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BESC1081 Coaching Theory and Practice

Bachelor Course Unit

Level: 100

Credit points: 6

Prerequisites: none

Mode of Delivery: On Campus and Synchronous Online

Unit Description

This unit forms part of the Coaching Specialisation and introduces theories, models and practices of coaching to the student. It will explore the context of coaching within the broader professions of psychology, and in contrast to counselling, psychotherapy, mentoring, and consulting. The theory of coaching is critiqued in the light of Positive Psychology principles and practice and how they contribute to effective coaching. You will be instructed in how to set effective goals with clients, on interviewing techniques characteristic of coaching practice, and will engage in role play practice sessions. You will further be instructed in the application of CBT and Solution Focussed approaches and how to structure a coaching session.

The Bachelor of Counselling (Coaching) is an Accredited Coach Training Programme (ACTP) with the International Coach Federation (ICF). What this means for students is that firstly they are able to apply for membership with the ICF whilst undertaking their degree. Secondly, once a student completes their degree, they are eligible to apply for a credential with the ICF - Professional Certified Coach (PCC) credential or an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) credential. Which credential students become eligible to apply for depends on how well they perform in their coaching assessment in their final coaching unit ‘Coaching Practice and Supervision’. That is, if students pass the final assessment at the PCC level they will receive a certificate indicating that they have passed an ACTP and are eligible to apply for a PCC credential. If students do not meet the PCC standard, they will receive an alternative certificate indicating that they are eligible to apply for an ACC credential. In order to ensure students meet the final assessment requirements it is highly recommended that students find opportunities to practice coaching beyond the classroom space.

Please refer to this link regarding credentials with the ICF in order to gain a full understanding of what is required:

Learning outcomes

On completion of this unit students should be able to:

  • Describe and discuss the distinction between coaching, counselling and consulting;
  • Describe and critically review the major theories and models of behaviour change relevant to coaching (goal theory, positive psychology, adult learning models, and theories of change);
  • Describe and discuss the key techniques utilised in the practice of coaching (goal setting, solution oriented practices, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, applied positive psychology);
  • Discuss and apply the key techniques utilised in the practice of coaching;
  • Identify and apply the core competencies utilised in coaching;
  • Identify and plan an effective structure for a coaching session;
  • Understand and discuss major issues in the ethics of coaching (boundaries, referrals and the client-coach relationship).

Unit workload

The workload for this unit is 9 hours per week.


The required text book for this unit  can be found by viewing the School of Counselling textbook list by selecting the course and trimester at the following link:

Academic misconduct

Ethical conduct and academic integrity and honesty are fundamental to the mission of ACAP. Academic misconduct will not be tolerated by the college. Please refer to the Academic Misconduct Policy for full details.


Unit information may be subject to change prior to the teaching trimester commencing. Once term has commenced please review the Unit Outline in your class space to ensure your trimester study plan is correct.