Trainee and associate placements

The Counselling Service at London Metropolitan University has an established Trainee and Associate scheme, providing a number of clinical placements for:

  • Counsellors in the advanced stages of training.
  • Counsellors who are qualified and wish to gain experience in Higher Education and accumulate hours for accreditation.

We welcome applicants from a variety of theoretical orientations (in counselling, psychotherapy, psychology) and from diverse personal and cultural backgrounds. The scheme offers an opportunity to gain work experience in the context of an inner-city institution of Higher Education, which has a culturally diverse population and a high proportion of 'mature' (21+) students.

Recruitment Year 2023 - 2024

Recruitment for this academic year is currently open. 

The Counselling Service is based in the Holloway Campus and provides both remote and in-person services. The Counselling Service is one of four specialist Student Services, also including:

The therapeutic approach of the Counselling Service is best described as integrative and relational (with an awareness of what is co-created in the relationship between client and counsellor). Our practitioners come from a variety of training backgrounds and the team currently consists of one full-time service manager post and four part-time counsellor posts.

The team is committed to the Equality Act (2010) and the BACP Ethical Framework (2018) which inform our work with representation, difference, and oppression. Across the Service, counsellors operate in a variety of time-limited arrangements, including: single sessions and periodic reviews. Normally the Service offers six sessions, but can, in some circumstances, consider extending this to nine or twelve sessions depending on the circumstances and the nature of the work with a student.

We are interested in receiving applications from Trainees and Associates who can meet the following basic requirements:

  • An ability to volunteer for one full day each week (either 9am-5pm or 10am-6pm). This includes one hour per week for clinical supervision. 
  • The ability to volunteer in person or remotely via an online platform (eg Teams) or over the phone.
  • Our aim is to provide an experience that realistically reflects the Higher Education environment. Therefore, we offer you the opportunity to see up to five ongoing clients and to join in other activities in the University if you wish to. Activities will be in line with your strengths and interests and could include: day-to-day administration, group facilitation, student induction events, Open Days, Freshers Fair. Where appropriate, training in these areas will be provided.
  • A willingness to engage across the University, eg making contact with others (lecturers, tutors, Student Services) who are involved with the students experience.
  • Placements run for a full year, usually beginning in September/October and ending in September of the following year, but occasionally advertised at other times as well. We ask that applicants are able to commit for one calendar year and that as far as possible they arrange holidays or other training out of academic term time, ie during Christmas, Easter, Summer. If this is likely to be problematic for you, please raise this prior to the interview.

At the end of the placement year, you can ask to be considered for a further year s placement if you wish, or if you are able to move from a trainee to associate role.

Should there be any issues of concern during your placement, we will discuss them with you, and may also need, where appropriate, to discuss them with your training organisation.

It is the policy of the Counselling Service not to offer placements to students or employees of the University unless they are already working within Student Services and would not be subject to conflicts of interest in the role.

Supervision is provided by permanent counselling staff, usually in groups of two and working integratively and relationally. While every effort is made to ensure that supervision coincides with placement times, it may require attendance at a different time/day from counselling practice, however, this is rarely necessary.

1. Trainee Counsellor 

Trainee counsellors are those who have not yet completed full counsellor training. To be considered you must meet the following criteria:

  • To be in the second year of a BACP/UKCP/BPS approved or RQF accredited Diploma course or equivalent;
  • Have some counselling experience (as a practitioner) is preferable though not essential;
  • Have experience of personal counselling or therapy (either individual or group). All trainees must be in personal counselling for the duration of the placement.

Trainee counsellors who are in the advanced stages of training may be eligible to apply for Associate Counsellor placements. You may do so if you meet the requirements of an approved Counselling Diploma: (a) at least two years part-time duration; (b) 400+ hours taught time; and (c) includes the basic elements for BACP recognition (see section 5.1 Recognition of Counsellor Training Courses, BACP).

2. Associate Counsellor 

Associate counsellors are those who have already qualified. Associates will have the opportunity, if agreed, to take part in counselling assessments, for which training is provided, and to take on clients with more complex needs/circumstances. When coming into an associate role the volunteer will not immediately fulfil all the aspects of the associate role, as it will take time to know the ropes of our service and to acquaint themselves with the University.

  • You must have completed a BACP, UKCP, BPS approved or RQF accredited Counselling Diploma course (preferably within the past two years) and be seeking experience of working in Higher Education;
  • Have a minimum of 100 hours of counselling experience (as a practitioner), during or after training; 

Have experience, preferably ongoing, of personal counselling or therapy.

Applications are currently open. Please email to ask for an application form.

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