The fast pace of life today has increased stress levels throughout the world. No matter how well adjusted we are, or how adept we think our coping mechanisms, there comes a point when we need help, be it with our romantic relationships, family relationships, work issues or personal problems. As a result, there is an increase in the demand for counselling services and with it an increase in the demand for counselling courses.
An increasing number of people are electing to study counselling in Australia, either as a stepping stone to a psychology degree or to pave the way for a career as a counsellor in a private or public health care setting.
Those who want to study counselling in Australia have several options available: they can study courses on a part-time basis online or they can register at one of the many reputable colleges or universities that offer counselling diplomas or degrees on a full-time basis.
The Academy of Counselling is one of the most reputable online counselling course providers in Australia. The Academy offers a nationally accredited Diploma of Counselling course, which allows students who complete the course’s study modules to practice as counsellors all around Australia, from Sydney, Melbourne and Perth to Adelaide, Brisbane and Canberra.
Counselling Associations in Australia
It’s important that you do your homework before registering for a counselling course at a particular institution. Ideally, you should only register for courses that are nationally or internationally accredited. This will allow you to join some of the professional counselling associations in Australia, which will provide support and networking opportunities, and avenues for ongoing development.
- The Australian Counselling Association (ASA) is said to be the biggest organisation for counsellors and psychotherapists in Australia. The association aims to promote the counselling profession in Australia, determine and maintain education and training standards for study courses, provide and uphold a Code of Conduct, maintain a register for qualified counsellors and create employment for counsellors throughout Australia. It also allows members of the public to lodge formal complaints against counsellors, which it investigates. The Australian Counselling Association has member associations around Australia, including New South Wales, Queensland, Tasmania and Victoria.
- The Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia (PACFA) has 31 member associations which are required to meet the professional and ethic standards as laid out by PACFA. Member associations include the Australian Association of Buddhist Counsellors and Psychotherapists, Counselling and Psychotherapy Association Canberra and Region, Melbourne College of Contemporary Psychotherapy, and the Melbourne Institute of Experiential and Creative Arts Therapy.
- The Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors (AIPC) specialises in high quality counselling courses with a focus on online education. Its counselling courses are available in 27 countries besides Australia. It has study support centres around Australia (Brisbane, Sydney, Canberra) and in nearby regions (New Zealand, Singapore, Fiji), which provide assistance regarding all manner of problems experienced by students enrolled in its counselling courses. The courses available are suitable for professionals looking to enhance their qualifications with counselling skills (teachers, nurses), for people who want a career change and need to slowly accumulate qualifications while still working, and students who need advanced tertiary qualifications, such as a counselling diploma, or a Bachelor or Master’s of Counselling degree.