Course at a glance


This course is accepted by ACCPH and the Level 3 and allows you to join as a professional member after graduation.

Families are ideally a great source of love, security and support, but sometimes, relationships within families can become strained and this is where family counselling comes in. Family counselling can be very helpful when family members are experiencing problems, or when parents and children are going through a separation or divorce.

Two important developments within family counselling during the past 60 years has been the systemic formulation and integrative practices which links the theory and practical aspects. In addition to the counselling approaches you will be studying, you will look at various working models and theories specific to this field will be explored, as well as the following concepts: meta-communication, genograms, triangulation, open and closed systems, reframing, solution focused counselling, goal setting and reflective practice.

Specific attention will be given to psychodynamic, cognitive behavioural and person-centred approaches, which will give students a fuller working knowledge and understanding of advanced counselling skills. In specialist counselling fields, these advanced skills are necessary in order to be able to recognise and deal with the complex range of client needs, together with being able to understand the origins of these particular emotions and possible physiological factors.

This Level 3 Diploma course is designed to follow on from and complement a basic or introductory counselling skills course. Reappraisal of basic counselling skills and core knowledge will be covered, together with a detailed examination of the five approaches or theories of counselling.

Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Entry Requirements

All students must be 16 years of age and above to enrol into our Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma course.

Level 3 Diploma courses require a minimum prior learning to GCSE standard in order that students can manage their studies and the assumed knowledge within course content.

Study Hours

Approximately 20 hours per unit.


Optional coursework and final examination.


Please note that you can enrol on this course at anytime.

Course Length

1 Year.

Endorsed By

Students at the college have the option to choose the awarding body of their course.

This course has been endorsed by :

Quality Licence Scheme:


Accord :

This courses’ awarding bodies are recognised for their high-quality, non-regulated provision and training programmes. This course is not regulated by Ofqual and is not an accredited qualification. Your training provider will be able to advise you on any further recognition, for example progression routes into further and/or higher education. For further information please visit Quality Licence Scheme website or Accord website

Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Course Content

Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Module 1: Introduction, Outline of Family Cycle and Reappraisal of Counselling Skills

This module focuses on the concept of the family cycle and reflects on previous counselling knowledge. Five main approaches in counselling are explored, namely, the work of Freud, Rogers, Skinner, Ellis, Jung and Egan is outlined, along with their corresponding counselling approaches. Students consider in detail the term ‘family cycle’, in terms of modern society.


Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Module 2: The Psychodynamic Approach Relevant to Family Counselling

This module examines the psychodynamic approach and its usefulness in family counselling. This approach may have special significance in the context of various family attachments and potential issues that may arise. The process of change from Freud’s original theories to the more social and relationship based approaches of the psychodynamic therapies is identified and explained.


Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Module 3: The Cognitive Behavioural Approach Relevant to Family Counselling

In this module, students gain understanding of the key concepts of the cognitive behavioural approach to counselling in the family context. Students also learn about conditioning and social cognitive theories. The module describes cognitive techniques, their applications and relevance to family counselling. Students gain confidence in the ability to integrate such components with other counselling approaches.


Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Module 4: The Person-Centred Approach Relevant to Family Counselling

In the study of this module, students learn key elements of the person-centred approach to counselling. The hierarchy of needs is explained in relation to counselling. Person-centred techniques and their relevance and application to family counselling are explored in detail.


Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Module 5: Ethics, Consent, Counsellor Responsibilities and Historical Background

This module focuses on key aims of counselling and includes confidentiality and ethical conduct within the counselling role. Students have the opportunity of considering the integration of different counselling approaches suitable for client need. Relationships within family groups are defined and explored. Boundaries or limitations of counselling are also identified and defined. The module also looks at what types of consent and responsibilities the counsellor has to seek. In addition to this, some historical background of the development of family therapy since the 1950’s is described, together with the emergence of the therapeutic concepts in use today.


Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Module 6: Main Concepts

This module addresses the family lifecycle, including nuclear and extended family influences on family life. Students gain understanding of the main concepts associated with modern family counselling.


Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Module 7: Processes in Family Counselling (Part 1)

This module explains the process of accurate and effective client assessment. The subsequent planning of counselling programmes is described. Students learn about the deconstruction of issues, engaging helpfully with family members. Also, the reframing and construction of intervention is examined. This leads to positive counselling outcomes. Students also gain confidence in the use of genograms and scoring systems.


Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Module 8: Processes in Family Counselling (Part 2)

This module continues from the previous one by discussing positive interventions, feedback loops, progressive hypothesizing and contexts of behaviour and interventions.


Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Module 9: Focus on Specific Problems (Part 1)

This module considers important relationships within the family and specifically discusses depression, anxiety and associated psychological problems within the family that may be encountered within the counselling context. It will also examine alcohol and drug problems within the adult family members and their repercussions.


Level 3 Family Counselling Diploma Module 10: Focus on Specific Problems (Part 2)

With the completion of this module, students gain understanding of issues surrounding abuse and its different connotations within the family. The role of the counsellor in this context is explained. Relationship difficulties between parents and children are explored, along with the challenges of child alcohol and other substance misuse.


This Quality Licence Scheme course can be used to gain entry to a Level 4 Diploma or higher.

Further information on our Level 4 Diplomas can be found here: