What is counselling?

Counselling is a method of assisting people in dealing with challenging events in a particular area of their lives. It takes place in a safe, private setting between a therapist and a client, allowing the latter to share their thoughts and feelings without fear of being judged. Individual, couple and group or family counselling are some of the several types of counselling available. A counsellor can assist their clients in overcoming obstacles in their lives, such as stress and low self-esteem, as well as career and learning difficulties, addiction and family conflicts.

Professional organisations that support and uphold the counselling profession are open to qualified counsellors in Bendigo. Joining the following organisations will provide them with a wealth of resources for their professional development:

  • Counsellors Victoria (CV)
  • Australian Holistic Healers and Counsellors Association (AHHCA)
  • Australian Counselling Association (ACA)
  • Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia (PACFA)
  • International Institute for Complementary Therapists (IICT)

Counselling courses in Bendigo

Should you study counselling?

If you're interested in helping others feel better about themselves then taking a counselling course could be right for you. Many people who have pursued a career in counselling see it as a way of giving back to their community or paying forward what was offered to them by mentors in the past. By studying counselling, you will also be able to imbibe the essential qualities of successful counsellors, such as:

  • Empathy is the most important trait of a counsellor. With this quality, you can get people to trust you easily because they know that you genuinely care about what they're going through.
  • Patience is very important because you'll be dealing with people with a range of problems causing them emotional distress. Taking the time to understand what your clients are trying to communicate will enable you to develop an effective treatment plan. 
  • Active listening skills allow you to grasp issues that are most important to your clients and devise a plan of action to help them move forward positively.
  • Good communication skills are essential because it enables you to educate others about the process of counselling and its benefits.

If you can relate with these personal characteristics, there's no better time than now to enhance your skills as a counsellor. Continue reading to see which courses in Bendigo will take you to your career goals. 

What are the course and study options for counselling in Bendigo?

Universities in Bendigo provide a wide range of counseling courses. You can study full-time on campus. If you have a job, you can study part-time or via distance learning to give yourself more flexibility with your study schedule. Counseling courses are also available for those who wish to study only on weekends or at night.

An important factor to consider when you start looking for counselling courses is the level of qualification that you need. A certification course is a great way to gain insight into your personal patterns and work on personal healing and transformation. Developing self-awareness and self-development is an excellent way to get started with counselling. The course can take around six to nine months to complete.

A diploma qualification is what you need to develop the essential skills that a counsellor employs on a daily basis. Depending on the mode of study that you choose, a diploma program might last anywhere from a year and a half to two years. This course will help you in better understanding human behaviour, which is critical in motivating others to improve.

A bachelor's degree is the most comprehensive program available to aspiring counsellors that allows them to specialise in a specific area. It covers a wide range of subjects such as psychology, behavioural science and social work, among others. In addition to lectures and group discussions, students must complete their practicum in an actual clinical setting, where they get to apply hands-on counselling techniques.

Scroll to the top of the page to see the list of Bendigo's top counselling schools and courses. To learn more about the admissions process, course fees and instructors for the program you're interested in, contact your preferred course provider.

What happens after you complete your counselling course?

Completing one or more of the courses listed above can lead to a variety of professional opportunities. As a full-fledged counsellor, you can work in schools, offices, holistic clinics, rehabilitation centres or government agencies. Some counsellors go on to participate in campaigns aimed at raising the standard of living in their communities.

Not all counsellors seek employment; there are many that operate in private practice, delivering face-to-face or online sessions. Others run workshops or retreats. Natural Therapy Pages may be able to help you get started if this is the path you wish to go with your profession. Expect more clients in your office in no time after listing your business and services on the practitioner listing pages.

To enhance your knowledge and skills like many successful counsellors in Bendigo, it's worth taking advanced classes in counselling or related fields such as the following: