Course Overview

This part-time programme aims to provide a good, basic grounding in the psychology of lifespan development and major psychological theories of personality and their application to counselling. The practical aspects of the course include basic counselling skills and group facilitation of personal development.

Applications and Selections

Applications will open in April for 2017

Who Teaches this Course


Course Director/Co-ordinator

Tammie (Tamar) Scott
M.A. Counselling Psychology, M.B.A.
Associate Member APA


Requirements and Assessment

Programme lectures take place one evening per week. In addition, there are three weekend workshops (Saturdays, 10.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m.) throughout the year. Reading and writing assignments will be in addition to the above time requirements.


Submission of written work, participation in skills training sessions, group work and discussion work form the basis of assessment.

On successful completion of Year 2, participants will be awarded a Diploma in Psychology of Counselling.

The Diploma is not a professional qualification in counselling. The Diploma programme is recognised and approved under the accreditation scheme of the National University of Ireland. The programme merits 15 ECTS credits in each academic year under this scheme.

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

No special educational qualifications are required. Successful applicants should have acceptable standards in written and oral aspects of the course. Involvement, either voluntary or professional for which the contents of this programme have relevance, will be taken into consideration. The programme selection panel reserves the right to select candidates. Students must complete a personal statement as part of the application process for this course.

Additional Requirements


2 years, part-time

Next start date

September 2017

A Level Grades ()

Average intake


Closing Date

Next start date

September 2017

NFQ level


Mode of study


ECTS weighting




PAC code

Course Outline

The programme includes lectures and workshops. Participants are introduced to diverse counselling theories and to the practices derived from them in a variety of settings. The two-year course integrates three dimensions of counselling psychology:

  • Personality theory and theories of counselling
  • Lifespan development and theories of counselling
  • Counselling skills and practice, including ethical and professional issues

In the second year of the course students will have an opportunity to gain more in-depth knowledge of:

  • Diverse approaches to counselling - Gestalt Counselling; Person-centred Counselling; Behavioural/Cognitive-Behavioural Counselling; Reality Therapy; Family/Couples Counselling; Applied Behavioural Analysis
  • Working with groups including various groups such as adolescents, children as wellas addiction groups etc.
  • Self Awareness and Personal Development

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

This foundation programme in the psychology of counselling is a stepping stone towards the further education that is required to become a counsellor, psychotherapist or psychologist. The programme provides an opportunity for students to assess their ability to perform in a third level education setting, to work on personal development issues and obtain knowledge of what a career in mental health work might be.

Who’s Suited to This Course

It is designed for individuals who are involved in a helping or advice giving role. In particular, it caters for members of self-help groups, volunteers in befriending and support organizations, individuals engaged in personnel work and staff of educational, youth and health services. The course enables participants to gain a better understanding of the processes in which they are involved and to develop their counselling skills. The course is also suitable for persons who would like subsequently to pursue a professional counselling course as the programme is a foundation in the theory and basic skills of counselling.

Learning Outcomes

Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€970 p.a.

Fees: Tuition

Fees: Student levy

Fees: Non EU

€1,470 p.a.


A fees scholarship of up to 30% may be available for students who wish to upskill for the purposes of re-employment. Students must be registered as unemployed and in receipt of one of the following: Job-seekers Benefit, Job-seekers Allowance, One-parent family allowance, Disability allowance, Community Employment Scheme or signing for social insurance contribution credits. Please download the 2016_2017 Scholarship Form for more information.

Find out More


Catherine Geraghty
Centre for Adult Learning and Professional Development
NUI Galway, Nuns' Island

Tel: 091 492144
Fax: 091 525051

What Our Students Say 


Patricia Burke |   Current Student

Having completed the part-time Diploma in Psychology of Counselling at NUIG, I have progressed to further studies in this area. The Diploma was a fantastic learning experience and I thoroughly enjoyed my time at NUIG. Starting a third level course as a mature student can be a daunting experience, but I was supported and encouraged every step of the way. Lecturers were knowledgeable, professional and approachable. This course facilitates personal growth and academic development. I highly recommend it as a starting point for those interested in counselling or psychotherapy.