What is Required to Become a Counsellor in Australia

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If you’re thinking of studying counselling then you’ll be pleased to know that the field is high in demand. The majority of graduates are able to find positions in many counselling job paths and report high levels of job satisfaction. This can be great if you have the communication skills and empathy required, although there will be some steps to take before employment.

To become a counsellor you will need an accredited degree in counselling, as well as accruing supervised experience. You must also complete a minimum of two years of supervised practice, during which time you will be required to demonstrate your competency in counselling. In this article, we will outline some of the requirements needed to become a counsellor in Australia.

What do Counsellors do?

Counselling is a type of therapy that focuses on helping individuals to identify and resolve their personal issues. Counsellors help their clients to manage emotional difficulties, develop coping strategies, and make positive changes in their lives. Counsellors are also advocates for the psychological well-being of their clients, providing support and guidance in times of desperation.

What Qualifications are Required?

In order to become a counsellor in Australia, you must complete an accredited degree in counselling. This can be either a Bachelor of Counselling or a Master of Counselling, depending on the specialisation you choose. You may also need to obtain additional qualifications such as professional certifications or diplomas, although this does vary depending on the position.

How can I gain experience?

Once you have completed your degree, you must accrue supervised experience in order to become a counsellor. This may include internships or volunteer placements at counselling services, which will help you develop the skills and competency needed for the role. You must also complete a minimum of two years of supervised practice to demonstrate your proficiency in the field.

What are the other Requirements?

In addition to the educational and experience requirements, you must also complete a criminal history check and obtain professional indemnity insurance. You may also need to register with an association such as the Australian Counselling Association (ACA) or the Psychology Board of Australia (AHPRA).

Tips to find Counselling Positions

Once you have met the requirements and feel confident in your counselling skills, it’s time to start looking for a job. Here are some tips that can help you find employment as a counsellor:

  • Make sure you research different organisations and services to identify potential employers
  • Spend time networking with other professionals in the field to increase your visibility 
  • Start attending conferences and seminars to learn about current trends
  • Take advantage of online platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook to reach-out
  • Make sure you have a positive attitude and demonstrate your commitment to the profession 

These tips can help you stand out from other applicants when looking for a job in counselling. By taking proactive steps to further your career, you can increase your chances of being successful.

Benefits of working as a Counsellor

The benefits of working as a counsellor are many and varied. Counsellors have the opportunity to impact people’s lives and see first-hand the positive changes they are able to bring about. They also enjoy good job security and excellent working conditions, which makes for a satisfying and rewarding career.


With the right qualifications and experience, becoming a counsellor in Australia can be an extremely rewarding life choice. By following the steps outlined in this article, you will have all the tools necessary to begin your counselling journey.

Photo by christopher lemercier on Unsplash

Cadi Hopper
the authorCadi Hopper

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