Counselling Service - What can I expect from Counselling?

What Can I Expect from the Counselling & Personal Development Service?

The Counselling and Personal Development Service offers a range of clinical services and is available to all undergraduate and postgraduate DCU registered students. 


Students who wish to avail of the services provided, please email for the Glasnevin Campus and for the St Patrick’s Campus.   


On contacting the service, students who wish to register with the Counselling and Personal Development Service are invited to complete an intake registration form and a psychometric measure online. This takes approx.15 minutes to complete. The link to both of these forms will be emailed to you by one of our service administrators from or from 


All personal information provided to the service is held confidentially by the service and is in line with GDPR.

Please click the following link for full detail


What is Counselling? 

Counselling is a specialist service provided by qualified, accredited counselling psychologists/psychotherapists and counsellors who at an advanced stage of their counselling psychology/psychotherapy training; who are experienced in the developmental and learning paths of students. 

Counselling involves providing professional assistance to students who are experiencing personal issues to help alleviate those difficulties. Everyone faces challenges and difficulties in their life at some time, however sometimes, they can be overwhelming. Stress, anxiety, difficulties in a relationship, family difficulties, trauma, assault, mental health difficulties are just some of the reasons students feel they can benefit by talking to a professional Counsellor/ Psychotherapist.

Counselling facilitates self-awareness, and offers the opportunity to learn skills and ways to enhance the student’s personal tool kit and resources when facing personal and mental health difficulties that hinder academic performance and/or negatively impact on their college/personal life.

The Counselling and Personal Development Service offers the following services: 

  • Psycho-educational lunchtime workshops, presented and facilitated by service counselling psychologists/psychotherapists, during semester time.


  • Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction- Living in the Present
  • Working with the Unhelpful Critic 
  • Mindfulness of the Worried Mind
  • Emotional Intelligence: Ways to ease Stress and Anxiety
  • Wise Mind Decision Making
  • Resilience: Self-Care as a core resource
  • Stress Management
  • Emotional Intelligence: Ways to ease Low Mood

Please click on the following link here for full details.


Cognitive behavioural therapy mental health and wellbeing self-help online SilverCloud programmes. 

  • Programmes offered to help alleviate the symptoms of mental health experiences are: Anxiety, Panic, Social anxiety, OCD, Depression
  • Programmes offered that give you the skills to deal with everyday issues that affect your emotional health are: Stress, Sleep, Resilience, Positive body  image, COVID-19, Space from Alcohol

Please click the following link here for full details.


Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction.

For mindfulness practice podcasts, mindfulness handbook, lunchtime series, a short mindfulness practice and other mindfulness resources.

Please click on the following link for full information and view the drop down fields What is Mindfulness? | Counselling & Personal Development Service (



Bibliotherapy Live-Wise reading on a range of psychological, mental health and wellbeing issues.

  • Bibliotherapy is the use of quality publications as an evidence based psycho- educational resource and is the term used to cover the use of self-help books addressing psychological, emotional and mental health issues/difficulties.


  • Subject areas covered for example are: healthy living practices, development of resilience, ways to enhance well-being, approaches to ease stress/anxiety/distress/low mood/depression, relationships, bereavement, understanding and healing from trauma, bullying, alcohol and substance misuse, sexual violence, mental health disorders etc.


     Please click on the following link here for full details.


Psychological resources including podcasts, videos, audio recordings, short resource leaflets etc. please click here.

Information on additional student services/supports, please click on the relevant links for further details:








Anxiety cognitive behavioural therapy online SilverCloud programme, with weekly support provided by a service psychotherapist, offered when and where appropriate.

This evidence based programme covers how to: 

  • face fear using a technique called ‘graded exposure',
  • recognise unhelpful automatic, thinking traps and how to stay present,
  • tackle overthinking thinking patterns and cope with difficult situations,
  • manage the worried mind, using the Worry Tree tool and related approaches    
  • develop helpful self-talk with the power of self-compassion,
  • make changes to get a good night’s sleep,
  • relax, using relaxation techniques such as the three-minute breathing space, guided visualisation, progressive muscle relaxation exercise,
  • make relationships more satisfying by enhancing communication skills, learn how to be appropriately assertive,
  • manage anger more effectively,
  • ease the experience of loss and grief,
  • bring your new skills together to manage the experience of anxiety. 

Individual Counselling

In counselling the student and the counsellor develop a supportive relationship in which the student is empowered to make informed choices and find positive responses to difficulties.  

One to one counselling is offered according to urgency and when space becomes available.       

 In the initial meeting the counsellor will listen carefully to your concerns, will assist in identifying the main issues and will help in drawing up together a plan of work.

The counsellor will encourage you to express your thoughts and feelings, in an environment that is confidential, non-judgemental and professional.

Each counselling session lasts 50/60mins.

Some student's avail of two to three sessions, others avail of four to five sessions. The average number of sessions availed of by students is six.

On-going collaboration and evaluation with your counsellor is an essential part of the counselling process to facilitate the best personal development 


Professional support and encouragement is provided to engage effectively with issues that one might otherwise find challenging to address.

 Counselling often engages in the area between what we know and are comfortable with and that which we are less aware of and less comfortable with.

This often is the area of greatest potential personal development.

Counselling may involve changing one's behaviour and/or perspective and/or finding constructive ways to dealing with a situation(s).

When/if required the student is supported by referral for psychiatric or learning disorder assessment/treatment as appropriate.

With the student's commitment to engage and work with their counsellor, counselling is an opportunity to grow personally, to develop self-insight and  life skills central to one's overall mental health, wellbeing and resilience as a student.


External Counselling 

If you are seeking an external counsellor/psychotherapist here are professional bodies which can help provide you with contact information to professional & accredited practitioners. 

You might also consider contacting your GP/Doctor who can support/advise on referring to a counselling psychologist/clinical psychologist/psychotherapist or mental health service. 


 IACP logo Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy
ICP logo Irish Council for Psychotherapy
The Psychological Society of Ireland The Psychological Society of Ireland


For Community based low cost counselling you might consider The Healthy Living, 

Situated on the DCU Glasnevin Campus, (Collins Ave entrance/at the side of the DCU Nursing building).

  • For after-hours support and services, including 24/7 text and support helplines, please click on the following link here
  • For a list and live links to a range of external support and mental health agencies, please click on the following link here for further information.              

We hope the information provided here is of support and please don’t hesitate in contacting us at or if we can be of any assistance. 

Counselling Quicklinks



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