Can I study the Open University's D171 instead of CPCAB's Level 3 Certificate in Counselling Studies as the entry to the Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling?

D171, the Open University's module entitled “Introduction to Counselling” was discontinued at the end of 2015-16. However, if you have already achieved this module, it can be an acceptable alternative to CST-L3 for entry to TC-L4. To enter onto TC-L4 you will:

  • Also need to have gained CPCAB's Level 2 Certificate in Counselling Skills (CSK-L2) or its equivalent; and...
  • Regardless of the qualifications held, prospective candidates will have a personal interview prior to being accepted onto TC-L4.

If the training centre is still concerned about any area of your experience you may not be accepted on to the Diploma course.

Take the advice of the tutors at the interview, but the following activities may help you to prepare for your interview and progress to an acceptable level:

  • Actively research an agency or do voluntary work with an agency that offers counselling; looking at, for example, agency policies and practice;
  • Undertake some personal development which enables you to grow in self awareness and interpersonal skills;
  • Do some volunteer work with an agency that allows you to use your Level 2 counselling skills.

It has always been the case that entry onto TC-L4 is not just about previous qualifications. Our candidate entry requirements stress the need to:

  • Identify reasons for training beyond just personal development
  • Provide references
  • Cope academically and emotionally with this very demanding level of training
  • Be able to work with difference and diversity
  • Possess personal qualities, imagination, intuition, openness and ability to benefit from self-development
  • Be able to form a helping/therapeutic relationship
  • Demonstrate some self-awareness, insight, honesty and the ability to make links
  • Be emotionally stable and without personality disturbance
  • Be able to challenge and be challenged
  • Be able to respond sensitively and empathically to others
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