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Last modified: 22 May 2019 17:07

Course Overview

Cognitive behavioural counselling is the ability to identify the thoughts arising from a client's interpretation of life experiences which lead to changes in mood and behaviour.  Students will learn skills to work with a client, facilitate and develop strategies to find a more adaptive thinking or behaviour. 

This course assumes previous practical experience as a professional helper or Counsellor, or completion of Counselling Skills 1 and 2.

See 'Further Information & Notes'.

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 2
Session First Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus Old Aberdeen Sustained Study No
  • Dr Salma Siddique

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?

Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

The course will introduce:
  • The basic principles of cognitive behavioural counselling
  • The stages of the process of cognitive behavioural counselling
  • The collaborative working relationship
  • The structure and content of cognitive behavioural counselling sessions
  • The identification of key thoughts and beliefs
  • Identification of short and long term goals and tasks
  • Coaching tasks and steps for self counselling

Further Information & Notes

This course may not be suitable for anyone who is currently receiving counselling or has faced a serious emotional issue in the last six months.
Class size is limited to 15. You must be able to attend the same class at the same time over 10 weeks. There is a strict attendance requirement of at least 85%.  Students who miss more than two 3-hour classes - for any reason - cannot pass the course.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown

More Information about Week Numbers

Details, including assessments, may be subject to change until 31 August 2023 for 1st half-session courses and 22 December 2023 for 2nd half-session courses.

Summative Assessments

1st Attempt

Weekly 400 word reflective log/journal writing (25%), Oral Practice (25%) and Oral Participation (25%), 3500-word essay (25%) To achieve a pass for the course overall, a pass in each element is required. Candidates should note that a resit is not permitted of the learning log or oral elements of the course. To achieve credit for the course overall, a pass in each element is required.


One 3500-word essay.

Formative Assessment

A reflective personal learning log, will be completed by all students and submitted to tutors after week 2 on a weekly basis. The log is an opportunity for students to reflect on their experiences of learning in the class, how they relate theory to practice and their own personal awareness, growth and development. Skills practice is included in each class. Tutors provide feedback on practical skills on a group or individual basis as appropriate in each of the 10 classes. Oral participation is assessed in the whole class group and with all class members.


A reflective learning log will be read by tutors on weekly submission and any necessary feedback or concerns communicated to students. At the end of the course 10 logs will be graded linked to the CGS and weighted at 25% of the overall course mark.

Oral practice: Tutors give verbal feedback to the group and individuals in each of the 10 classes.

Oral participation: Tutors will give individual feedback as necessary during the course.

Course Learning Outcomes


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