This is a 'top up' degree for those with the Foundation Degree (FdSc) in Counselling or an equivalent Level 5 qualification in counselling.


The BSc Hons Professional Development in Counselling programme provides the opportunity for students to complete counsellor training to honours degree level. This 'top up' programme has been designed as the final stage of a structured and systematic training for individuals wishing to continue their professional development in counselling.

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About this course

In this section


In terms of academic coherence and progression, the BSc Hons Professional Development in Counselling is a pathway to the acquisition of specialist knowledge and skills, building on the core training provision of the Ulster University Foundation Degree in Counselling, and bridging to postgraduate level of study.

Students undertake two compulsory modules: Research Methods (20 credit points), and Dissertation (40 credit points), in addition to three other modules (20 credit points each). Thus students acquire 120 credit points at Level 6, which are required to 'top up' the Foundation Degree in Counselling Studies, to BSc level.


This is a part-time course of minimum two years duration but taking up to three years to complete. Classes are during the day and students will be required to attend one or two days per week depending upon number of modules undertaken.

Start dates

  • September 2019
How to apply


Here is a guide to the subjects studied on this course.

Courses are continually reviewed to take advantage of new teaching approaches and developments in research, industry and the professions. Please be aware that modules may change for your year of entry. The exact modules available and their order may vary depending on course updates, staff availability, timetabling and student demand. Please contact the course team for the most up to date module list.

In this section

Year one

Research Methods

Year: 1

This module builds on students' appreciation and understanding of research by examining more advanced techniques of design and analysis. It has been designed to enable students to develop their skills in designing, executing and writing up quantitative and qualitative research projects. This module will provide an important foundation for the Project.

Working with Adolescents and Young People

Year: 1

This module is optional

This module provides students the opportunity to improve their counselling skills for working with adolescents and young people. A range of theoretical perspectives across the domains of context, theory and practice are introduced. A variety of teaching strategies are employed including lectures and seminar discussion. The module is assessed through an essay, presentation and write up of a real life case study.

Organisational Counselling

Year: 1

This module is optional

This module provides students with the opportunity to explore and evaluate the counselling process within the organisational context. The module will enable student to develop a critical understanding of the complexities and challenges of providing and undertaking therpapeutic intervention in the workpace from the perspectives of the client, counsellor and organisation

Professional Issues in Counselling

Year: 1

This module is optional

This module provides students with an understanding of one of the major areas of applied communication. The module will enable students to gain an overview of the major theoretical and empirical literature in the area of counselling and psychotherapy. The wider issues relating to professional, legal and ethical matters will also be addressed. The module is assessed by coursework and examination.

Integration and Eclecticism in Counselling

Year: 1

This module is optional

This core module, introduces students to the integrative counselling model as a distinct conceptual framework and approach to counselling. Students will explore it's historical development and relevance in contemporary counselling practice and critically evaluate the theoretical and practical challenges of its application in a practice context.

Psychosocial Issues

Year: 1

This module is optional

This module will introduce students to the interdisciplinary field of psychosocial studies and its relevance for counselling. Research in psychosocial studies focuses on how a person's subjectivity, sense of self and identity are formed through the interaction of internal and external factors. The field of psychosocial studies is underpinned by psychoanalysis, emphasising the development of observation and analytic skills, self-reflectivity and insight.

Year two


Year: 2

The project enables students to apply methods and techniques to exending and applying their knowledge and understanding of Communication and allows them to further develop their conceptual, rational and creative thinking within the field of Communication. It incorporates all aspects of completing a research project, from topic selection through to writing up and builds upon research skills acquired in Years 1 and 2.

Integrative Counselling - Ethics, Theory and Skills

Year: 2

This module is optional

This module will foster students' capacity to understand the need for counselling practice to be underpinned by ethical awareness and theoretical understanding.

Entry conditions

We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.

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A level

Students must have the Ulster University Foundation Degree in Counselling or Diploma of Higher Education in Counselling. In some circumstances, students who have attained 240 credits in an equivalent programme of study may be eligible to apply through the Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) process.


You must satisfy the General Entrance Requirements for admission to a first degree course and hold a GCSE pass in English Language at grade C or above (or equivalent).

English Language Requirements

English language requirements for international applicants
The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.

Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.

Careers & opportunities

In this section

Career options

The BSc Hons Professional Development in Counselling is an academic programme that offers counselling education to Honours Degree level. The programme also offers a solid foundation for further postgraduate study at the University.

Supervised practice is not included on the curriculum for this top-up programme. Students are advised that it is their responsibility to pursue professional accreditation by their chosen professional body independently.


How to apply Request a prospectus

Applications to our part-time undergraduate courses are made through the University’s online application system.

Start dates

  • September 2019

Fees and funding

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Fees (total cost)

Important notice - fees information Fees illustrated are based on 19/20 entry and are subject to an annual increase. Correct at the time of publishing. Terms and conditions apply. Additional mandatory costs are highlighted where they are known in advance. There are other costs associated with university study.
Visit our Fees pages for full details of fees

Northern Ireland & EU:

Additional mandatory costs

Tuition fees and costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges), and normal living are a part of university life.

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses we make every effort to highlight them. These may include residential visits, field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering) inoculations, security checks, computer equipment, uniforms, professional memberships etc.

We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free wifi is also available on each of the campuses.

There will be some additional costs to being a student which cannot be itemised and these will be different for each student. You may choose to purchase your own textbooks and course materials or prefer your own computer and software. Printing and binding may also be required. There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines. Additional costs vary from course to course.

Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs as well as tuition fees.

Please contact the course team for more information.


Course Director: Dr Maggie Long

T: +44 (0)28 9036 6282

E: m.long@ulster.ac.uk

Admissions Contact: Amber Crozier

T: +44 (0)28 9536 7043

E: a.crozier@ulster.ac.uk

Admissions Service

T: +44 (0)28 9036 6309

E: admissionsjn@ulster.ac.uk

For more information visit

Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

School of Communication and Media