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COUN5131 Counselling Practice

Graduate Diploma Level Unit

Duration: One Trimester

Level: 1st year

Credit points: 8 (out of a total of 96 points)

Prerequisites: None

Mode(s) of Delivery: Blended Delivery

Core/Elective: Core

Unit Description

In this unit, students develop an understanding of the historical development of the counselling profession and an applied understanding of counselling skills. Student learning will be facilitated by using relevant readings, weekly section notes , learning activities, online classroom participation, self-reflection and skills practice. Self-awareness about the influence of values, attitudes and biases on communication is foundational to the development of effective counselling skills.

The process of counselling and establishing the counselling relationship are introduced in this section. Understanding of the stages of counselling provides a framework to practice new skills. The first session with a client and conducting client assessment are a focus of this unit. The counselling relationship is an important means of facilitating change and growth. Students will learn how they can assist clients to achieve positive outcomes and increase their self-understanding.

Foundational counselling skills are introduced in this unit. There will be opportunity for learning through watching counselling demonstrations in the Counselling and Therapy in Video series and resources available on the library website. Learning activities provide opportunity for practice with peers in triad groups. This is a very important part of developing counselling skills. 

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the unit students will be able to:

  • Define and analyse the skills necessary to establish an effective counselling relationship
  • Analyse the influence of the counsellor and the counselling setting on the client’s experience
  • Practise the application of counselling skills in counselling contexts
  • Critically evaluate use of counselling skills and create a plan for ongoing skills development

Unit Workload

The workload for this unit is 12 hours per week.


The required text book for this unit  can be found by viewing the Discipline 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. 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 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.