Level 4 Advanced Diploma in Counselling (Accred) - Evening Class

This is the popular two year Level 4 Diploma course running weekly, one evening a week, term time only in Devon.

The next evening course starts: 25th November 2020, weekly on Wednesday evenings

*Courses to run on our exceptional virtual learning environment until we can return to the classroom*


This is a two year Accredited Level 4 Advanced Diploma course running one evening a week over two years, and incorporating two weekends and will qualify you to work as a professional counsellor.

The Level 4 Advanced Diploma follows an integrative approach, and draws from the traditions of Gestalt, Mindfulness Based Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, and Person Centred; which when combined create an holistic perspective which will allow you to successfully counsel clients experiencing a range of issues affecting their mind, body, spirit and emotions.

This is Heartwood’s most popular course and we have been successfully running this course for nearly two decades with a much higher than average rate of students qualifying. Our unique style of teaching allows for each student to develop at their own rate with gentle support from our tutors and student mentor.

In order to strengthen personal, and professional development we will cover:

  • Self development exercises
  • Understanding the supervisor relationship
  • Developing therapeutic relationships with clients
  • Developing relational depth
  • Creating therapeutic contracts
  • Understanding of counselling profession ethics
  • Child protection and working with vulnerable young people and adults.
  • Managing self-care and caseloads.


Heartwood students have access to outdoor and indoor light and warm recreational space with seating for break times and own refreshment making facilities.

Entry Requirements

You will need to have completed a Level 3 Counselling Certificate or Equivalent course, certificates from other colleges are accepted.

It is sometimes possible to enrol onto the Level 4 Advanced Diploma without having done a level 3, you may be able to accredit your experience or other training, please talk to one of our tutors who will be happy to advise you on this.

Acceptance onto the course is via a short interview at the centre, or by telephone, when visiting the centre is problematic.

Places are allocated on a first come first served basis and only secured with a deposit.

In cases where you have worked within the helping professions it is possible to gain access onto the course without having a level 3 certificate, this will be assessed on a case by case basis.

Course details

At Heartwood we aim to draw on your own desires and passion for the profession and encourage you to develop your own personal approach to the counselling work you do. We believe that our role is to give you the skills, knowledge and confidence to enable you to develop into the best counsellor you can be.

The training will teach you skills, and theories, in a creative and fun environment, and provide you with many opportunities to develop yourself personally with a strong sense of belief in who you are and what you can offer your clients.

You may find other providers offering this type of training, and they may be cheaper, but we believe that no other course will give you the same mixture of compassionate support and professionally accredited training which we offer. We are right beside you 100% of the way which is why we have such a high success rate.

Evening classes take place on one evening per week 6pm – 9.30pm over two years and include one weekend per year.

Next courses:
25 November 2020, weekly on Wednesday evenings

Other study options available:

Weekday option is available starting in October 2020

Weekend option  is available starting in January 2021

Weekend (London) option is available in central London starting 16th/17th January 2021

This course is fully accredited by the National Counselling Society (NCS) and, at the discretion of the Society, is a route onto a national government register of counsellors which is accredited by the Professional Standards Authority.

  • 400 hours of course time
  • Course meets NCS and BACP requirements for membership and students are encouraged to apply for student membership status with a professional governing body
  • 20 hours of personal therapy concurrent with taking the course
  • Assessment is both Internal and external at no extra charge
  • There is a supported 100 hour placement unit to this course
  • We access over 30 agencies who are eager to accept our students on placement
  • Mentor support is provided at no extra charge
  • Placement support is provided at no extra charge
  • Tutorials are provided on request at no extra charge
  • Safeguarding training included at no extra charge
  • Curriculum is adapted yearly to meet current NICE guidelines
  • Qualifying students can seek employment in NHS, Dept for Education or private practice


Course Calendar:

Please click on the below link to view and download the course calendar for upcoming courses:

Level 4 – 25th November 2020, weekly on Wednesday evenings


The course runs over two years, with the emphasis in year one being on safeguarding, skills building, confidence and self awareness. And in year two we deepen our theoretical knowledge, explore some of the more challenging aspects of client work, and focus on professional practice.

Throughout the course we will further advance our counselling skills focusing on; skills based triad work, managing anger in the therapy room, giving and receiving feedback, working with sexual issues, working with suicidal clients, working with self-harm and practising interventions.

Throughout both years there is a focus on your own personal growth and development. Our tutors are fully qualified counsellors and will encourage you to seek out the more authentic you, and to celebrate your difference, uniqueness and honour the life challenges that will enable you to work effectively and from the heart.


Level 4 will develop a deep understanding of:

  • Person Centred Approach
  • Gestalt Theory
  • Mindfulness based CBT
  • Attachment Theory
  • The Inner Child
  • Trauma concepts
  • Transference and countertransference
  • Transactional Analysis
  • Working with what lies beneath (implicit processes)
  • Integrative approaches
  • Working with body processes
  • Creative interventions
  • Sand-tray
  • Difference, diversity and Inclusion


Internal Assessment

The course requires the following:

  • Personal counselling (20 sessions and further sessions if required)
  • A minimum of 90% attendance on tuition days
  • Completion of a learning journal
  • Completion of all course assignments
  • Demonstration of practical skills throughout
  • Active participation in experiential aspects of the training
  • Safety, robustness and readiness to practice as a counsellor
  • Counselling skills in practice

External Assessment

The course requires the following;

  • A case study
  • A placement of 100 hours
  • A supervisors report
  • An agency report


An NCS representative will attend the course to assess college standards throughout the year.

We create a supportive learning environment here at Heartwood and will guide learners through their studies.


Payment options:

Full course fee £5100.

Your place on the course is only secured on receipt of the non-refundable deposit of £400:

  • The outstanding balance of £4700 can then be made in full before the course start date. There is an early bird discount of £200 when paying the balance of your course fees 6 weeks in advance of the start of the course (£4500).
  • The balance of your fees can be paid annually at £2350 per year.
  • A monthly payment plan is available at £230 for 21 months.

What Students Say

“I had no idea just how much this course would change my life, I am so proud of myself for achieving my Diploma and now I am back in the workplace and doing a job I absolutely love, thank you to everyone at Heartwood that supported me to get where I need to be”

Gemma 2019

Register your interest

To register your interest in this course without obligation, please click here


To enrol on this course, please select your payment method below and then select ‘Buy now’ to proceed.