, registration number 11497.  For further information on financial assistance to support your learning, please visit the GOV.UK website or contact the National Careers Service on 0800 100 900.

How do I apply?

If you have an enquiry or want to request an application form: either complete the form on the ‘Contact Us’ page, or email or call us on 0330 202 0283

Interested in Persona Development & Training?


“Being a student on the Persona PG Counselling Diploma was the best and most important decision I have ever made. It has been life changing. The group process and emphasis on self- development was instrumental in my journey of self-discovery.”

Christine 2014-2016

“Being on the programme opened up new insights into who I was - an awareness to change certain things and an acceptance of those things in me that I could truly cherish. This wouldn't have been possible without my peers and tutors. A great learning experience indeed! “  

Sarah 2014 – 2016

'Persona offers a substantive and truly immersive training in counselling; I have found that my experience and learning from being on the course has given me a solid and proper foundation on which to build my counselling career.'

Kenny 2005-2007


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