Graduate Diploma in Counselling

Why study the Graduate Diploma in Counselling at UNE?

The Graduate Diploma in Counselling prepares graduates to work as university-qualified registered counsellors in a diverse range of counselling contexts. Combining online study with mandatory intensive schools in a blended learning format, the course is ideally suited to individuals with a prior degree in any discipline wishing to gain an industry-recognised, tertiary-level qualification whilst continuing to meet their work and family commitments. As part of the award, students can complete either the Generalist Counselling Pathway or the Counselling Placement Pathway which includes 40 hours of face-to-face counselling; 10 hours of clinical supervision and 150 hours of agency-based activities. The course provides a direct pathway to the Master of Counselling at UNE and is accredited by the Australian Counselling Association (ACA), a national peak association, and Australia's largest single registration body for counsellors and psychotherapists. Student membership with the ACA is available while undertaking the course, with professional membership eligibility after graduation. Graduates who engage in ongoing professional development are also eligible to be listed on the Australian Register of Counsellors and Psychotherapists (ARCAP), an independent national register of qualified counsellors and psychotherapists.

Career Opportunities

Employment opportunities in the public, private and community counselling, health, education and human services sectors.

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Degree Snapshot


Up to 4 years Part-time


CSP (quotas apply)
Full Fee


Trimester 1, Online
Trimester 2, Online

Official Abbreviation GradDipCouns
Course Type Postgraduate
Responsible Campus Admission Period Mode of Study
Armidale Trimester 1 Online
Armidale Trimester 2 Online
Course Duration
  • Up to 4 years Part-time
Fees CSP (quotas apply) / Full Fee / International
For fee information, click here
Total Credit Points 48
How to Apply

All domestic students apply through the link below

For more information, click here

International students apply direct to UNE through UNE International. This course is only available online (distance education).

For more information, click here

Intensive Schools

Mandatory Intensive schools are a requirement of some of the units in this course. See Unit Catalogue for specific requirements.

Entry Requirements

A candidate shall:

(a) hold an AQF Level 7 Bachelor qualification; or

(b) hold an AQF Level 8 Graduate Certificate or Graduate Diploma or AQF Level 9 Masters or AQF Level 10 Doctorate degree in any relevant* discipline; or

(c) satisfy UNE by means of other relevant* professional experience by submitting a Statement of Service from your employer/s and a resume outlining a minimum of three years' full-time (or equivalent) relevant* professional experience and training undertaken in the past 10 years.

*Relevant disciplines include, but are not limited to: counselling, psychology, social work, nursing, teaching, human resources, life coaching, community services, children's services, youth work, care for the aged, care for the disabled, residential client care, welfare studies, human welfare services, pastoral care and medicine.

Additional Requirements

Inherent Requirements: Students must meet the Inherent Requirements in order to complete this course.

Advanced Standing

Candidates are referred to the University Policy on Advanced Standing.

Academic Colours

Old Rose (BCC 157)

Further Information

You can find instant answers to many of your questions or contact UNE directly via AskUNE

Course rules and plans for the Graduate Diploma in Counselling, 2019, will be available between November and January. Course information relating to other years is available by selecting the year required from the list at the top right hand side of the page.
Course Aims

This course aims to equip students with advanced theoretical knowledge and practice-based counselling skills.

Learning Outcomes Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:
  1. demonstrate advanced theoretical knowledge and skills-based practice in the discipline of counselling;
  2. utilise contemporary research and evidence-based guidelines, together with a professional understanding of diverse client populations and the main approaches used, in order to best meet their client's needs;
  3. apply principles of ethico-legal practice to plan, implement, analyse and document ways of working with clients in complex situations, demonstrating respect for diversity;
  4. conduct skills-based practice sessions in a competent, adaptable and professional manner, demonstrating well-developed judgement, in order to best meet the needs of clients and groups;
  5. engage reflexively in analysis of the development of their professional practice, counselling and supervision skills and on the need for ongoing supervision and professional development; and
  6. demonstrate the capacity to work inter-professionally and to communicate knowledge, skills and ideas to others.
Graduate Attributes
Knowledge of a Discipline

Students will adopt a culturally sensitive, global perspective during the acquisition of advanced knowledge and skills in counselling.

Communication Skills

Students will increase their English language proficiency by developing communication skills to build empathic relationships with clients based on approaches outlined and the ability to critically reflect on the use of these skills.

Problem Solving

Students will develop their ability to review, analyse and critically reflect on knowledge and identify appropriate ways to support clients with complex issues.

Information Literacy

Students will increase their capacity to critically evaluate the sources and validity of relevant information and their ability to think critically and evaluate complex ideas and experiences, using specialised techniques.

Ethical Conduct and Social Responsibility

Students will increase their capacity to reason, practice and behave in an ethically sound and socially responsible manner towards their clients, colleagues and the wider community.

Lifelong Learning

Students will expand their capacity to take responsibility and be accountable for personal and professional practice as a counsellor through self-reflexive practice.

Independence and Collaboration

Students will extend their understanding of the importance of both effective, multi-disciplinary teamwork and the capacity for competent independent practice when working with clients, their families and the community.

How to Apply

Domestic Students

All domestic students apply through the link below

For more information, click here

International Students

International students apply direct to UNE through UNE International. This course is only available online (distance education).

For more information, click here

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