Undergraduate Course

Counselling and Psychotherapy Principles and Practices

BSc (Hons)

Available in clearing

 - Call 01332 592023

Course details

Study options

Full-time: 3 years, Part-time: Up to 6 years

UK fee

£9,250 per year (2023/24)

International fee

£14,900 per year (2023/24)

UCAS points

104-112 (September 2023 entry)

UCAS code


Course level



BSc (Hons)

Start date



Kedleston Road, Derby Campus

If you do not achieve the typical entry points required, you may want to consider studying this course with foundation year.

View with foundation year optionView with foundation year option

Course description

Develop your personal and professional skills and gain invaluable practical experience on placements, to ensure you are fully equipped for a successful career in counselling and other people-focused professions.

Top15for academic support and teaching quality for Counselling and Psychotherapy**National Student Survey 2023
Top5for student satisfaction for Counselling and Psychotherapy**The Complete University Guide 2024
99%of students said they were overall satisfied with the teaching on this course**National Student Survey 2023

Broaden your knowledge and experience

This course represents an excellent introduction to counselling and psychotherapy. It puts you on the pathway not only to further postgraduate study – so that you can qualify to practise as a counsellor or psychotherapist – but also to broader roles within health, social care, education and human resource management, both in the UK and overseas.

The course will develop you academically, professionally and personally, equipping you with essential life skills alongside a strong foundation of theoretical knowledge. You’ll become familiar with a number of different psychological therapies that can be applied in a wide variety of contexts and situations. We focus on both interpersonal and intrapersonal development, with an emphasis on nurturing your skills as a reflective practitioner.

In tune with latest developments

The world of counselling and psychotherapy is constantly changing and this course has been specifically designed to reflect the demands of life and work in the 21st century. Drawing on our strong engagement with the professional bodies, it aims to meet the growing need for effective, skilled and forward-thinking counsellors and psychotherapists.

Now is the ideal time to embark on a career in this important field, with new opportunities constantly emerging. The issue of mental health is rising on the political agenda and high-profile campaigns are seeking to tackle the stigma surrounding mental health problems.

There is, in particular, a renewed focus on counselling for children and young people, with the NSPCC’s Childline service reporting a 35% increase in the number of calls from individuals seeking help for anxiety in 2015-16.

At the same time, the Department for Education has highlighted the need for counselling provision in every school. Its 2015 paper Counselling in Schools: a Blueprint for the Future states that, by the turn of the decade, children and young people across the country should have “timely access to effective mental health support when they need it”.

In addition, new initiatives are being launched to support mental health in the workplace. The latest guidance from the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence urges employers to adopt an organisation-wide approach to promoting the mental wellbeing of all employees.

Student standing holding paper and speaking
Students sitting down and in conversation
Students sitting watching other students perform an interactive activity

Benefit from our employer partnerships

Our course is underpinned by strong professional partnerships so you can be confident it delivers the skills and knowledge that employers are seeking. You will also gain essential practical experience whilst on placement. Placement hours are subject to change.

We give you the opportunity to take part in insight visits which will shed light on how relevant organisations across the health, social care and educational sectors operate. You may find yourself shadowing a health care worker, sitting in a support group, participating in different wellbeing groups such as meditation, mindfulness or art therapy, or undertaking personal therapy to gain new perspectives on how the theories work in practice.

Thanks to our strong network of contacts, the course features guest lectures by influential figures from the profession, including Increasing Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) and Children and Young People Increasing Access to Psychological Therapies (CYP IAPT) practitioners, art therapists, drama therapists, and mental health practitioners. These will give you a broad vision of what might be involved in the therapeutic settings you could encounter in your future career.

Be inspired by our expert teaching team

You’ll be motivated, challenged and supported by our teaching team. All are specialists within their therapeutic fields, so will keep you up to date with the latest thinking and practice.

Our staff include influential researchers, published authors and high-profile practitioners who have active roles on the leading professional bodies. They undertake a wide range of research which places us at the cutting edge of policy change and helps to shape the future of the profession. The team is frequently commissioned to run specialist programmes which underpin national policy on mental health.

Students siting down and in conversation

Working together to learn from each other

Successful counselling and psychotherapy professionals have to be adaptable, versatile and prepared to work in multi-agency teams. You will therefore have opportunities to learn with, and from, students from other disciplines through our Inter-Professional Learning agenda.

This is important in preparing you to work alongside other professionals after graduation so that you can achieve positive outcomes for your clients. We adopt this approach right from the start of your course, where you will attend a major conference with other new Health and Social Care students representing courses ranging from nursing to social work.

Outstanding learning facilities

You’ll be based at Kedleston Road, our Derby campus, which boasts some of the best resources for health and social care learning that you’ll find in any university, including a clinical skills suite, immersive simulation room, domestic living suite and a community care living space. The clinical skills suite includes five rooms dedicated to counselling along with group behavioural observation rooms. 

What you will study

Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

Kedleston Road, Derby Campus entrance

Undergraduate Open Days

The best way to find out if studying at Derby is right for you is to experience an Open Day. Get a feel for the city and campus, tour our first-class facilities and see where you could be living.

Book your Undergraduate Open DayBook your Undergraduate Open Day

How you will learn

There are varied opportunities to practise your skills individually, as a group, and in real life contexts. The course incorporates insight visits to a range of health and social care settings such as counselling or voluntary organisations.

You can develop your abilities in our clinical skills suite, which includes counselling rooms. In addition, you will benefit from our learning resource centre, with interactive resources including books, ebooks and DVDs.

How you’re assessed

Your assessments will focus on the different skills required to excel on this course. The methods we use include project work, written assignments, presentations, video and audio work, portfolios and posters.

Who you will meet

Our teaching team has extensive experience of counselling and psychotherapy, along with wide-ranging professional networks. This course also benefits from the input of an enthusiastic and expert team specialising in a wide range of fields including gestalt psychotherapy, compassion, counselling in cases of rape and sexual abuse, conflict transformation, trauma, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, systemic psychotherapy and compassion focused therapy.

Personal academic tutoring

Your personal academic tutor will work with you to help you get the most out of your time at university. Having someone to talk to about your academic progress, your university experience and your professional aspirations is hugely valuable. We want you to feel challenged in your studies, stretched but confident to achieve your academic and professional goals.

Find out more about personal academic tutoring

Who will teach you

Kathy Humberstone teaching a lecture

Kathy Humberstone
Programme leader

Kathy is a senior lecturer and the programme leader of BSc Counselling and Psychotherapy: Principles and Practices.

View full staff profileView full staff profile

Entry requirements

2023 entry

These are the typical qualification requirements for September 2023 entry.

RequirementWhat we're looking for
UCAS points104-112
T LevelMerit
GCSEGCSE Maths and English Grade 4/Grade C (or above) or equivalent qualification
Access to HEPass Access to HE Diploma with 60 credits: 45 at Level 3 with a minimum of Distinction: 15, Merit: 24, Pass: 6

Additional entry requirements

English language requirements

IELTS: 6.5 (with at least 6.0 in each skills area)

2024 entry

These are the typical qualification requirements for September 2024 entry.

RequirementWhat we're looking for
UCAS points120-128
T LevelMerit
GCSEGCSE Maths and English Grade 4/Grade C (or above) or equivalent qualification
Access to HEPass Access to HE Diploma with 60 credits: 45 at Level 3 with a minimum of Distinction: 21, Merit: 24, Pass: 0

Additional entry requirements

English language requirements

IELTS: 6.5 (with at least 6.0 in each skills area)

Fees and funding



£9,250 per year

£1,155 per 20 credit module


£14,900 per year


Further information about our fees and support you may be entitled to.

Additional costs and optional extras

How to apply

Please look at our application deadlines before you apply.

UK students

Full-time students should apply for this course through UCAS.

Apply through UCAS

Part-time students, and those wishing to join at stage 2 or stage 3, should apply directly to the University.

Apply directly to the University
International students

This course is now closed to new international student applications for September 2023.

To apply for January 2024 and September 2024, please keep checking for updates


With careers advice an integral part of your studies, this course equips you to compete effectively in the graduate careers market. After graduation you’ll have a wide range of options and could progress to roles within health and social care, counselling, psychotherapy and psychology.

If you would like to take your qualifications to the next level and become a professional counsellor and/or psychotherapist, we offer a full range of postgraduate programmes including accredited MSc courses in Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy and Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy

These could pave the way to rewarding counselling and psychotherapy positions within the NHS, schools, colleges and universities, and any organisations which employ therapists as part of their occupational health portfolio. Some of the students who complete our postgraduate programmes also go on to develop their own private practice or advance to research degrees.

However, the transferable skills you gain on the BSc (Hons) Counselling and Psychotherapy Principles and Practices also mean that you could pursue careers in a wide variety of other professions where excellent people skills and emotional intelligence are valued, including nursing, social work, education, coaching, mental health, human resource management and marketing.

Ongoing careers support

Our Careers and Employment Service will provide you with help, guidance and support from day one of your course – and for up to three years after you’ve completed your studies.

Logan Strouther

Logan's preparing for life as a qualified therapist

A placement at a primary school was the stepping stone that inspired Logan Strouther on his chosen career path. The BSc (Hons) Counselling and Psychotherapy Principles and Practices graduate is now well on his way to becoming a qualified therapist.

Read Logan's storyRead Logan's story
Tania Wilson

Finally taking the plunge pays off for Tania

After ten years of considering applying to university, mature student Tania Wilson finally took the plunge and applied to the University of Derby to study Counselling and Psychotherapy. She has now graduated and is ready for the next stage of her academic career.

Read Tania's storyRead Tania's story

Contact us

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

Contact us Contact us

Additional information about your studies

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Additional costs and optional extras

We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.

The information provided on this page is correct at the time of publication but course content, costs and other individual course details do change from time to time and are updated as often as possible, so please do check these pages again when making your final decision to apply for a course. Any updated course details will also be confirmed to you at application, enrolment and in your offer letter.

Included in your fees
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
Optional costs not included in your fees

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.

Minimum numbers

Please note that this course is subject to minimum numbers in order to run.

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