01904 554277 york.learning@york.gov.uk

2020 - 2021

CPCAB Level 3 Certificate in Counselling

Thank you for expressing your interest in our Counselling Training Programme.  I am delighted to provide you with all the necessary information that you may need to support and guide you in your application.

York Learning has been delivering the CPCAB Counselling Training Courses since 2013 and in that time we have grown to become one of the biggest training centres for CPCAB in the whole of Yorkshire.

All members of the Counselling tutor team are fully qualified counsellors as well as qualified teachers with an extensive amount of knowledge and experience that they bring to the classroom.  We are very passionate about providing the highest quality training from Level 2 to Level 4 and we put our learners at the centre of everything we do.

We have excellent training facilities within the city of York with the programme running from 2 different venues.  Our main venue and office base is the brand new purpose built Community Hub at The Centre@Burnholme (near Tang hall, York) and our 2nd venue is Huntington School, Huntington, York.

If after reading the information in this booklet you decide to progress to the application stage then please complete the attached application form and return it to yorklearningcounselling@york.gov.uk and we will be in touch to proceed with your application.

Warm Regards

Anna-Marie Gillman
Programme Lead: York Learning Counselling

All you need to know about the Level 3 Certificate in Counselling Studies

Who is this course for?

This qualification is intended for candidates who have already acquired a recognised qualification in counselling skills (minimum Level 2) and want to:

  • take the next step in training to become a counsellor
  • learn more about counselling theory, ethics and mental health
  • be prepared for work as a professional counsellor in an agency setting.

This qualification does not lead directly to employment as a counsellor but it will provide you with an enhanced skill set for those already working in a related field.

The course is specifically designed as a ‘pre-practitioner’ course for the Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling.

Duration of course

This course is run over a period of 32 weeks.  You will meet on a weekly basis for 3 hours per week.  (Excluding half term holidays, Easter and Christmas).  The course will start in the Autumn term 2020 (exact date tbc) Nov and run until 28 July 2021.

You are required to attend each session to ensure that you get the most out of the course and absence from sessions will only be accepted due to unforeseen circumstances such as sickness or other work commitments.

Time required completing homework outside of the sessions

An essential part of your learning is the homework tasks and related reading that you will be set.  At this level we advise that you allow between 3 – 5 hours per week to complete your homework related tasks.

Entry Requirements

You are required to have completed the CPCAB Level 2 Certificate in Counselling Skills (or equivalent) to be eligible for a place on the course.  Special consideration may be given to those who do not hold a Level 2 qualification in Counselling Skills if they are able to evidence that they have recognised prior learning (RPL).  RPL will be awarded to those who have qualifications in other related fields and / or actual practical experience within the helping / counselling sector.   For those wishing to apply for this course through the recognised prior learning route you will also be required to write a short essay (1,000 words) on a relevant topic area and may be required to attend an interview with the course leader.

A further requirement is that you purchase the two essential course text books to support you in your studies:

  1. The CPCAB Skills and Studies book which can be purchased from SAGE by following a link directly on the homepage of the CPCAB website. For more information visit the CPCAB website at cpcab.co.uk
  2. Margaret Hough [2014] ‘ Counselling Skills and Theory 4th Edition’

Important to note

This qualification is not suitable for those who are currently in a state of severe emotional difficulty and /or severe psychological confusion. The course involves experiential elements that will involve some personal disclosure and self reflection through associated personal developmental activities.


The course costs £911 which can be self funded or via the advanced learner loan.  If you are self funding then you can pay the full £911 at the start of the course or in a number of agreed instalments. If you are loan funding, you are required to pay a non refundable £100 deposit to secure your place and then apply to the advanced learner loan company for the remaining balance of £811. You will be required to confirm your chosen payment option at the application stage.


There are 2 elements to the course and both are required to be passed in order to gain the qualification

  1. Completion of a portfolio to evidence knowledge and skills through written work and skills practice: this is assessed internally by your tutor and verified by CPCAB
  2. An external exam where you are required to watch a DVD of a helping session and answer a written paper based on what you have watched. For this course the exam will take place in April / May 2021 (exact dates tbc)


The Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling or equivalent

Areas and topics studied

This qualification has 7 Learning Processes that will be covered in a range of ways as follows:

  1. Prepare to work within an ethical framework for counselling
  2. Understand the counselling relationship
  3. Understand difference and diversity issues to develop empathic understanding
  4. Work within a user-centred approach to counselling
  5. Use counselling theory to develop self awareness in counselling practice
  6. Understand theories of counselling and mental health
  7. Use feedback, reflection and supervision to support counselling studies

For more information about the qualification why not down load the Candidate Guide for the Level Certificate in Counselling Skills.