Professional Diploma in Counselling

Course Programme:
 Professional Diploma in Counselling

Course Director: Norman Warden

Senior Tutor: Dr. Simon Western

Course Description: The Professional Diploma in Counselling was a 3-year part-time Training Programme taking place on weekends. The central aim of the course was to help develop reflective competent counsellors by encouraging development in Counselling theory, professional practice, Counselling skills, core qualities essential in therapeutic relationships and personal changes relevant to being an effective counsellor. The course involved a minimum of three experienced accredited psychotherapy trainers plus guest facilitators and occasional speakers (David Mearns). 

IACP Accreditation

The course training was accepted by IACP as meeting the IACP criteria for professional accreditation. The Diploma had two intakes between 1996 and 2003. Successful students went onto to become accredited with the IACP and IAHIP.

Course Content 

Person-Centred, Gestalt, Psychodynamic, Existential and other comparative counselling theories. Professional Practice, Mental Health, Client Issues, Power and Oppression, Research and Evaluation. Each weekend consists of theoretical input, skills development, personal development group and supervision. Study groups take place in between weekends and tutorials as arranged. 


Personal counselling (50 hours minimum), supervision and formal assignments: A Personal Paper, 4 Theory Papers, a video taped Skills Assignment, Case Studies and Research Project.

Entry Requirements
Experience in personal development work; sufficient self awareness, maturity and mental stability. The ability to make use of and reflect upon life experience. The capacity to cope with emotional and intellectual demands of course, and potential to form a therapeutic client/counsellor relationship. Ability to receive feedback and challenge. A foundation counselling course. Applicants must be in a voluntary or paid counselling role. 

Selection Process
Students are selected on the basis of:

(a) application form 
(b) referees reports 
(c) interview.


Norman Warden  MCOUN, EAP, RMN, Dip. Gpwk.,  B.A. Training & Ed.,  MIACP,  MIAHIP. 

Simon Western  RGN, RMN, MA Couns., UK Reg. Cllr., BAC Acc C, UKCP Reg. Family Th., MA Consultation to Organisations (Tavistock).  

Tom Furlong  M.Sc.  Family Counselling,  M.Ed.,  N.T.,  Dip. Child Care,  Dip. Leadership,  MNAPCP,  MIACT.

Mary Creaner  M.Sc.  Counselling,  B.Rel.Sc.,  Media Studies (UCC),  RSE Trainer,  MIACT,  MNAPCP.  

Bobbie Sparrow  Dip. S.C, Dip. Psych.,  MIAHIP,  MIACT.  

External Examiners:   Dr. Reamonn O`Donnchadha and Ursula O’Farrell

Training Consultant Susan Lindsay  B. Soc. Sc. TCD, CQSW

Sucessful students: Theresa Mulholland, Ann McCurry, Breda Moore, Ursula Jordan-Hanley, Marian McMahon, Della McGarry, Beatrice Blaine, Breda Fadden.