Careers and Employability Service

I want to work in Counselling

Career Options


Graduates from any degree can consider a career in counselling. The first stage is to get lots of practice in counselling, as the job is 10% theory and 90% practical experience. Organisations such as the Samaritans will give you excellent free training in counselling in return for a commitment to do work as a volunteer counsellor for a few hours a week (see

Many people combine counselling with another role such as teaching, a health profession or youth work. Gaining voluntary experience with people will be vital to starting a career in counselling. Many counsellors work self-employed . The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) accredit introductory and advanced courses. Introductory courses are offered by local colleges which may not have BACP accreditation but make a good starting point. A longer introduction to counselling and a list of the different types of therapy specialism can be found on the BACP website.

Counsellor Job Profiles

Related roles


Opportunities in counselling can be found in health care, education, commercial companies and through self-employment.

  • Charity Job: A good source of opportunities in all aspects of the not for profit sector
  • Cruse: Training, voluntary and paid opportunities in bereavement counselling and support
  • The Guardian
  • Jobs in Psychology advertised though the BPS
  • NHS jobs: Current vacancies and advice on applications
  • Place2Be: Training and opportunities to work with children and families helping to improve mental health
  • Relate: Training and jobs within relationship counselling

Find out more

Page updated January 2021

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Last Updated: 06/02/2021