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Psychology (Counselling) BSc (Hons)


TEF Gold. Teaching Excellence Framework.

If you are interested in pursuing a career in counselling or clinical psychology, or another helping profession where interactive skills are essential, this course is one of only a few national programmes that is designed specifically for you.

Our Psychology and Counselling course will introduce you to the central concepts of both psychology and counselling before moving on to explore the subject in more depth, according to your interests. You will have the opportunity to study areas as diverse as positive psychology, parapsychology and neuroscience of mind.

We will support you to achieve your career and study ambitions, which is why if you complete our Employability Plus Gold programme or Changemaker Gold certificate alongside your studies and if you haven’t secured full-time employment 12 months after graduating* we will secure a three – six month paid internship for you, or support you into postgraduate study.

Updated 21/07/2020

Key Facts

  • UCAS Code:


  • Level:


  • Duration:

    3 years full time
    4-6 years part time

  • Starting:


  • Fees UK/EU:

    Full Time: £9,250 Part Time: £1,450 per 20 credit module

  • Fees International:

    Full Time: £12,900

  • Location:


Get in touch

For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

UK/EU Students enquiries
0300 303 2772

International Students enquiries
+44 (0)1604 892134


  • This course is accredited by BPS (British Psychological Society)
  • Provides you with the Graduate Basis for BPS Chartered Membership and eligibility for MSc and professional doctorates in Psychology (2:2 degree classification or higher)
  • Experiential learning in small groups
  • Teaching staff with extensive professional experience
  • Guaranteed paid internship with the Northampton Employment Promise.
  • HP Laptop and software included with this course.*  (*Terms and Conditions apply)

Course Content

  • British Psychological Society accredited logo

    This course offers you various volunteering opportunities, careers events and workshops which will enhance your employability once you have graduated.

    You will have an opportunity to develop your understanding of the key theories and concepts in psychology and counselling, learning basic counselling skills and gaining an understanding of the professional context of counselling work. The applied nature of counselling psychology will be emphasised throughout the programme.

    In addition to a focus on counselling concepts, issues and skills, this course will allow you to analyse and understand human behaviour, thought and emotions, from many different psychological perspectives. If you are looking to become a counsellor then this course provides you with a basis for professional level training.

    If you are studying this course full-time you will take 120 credits each academic year. You will study a mix of core subjects and can choose from a range of modules which reflect your interests. At each level, you will take a core year-long module in Counselling combining three key elements:

    • key concepts and ideas
    • the development of self-awareness
    • the development of counselling skills

    Stage one

    At stage one, the core Counselling module is Introduction to Counselling which explores key concepts and research approaches in counselling, while developing your awareness of different counselling settings and developing your presentation skills. You are given an excellent grounding in counselling and psychology that you will continue to build upon throughout the course.

    Stage two

    Stage two aims to provide you with a thorough grounding in the main theoretical models used in counselling (person-centred, CBT and psychodynamic) and an opportunity to develop your counselling skills and awareness of the therapeutic process through theory, group work and practicing with your peers.

    You will also have the option of studying either a module on the psychology of wellbeing or taking a work-based placement: The Psychology of Learning and Teaching in Educational Settings. Please note that if you do select this work-based placement module then a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check will be required.

    Stage three

    In stage three, you will undertake a module in counselling psychology theory and counselling skills which will introduce you to a range of issues worked with by counsellors. The knowledge and skills gained will be applicable in a range of therapeutic professions. You will also undertake an empirical dissertation, under the guidance of a psychology or counselling lecturer with particular expertise in your chosen area. You will immerse yourself in a topic of your choosing, subject to staff and ethical approval, and exercise the research skills you have acquired through the course.

    It is important to note that this is primarily an academic course rather than a professional training course, and that those who complete the course will not be qualified as counsellors or counselling psychologists. However, on successful completion of the course, with a 2:2 or above, you should have the knowledge, skills and experience to enable you to pursue professional training in counselling or counselling/clinical psychology at postgraduate level.

    • Module code: PSY1001
      Status: Compulsory
      This module introduces students to applications of psychological knowledge in the real world. It aims to help students acquire knowledge and understanding of theory and research relating to key topics in Applied Psychology and to develop the critical skills necessary to the evaluation of different approaches within Applied Psychology.
    • Module code: PSY1003
      Status: Compulsory
      The purpose of this module is to provide students with a broad understanding of psychology by introducing four core areas (social developmental cognitive and biological psychology). Students will develop critical thinking and evaluative skills of psychological material by focusing on theory empirical research and real-life examples.
    • Module code: PSY1006
      Status: Compulsory
      The purpose of this module is to provide a fundamental introduction to research design analysis and interpretation in psychology. Students need to understand common methods of investigation in order to appreciate the source and context of theories and research findings encountered in specific subject areas studied in other psychology modules.
    • Module code: PSY1009
      Status: Compulsory
      This module provides a grounding in moral ethical legal and professional issues which underpin the practice of counselling. It also provides an opportunity to develop critical engagement with original psychological materials in counselling.
    • Module code: PSY1011
      Status: Compulsory
      This module aims to develop student?s intra-and-inter-personal skills through exploring Positive Psychology theory and application and increasing self-awareness. Throughout the module you will gain understanding for how these are experienced how we relate to them and what psychology has begun to understand about them.
    • Module code: PSY1012
      Status: Compulsory
      The purpose of this module is to be personally relevant to students? psychological studies and enable them to start to build psychological literacy - using psychological skills and knowledge to solve real-world problems and interact ethically and responsibly with others.
  • Our Psychology and Counselling course is accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS)*, conferring eligibility for the Graduate Basis for Chartered membership, provided that you achieve the minimum of a second class honours in your degree. This is the first step towards becoming a Chartered Psychologist.

    * Accreditation applicable to undergraduate Single Honours Psychology degrees and Joint Honours degrees where Psychology is the major subject.

    • as part of the course, you will have the opportunity to undertake a work-based placement
    • students have access to excellent facilities and resources for research
    • you will be taught by internationally and nationally recognised researchers in several topics including parapsychology, mental health and wellbeing and qualitative psychology
    • Counselling modules will be taught by experienced counsellors and therapists
  • What can I do with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and counselling?

    With a psychology and counselling degree, you can specialise within different pathways and develop within an area of your choice in the field of psychology. You may also choose to follow various career paths outside of the psychological profession, as you will have gained such an invaluable set of skills and a knowledge base that enables you to succeed in areas outside of psychology.

    For example, our graduates are employed in education, the health service, the police force, human resources management, marketing, the civil service, broadcasting, social work and many other professions. The work-based elements of this course provide valuable careers-based skills.

    As well as our annual Psychology Careers Event, at the University of Northampton, we also offer other volunteering opportunities through our Changemaker Hub, Employability Plus recognition, STEAM Opportunities and support from our careers team. Upon completion of this course, and depending on degree classification, you can progress to postgraduate training to obtain British Psychological Society (BPS) ‘chartered’ status (GBC) as counselling, clinical, educational, occupational, health or forensic psychologist. You could pursue a career as an academic psychologist, conducting research and teaching in higher education. More information about psychology careers can be found on the BPS website.

    Is this degree good for a career in counselling?

    This course is a good ground for careers in chartered counselling psychology, or even clinical, occupational, education or forensic psychology. This course will prepare you for roles such as a coach, counselling psychologist, counsellor, psychotherapist and wider helping professions. As well as an introduction to counselling, this course will give you a deeper understanding of counselling theories, ethics and self-awareness. Furthermore, our changemaker team is available to help support you with work experience in the appropriate field from the start of your studies, until after you graduate.

    How is this course different to single honours psychology?

    Within this course, you will have the opportunity to choose modules from levels from 4, 5 and 6 which focus on counselling and wellbeing. These include, Introduction to Counselling, Counselling: From theory to practice, The Psychology of Wellbeing and Counselling in context. Furthermore, your level 6 dissertation project will focus on a counselling topic. These modules will focus on transferable therapeutic skills, self-awareness and knowledge required for a career in counselling.

    Is Psychology (Counselling) a good degree?

    One of the main draws for a degree in psychology and counselling, is that it does not limit you to just working within psychology or counselling. Of course those options are available (and more information about psychology careers can be found through the BPS website), but the skills that are acquired throughout a psychology and counselling degree are applicable to careers much more broadly. Such examples that you can expect to develop across the course include critical thinking and writing, computer literacy, effective communication via a variety of different channels, and thorough and ethical research practices. Many of the skills from a psychology and counselling degree are transferable across many different careers, and therefore gives you the opportunity to develop yourself towards any route you would like to pursue.

    How long is a Psychology (Counselling) degree?

    The BSc Psychology (Counselling) route here at the University is between 3-6 years, depending on your availability to study. This gives time to not only develop a foundational knowledge of psychology and appropriate research skills, but also for you to develop towards the areas that are of interest to you, and time to explore career opportunities and areas of expertise, alongside our staff team.

    Are there work placements?

    There are a couple of different places within the course where there are opportunities for work placements. During Stage One, there is a short work placement to complete as part of a module assessment. Following from here, there are work placement opportunities within our Education-focused modules at Stages Two and Three. We also run an optional placement year, between Stage Two and Stage Three, giving you the opportunity to strengthen career skills alongside your degree, should you so wish.

    Does this course qualify me to be a counsellor?

    Taking this course does not automatically qualify you to become a counsellor. However, this course is accredited by the professional body that oversees Psychology in the United Kingdom, the British Psychological Society (BPS).

    This means, that providing you meet the minimum standard of a lower second class honours (2:2) level you are eligible for the Graduate Basis for Chartered (GBC) membership of the BPS. GBC is considered the first stage necessary for becoming a chartered practitioner, in counselling psychology as well as several other areas. If you wish to pursue a counselling career or a related profession, such as a psychotherapist, you will need to complete core practitioner training that is at a minimum level of a psychotherapy or counselling diploma or masters.

    How will I learn?

    Teaching methods on BSc Psychology (Counselling) include an innovative, active blended approach to learning which makes the acquisition of knowledge more dynamic and flexible for students than ever before. This involves face-to-face seminars, tutorials, practical or laboratory workshops and computer assisted learning. Independent and group work will be supplemented with online seminars, self-directed learning and virtual tasks.

    You are encouraged to actively engage and participate with your course material both online and in class discussions to further enhance your learning and will be expected to complete independent study alongside attending your classes. Practical work represents an important component of the Psychology course in each of your three years of study.

    Throughout the course, you are exposed to different research approaches, and will develop an ability to apply both quantitative and qualitative techniques to research questions. We have extensive online resources that support face-to-face contact in class. You are taught by experienced, well-qualified staff that are experts within their disciplines. Staff in the Subject Group are active researchers, producing research that is nationally and internationally recognised.

    How will I be assessed?

    A variety of assessment strategies are used at each level to ascertain your level of competence in a range of academic and transferable skills. These strategies include essays, practical reports, multiple-choice tests, oral presentations, time-constrained essays, seen and unseen examinations, critical reviews, group project work, patchwork blogs, audio-visual presentations, and reflective reports, for example.

  • Typical offers are BBC at A Level or DDM at BTEC.

    In addition to the standard entry requirements, applicants require GCSE Mathematics at grade C or above. Equivalences are not accepted, apart from Access applicants who must take 12 credits of Maths Level 2 or 9 credits of Maths Level 3 as part of their Access course.

    If you would like more information on how to make an application as a Home or EU student, please visit our How to Apply page.

    If you are an International student and would like more information on how to make an application, please visit our How to Apply page.

    English Language Requirements

    All International and EU students applying for a course with us must meet the following minimum English language requirements:

    • IELTS 6.0 (or equivalent) with a minimum of 5.5 in all bands
      for study at undergraduate level.

    For information regarding English language requirements at the University, please see our IELTS page.

  • The Integrated Foundation Year (IFY) offers a new and exciting route into studying for a degree, attracting ambitious and driven students who are willing to learn and advance.

    If you have non-standard qualifications or do not quite meet the admissions requirements we can offer you a fantastic opportunity to study a four year programme which includes an Integrated Foundation Year. The Integrated Foundation Year will help you develop the theoretical/practical and academic skills you need, in order to successfully progress to the full award.

    Featuring a reduced tuition fee in the first year, our four-year courses will enable you to successfully follow the degree pathway of your choice while gaining essential study skills. The foundation year of your chosen degree will be studied on a full-time basis and is aimed at supporting the transition to higher education. Years two, three and four are then studied as a standard degree programme.

  • UK & EU

    2020/21 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 20/21 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    Full Time: £9,250
    Part Time: £1,450 per 20 credit module

    2019/20 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 19/20 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    Full Time: £9,250
    Part Time: £1,400 per 20 credit module

    Additional costs

    Travel costs to and from placements, and extra costs associated with placements, may be incurred throughout your studies depending on where you are based.


    2020/21 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 20/21 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    Full Time: £12,900

    2019/20 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 19/20 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    Full Time: £12,500

    Additional costs

    Travel costs to and from placements, and extra costs associated with placements, may be incurred throughout your studies depending on where you are based.

  • Our postgraduate courses are a great way to enhance the skills you have already learnt. Benefit from our 20% alumni discount on postgraduate fees to give you a CV that will catch the eye of employers.

    Counselling MSc

    Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMH) MSc


Karishma Jivraj

Lecturer in Psychology / Programme Leader BSc Psychology (Counselling)
Psychology (Counselling) BSc (Hons)


Careers and Employability

This course prepares you for postgraduate training in counselling and counselling psychology as well as other areas. Upon completion of such a postgraduate course you can also obtain ‘chartered’ status as a counselling, clinical, educational, occupational, health or forensic psychologist.

Continue your studies and become a qualified counsellor by studying our MSc in Counselling Children and Young People or our MSc Counselling.

Choose to pursue a career as an educator as as an academic psychologist, conducting research and teaching in higher education.

Psychology degrees provide an excellent grounding for a diverse range of non-psychological careers. The listening and communication skills developed on this degree course will be highly valuable in a range of health and social care professions.

Is this course for you?