Study counseling abroad

Find programs that match your goals by answering a few simple questions about you and your study plans

Medicine & Health Sciences

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Find your perfect counseling programs abroad

Find counseling programs you love that match your needs and aspirations, where you stand a high chance of acceptance.

Counseling degrees abroad

Counseling is a type of therapy, centered around talking through problems, thoughts and relationships. It is popular as a treatment for mental health issues such as anxiety, depression and PTSD.

Studying counseling abroad may also involve studying psychotherapy or psychology. In general, a counselor provides short-term treatment and psychotherapy is generally considered a longer term treatment.

Counseling degrees abroad will vary depending on which university you are studying at, and the country the university is in. Counseling qualifications may be aligned or accredited by a country’s counseling board, for example the BPS or BACP in the UK.

Why study counseling abroad

Understanding and experiencing a different culture will help you become a more effective counselor if you choose to go into the profession. Studying abroad for your counseling qualification gives you experience of a different country and widens your understanding of people’s problems.

You will also find that some countries are more progressive and advanced with their practices of counseling than others. It may even be more commonplace in society to have experience of counseling depending on the society.

Globe surrounded by study materials and travel items

Counseling program structure

Counseling programs may offer practical and professional experience through placements, work experience, or internships with counseling services.

You will need to complete written exams as well as practical assessments, and some programs will require you to undertake research.

A counseling degree abroad will cover a wide range of areas, including some within the subjects of psychology and psychotherapy. On counseling degree programs it is likely you will be able to choose areas of study. Universities will offer counseling teaching from a wide range of modules such as:

University surrounded by study materials

Types of counseling degrees

Counseling qualifications can be bachelor’s degrees, short programs to top up a bachelor’s degree, master’s, or even PhDs: counseling degrees range from three months to four years in length.

If you want to become a professional counselor then you will need to find out the correct pathway for the country you want to practice in.

There are variations of counseling degrees that may focus on the particular area you are interested in. The more focused and specialist subjects are more commonly available at postgraduate level:

  • Counseling and psychology
  • Counseling and psychotherapy
  • Clinical psychology
  • Addiction studies
  • Mental health
  • Family therapy

Where to study counseling abroad

When deciding where to study counseling abroad, it’s important to consider the following things:

  • The counseling program

    your personal goals and interests will help determine which university is right for you to study counseling at. There may be a specific area you are interested in specializing in, that not all universities will offer enough of a focus on. Read through course options thoroughly to determine if it’s what you want.

  • Where you want to work after graduation

    Whether you want to carry on your career in your host country or back at home, this will determine the type of program you do. If you want to qualify as a counselor you need to know the requirements for the country you want to work in, or how to convert that qualification.

  • What university experience you want

    The university itself will be your living and learning environment for up to four years, so it’s important you get what you need from it. If you want a quiet and relaxed atmosphere then some smaller universities may suit you better. If you have an activity or sport you want to be playing alongside your studies, that may also determine where you should go.

University campus in multiple locations

Best countries to study counseling

Some of the best countries to study counseling include the UK, the US, Canada, Norway and Sweden. These are the countries that tend to have the best counseling funding and research and also offer the best career opportunities after graduation.

The importance placed on mental health varies across the globe, and looking at a country’s mental health services can give you a good indication of the quality of counseling courses its universities offer.

Best universities to study counseling

The best university for studying counseling will depend on your needs. When you’re considering which university is right for you, it’s important to think about the following areas for guidance:

  • What the university’s program covers, including the structure and year by year break down
  • Whether the university has counseling internships, year abroad or placements included in the course
  • What the university offers in terms of extra-curricular activities
  • The facilities of the university - does it have everything you’d want?

Counseling study abroad programs

Counseling bachelor’s programs often fall under the classification of a bachelor of science (BSc). At undergraduate level you can also study for a diploma or certificate to prove your abilities and knowledge in counseling, or a particular specialism of counseling.

In the US, or at universities that follow a liberal arts structure, you may be able to major in counseling or have it as a minor, rather than an entire bachelor’s degree focused on one subject.

At postgraduate level you are able to study specialist areas of counseling and therapy at master’s or PhD levels.

What are the top counseling undergraduate programs abroad?

  • Mount Aloysius CollegePsychology: Counseling - BA

    • 4 years
    • On campus
    • Full-time
    • Sep, Jan
    Program type
    Bachelor's
    Subject area
    Counseling, Psychology
    Location
    Cresson, USA
    Next start date
    September 2024
    Annual tuition fee
    26,906USD
  • Arizona State University (in partnership with Kaplan International)Counseling and Applied Psychological Science (Polytechnic Campus) - BS

    • 4 years
    • On campus
    • Full-time
    • Jan, Aug
    Program type
    Bachelor's
    Subject area
    Counseling, Psychology
    Location
    Phoenix, USA
    Next start date
    January 2025
    Annual tuition fee
    32,760USD
  • McMurry UniversityPsychology: Counseling and Human Development - BA

    • 4 years
    • On campus
    • Full-time
    • Jan, Aug
    Program type
    Bachelor's
    Subject area
    Counseling, Psychology, Human Development
    Location
    Abilene, USA
    Next start date
    August 2024
    Annual tuition fee
    31,850USD
  • Dallas Baptist UniversityProfessional Development: Counseling - BA

    • 3 years
    • On campus
    • Full-time
    • Aug, Jan, Jun
    Program type
    Bachelor's
    Subject area
    Professional Studies, Counseling
    Location
    Dallas, USA
    Next start date
    August 2024
    Annual tuition fee
    19,872USD
  • University of GreenwichPsychology with Counselling - BSc (Hons)

    • 3 years
    • On campus
    • Full-time
    • Sep
    Program type
    Bachelor's
    Subject area
    Counseling, Psychology
    Location
    London, UK
    Next start date
    September 2024
    Annual tuition fee
    16,150GBP

See all undergraduate degrees in counseling

What are the top counseling postgraduate programs abroad?

  • Abertay UniversityProfessional development in mental health nursing and counselling - MPhil

    • 2 years
    • On campus
    • Full-time
    • Jun, Oct, Feb
    Program type
    Master's
    Subject area
    Mental Health Nursing, Professional Studies, Counseling
    Location
    Dundee, UK
    Next start date
    October 2024
    Annual tuition fee
    13,750GBP
  • Troy UniversityCounseling: Clinical Mental Health Counseling - MSc

    • 2 years
    • On campus
    • Full-time
    • Jan, Sep
    Program type
    Master's
    Subject area
    Counseling
    Location
    Troy, USA
    Next start date
    January 2025
    Annual tuition fee
    17,100USD
  • California State University, East BayCounseling: School Counseling - MSc

    • 2 years
    • On campus
    • Full-time
    • Jan
    Program type
    Master's
    Subject area
    Counseling
    Location
    San Francisco, USA
    Next start date
    January 2025
    Annual tuition fee
    15,567USD
  • University of Colorado DenverCounseling: School Counseling - MA

    • 3 years
    • On campus
    • Full-time
    • Aug, Jan, Jun
    Program type
    Master's
    Subject area
    Counseling
    Location
    Denver, USA
    Next start date
    August 2024
    Annual tuition fee
    18,279USD
  • Long Island University PostClinical Art Therapy and Counseling - MSc

    • 3 years
    • On campus
    • Full-time
    • Sep, Jan
    Program type
    Master's
    Subject area
    Art Therapy, Counseling
    Location
    New York City, USA
    Next start date
    September 2024
    Annual tuition fee
    27,040USD

See all postgraduate degrees in counseling

Entry requirements to study counseling abroad

If you haven’t studied therapy or psychology before then you will still find programs available to you for studying counseling. You will be required to prove your English language proficiency if you are studying in English and it isn’t your first language.

The exact requirements for being admitted to a counseling program will depend on the country and level of study. In general, these are the requirements you may need to meet to study counseling abroad:

  • Completion of high school education
  • Educational transcripts
  • English language proficiency test (IELTS/TOEFL)
  • Proof of funds to support yourself while studying
  • Professional experience
  • Personal statement
  • References
University with application documents

Future counseling careers

A degree in counseling can lead to using your skills in a number of areas. Knowing how to effectively talk to people, helping them through difficulties, and knowing about psychology can all be valuable skills in many organizations.

Some of the most common career paths taken by counseling students lead to the following roles:

  • Family therapist
  • Marriage counselor
  • Career counselor
  • School counselor
  • Substance abuse counselor
  • Mental health counselor
Student and university with study materials and money