Theories of Counselling

PSY20001 12.5 Credit Points Online Available to incoming Study Abroad and Exchange students


  • One semester or equivelent

Contact hours

  • Students are required to devote 10-12 hours per week to the unit

On-campus unit delivery combines face-to-face and digital learning. For Online unit delivery, learning is conducted exclusively online.

2022 teaching periods


HOL Study Period 2

30 May 22 - 28 Aug 22

27 Sep 22

Last self enrolment:
12 Jun 22

20 Jun 22

Last withdraw without fail:
15 Jul 22

More teaching periods
Swinburne Online

Teaching Period 2

11 Jul 22 - 9 Oct 22

1 Nov 22

Last self enrolment:
24 Jul 22

5 Aug 22

Last withdraw without fail:
26 Aug 22


PSY10007 Brain and Behaviour or PSY10003 Psychology 100
PSY10008 Fundamentals of Psychology or PSY10004 Psychology 101
PSY10005 Introduction to Research Methods OR STA10003 Foundations of Statistics

Aims and objectives

This unit provides a theoretical introduction to counselling psychology. In the profession of counselling, theory, process and research are intertwined. The unit content, readings and online activities will give students the opportunity to develop their knowledge of the application of counselling theory to the therapeutic process. Major therapeutic approaches will be covered including psychoanalytic, existential, person-centred, behavioural, cognitive, family and solution focused therapy, as well as coverage of the research and ethical issues involved in counselling.

Students who successfully complete this unit will be able to:
1. Appraise a range of different theoretical counselling approaches.
2. Compare and contrast the different approaches and their application to counselling.
3. Explain how research and ethical issues inform both theory and practice in counselling.
4. Reflect on and write critically about how research, process and theory are intertwined.

Courses with unit

BA-BEHS2 Bachelor of Behavioural Studies – OUA, MJ-BEHSTD
BA-SSS Bachelor of Social Sciences, Behavioural Studies Major – SOL only