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What makes Counselling MSc at Worcester special?

If you're passionate about therapeutic care, our Counselling MSc will bring you a step closer to a career in counselling or clinical psychology. You will strengthen your theoretical knowledge, debate issues and hone your research skills, all of which you can apply to your career in healthcare. The course will prepare you for a range of therapeutic occupations across the statutory, private and voluntary sectors.

You can tailor your course to your preferences by choosing from a number of pathways. You also have the option to study part-time, providing you with a flexible degree that can fit alongside your busy life. After you've completed the course, you'll be able to register for professional training or further study. Whatever your career interests may be, we will support you to become a confident and experienced counselling practitioner.



Key features

  • Available as a full-time (one year) or part-time (up to six years) course.
  • The opportunity to complete Intermediate Counselling Awards, providing flexibility for our students.
  • A combination of teaching methods including group seminars, lead lectures, individual tutorials and online resources.
  • Staff with extensive experience in a range of psychology and psychotherapeutic settings.
  • Progress to further study on a Clinical or Counselling psychology Doctorate courses.
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Entry requirements

What qualifications will you need?

Entry requirements

Minimum 2:2 Honours degree in Psychology. Other level 6 degree qualifications, together with appropriate experience, or substantial related experience alone, will be considered.

International students must hold a qualification equivalent to a UK first or second class honours degree.

The IELTS score for international applicants is 6.5 (with no less than 5.5 in each component). Other English Language qualifications will be considered. For more information, please view our International English Language Qualifications document.

The University of Worcester is committed to widening participation to candidates from diverse backgrounds, abilities and ages. The programme is open to those already in counselling practice and to those with the appropriate background who wish to pursue a career in counselling.

Other information

If you have any questions about entry requirements, please contact the Admissions Office on 01905 855111 or email for advice.

Course content

What will you study?

Our courses are informed by research and current developments in the discipline and feedback from students, external examiners and employers. Modules do therefore change periodically in the interests of keeping the course relevant and reflecting best practice. The most up-to-date information will be available to you once you have accepted a place and registered for the course. If there are insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, this might not be offered, but we will advise you as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative. 


Core Modules

  • Advanced Research Analysis 2
  • Theory for Practice: Towards an Integrative Approach
  • The Professional, Political and Social Context of Counselling
  • Psychology of Mental Health
  • Developments in Evidence-Based Counselling Practice
  • Therapeutic Practice and Skills Integration
  • Professional Skills Development
  • Dissertation
Teaching and assessment

How will you be taught?

The University places emphasis on enabling students to develop the independent learning capabilities that will equip you for lifelong learning and future employment, as well as academic achievement. A mixture of independent study, teaching and academic support through the personal academic tutoring system enables you to reflect on progress and build up a profile of skills, achievements and experiences that will enable you to flourish and be successful.


You are taught through a combination of on-campus lectures and self-directed study tasks. All lectures are held on a Friday and Saturday, the date depends on your module choice. The days involve engaging with different learning activities, such as lectures, practical tasks (individual and/or group), discussion and reflection.

In addition, meetings with your allocated personal academic tutor and your research supervisor are scheduled when required and in line with the module handbook.

Contact time

The programme is taught across two-day blocks on a Friday and Saturday, each 15 -credit module being four days in total, and the 30-credit module being eight days in total.

In the final semester, you will be undertaking your dissertation to help you in this period more independent study hours are allocated as well as, individual supervision totalling 8 hours. 

In a typical week, you will have around 37 hours engaged in study which will, in a normal week, includes a combination of taught sessions and independent study.


Independent self-study

In addition to the contact time, you are expected to undertake personal self-study. Typically, this will involve further reading on each module and additional reading and research to complete each module's assessments. Assessments may consist of written essays, individual presentations, poster presentation and case study work.

Independent learning is supported by a range of excellent learning facilities, including The Hive and library resources, the virtual learning environment, and extensive electronic learning resources. There is also additional reading and resources on the module's Blackboard site, which will be available once you register for the module.

Teaching staff

You will be taught by a teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. The team includes counselling psychologists, counsellors, psychotherapists and specialist professionals in a variety of therapeutic treatments.

Teaching is informed by the research and consultancy, and all of our lecturers are practitioners with significant training and skills in their area of expertise.


The course provides opportunities to test understanding and learning informally through the completion of practice or 'formative' assignments. Each module has one or more formal or 'summative' assessments, which are graded and count towards the overall module grade.

Assessment methods include essays, case studies, practical skills work, data analysis, research reports, seminar papers and presentations. A 15,000 - 20,000 word Independent Research Project is required for the MSc award.

This programme has an 80% attendance requirement in order to be completed successfully.


You will receive feedback on practice assessments and on formal assessments undertaken by coursework. Feedback is intended to support learning and you are encouraged to discuss it with personal academic tutors and module tutors as appropriate.

We aim to provide you with feedback on formal course work assessments within 20 working days of hand-in.

Intermediate awards

Two intermediate awards are available if you are unable to commit the time required to gain the Masters award:

  • Postgraduate Certificate in Counselling Studies (successful completion of three modules)
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Counselling (successful completion of six modules)

Programme specification

For comprehensive details on the aims and intended learning outcomes of the course, and the means by which these are achieved through learning, teaching and assessment, please download the latest programme specification document.


Where could it take you?


Our programme will prepare you for a range of therapeutic occupations across the statutory, private and voluntary sectors.

You can also progress to further study, providing a strong platform for a Clinical or Counselling psychology Doctorate courses.

Dr Gabriela Misca and Dr Peter Unwin with their book

New Book Aims to Get Behind the Headlines to Offer New Insights for Social Workers and Psychologists

Thursday, 09 February 2017

A new book, written by two academics at the University of Worcester, aims to encourage social workers to get back to the ‘personal’ touch.

Social work has become increasingly depersonalised in an era of managerialism and performance management, with many aspects of what were once known as the ‘personal social services’ having been lost.

Psychology and Social Work, is a timely reminder for social workers and other professionals that the personal and the individual should still be at the centre of everything they do. It brings together, in a genuine multidisciplinary approach, contributions from applied psychology arenas – such as clinical, health, forensic and organisational psychology - to social work theory and practice, in light of cutting-edge research and theoretical debates.

Professor Erica Bowen

Professor Calls for More Research into Domestic Violence Programmes

Thursday, 26 January 2017

Programmes to tackle domestic violence in England and Wales are too varied with little evidence that they work, says a leading academic. 

Professor Erica Bowen, of the University of Worcester, said there was almost no evidence or research available to support the use of many interventions and has called for a change in the system.

“Most local authorities will have programmes to try to deal with domestic abuse, and that is fantastic,” she said. “But the problem is that there are many different programmes operating across the UK and most have never been fully evaluated to see if they actually have any impact on reducing domestic abuse.”

Imogen Healey

Imogen Healy

Imogen Healy has graduated with a Masters in Counselling and hopes to become a counselling psychologist.

"I want to help other people understand how they can improve their mental health as I think that struggles with mental health are part of being human,” said Imogen.

Imogen is now studying for a Professional Doctorate in Counselling Psychology at York St John University. Upon completion of her doctorate, Imogen plans to apply for work as a Counselling Psychologist in the NHS. This will involve working with children, adolescents and adults that are struggling with psychological problems. 


How much will it cost?


The current fees can be found within the tuition fees document on our figure out finances page.

Postgraduate loans

The Government will provide a loan of up to £10,609 per student for postgraduate Masters study. It will be at your own discretion whether the loan is used towards fees, maintenance or other costs.

For full details visit our postgraduate loans page.

How to apply