This one year, part-time course is one of our most popular. As well as forming the foundation for our Counselling Programme, it’s often taken as a standalone course by people looking to understand life and relationships – whether for personal insight or professional development.
Counselling skills are regarded as advanced, interpersonal, social and communication tools that enable people with their thoughts and feelings. Showing that you can listen and understand a person, even if nothing can be changed about their situation is invaluable to them. Counselling skills are also used to guide people through decision processes, perhaps helping to see potential possibilities or areas for change.
Gestalt holds a central position in this course and as an evolving, exciting and universally applicable theory it supports the use of counselling skills. It is well respected and has influenced and enriched many other therapeutic, educational and managerial approaches to supporting people.
It is highly recommended that all students engage in weekly individual personal counselling/psychotherapy. It is recommended that your practitioner work from a Gestalt perspective.
Note: Should you go onto further study, individual therapy/counselling is a mandatory requirement for the duration of the Diploma in Counselling course. This MUST be with either a Reg. MBACP (Accred) counsellor or a UKCP registered psychotherapist with at least 3 years’ post qualifying experience. There is a similar requirement for those who progress to the psychotherapy training programme.
Who takes this course?
You can take this course as a standalone introduction to counselling or as the start of our Gestalt Counselling Programme. The course typically attracts:
- People who want to train as counsellors plus existing counsellors and therapists (including voluntary ones) who want to integrate the Gestalt approach into their practice
- People-focused professionals in health, complementary medicine, social care, the prison service, HR, consultancy, coaching and mentoring who want to develop their communication, negotiation, assertiveness and problem-solving, and to gain a qualification as part of their CPD
- People who want to understand more about themselves, others and their relationships.
What the course offers
- Participation in a varied, stimulating learning environment which includes tutor and student input, group-work and personal reflection
- An understanding of the theories which support the use of counselling skills
- Opportunities to practice various counselling skills and techniques within an ethical and professional framework
- A safe place to begin to explore and share some of your personal beliefs and values
- Continuing professional development.
There are three components to the course.
Here, you’ll learn about the various counselling skills and techniques needed to support people in personal exploration and during times of difficulty. Looking more closely at yourself and relationships with others, you’ll be invited to consider your attitudes to race, gender, sexuality and other differences. There will be an introduction to person-centered counselling and to Gestalt theory and practice and how it supports the use of counselling skills.
2. Gestalt in Action
This component will enable you to deepen your understanding of Gestalt theory and practice using words, art, writing, sound, movement and other creative means. You’ll explore how we make and interrupt contact with ourselves in order to meet our needs, others and the environment and how this affects our life. As a central theme in Gestalt therapy theory, you’ll also look at the issue of responsibility and at the consequences of disowning it. (We also offer this component as a single weekend.)
3. Loss and bereavement
As children, the quality of the bond that we make with others lays the groundwork for future relationships and determines how we cope with the many different losses in our lives. We respond to loss by beginning a process of grieving and you will learn how best to understand and support people who are going through this process in the light of various cultural and spiritual attitudes. Sometimes, grieving can be complicated by unusual or unexpected loss, e.g. a child’s death, suicide, the loss of a limb, redundancy, illness etc. and you will consider this too. You’ll also have the opportunity to look at how you respond to the losses in your life and how this affects your work with grieving people.
What our students say…
“Better than I could have imagined.” HS (secretary)
“I would recommend it to anyone who wants to know more about themselves and those who do not.” SM (Senior HR Business Partner)
“I thought it was an excellent intro to Gestalt counselling.” SH (trainer)