We are the principal provider of counselling training in Peterborough.

The College offers a range of counselling courses from beginners to Level 4 which qualifies you to practice as a counsellor and then Level 6 to develop your skills further.   You will usually be asked to attend an interview before you enrol (except for the First Steps into Counselling) to ensure the counselling course you wish to join is suitable for you.

Courses are held at City College Peterborough.

First Steps into Counselling 

This short course will cover listening and responding skills, contracting, confidentiality, self-development, supervision and the nature of counselling. You will also examine different methods and dimensions of counselling and gain an insight into related courses should you wish to progress in this area.

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Level 2 Award in Introduction to Counselling Skills

This course is suitable for a wide range of people who would like to improve their listening skills, to use in their own life, in voluntary work or in paid employment. This course offers a short, lively introduction to active communication and listening skills. The course won’t teach you to be a counsellor, but it offers a great 10 week introduction, which may help you decide if further training in this subject area is suitable for you.

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Certificate in Counselling Skills Level 2

This qualification is suitable for a wide range of roles and professions. The course enables you to gain techniques through interactive role play in using counselling skills. It will not teach you to be a counsellor, but will give you skills that will be useful in a variety of roles to help and support others, either in a voluntary or employed capacity, and may help you decide whether or not you want to train as a counsellor.

Courses starting in September 2018, for more information, or to register your interest, please email admin@citycollegepeterborough.ac.uk.

Certificate in Counselling Studies Level 3

This qualification is for individuals who have already acquired some counselling skills (ideally at Level 2) and now want to continue their training. This level can be taken as the next step if learners are thinking about training as professional therapeutic counsellors or alternatively it can be taken as part of Continuous Professional Development focusing on active listening skills and developing a good foundation in theoretical counselling concepts.

Courses starting in September 2018, for more information, or to register your interest, please email admin@citycollegepeterborough.ac.uk.

Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling

This CPCAB Level 4, 2 year qualification is intended for learners who want to train to work as a professional counsellor in an agency setting. Successful completion of this course means that you will be able to provide a therapeutic conselling service within the context of an agency framework. *both courses include 8 saturday dates over the 2 year course.

Courses starting in September 2018, for more information, or to register your interest, please email admin@citycollegepeterborough.ac.uk.

Level 6 Therapeutic Counselling Supervision Certificate

This CPCAB-awarded qualification is intended for candidates who want to learn the skills to provide clinical supervision for counselling practitioners. It is aimed at counsellors who have acquired sufficient client work experience to contemplate the move into a supervision role. You will need to:

  • have both supervisees (15 hours min during course) and supervisory supervision (5 hours min)
  • be working as a counsellor under supervision.

Courses starting in September 2018, for more information, or to register your interest, please email admin@citycollegepeterborough.ac.uk.

We offer a complete range of courses: from one-day tasters and CPD through to short courses in communication and Counselling Skills suitable for use in any environment, and courses in Therapeutic Counselling to professional qualification and beyond. We also offer tailor-made courses in communication for corporate customers and health/care professionals.

Courses include:

  • One-day course: First Steps into Counselling

  • Counselling Skills Level 2

  • Counselling Studies Level 3

  • Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling, level 4

  • Courses for Businesses


Does the college give help with finding a suitable placement?

We give help, but it is your responsibility in the end to find and be accepted on a placement. We give you details of where people have worked in the past. We give references for trainees for these posts. This year a number of agencies have approached the college asking for trainees for placements – and for the first time there were more possible places than learners to fill them!

How long does it take to become a counsellor?

This varies slightly depending on how fast you learn and the route you choose. It will normally take 4 years, 3 in a few cases. The length of time is important because there is a lot of work to do on yourself and your own life, and that cannot be hurried.

How do I get a placement for Level 4?

We can make suggestions about where to approach, but the application process is down to you.

When do I need to get a placement?

You need to be working in a placement to proceed to the second year of the Diploma. This means that you will start some time in the first year – but when varies considerably. This is both because some people have more luck with their first applications, and because some are ready sooner than others. Tutors give you a certificate when they believe you are ready to start work. However we advise you to start researching and approaching agencies as soon as you are accepted on the course; the whole process can take anything up to 4 months, from an agency first showing interest.

Is this course BACP accredited?

It is not BACP Accredited, but fulfils most of the requirements for an accredited course. There is little difference in the procedure you will have to follow to become BACP Accredited.

What about government plans for a Register of Counsellors?

The current government is opposed to the statutory regulation of counselling and psychotherapy and has abandoned plans to regulate the profession via the HPC (Health Professions Council). However they are keen on voluntary registration and have charged CHRE (Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence) with developing a system for achieving this. For updated information visit www.cpcab.co.uk.

Is there work at the end of this?

There is no guarantee or work, and most – though not all – counsellors have a portfolio of work rather than one employer. It is often necessary to continue to work in a voluntary capacity after qualifying, to build up hours and experience.

Can I get any help with financing these courses?

Levels 3 and 4 are now eligible for 24+ Advanced Learning Loan.

Useful links

Counselling Directory

CPCAB Website  (Counselling and Psychotherapy Central Awarding Body)

BACP Website (British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy)