Certificate in Counselling

Part-Time | 12 Days | Quality Checked by NCPS | Exeter & Poole

Open Days How to become a Counsellor? Online Course Presentations Booking Form

Group of happy peopleWhy study this course at Iron Mill College?

As a relational, specialist, mental health and wellbeing college we will immerse you into the world of counselling. You'll be taught by our highly experienced tutor team all of whom are professional counsellors.  We run our classes in small groups, giving a more personal experience. This course is designed to teach you the basic elements of counselling through humanistic approaches, and therapeutic models that provide preliminary training in the use of counselling skills.

Additionally, Iron Mill College Certificate in Counselling students are entitled to 25% discount on all CPD workshops whilst studying with us, and on completion of their course as IMC Graduates. In addition, those students progressing to an eligible Advanced course with us will be entitled to 50% discount on all CPD workshops while they study with us. 

Course description

  • This course allows you to gain your Certificate in Counselling in one 12-day programme that runs over 12-weeks or 6 weekends over 6 months.
  • It will leave you with a deeper understanding of yourself, the healing aspects of relationships and how to support vulnerable others whilst reflecting on personal growth and experience of life.
  • Experiential exercises and skills work are integrated throughout the course.
  • The course is delivered face to face. 
  • Available to study in Exeter, Devon or in Poole, Dorset, either as a weekday (weekly) course or as a weekend (monthly) course. A Blended Learning option is also available. 

If you have any questions and wish to speak to a member of our team, please contact 01392 219200 or email enquiries@ironmill.co.uk.

Watch our video below with lecturer Veronica Rosello to find out more about the course. 

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Student testimonials

'It's a place where you can fully be yourself, and life outside the classroom doesn't exist. This space allows you to fully connect with yourself, and to get to know who you are without any interference." 

Mike Palmer - Certificate in Counselling Graduate

"I have never before learned so much about myself and about where I want to go in the future. I couldn't imagine a better place for my development than at the Iron Mill. The tutors, staff and students are all fantastic. Thanks to all of them."

Jess Houghton - Certificate in Counselling Graduate

"I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Iron Mill - there is a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere which makes for a very positive learning environment. My tutor was excellent and the course content was both challenging and enjoyable. I have gained invaluable new skills and made lasting friendships."

Frances Carpenter - Certificate in Counselling Graduate

"I wasn't sure what to expect of the Iron Mill course but I loved every minute of it. The tutors and course content are nothing short of excellent, I would definitely recommend studying here. Thank You so much!"

Laura Temple - Certificate in Counselling Graduate

Where will this course take you?

On successful completion of the course you may apply for and progress onto either our Advanced Diploma or the FdA Foundation Degree in Integrative Counselling course, both of which qualify you as a counsellor.  Please see the chart below for your counselling study route with us. 

Counselling route map

If you're looking to enhance your career as a helping professional, this course can also benefit and grow your skillset for working with people. 

What will you study?

In-person Certificate in Counselling Content - 12 days:
Day 1: Welcome Day
Day 2: Introduction to Relational Depth
Day 3: Introduction to the Person-Centred Approach
Day 4: Cultural Empathy
Day 5: Active Listening Skills Day
Day 6: A Sense of Self
Day 7: Focus Forward
Day 8: Introduction to Transactional Analysis
Day 9: Transference
Day 10: Ethical Decision Making
Day 11: Working in Groups 
Day 12: Celebrations and Endings

How will you be assessed?

Learning and assessment:
Training is delivered via a combination of tutor led sessions, creative group work, research and skills practise exercises. There is an expectation for students to reflect on their own learning and development throughout the course, and a requirement for students to undertake additional reading. 

Assessment is based on:
(a) Attendance (9.5 days minimum) for in-person
(b) Diary / Journal (2000 words; externally set assignment).

Attendance requirements: 
Students should aim to attend all 12 days, and the minimum attendance criteria is 9.5 days out of 12. You can still pass the attendance requirement of this course if you miss up to 2.5 days, by ‘making up’ the learning in the ways described in the course handbook. But, 3 or more missed days means you cannot meet the attendance criteria to pass the course. 

Iron Mill College Certificate in Counselling.

Please note: 
Completion of this course does not provide a route to registration with the National Counselling and Psychotherapy Society (NCPS) and detailed individual applications to NCPS are required for this purpose, where applicable.

Course dates

For the full course dates, please see the available 'Downloads Tab' section of this web page. 

Upcoming Exeter intakes: 



  • Starts Friday 26th April 2024, 10:00-17:00, runs over 12 weeks


  • Weekend course starts Saturday 14th September 2024, 10:00-17:00, runs over 6 weekends
  • Friday course starts 13th September 2024, 10:00-17:00, runs over 12 weeks


  • Starts Friday 17th January 2025, 10:00-17:00, runs over 12 weeks

Upcoming Poole intakes:


  • Starts Friday 26th April 2024, 10:00-17:00, runs over 12 weeks. 


  • Starts Friday 6th September 2024, 10:00-17:00, runs over 12 weeks


  • Starts Saturday 18th January 2025, 10:00-17:00, runs over 6 weekends


  • Starts Friday 28th March 2025, 10:00-17:00, runs over 12 weeks. 

Applying for this course

How to apply: 
You can apply by submitting:

  • Your £350.00 Enrolment Deposit (Non-Refundable) to reserve your place by using our 'Booking Form' on this website page. A confirmation email will be sent to the email address that you have provided as proof of purchase. Please check the confirmation email to click on the application form link to complete and process your application. Payments can also be made by contacting us
  • If you require assistance in completing your application, please contact admissions@ironmill.co.uk

Please note:
Applicants will be offered a place on the course following the receipt of a completed Booking Form / Application Form and payment of the Enrolment Deposit. Please note that completion of this course does not provide a route to registration with the National Counselling and Psychotherapy Society (NCPS) and a further application process is required.

How much will it cost?

Courses starting 1st Jan 2024- 31st December 2024

Option 1 (Total Payable £1,140.00):
An Enrolment Deposit of £350.00 (Non-Refundable) followed by one instalment of £790.00.

Option 2 (Total Payable £1,200.00):
An Enrolment Deposit of £350.00 (Non-Refundable) followed by two instalments of £425.00 (payable by direct debit only).

Bespoke payment plans (Total Payable £1,200.00):
In order to facilitate students, Iron Mill College has introduced Bespoke Payment Plans which can be tailored to meet your specific needs. Please contact us at 01392 219200 / admissions@ironmill.co.uk for further information.

If you are an organisation looking to book staff members onto this course, then please email admissions@ironmill.co.uk to process your payment. 

Applicants are invited to enrol by paying the Enrolment Deposit by using the Booking Form on this website page (which shall be fully non-refundable in all circumstances) as well as submitting an application form that can be found as a link in your deposit payment confirmation email. The balance of course fees is payable as per the relevant schedule option above.

All applicants should ensure they read and understand the Terms and Conditions of the Student Agreement and the Tuition Fee Contract Terms and Conditions 2023 before applying and paying their Enrolment Deposit (Non-Refundable). These documents can be found in the 'Downloads' tab below. 

Tuition Fee Increases:
Tuition fees are reviewed in Autumn each year and are usually increased in line with CPI each January.

How to pay:
For initial course payments and deposits, you can pay online by using the booking form on this web page. You can also pay all fees by credit / debit card, either in person at Iron Mill College in Exeter, or over the phone by calling 01392 219200. Please note that we are unable to accept payments via American Express or Diners Club cards.

We also accept cash paid in person at Iron Mill College in Exeter, as well as cheques, which should be made out to 'Iron Mill College' and dropped in or sent to 'Iron Mill College, Morwenstow, 7 Barnfield Crescent, Exeter, Devon, EX1 1QT'. We can also accept payments by bank transfer and direct debit - please get in touch with us at 01392 219200 / enquiries@ironmill.co.uk for our bank details or a direct debit form. Please use your name as the reference when making such payments.

Additional expenses:
This will vary depending on your own circumstances, but all applicants must make sure they fully understand the additional expense requirements they will need to undertake during this course. Iron Mill College is unable to contribute to any of these additional costs; they are met by the student. These costs may include: travel and boarding costs, purchase of books. 

Course commencement:
Please note: Iron Mill College makes every effort to avoid altering course times, course commencement and conclusion dates. However, should any changes be necessary, you will be notified at the earliest opportunity. All courses run subject to demand and the formation of a viable class cohort, based on the enrolment of a minimum number of successful applicants. A full refund of course fees paid, including any deposit, will be given to all applicants in the event that a course does not proceed and at least 14 days’ notice (prior to the advertised course start date) will be given to applicants, in the event of a course cancellation or postponement. The college cannot be held liable for any remedy, damages or compensation beyond this.

Certificate in Counselling is Quality Checked by the National Counselling and Psychotherapy Society (NCPS).

This course alone is not a route to the Accredited Register nor does it fully equip a graduate to practise as a qualified counsellor.  


"Like its name, the Iron Mill College is down to Earth, unpretentious and is simply getting on with the job of training people from a wide range of backgrounds, to become effective, professional counsellors"
Certificate in Counselling Graduate

Why Iron Mill College?

Iron Mill College offers accredited courses, academic standards, experiential learning, experienced lecturers with student focused training and classes.

Why Iron Mill?

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Course Venues:   Exeter   |   Poole   

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