Diploma of Applied Psychology and Counselling
To accommodate the diverse landscape of employment opportunities in the mental health field, KCPC offers a variety of options to fit your career goals.
Choose from four areas of specialization:
(*An undergraduate degree is required for Counselling Therapy, and Psychotherapy)
Graduates from each area of specialized practice are prepared for entry-to-mid level careers in community agencies, hospitals, treatment centers, and private practice.
KCPC’s Diploma in Applied Psychology and Counselling provides competency-based training in the major theories and techniques used to treat disorders of emotion, cognition, and/or behavior. The difference between the scope of practice in each area of specialization is based on :
- the type of clientele being served;
- severity of clients’ symptoms;
- length and depth of treatment;
- level of the practitioner’s training and clinical experience.
Professional Counsellors treat clients whose mental health issues are typically less severe and shorter in duration than those requiring in-depth intervention.
Addiction Counsellors treat clients struggling with multi-faceted issues involving substance and/or behavioral addictions.
Counseling Therapists, and Psychotherapists utilize advanced techniques to treat complex mental health issues that severely impact the client’s emotional, cognitive and/or behavioral functioning.
When difficult to resolve issues fall beyond their professional capacity, all mental health practitioners follow the same ethical protocol: obtain supervision, and/or refer the client to an appropriately qualified practitioner.
How is the Diploma program structured?
The one-year, accelerated Diploma program, includes 16 courses (980 hours of study) made up of foundational counselling skills, and specific competencies required for the student’s chosen area of specialization.
Students study from the comfort and convenience of home; texts and study materials are delivered right to your door.
Hands-on skill practice:
Interactive assignments focus on skill development with over 300 demonstration videos, case studies, and online participation. Practice sessions with volunteer 'clients' simulate real counselling situations, putting you in the role of the counsellor or therapist. The skills you learn are readily transferable to employment settings.
Study on campus
Students wanting additional skill practice to supplement the Distance Learning experience can enroll in On-campus study groups.
The application of therapeutic techniques requires the ability to analyze and process complex information as it emerges in real life therapy situations. Unlike traditional academic programs, KCPC’s curriculum is specifically designed to strengthen critical thinking abilities related to the practice of counselling and psychotherapy.
The curriculum covers major theories and techniques drawn from psychology, social work, and counselling. This broad information-base builds competency required for clinical practice, and is relevant for students who choose to continue their education in the University system. Credit for KCPC courses may be transferable to other colleges and universities at the discretion of their admissions departments.
Self-awareness and effective use of the self in the therapeutic setting are essential characteristics of effective counsellors and psychotherapists. Although not meant as a substitute for professional counselling, each course provides students the opportunity to gain valuable personal insights.
What about employment?
Although KCPC cannot guarantee job placements, Diploma graduates possess the skills required to assess and treat a variety of mental health concerns such as:
- depression, anxiety, and other emotional and behavioral disorders
- assessment and treatment or referral for disorders found in the DSM V
- addictions: prevention, recovery and follow-up treatment
- youth, family, and couples’ issues
- suicide and emergency intervention
- identity and developmental milestones
- loss and grief
- abuse, trauma, and domestic violence
Diploma graduates may apply for candidate membership with professional associations and voluntary regulatory colleges such as:
- Canadian Professional Counsellors Association to earn RPC. designation, Registered Professional Counsellor.
- Association of Cooperative Counselling Therapists of Canada for the RTC designation, Registered Therapeutic Counsellor.
- Canadian College of Professional Counselling and Psychotherapy, a national, self-regulatory college. CCPCPr designation.
Full membership in these associations typically requires completion of a competency-based training program, and a minimum of two years of supervised experience.
NOTE: Because regulations that govern specific types of mental health services differ province-by-province, KCPC advises all applicants to review t he Canadian Professional Counsellors Association (CPCA) website, and/or contact your home province for regulations and restrictions that may apply. https://www.cpca-rpc.ca/regulatory-colleges~.aspx
NOTE: The Diploma in Applied Psychology and Counselling program conforms to ethical guidelines and competency standards established by the Ministry of Advanced Education in BC; the Competency Profile for Counselling Therapists; the Canadian Professional Counsellors Association, (CPCA); Association of Cooperative Counselling Therapists, (ACCT); and the Canadian College of Professional Counsellors and Psychotherapists (CCPCP).