Counselling Students On Sofa
Anniesland Campus
SCQF Level
Start Date
22 Aug 2022
Qualification Type
Course Type
2 Years (August to June)

HNC Counselling is designed to provide the opportunity to further develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes relevant to the theory and practice of working with people and counselling within an encouraging and supportive environment. The course is designed to integrate theory, practice, reflection and self-development, and build upon the content of the Counselling Theory for Practice: An introduction unit of study at SCQF Level 6.

What will I learn?

General aims of the qualification are to provide a coherent and progressive learning programme relevant to the needs of the counselling sector in Scotland, achievement of which provides joint certification from SQA and BACP and the opportunity to access individual membership and the BACP professional register.

The course has been designed to:

  • develop transferable skills, including core skills
  • demonstrate interpersonal skills and the ability to work with others
  • develop personal effectiveness
  • develop critical thinking skills
  • progress within the SCQF framework and into higher education
  • provide opportunities for career progression
  • provide an award for those working in the sector who wish to build on their existing knowledge and/or experience
  • encourage best practice
  • understand the main theoretical concepts and approaches to counselling and develop underpinning knowledge of counselling ethics and boundaries
  • explain and demonstrate the practice of skills using a relationship-centred model of counselling
  • explain and demonstrate personal learning and development within the course of the programme
  • provide you with counselling specific knowledge and skills applicable to a number of specialist areas
  • provide you with the opportunity to progress to the HN Diploma in Counselling.

Subjects covered include:

  • The Three Stage Integrative Model
  • Humanistic counselling approaches
  • Behavioural and cognitive counselling approaches
  • Psychodynamic counselling approaches
  • Understanding addictive behaviours
  • Working with addictive behaviours
  • Working with substance abuse
  • Group counselling skills
  • Theory loss, grief and bereavement
  • Graded unit.

Non-assessed practical experience within a helping agency or organisation that allows for the supervised practice of counselling skills is encouraged during the course.

Entry requirements (minimum)

  • A Counselling Award at SCQF level 6 or above e.g. the SQA unit Theory for Practice: an Introduction (or equivalent counselling units/awards from other awarding bodies at SCQF Level 6)
  • Two Highers, or equivalent, one of which must be English 
  • Participation in voluntary/paid work experience in a counselling setting
  • Other relevant related qualifications (such as HNCs in Social Care, Health Care, Diploma in Social Work, Degree/Diploma in Nursing, etc) may be considered
  • Experience of working with people who have experienced substance misuse problems, eating disorders, relationship issues
  • Two supportive verifiable references. 

Entry requirement equivalency table

  • If you do not meet the entry criteria for your chosen course, you may be offered an alternative course in the same subject area.

Employer and industry links

This course is underpinned by the BACP ethical framework. There is no placement required for this course although gaining relevant experience within a helping environment is recommended.

Jobs and further study

The HNC may lead to work within an agency or organisation where counselling skills are required, or progression to further study in counselling, psychology or related fields. Successful completion may lead to the opportunity to apply for the Higher National Diploma in Counselling which can result in BACP professional registration as a counsellor.

Making an application

For courses starting in August, you can make up to two applications.

Applications are made to a course and a first choice of campus. If the course is oversubscribed at your first choice you will be automatically considered for alternative sites and may be made an offer without a further application.

I've applied — what happens next?

When you apply:

You will receive an automated email confirming that we have received your application (please check your junk/SPAM folder if you do not hear from us).  We will be in contact as per the following stages:

  • The process will consist of a *group interview with two members of the lecturing team
  • A separate, 500 word 2nd personal statement should be submitted prior to interview. You will be required to bring evidence of qualifications to the interview where you will receive more information about the course and college and will have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have
  • Interviews will begin in February and will continue until June
  • Selection outcomes are based upon careful consideration of interview performance, qualifications and/or relevant workplace experience for each applicant. One of three selection outcomes will be made for each applicant and will be sent by email within 10 working days of the interview
  • The selection outcomes are ‘unconditional offer’; ‘conditional offer’, or ‘unsuccessful’
  • Any ‘conditions’ to your offer will be clearly outlined in the email
  • Once an offer is received, you must reply within 14 days or risk losing your place
  • Once you have accepted your offer, you will be sent further information relating to student funding in June with joining instructions and induction information in mid-July
  • You must accept your offer as soon as possible in order to secure your place. If you are made a conditional offer, you must provide the required evidence (qualifications, references, other details) as soon as it is available or risk losing your place
  • Non-assessed practical experience within a helping agency or organisation that allows for the supervised practice of counselling skills is encouraged during the course.

*Interview arrangements will be subject to change in accordance with available public health guidance and in order to facilitate a COVID-secure interview experience

More questions? Contact us about this course

0141 357 6189