COUN2101 Counselling Theories and Models 2

Bachelor Course Unit

Level: 2nd year core

Credit points: 6 (out of 144)

Prerequisites: COUN1101 & COUN1102 

Mode of Study: On Campus and Blended Delivery


The unit provides a strong emphasis on postmodern and systems theory as well as the study of third wave, transpersonal and integrative theory and practice.

Unit description

This unit follows on from Counselling Theories and Models 1 and examines more recent developments in theoretical models and approaches to counselling. The historical development of theories will be reviewed and contextualised providing a framework for theory integration

Students will also have opportunity to consider how the relational and postmodern models discussed in the unit approach the topics of self, change, gendered power relations, and working with clients from diverse backgrounds. Finally, the potential strengths and limitations of these approaches will be identified and evaluated.

Learning outcomes

 On completion of this unit students should be able to:

  • describe key elements of relational and postmodern counselling modalities, and their historical development
  • explain the framework and models of self and change that inform relational and postmodern counselling modalities
  • discuss how relational and postmodern approaches to counselling approach the topics of the therapeutic relationship, mental health and mental illness
  • evaluate the benefits and limits of relational and postmodern counselling modalities
  • reflect on gendered power relations and cultural diversity in the counselling relationship

Unit content

  • Introduction to Counselling Skills and Models
  • Gestalt Therapy
  • Emotionally Focussed Therapy
  • Postmodernism – Themes, Narratives and Hope
  • Solution-Focused Therapy
  • Narrative Theory and Practice
  • Third Wave Theories and Practice
  • Transpersonal Theories
  • System Theories
  • Bowen’s Multigenerational Family Systems Theory
  • Structural and Strategic Systems Theories
  • Psychotherapy Integration: Putting It All Together

Learning and teaching process

The on-campus version of this unit comprises 12 weekly three hour on-campus lectures. Studying by Blended Delivery mode involves an online study guide and readings, video recorded lectures, four one and three-quarter hour synchronous online tutorials, and a two-day on-campus workshop.

Assessment summary

Please refer to the document available here 

Recommended text

For more information regarding recommended texts for specific units, please see the Counselling Textbook List.

Unit workload

The workload for this unit is 10 hours per week.

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. This includes plagiarism of any nature. It is your responsibility to make sure that you understand what constitutes plagiarism in order to ensure that you do not engage in it. Please refer to the Academic Misconduct Policy for more information.

Enrolment Recommendation

It is the recommendation of Psychological Sciences and Counselling that students follow the recommended enrolment guide for the Bachelor of Psychological Sciences and Counselling, and complete all five first level counselling units (i.e., COUN1101 – COUN1105) before progressing to second level units within the program. COUN1101 Counselling Skills and Practice 1 and COUN1102 Counselling Theories and Models 1 are pre-requisites for COUN2101 Counselling Theories and Models 2. Please see our recommended sequencing of unit completion here.


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.