course page main image

Psychology and Counselling - BSc/MSci

Currently viewing course to start in 2024/25 Entry. Switch to 2023/24 Entry

The BSc (Hons) Psychology and Counselling will be of particular interest if you are thinking about a career as a Counselling Psychologist, Psychotherapist or a Counsellor. The course has been carefully developed to enable graduates to gain the required knowledge base, practical skill and emotional awareness and maturity required for these, normally postgraduate professions....

  • Level Undergraduate
  • Study mode Full Time
  • Location City Centre
  • School School of Social Sciences
  • Faculty Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences

This course is:

Overview

The BSc (Hons) Psychology and Counselling will be of particular interest if you are thinking about a career as a Counselling Psychologist, Psychotherapist or a Counsellor. The course has been carefully developed to enable graduates to gain the required knowledge base, practical skill and emotional awareness and maturity required for these, normally postgraduate professions. Whether or not further study is for you, an in depth exploration of – among other things - human development, mental health and distress and practical listening and relationship building skills will prepare graduates for range of people-focussed roles with adults, young people and children.

This course integrates traditional psychology teaching with the theory and practice of counselling and psychotherapy into unified course which enables an early focus on applied practice without any loss of the rigour of a pure psychology degree.  The course team consists of chartered psychologists and accredited, practising psychotherapists and counsellors, ensuring the theoretical and practical relevance of your student experience.

MSci Psychology and Counselling

On the BSc (Hons) Psychology and Counselling degree, you have the opportunity to apply for the MSci Psychology and Counselling course, turning your three year degree into a four year combined master’s degree. MSci Psychology and Counselling isn’t available via direct application, and is only available to those studying Psychology and Counselling at undergraduate level.

Applicants will need to demonstrate the core personal and professional competencies specified by professional accrediting bodies as part of the application process, including among other things self-awareness, maturity, stability, resilience, the ability to be reflective, to receive and work with feedback and to cope with the demands of the course and of the profession.

This qualification enables students to apply for individual registration with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP). Successful graduates of the MSci Psychology and Counselling are therefore able to practice or obtain employment as BACP registered counsellors, and / or to proceed to further BPS accredited training and qualifications.

For more information, please read the MSci Psychology and Counselling course specification.

Professional Placement Year

This course offers an optional professional placement year. This allows you to spend a whole year with an employer, following successful completion of your second year, and is a great way to find out more about your chosen career. Some students even return to the same employers after completing their studies.

If you choose to pursue a placement year, you will need to find a suitable placement to complement your chosen area of study. You will be able to draw on the University’s extensive network of local, regional, and national employers, and the support of our Careers teams. If you are able to secure a placement, you can request to be transferred to the placement version of the course.

Please note that fees are payable during your placement year, equivalent to 20% of the total full-time course fee for that year.

This course is not open to International students.

What's covered in this course?

While some modules focus more centrally on the discipline of psychology, and others on the associated field of counselling, the key focus throughout is on the integration of the two areas to offer a unique focus on both the theory and the practice of Psychology and Counselling. The optional work placement module in year 2 enables you to gain valuable practical experience, and this together with practice focussed modules in each year ensures a good balance between theory and practice throughout the course.  

Progression opportunities 

On this course (BSc Hons Psychology and Counselling, you will have the opportunity to apply for the integrated MSci Psychology and Counselling course, turning your three year degree into a four year combined master’s degree.  The MSci Psychology and Counselling is not available via direct application and is only available to those studying Psychology and Counselling at undergraduate level.  The MSci qualification will enable you to apply for individual registration with the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).   This makes the BSc in Psychology and Counselling highly attractive as successful graduates of the MSci Psychology and Counselling (which is only open to application to those students studying the BSC Psychology and Counselling) are able to practice or obtain employment as BACP registered counsellors, and/or proceed to further BPS accredited training and qualifications. 

Accredited By

This course is accredited by:

  • The British Psychological Society

Why Choose Us?

  • We have a strong focus on employability and through placement opportunities and our links with local businesses, we aim to ensure you graduate not only with your degree but also with the skills and knowledge needed to embark on your chosen career.
  • We aim to infuse learning with exposure to real-world experiences. Through participation in the Social Impact Hub, we give students the chance to work on real-life projects. These offer a unique opportunity for students to gain this invaluable experience while they study.
  • This course is accredited by the British Psychological Society (BPS) and gives you Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership (GBC) when you pass the course.
  • Our staff are research active, allowing research-informed teaching and learning activities. You will be given the opportunity to learn and participate in a number of research projects throughout the year and we hold regular academic research seminars, which are recorded for our online students.

Open Days

Join us for an on-campus Open Day where you'll be able to meet us in person, hear from our trailblazing academics and explore our innovative £340m facilities.

Next Open Day: 30 September 2023

Book now

Entry Requirements

These entry requirements apply for entry in 2024/25.

All required qualifications/grades must have been achieved and evidenced at the earliest opportunity after accepting an offer to help confirm admission and allow for on-time enrolment. This can also include other requirements, like a fee status form and relevant documents. Applicants can track their application and outstanding information requests through their BCU mySRS account.

We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.

Essential

BBC or 112 UCAS tariff points from a maximum of 3 subjects.

Please note: If you qualify for our BCU Accelerate scheme, you could receive an offer that is two grades below our normal entry requirements. Find out more about BCU Accelerate.

Level 2 qualifications

GCSE

GCSE English Language or English Literature and GCSE Maths at grade C/4 or above. If you do not have these or are not undertaking them, we accept other Level 2 equivalents, or we may ask you to pass BCU's GCSE equivalency tests.

Irish Leaving Certificate (Ordinary Level)

See level 3 entry under Irish Leaving Certificate for full details.

Scottish National 5

English Language or English Literature and Maths at grade C or above. If you do not have these or are not undertaking them, we accept other Level 2 equivalents, or we may ask you to pass BCU's GCSE equivalency tests.

Plus one of the following Level 3 (and above) qualifications

A level and Advanced VCE

  • BBC / 112 UCAS points
  • A maximum of 3 subjects are considered excluding General Studies. These can be other A-levels or level 3 equivalents.

Access to HE Diploma

  • In a Social Sciences/ Humanities pathway which includes a minimum of 6 credits at level 3 in Psychology.
  • Pass with 60 credits overall. At least 45 credits at level 3. 21 credits at level 3 must be achieved at distinction grade.
  • Pearson BTEC National Extended Diploma
    (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Extended Diploma (QCF)
    (2010 - 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Diploma
    (2002 – 2010)
  • DMM
  • All subject accepted except Health and Social Care pre 2016 syllabus
  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma
    (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Diploma (QCF)
    (2010 – 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Certificate
    (2002 – 2010)
  • 112 UCAS points
  • All subject accepted except Health and Social Care pre 2016 syllabus
  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification
  • Pearson BTEC National Foundation Diploma (2016 to present)
  • Pearson BTEC 90-Credit Diploma (QCF) (2010 - 2016)
  • 112 UCAS points
  • All subject accepted except Health and Social Care pre 2016 syllabus
  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification
  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate
    (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Subsidiary Diploma (QCF)
    (2010 - 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Award
    (2002 - 2010)
  • 112 UCAS points
  • All subject accepted except Health and Social Care pre 2016 syllabus
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

Extended Project

  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s) to achieve a total of 112 UCAS tariff points

IBO Certificate in Higher Level

  • Students who do not complete the IB Diploma will be considered on the basis of their IB Certificates if they obtain a total of 14 points or above from three Higher Level Subjects
  • Considered with other acceptable level 3 qualifications to meet 112 UCAS Tariff Points
  • For students who do not already hold a GCSE in Mathematics at Grade C/4 or above grade 5 in Maths (Standard Level) from the IB Diploma will be accepted
  • For students who do not already hold a GCSE in English Language at Grade C/4 or above Standard Level English Language (not literature) English A - Grade 4 or above or English B - Grade 5 from the IB will be accepted.

International Baccalaureate Diploma

  • Obtain a minimum of 28 points overall
  • For students who do not already hold a GCSE in Mathematics at Grade C/4 or above grade 5 in Maths (Standard Level) from the IB Diploma will be accepted
  • For students who do not already hold a GCSE in English Language at Grade C/4 or above Standard Level English Language (not literature) English A - Grade 4 or above or English B - Grade 5 from the IB will be accepted.

Irish Leaving Certificate (Highers)

  • Pass the Irish Leaving Certificate with a minimum of 112 tariff points, achieved in four Higher level subjects. This must include Maths and English Language taken at either Ordinary level (minimum grade O1-O4 (or A-C/A1-C3)) or Higher level (minimum grade H5/D1)
  • NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Child Care and Education
  • NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator) (from September 2014)
  • NCFE CACHE Technical Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator)
  • Grade B overall

NCFE CACHE Level 3 Extended Diploma for Children’s Care, Learning and Development (Wales and Northern Ireland)

  • Grade B overall

NCFE CACHE Level 3 Extended Diploma for the Children and Young People’s Workforce

  • Grade B overall
  • NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Early Years Education and Care (Early Years Educator)
  • NCFE CACHE Technical Level 3 Diploma in Early Years Education and Care (Early Years Educator)
  • 112 UCAS points
  • Can be considered along with two A-levels or a combination of equivalent level 3 qualifications
  • NCFE CACHE Level 3 Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care
  • NCFE CACHE Technical Level 3 Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care
  • Grade B overall

NCFE CACHE Level 3 Applied General Certificate in Health and Social Care

  • 112 UCAS points
  • Can be considered along with A-levels or a combination of equivalent level 3 qualifications

OCR Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma

  • DMM

OCR Cambridge Technical Diploma

  • 112 UCAS points
  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification
  • OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate
    (2016 – present)
  • OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma
  • 112 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

Scottish Advanced Higher

  • Achieve a minimum of 112 tariff points achieved in either three Advanced Highers or from a combination of two Advanced Highers plus two Highers.
  • Where three Advanced Highers have been taken achieve a minimum of grades CCD.
  • Where a combination of Highers and Advanced Highers have been taken you must achieve (grades of CD in two Advanced Highers plus grades of CC in two Highers).

Scottish Higher

  • Achieve a minimum of 112 tariff points achieved in either five Highers or from a combination of two Advanced Highers plus two Highers.
  • Where only Highers have been taken a minimum of grades BBCCC is required. Where a combination of Highers and Advanced Highers have been taken you must achieve grades of CD in two Advanced Highers plus grades of CC in two Highers.

T-Levels

  • 112 UCAS points (Merit overall)

Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate - Skills Challenge Certificate (first teaching September 2015)

  • 112 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)
  • Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma – Core (awarded until 2016)
  • ESW/KS Combined component
  • 112 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)

WJEC Level 3 Diploma in Criminology (QCF)

  • 112 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)
Other qualifications

If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS.

Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.

Additional information for EU/International students

Applications from international applicants with equivalent qualifications to 112 points are welcome. Please see your country page for further details on the equivalent qualifications we accept.

In additional to the academic entry requirements listed above, international and EU students will also require the qualifications detailed in this table.

IELTS

6.0 overall with 5.5 minimum in all bands

If you do not meet the required IELTS score, you may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English courses.

Please note that you must have a Secure English Language Test (SELT) to study on the pre-sessional English course. More information.

Other accepted qualifications

Visit our English language page

MSci Psychology and Counselling

Students eligible to continue onto the MSci will be invited to do so at the end of the second year of their undergraduate course.

Eligibility involves selecting and passing the core MSci module requirements as optional modules, and obtaining a satisfactory report from personal and module tutors during the first two years of the BSc. Eligible applicants to the MSci will be invited to attend an interview and successful candidates will be invited to transfer onto the MSci.

Fees & How to Apply

Please select your student status to view fees and apply
  • UK Student
  • International Student

UK students

Annual and modular tuition fees shown are applicable to the first year of study. The University reserves the right to increase fees for subsequent years of study in line with increases in inflation (capped at 5%) or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament. View fees for continuing students.

Award: BSc/MSci

Starting: Sep 2024

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees

International students

Sorry, this course is not available to International students.

Access to computer equipment

You will require use of a laptop, and most students do prefer to have their own. However, you can borrow a laptop from the university or use one of our shared computer rooms. If you decide to buy a laptop or PC, it is worth checking with the retailer if it can run the computer program, IBM SPSS.

Printing

You will receive £5 print credit in each year of your course, available after enrolment.

Field trips

All essential field trips and associated travel costs will be included in your course fees.

Access to Microsoft Office 365

Every student at the University can download a free copy of Microsoft Office 365 to use whilst at university and for 18 months after graduation.

Key software

You will be able to download SPSS and Nvivo to your home computer to support with your studies and research.

Key subscriptions

Subscriptions to key journals and websites and available through our library.

Excess printing (optional)

Once you have spent your £5 credit, additional printing on campus costs from 5p per sheet.

Books (optional)

Some modules may suggest that you purchase a key textbook. All module key texts will be in the University library, but in limited numbers. Many students choose to purchase a copy.

Placement expenses (optional)

If you choose to undertake a placement, you'll need to budget for accommodation and any travel costs you may incur whilst living or working away from home.

Field trips (optional)

This course includes the option of additional trips that may enhance your experience.

Subscriptions (optional)

You may wish to purchase subscriptions to additional journals and websites.

Memberships (optional)

You may wish to join a union or professional body related to this course, such as the British Psychological Society (BPS).

Accommodation and living costs

The cost of accommodation and other living costs are not included within your course fees. More information on the cost of accommodation can be found in our accommodation pages.

Guidance for UK students

UK students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.

Applying through UCAS

  1. Register with UCAS
  2. Login to UCAS and complete your details
  3. Select your course and write a personal statement
  4. Get a reference
  5. Pay your application fee and submit your application

Personal statement

UK / EU students are required to submit a personal statement as part of their application for this course.*

The personal statement gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

  • Course choice - Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?
  • Career plans - If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.
  • Work experience - Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.
  • School or college experience - Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.
  • Non-accredited skills or achievement - eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Worried about Personal Statements?

If you've got no idea where to start or just want to check you're on the right track, we’ve got expert advice and real examples from our students to help you nail your personal statement. You can even download our ultimate personal statement guide for free.

Get personal statement advice

*Non-EU students are not required to submit a personal statement when applying for this course.

Course in Depth

First Year

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 100 credits):

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete at least 20 credits from the following list of OPTIONAL modules:

All core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only.

Second Year

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 100 credits):

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete at least 20 credits from the following list of OPTIONAL modules:

All core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only.

Professional Placement (Optional)

In order to qualify for the award of BSc/MSCI (Hons) Psychology And Counselling with Professional Placement Year you must successfully complete the following module.

Please note, that for BSc Psychology and Counselling students, the professional placement year relates to the Psychology component of the programme only. Students cannot undertake a professional counselling placement as part of the BSc programme. Students who progress to the MSci Psychology and Counselling undertake a professional counselling placement during their fourth year of study.

Final Year (BSc)

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 100 credits):

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete at least 20 credits from the following list of OPTIONAL modules:

All core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only.

MSci

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits):

Download course specification

Download now

Accredited by: 

The British Psychological Society
The British Psychological Society

This course is accredited by the British Psychological Society, which not only demonstrates the high quality of our teaching provision, but also ensures our course remains cutting-edge, fresh and relevant.

The Society and its members develop, promote and apply psychology for the public good. They enhance the efficiency and usefulness of psychologists by setting high standards of professional education and knowledge, and cover all areas of psychological research and practice.

Find out more about British Psychological Society accreditation.

Employability

Facilities & Staff

Curzon facilities eatery
Curzon facilities staircase
Curzon facilities student hub

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and have spent £340 million on new learning facilities.

The Curzon Building

This course is based at our City Centre Campus – and specifically The Curzon Building, alongside other social sciences, law and business students.

The £63m building offers students a unique social learning space, including a dedicated student hub incorporating student support services, in the heart of Birmingham’s Eastside development.

Realistic, simulated environments include two mock court rooms, a Magistrates' and Crown Court, and an interviewing suite. We’re also exploring the use of virtual environments as a way to develop case study analysis.

For those studying on the BA (Hons) Policing or BA (Hons) Criminology, Policing and Investigation degrees, you’ll experience simulations of police interviewing environments for both suspects and witnesses, with access to tape recording and video playback analysis.

Crime investigation files are prepared using computer-based technology, and the crime data analysis requirements of the degree are supported by appropriate statistical and analytical software.

Psychology students can look forward to using state-of-the-art equipment as well, including the latest in eye-tracking software, and our new EEG machine, all geared towards giving you true hands-on experience with tools you’ll be using in your later career. You will also benefit from facilities across the wider campus including the Parkside and Millennium Point buildings.

The Curzon Building also features:

  • An impressive library with access to over 65 million full text items and stunning views of Eastside City Park
  • Your Students’ Union which is located in a beautifully restored 19th century pub, The Eagle and Ball
  • A modern 300-seat food court with space to study and socialise
  • Accessible IT facilities with full Office365 for all students for free
  • Shared facilities with the wider campus including the Parkside Building and Millennium Point

Our staff

Ruth Roberts

Course Lead for BSc Psychology and Counselling

Ruth is course lead for the BSc Psychology and Counselling programme. She is a BACP senior accredited counsellor / psychotherapist and a qualified supervisor. She has been in practice since 2004 and has worked as a full-time lecturer in counselling since 2017. Ruth has worked in a variety of settings including private practice and renal counselling...

More about Ruth