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BSc (Hons) Counselling

Course overview

Start date

September 2021

Subject area

Counselling and Coaching




On campus, dual delivery

Course summary

Do you have a passion for helping people, do you feel inspired to make a positive change in people's lives, and to meet society's ever-growing need for help in times of mental health difficulties, bereavement, or any number of life's troubles? Then our undergraduate Counselling course is for you. 

Our course integrates current therapeutic approaches in an innovative way to prepare you to become a skilled, competent and reflective practitioner. It offers you a rare opportunity to gain both a BACP-accredited academic degree and a professional qualification, and through 108 hours of placements, you'll be well on your way to becoming an accredited practitioner.

We’ll give you in-depth knowledge of the four major psychotherapeutic approaches:

  • Person-centred
  • Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)
  • Psychodynamic
  • Existential 

You will develop your understanding of the key feature of counselling – the therapeutic relationship between counsellor and client. In order to achieve this, you’ll undergo personal therapy yourself, starting in year one. You’ll also practise what you’ve learned in lectures through video-recorded counselling sessions in the UEL labs. We’ll enhance your employment prospects by offering you work placements and a number of volunteering and community action projects.

Study our course and you can find yourself profoundly changing people's lives in a career that will give you incredible satisfaction and reward.

UCAS points


Course options


UCAS code


UCAS points

Less points?

Course options

Degree + Foundation year

Return to campus: dual delivery

In a Covid-secure environment, enjoy learning on our state-of-the-art campuses and flex between online delivery

Find out more


Overall satisfaction

The overall satisfaction is rated at 100% in NSS (National Student Survey) for 2020. This reflects our innovative approach of teaching linking theory with practice.


hours of placement

By the time you graduate you’ll have amassed at least 100 hours of client work.  You’ll be well on your way to the 450 hours you need for full British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) accreditation.

Accredited by the BACP

This is one of the very few undergraduate counselling training degrees in the UK that’s been awarded professional accreditation by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).


Majda Rogers

Counselling, BSc (Hons)

Studying for a BSc Counselling degree at UEL was a valuable stepping-stone towards the career that I wanted to pursue.

I was able to bring together theory and practice not only in the classroom but also through clinical placements.

Fees and funding

Tuition Fee Loan

You can apply for a loan to cover the cost of your tuition fees, which will be paid directly to UEL. There are no up-front fees required. Repayment only starts after you finish your course and are earning over £25,000. If you haven’t finished repaying your loan after 30 years it will be automatically cancelled.

To apply visit

Maintenance Loan

You can apply for a loan to help with living costs such as food, travel and accommodation. How much you can borrow depends on where you live and study, and whether you are currently on welfare benefits. The maximum loan you can apply for is £12,729.

To apply visit

Supplementary Grants

The government also offer the following additional support:

-          Parents' Learning Allowance

-          Adult Dependants' Grant

-          Childcare Grant

-          Disabled Students’ Allowance

-          All nursing and many allied health students on courses from September 2020 will receive a payment of at least £5,000 a year from the government.

For further information visit or contact Student Finance England.

We appreciate that finance is one of the key considerations when you are applying to university. That's why alongside your Government loan, you can apply for scholarships to help towards your finances. We have invested over £2 million worth of scholarships to financially assist new students, starting in September 2019. If you are awarded a scholarship you don't need to pay it back.

All students will receive:


Bursaries Schemes for which you can apply

Scholarships Schemes for which you can apply


There are a number of external organisations that offer financial help to
students. Please see the list below list to view additional support options.
Alternatively, you can visit the Scholarship Search website.

Please note that the University of East London is not responsible for
the content of these external sites and is not associated in any way
with the funding schemes and their application processes.

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) are here to help you navigate your finances while you are a student at the University of East London.

We can give you advice, information and guidance on government and university funds so that you receive your full funding entitlement.


Phone: 020 8223 4444


Tuition fees

You don't need to pay this up front.

EU, EEA and Swiss Nationals starting a course in September 2021, will no longer be eligible for Home fees. However, such nationals benefitting from Settled Status or Citizens' Rights may become eligible for Home fees as and when the UK Government confirms any new fees regulations.  Further information can be found at UKCISA.

Tuition fees are subject to annual change. Fees for future years will be published in due course.

At UEL, we understand that studying in another country is a big financial commitment. If you apply early for an undergraduate, you may be entitled to a scholarship of up to £3,000.You can find out more about the international scholarships here.

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) also run an Emergency International Fund to assist international students in hardship.

You can contact our SMART team on 02082233333 or

As part of the Tier 4 student visa requirements, UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) estimate that you will need £1,265* per month to cover your living costs. It includes expenses for accommodation, food and drink, travel within London, text books, entertainment, clothing, toiletries and laundry. Most Tier 4 students are required to show they have sufficient funds to cover the first nine months of the course before they start- a total of £11,385- in addition to the tuition fees. You can find more information about the specific requirements of the Tier 4 student visa here. The amount that you will spend can vary depending on your lifestyle. The UKCISA International Student Calculator can help you plan and manage your money. Please make sure you also factor in the fees for the visa application and immigration health surcharge when budgeting.

* Please note the Immigration Rules are subject to change and this figure is likely to be increased by UKVI year on year. Please therefore check our ISA pages for more information at the time of preparing your visa application.

Deposits and paying by instalments

International students are required to pay a deposit prior to being issued a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS).

Your remaining balance will be paid in five monthly instalments over your first term. The first of these instalments must be paid when completing your enrolment on arrival at UEL. Please follow the payment instructions here

After the required payment has been made, you will be asked to complete the online International Student Reply Form to confirm your acceptance of our offer and of our terms of admittance and fees policy.

Our International team at UEL are available for advice and guidance on studying in London, fees, scholarships and visa requirements.


Tuition fees

EU, EEA and Swiss Nationals starting a course in September 2021, will no longer be eligible for Home fees. However, such nationals benefitting from Settled Status or Citizens' Rights may become eligible for Home fees as and when the UK Government confirms any new fees regulations.  Further information can be found at UKCISA.

Tuition fees are subject to annual change. Fees for future years will be published in due course.

Entry requirements


New UCAS Points

A Level
Must include passes at A2 in at least two subjects.
Extended Diploma or Diploma
International Baccalaureate
Diploma with 25 points including a minimum of 15 points at Higher Level.

The Admissions Procedure involves an online application including a tailored personal statement and a reference and an intake interview where an applicant is expected to show evidence of criteria below:

• Self-awareness, maturity and stability
• Ability to make use of and reflect upon life experience
• Capacity to cope with the emotional demands of the course
• Ability to cope with the intellectual and academic requirement
• Ability to form a helping relationship
• Ability to be self-critical and use both positive and negative feedback
• Awareness of the nature of prejudice and oppression
• Awareness of issues of difference and equality
• Ability to recognise the need for personal and professional support
• Competence in, or the aptitude to develop generic professional skills, including: literacy, numeracy, information technology, administrative skills, self- management skills, communication and interpersonal skills 


(Including European Union)


Access to HE Diploma (QAA approved) with 60 credits overall and 45 credits at Level 3

Overall IELTS 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in Writing, Speaking, Reading and Listening (or recognised equivalent).

If you do not meet the academic English language requirements for your course, you may be eligible to enrol onto a pre-sessional English programme. The length of the course will depend on your current level of English and the requirements for your degree programme. We offer a 5-week and an 11-week pre-sessional course.

Level 2 equivalences such as Level 2 Functional Skills in English / Maths, Level 2 Key Skills in Communication / Application of Number and Level 2 Adult Literacy / Adult Numeracy

As an inclusive university, we recognise that applicants who have been out of education for some time may not have the formal qualifications usually required for entry to a course. We welcome applications from those who can demonstrate their enthusiasm and commitment to study and have the relevant life/work experience that equips them to succeed on the course. We will assess this from the information provided in your application – in particular your personal statement - to help us decide on your eligibility for the course.

Please note that some courses require applicants to meet the entry requirements outlined on the course page. Our pre-entry Information Advice and Guidance Team are able to provide further advice on entry requirements and suitability for study.
You can speak to a member of our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0)20 8223 3333, Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Alternatively, you can visit our Information, Advice and Guidance centre.

What you'll learn

We’ve made theory, practice, research and personal development the four pillars on which we’ve built our course.

In year one, you’ll study the foundations of the therapeutic process and practise basic counselling skills. You’ll have the chance to apply your knowledge through supervised counselling work placements during your second and third years. Additionally, in your third year you’ll carry out and write up a research project.

There are many ways of providing counselling, involving more than 400 different therapeutic modalities. The characteristic feature of this course is the highly contemporary way in which it integrates the main therapeutic approaches.

You’ll cover the main and well-established modalities of person-centred counselling, psychodynamic counselling, cognitive behavioural therapy and existential counselling.

By the time you graduate, you’ll have amassed at least 100 hours of client work. You’ll be well on your way to the 450 hours you need for full British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) accreditation.

What you'll study and when

We consistently review our courses to ensure we are up-to-date with industry changes and requirements from our graduates. As a result, our modules are subject to change.

  • Core Counselling Skills and Processes (Core)
  • Personal Development and Professional Life (Mental Wealth) (Core)
  • Researching with Small Samples (Core)
  • Person-Centred Counselling (Core)
  • Professional Development and Ethical Practice (Core)
  • Researching with Larger Samples (Core)
  • Readiness to Practice (Mental Wealth) (Core)
  • Psychodynamic Counselling (Core)
  • Research Methods (Core)
  • Life Span Development (Children and Young People) (Core)
  • Life Span Development (Adulthood and Later Life) (Core)
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (Core)
  • Becoming a Competent Practitioner (Mental Wealth) (Core)
  • Research Dissertation (Core)
  • Clinical Practice and Supervision (Core)
  • The Integrative Practitioner (Core)
  • Existential Counselling (Optional)

How you'll be assessed

You will be assessed through 100% coursework. It will include academic essays, reflective essays, skills analysis of recorded practice counselling sessions, oral presentations, and video recorded personal statements.  In your final year, you will complete a substantial dissertation research project.

You’ll always receive detailed feedback outlining your strengths and how you can improve. We aim to provide feedback on assessments within 15 working days.

Course specification

How you'll learn

You'll be taught by a range of staff, all of whom are qualified counsellors, therapists, or psychologists, which ensures practice-focused teaching and research that is relevant to your professional development and future career.  You will be taught through lectures, seminars, skills practice sessions (which start from your first week on the course), and, in your final year, group-based clinical supervision with a course tutor.  

When not attending timetabled lectures you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. This will typically involve reading journal articles and books, preparing for seminars, undertaking preparing coursework assignments, and arranging independent skills practice sessions with your peers. In your final year, much of your independent study will be focused on your dissertation research project.  Your independent learning is supported by a range of excellent facilities including online resources, the library and Moodle.

Students are supported with any academic or subject related queries by an Academic Advisor, module leaders, former and current UEL students. 

If you need a bit of extra help with certain skills such as academic writing, maths or IT, our Skillzone and English for Academic Purposes we offer workshops, drop-in sessions and one-to-one appointments to help our students achieve their potential. You can receive advice and guidance on all aspects of the IT systems provided by the university from our IT Service Desks located on all three campuses.
Our Student Support hubs in Docklands and Stratford feature centralised helpdesks to cater for your every need. UEL provides also support and advice for disabled students and those with specific learning difficulties (SPDs).

Each year you will spend around 300 hours of timetabled learning and teaching activities. These may be lectures, workshops, seminars and individual and group tutorials. Contact hours may vary depending on each module.

The approximate percentages for this course are:
Year 1: scheduled teaching – 300 hours; guided independent study – 900 hours.
Year 2: scheduled teaching – 300 hours; guided independent study – 900 hours.
Year 3: scheduled teaching – 300 hours; guided independent study – 900 hours.

Your individualised timetable is normally available to students within 48 hours of enrolment. Whilst we make every effort to ensure timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week between 9.00am and 6.00pm. For undergraduate students Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities, but there may be occasions when this is not possible.

To give you an indication of class sizes, this course normally attracts 40-50 students a year. Lecture sizes are normally 30-40 students.
You will also engage in skills practice and supervision sessions in groups of around four to six peers, plus a staff observer.

The Programme Teaching Team:

Lucia Berdondini
Fevronia Christodoulidi
Sonja Falck
Luis Jaminez
Max Eames
Joe Schwaerzler 


Your future career

A huge bonus of studying for this degree is that you will graduate from a BACP-accredited course, having acquired more than 100 hours of client-work experience.
You’ll have a professional qualification, so you’ll be able to go straight into employment, getting a job as a counsellor or even starting up your own private practice. That’s how many of our graduates have begun their careers.
Other likely employment areas include charities, schools or NHS mental health services. You can work towards the full BACP accreditation of 450 hours of experience while working and getting paid.
This undergraduate course is ambitious and challenging and, when you’ve seen it through, you’ll find yourself at a level that many other students can aspire to only at postgraduate level.
If you prefer to continue with your academic career, you’ll be able to progress to postgraduate studies in psychotherapy, coaching or integrative coaching and counselling disciplines. Or you can go on to do a master’s in Psychology. All these avenues will be open to you.

Explore the different career options you can pursue with this degree and see the median salaries of the sector on our Career Coach portal.

You may also be interested in

  • Why study at UEL?

  • Student finance

  • Information Advice Guidance

Meet us in your country

Our international team travel overseas regularly to meet prospective students and attend recruitment fairs. Our academics also give regular lectures overseas and are happy to speak to prospective students. In addition, we have a large worldwide network of advisors who can provide guidance and support with applying to study at the University of East London.

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