An Introductory Course open to anyone interested in

  • Finding out more about what Counselling is
  • Using Counselling Skills at work or in private life

Counselling skills can help you gain insight into how to deal effectively and in a helpful manner with difficult or distressed people. On this course you will learn the basic counselling skills, such as how to accurately reflect back what the person is saying, summarising, and asking open-ended questions. But you will also understand and practice the skill of 'active listening'. This is where you learn to be with the person, and yet at the same time are able to step back, rather than simply responding as you normally would. This involves what are sometimes called the 'core conditions'. Here you will develop the ability to be with the person without introducing your own agenda, to accept on their terms what they are saying, and at the same time to be genuine yourself.

The course emphasizes an experiential style of learning. Central to counselling skills practice is the idea that to understand the experience of another person you have to first understand our own, and the course is structured so that students learn not only from what is taught, but also by actively engaging in the various exercises. Much of the learning is in small groups and there is an emphasis on students, where appropriate, sharing and reflecting on their own experience.