Graduate Certificate of Counselling (T3 2021)

Postgraduate coursework

The Graduate Certificate of Counselling will provide you with essential knowledge and skills in counselling required to effectively and compassionately support individuals with mild or moderate mental health problems and normal developmental issues.

Domestic student information

This is the Trimester 3, 2021 version of this course.

The Trimester 3 teaching period starts from 8 November 2021.

Applications for this course have closed.

Key facts


Up to 1 year of part-time study.
The course is only available to students on a part-time basis


Key dates

Direct applications to Deakin for Trimester 3 2021 have closed

Current Deakin Students

To access your official course details for the year you started your degree, please visit the handbook

Course information

Our Graduate Certificate of Counselling will provide you with essential knowledge and skills in counselling required to effectively and compassionately support individuals with mild or moderate mental health problems and normal developmental issues. The course has a particular focus on telecounselling and counselling diversity, both of which are of increasing importance and experiencing higher demand in Australia and globally.

­­Want to expand on your current career in helping others or start a new career path in counselling?

This course will be a perfect fit for you if you’ve considered a career related to counselling or would like to develop counselling expertise to support your current role and expand your career opportunities (i.e. support workers, social workers, teachers, student advisors, nurses, supervisors, managers, doctors, occupational therapists etc.).

As a graduate, you will be armed with practical knowledge and expertise relating to counselling micro-skills, mental health issues, professional practice issues, and human development.

By studying counselling with Deakin, you’ll be joining a university ranked well above world standard for our Psychology and Cognitive Sciences research.*
*Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) 2018

Alternative Course offerings

From Trimester 1, 2022 you can choose to continue your studies in counselling by applying for our Graduate Diploma of Counselling. After successful completion of the Graduate Certificate of Counselling you will only need to complete four more units to graduate with the diploma level qualification.

Read More

Course structure

The Graduate Certificate of Counselling is part-time only and consists of the standard academic integrity module, 1 core unit and 3 course electives, each worth 1 credit point (total 4 credit points).

All commencing Faculty of Health Undergraduate and Postgraduate course work students are required to complete HAI010 Academic Integrity in their first semester of study (0 credit point compulsory unit).

The ability to choose from a larger suite of course elective units gives you the flexibility to undertake a course of study most suited to your interests and employment goals. It also allows the Graduate Certificate in Counselling to be nested within the Graduate Diploma of Counselling. Students in the Graduate Certificate can easily transition into the Graduate Diploma.

Also, because of the flexibility of the Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma students who want an alternative exit can easily do so once they have completed HPY730 Principles of Counselling and Telehealth (core), with any three other units from the above course electives.

The course is only available on a part-time basis.

Core units

Trimester 1

  • Academic Integrity (0 credit points)
  • Principles of Counselling and Telehealth
  • Trimester 2

    Plus two elective units

    Trimester 3

    Plus one elective unit


    Choose 3 credit points from

  • Mental Health Counselling

  • Professional Counselling Roles

  • Lifespan and Developmental Counselling

  • Ethical and Legal Issues in Counselling *

  • Counselling Diverse Populations *

  • Contemporary Counselling Interventions *
  • * Course Elective units available in 2022

    Key information

    Award granted
    Graduate Certificate of Counselling

    2021 course information

    Deakin code
    Postgraduate (Graduate Certificate and Graduate Diploma)
    Approval status

    This course is approved by the University under the Higher Education Standards Framework.

    Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) recognition

    The award conferred upon completion is recognised in the Australian Qualifications Framework at Level 8.

    Campuses by intake

    Campus availability varies per trimester. This means that a course offered in Trimester 1 may not be offered in the same location for Trimester 2 or 3. Read more to learn where this course will be offered throughout the year.

    Trimester 1 - March

    • Start date: March
    • Available at:
      • Cloud Campus

    Trimester 2 - July

    • Start date: July
    • Available at:
      • Cloud Campus

    Trimester 3 - November

    • Start date: November
    • Available at:
      • Cloud Campus

    This course can form a nested pathway to the Graduate Diploma of Counselling.


    As a student in the Faculty of Health you can expect to participate in a range of teaching activities each week. This could include classes, seminars, workshops, online interaction and clinical placements. You can refer to the individual unit details in the course structure for more information. You will also need to study and complete assessment tasks in your own time.

    The course require a part-time commitment, with a substantive load of required learning activities and study time. Although the course is designed for working health professionals, students will on average spend 150 hours over the teaching period undertaking the teaching, learning and assessment activities per unit credit point.

    Participation requirements

    See individual unit descriptions for full details.

    Reasonable adjustments to participation and other course requirements will be made for students with a disability.

    Entry requirements

    Entry information

    English language requirements

    All applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements. 

    Selection is competitive and meeting the minimum entry requirements does not guarantee selection.

    Entry requirements include:

    • Bachelor Degree or higher OR
    • two years relevant work experience OR
    • evidence of academic capability judged to be equivalent

    Deakin University offers admission to postgraduate courses through a number of Admission categories.

    Fees and scholarships

    Fee information

    Estimated tuition fee - full-fee paying place

    The tuition fees you pay will depend on the units you choose to study as each unit has its own costs. The 'Estimated tuition fee' is provided as a guide only based on a typical enrolment of students undertaking this course.  

    Full-fee paying

    The 'Estimated tuition fee' is provided as a guide only based on a typical enrolment of students completing this course within the same year as they started. The cost will vary depending on the units you choose, your study load, the length of your course and any approved Recognition of Prior Learning.

    One year full-time study load is typically represented by four credit points of study for Graduate Certificates. Each unit you enrol in has a credit point value. The 'Estimated tuition fee' is calculated by adding together four credit points of a typical combination of units for your course.

    You can find the credit point value of each unit under the Unit Description by searching for the unit in the Handbook.

    Learn more about fees and available payment options.

    Job-ready Graduates package short courses 2021 

    Estimated tuition fee (CSP): Fee information is available via the fee estimator.

    The Australian Government's Job-ready Graduates package provided a limited number of Commonwealth Supported Places (CSPs) for this course in 2021.

    A CSP is a place in a course where Deakin receives some funding from the Australian Government. This means you'll only need to contribute part of the cost of your course – this is referred to as the 'student contribution'. In addition, if you meet the eligibility criteria and would prefer to defer your student contribution, you can apply for HECS-HELP. HECS-HELP provides you with a loan to cover your student contribution. 

    Scholarship options

    A Deakin scholarship might change your life. If you've got something special to offer Deakin – or you just need the financial help to get you here – we may have a scholarship opportunity for you.

    Search or browse through our scholarships

    Postgraduate bursary

    If you’re a Deakin alumnus commencing a postgraduate award course, you may be eligible to receive a 10% reduction per unit on your enrolment fees.

    Learn more about the 10% Deakin alumni discount

    Apply now

    How to apply

    Apply direct to Deakin

    Applications can be made directly to the University through the Deakin Application Portal. For information on the application process and closing dates, see the how to apply web page. Please note that closing dates may vary for individual courses.

    Need more information on how to apply?

    For more information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply webpage. If you're still having problems, please contact us for assistance.

    Contact information

    Prospective Student Enquiry Centre
    1800 693 888


    Career outcomes

    The course has been designed to foster practical counselling skills that can be applied in-person,over the phone,or online via videoconference. There is a growing demand for these skills across a range of occupations related to mental health, disability, allied health and social support services, with an expected very strong increase in demand over the next five years.*

    As a counsellor you will provide advice and information on relationships, social, educational, occupational and a range of other every-day life difficulties. You will develop rapport and a healthy therapeutic relationship with people to help them to identify and define their emotional issues through a range of therapies including cognitive behaviour therapy, interpersonal therapy, and other talking therapies.

    *Australian Government Job Outlook

    Professional recognition

    The Graduate Certificate will not be accredited as the minimum requirement for Australian Counselling Association accreditation is a Graduate Diploma. Accreditation will be sought for the Graduate Diploma.

    Course learning outcomes

    Deakin's graduate learning outcomes describe the knowledge and capabilities graduates can demonstrate at the completion of their course. These outcomes mean that regardless of the Deakin course you undertake, you can rest assured your degree will teach you the skills and professional attributes that employers value. They'll set you up to learn and work effectively in the future.

    Graduate Learning Outcomes

    Course Learning Outcomes

    Discipline-specific knowledge and capabilities

    Demonstrate specialist knowledge of counselling roles, skills, and theory across the lifespan to a variety of audiences relevant to professional counselling.


    Employ clear written and oral communication skills in order to effect therapeutic change in counselling.

    Digital Literacy

    Select appropriate digital tools to find, use, and disseminate information in counselling practice.

    Critical thinking

    Identify, synthesize, integrate, and critically reflect on research to inform counselling practice.

    Problem Solving

    Appraise, select, and apply specialized counselling skills and knowledge to solve complex problems in the field of counselling.


    Demonstrate high level self-management and awareness in learning and practice that reinforces the importance of responsibility, accountability, and ethics in professional counselling.


    Work effectively in supervisory, leadership, and managerial capacities. Communicate and collaborate with other mental health professionals to support clients.

    Global Citizenship

    Evaluate and apply ethical principles to work productively in the field of counselling within diverse social, cultural and environmental contexts. Collaborate and communicate in a self-reflective manner.