Counselling Psychology

Trinity College Dublin

Counselling Psychology

The course emphasises the scientist-practitioner model and research-informed practice. The scientist-practitioner model is fostered through research classes and work on the research dissertation. Students are informed on a variety of research strategies (including e,g, experimental as well as descriptive and qualitative, phenomenological, hermeneutic, discourse analytic and grounded theory approaches) and learn to critically evaluate the strenghts and weaknesses of different methodologies.

Is This Course For Me?
The course is designed for students with a degree in Psychology or Dip.Psych. with relevant professional experience who would like to progress their academic and research performance with the practice of counselling psychology and acquire professional knowledge and skills.

Subjects taught

Course Structure
In the first year, the course offers academic and practical skills training in counselling psychology and related research. After the first few weeks of full-time coursework and personal development work, 2 full days per week are spent on placement and the 2-3 days in classes. The D.Couns.Psych. offers a wide range of course-approved placement options in community, health, mental health, education and private practice settings, as well as welcoming new student recommended sites, particularly for those students residing outside the greater Dublin area. At least 3 different placements are required during the 3 years of the course

The second year involves further training in counselling theories and practice, and students conduct a research dissertation related to counselling psychology, initiated during the summer before entering second year.

The third year includes small group supervision, reflective practice, and advanced counselling and psychotherapy theory and its application. However, the main focus will be on research. Courses are taught and supervision provided by both core staff and other practitioners from varied theoretical orientations. Humanistic theory underlies the course. Psychodynamic and systemic perspective are also emphasised, and training in cognitive behavioural approaches is provided. Practical placements continue through the summer

Course Content
Taught classes, as well as counselling skills training, supervision and reflective practice modules emphasise the application of current psychological knowledge informed by empirical research in the work of counselling psychologist. The students are facilitated to be aware of current research findings and to incorporate them into their clinical practice.

Year 1 modules include: Small Group Supervision I; Counselling & Psychotherapy Skills Training I; Personal Development I - (Group Process, Personal Counselling); Reflective Practice; Professional Issues in Counselling Psychology and Case Management; Theories and Approaches and Theoretical Issues in Counselling Psychology; Advanced Lifespan Developmental Psychology - Theory and Practice; Psychological Assessment I; Placements I; Research in Counselling Psychology I; and Small Scale Research.

Modules taken in Year 2 include: Small Group Supervision II; Reflective Practice & Research; Counselling & Psychotherapy Skills Training II; Advanced Counselling & Psychotherapy Theory and its Application - Counselling Modalities I; Personal Development II (Group Process, Personal Counselling); Research in Counselling Psychology II; Dissertation Research - Research Proposal & Literature Review; Psychological Assessment II; and Placements II.

Modules taken in Year 3 include: Small Group Supervision III; Advanced Counselling & Psychotherapy Theory and its Application - Counselling Modalities II; Dissertation Research – Doctoral Dissertation; and Placements III.

Personal development work, including individual therapy, is required throughout 3 years.

Entry requirements

Applicants will be required to hold at least a minimum of an upper second class honours degree (2.1) in psychology or its equivalent from a recognised university course, which confers eligibility for graduate registration with the Psychological Society of Ireland or equivalent professional body in the case of overseas applicants.

Students will be required to undergo Garda Vetting, you can learn more at:


3 Years full-time.

Enrolment dates

Next Intake September 2024

Closing Date 31st January 2024

Post Course Info

Career Opportunities
Graduates of this course are qualified counselling psychologists, skilled to conduct mental health assessments and therapy with individuals, couples, families and groups across the lifespan. Graduates have pursued careers as counselling psychologists in a variety of settings and have been employed by Health Service Executive, within the National Counselling Service, Refugee and Asylum Seekers Service, Autism Services; Voluntary agencies; Hospitals; Third level student counselling services; Private practice and multiple other locations. Graduates have also pursued further academic research, including Ph.Ds.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Doctoral (Level 10 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Full time,Daytime

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    Course provider