Master of Counselling

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Master of Counselling


Program summary

Student profile
Dr Mark Pearson
Program coordinator

Dr Mark Pearson

Your pathway to becoming a registered counsellor.

Do you like to listen? Do you enjoy being with people? Do you want a meaningful and fulfilling career? Learn to provide professional counselling support through the Master of Counselling Program.

Our fully accredited Master of Counselling Program provides a holistic integrated and evidence-based pathway to becoming a "registered counsellor". This Program will lead you to the acquisition of advanced skills, theoretical knowledge and clinical experience through classroom activities, blended learning and internship placements.

The program specialises in advanced counselling skills and theories, counselling and mental health, counselling and addictions, counselling children and young people, mindfulness based interventions, expressive therapies and solution focussed brief therapy. You will learn the art of assessment and case conceptualization and build a strong ethical framework for practice.

Supervised internships of 200 hours each semester of your final year, take place in a variety of counselling settings. This practical training prepares you for a rewarding professional career as a counsellor and eligibility to join the Australian Counselling Association (ACA), Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia (PACFA), and listing as a "Registered counsellor" on the Australian Register of Counsellors and Psychotherapists (ARCAP).

Career opportunities

The Master of Counselling opens new possibilities for you to work as a counsellor, including private practice, health and human service settings. It will interest you if you want a career change or to fine-tune your existing qualifications by adding a vocational emphasis. If you are already an experienced counsellor, this gives you an academic qualification to formalise years of work and opens pathways to further research, such as through undertaking PhD research.

Admission requirements

A student entering the Master of Counselling will normally be required to hold an approved 3-year degree in Counselling (AQF Level 7) or a Bachelor Degree (AQF Level 7) in other cognate areas as approved by the University.

Entry by non-graduates who have extensive relevant industry experience may be considered on a case-by-case basis by the Head of School, Social Sciences.

Applicants are required to complete an additional personal statement and attend an interview (refer to application form). Interviews for International students on a Student visa will be conducted by Skype.

Applicants must hold a valid Suitability Card (Blue Card), which is issued by the Public Safety Business Agency, prior to commencement. Please see the Blue Card link for further details.

The Master of Counselling offers a limited number of Commonwealth Supported Places (CSP) as well as domestic fee paying places. Offers for both CSP and fee paying places will be made after the application due date for the program.

CSP will be allocated on the basis of your Grade Point Average in the degree used to meet admission requirements. Applicants falling below the demand-driven cut-off for a CSP may be offered a domestic fee paying place (with the option to access FEE-HELP) subject to capacity limitations. USC reserves the right to offer a small number of CSP to students from ATSIC or disadvantaged backgrounds.

Australian citizens, New Zealand citizens and permanent visa holders enrolled in a fee paying place will have the option of applying for a CSP in subsequent semesters if one becomes available. In these cases, the student’s current GPA in the Master of Counselling will be used to assess eligibility for a CSP place using the same entry cut-off applied for new CPS entrants during that admission period.

Requirements for placements

You must hold a current Blue Card before starting your first supervised counselling experience. Many agencies also require a Police check in addition to the Blue Card.

Professional recognition

Graduates will be eligible to apply for membership with the Australian Counselling Association (ACA), Associations accredited by the Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia (PACFA) and the Queensland Counsellors Association.


This program is fully accredited with the Australian Counselling Association and the Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia.

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What will I study

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Select your location, starting year and starting semester below to display your program structure and a recommended study sequence.

The recommended study sequence ONLY represents the CURRENT program structure. Students MUST follow their commencing structure and use this recommended study sequence to guide enrolment.

Program structure

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How to apply

Am I eligible to apply?
Domestic students
  1. Download the Application for postgraduate coursework form and relevant additional forms listed.
  2. Lodge the completed application forms directly to USC, with supporting documentation to the addressee stated on each form by the due date.
International students

Apply direct to USC International

More information

How to enrol

New to USC?

Once you have applied and received your offer of a place from USC, follow the steps to Get Started at USC to respond to your offer, plan your study and enrol in the correct courses (subjects).

Continuing students

Before you enrol it's important to check your commencing program structure and the published recommended study sequence to make sure you study the right courses at the right time and will be ready to graduate from your degree when you plan to.

To better understand your program structure and for instructions on how to review your progress and plan your remaining courses, visit the Managing your progression page.

Visit How do I enrol? for enrolment instructions and key dates.

Need assistance?

View step-by-step instructions to enrol at How do I enrol?

Refer to the Academic Calendar for key dates, including the last day to add, drop or swap a course or class and Census dates.

Search for answers and ask questions about enrolling or contact Student Central.

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