What is a Low-Threshold Treatment Programme?


Low-threshold treatment programmes are harm reduction-based health care centres targeted towards people who use substances.

“Low-threshold” programmes are programmes that make minimal demands on the patient, offering services without attempting to control their intake of drugs, and providing counselling only if requested. Low-threshold programmes may be contrasted with “high-threshold” programmes, which require the user to accept a certain level of control and which demand that the patient accept counselling and cease all drug use as a precondition of support.

Low-threshold treatment programmes are distinct from simple needle exchange programmes, and may include comprehensive healthcare and counselling services. The International Journal of Drug Policy in its volume 24 published an Editorial which endeavoured to define a service known to be “low-threshold”, based on some popular and known criteria. According to that Editorial, low-threshold services for drug users can be defined as those which offer services to drug users; do not impose abstinence from drug use as a condition of service access; and endeavour to reduce other documented barriers to service access. Beyond comprehensive needle exchange services, other examples of low-threshold, community-based programmes include those that support people who use alcohol or drugs to consider positive or health protective changes without a demand for “recovery,” such as those piloted in New York City in the 1990s as “recovery readiness” efforts to bolster HIV prevention.


Injection drug users (IDUs) are at risk of a wide range of health problems arising from non-sterile injecting practices, complications of the drug itself or of the lifestyle associated with drug use and dependence. Furthermore, unrelated health problems, such as diabetes, may be neglected because of drug dependence. Sharing of health information with police, or requirements that patients abstain from all illegal drug use prior to receiving support are further impediments to health seeking, or require patients to lie about drug use in order to receive other lifesaving services. For all these reasons, despite their increased health care needs, IDUs do not have the required access to care or may be reluctant to use conventional services. Consequently, their health may deteriorate to a point at which emergency treatment is required, with considerable costs to both the IDUs and the health system. Accordingly, harm reduction based health care centres, also known as targeted health care outlet or low-threshold health care outlet for IDUs have been established across a range of settings utilising a variety of models. These targeted outlets provide integrated, low-threshold services within a harm-reduction framework targeting IDUs, and sometimes include social and/or other services. Where a particular service is not provided, referral and assistance with access is available. In 2007, for example, 33% of all US needle-syringe programmes (NSPs) provided on-site medical care, and 7% provided buprenorphine treatment. Similarly, in many European countries NSP outlets serve as low-threshold primary health care centres targeting primarily IDUs.

Health Care Models

These targeted outlets vary widely and may be either “distributive”, providing basic harm reduction services and simple healthcare with facilitated referrals to specialist services, or “one-stop-shops” where a range of services including specialist services are provided onsite. The services being offered by these outlets range from simple needle and syringe provision, to expanded services including basic and preventive primary healthcare, hepatitis B and A vaccinations, hepatitis C testing, counselling, tuberculosis screening and sometimes opioid maintenance therapy. Some centres offer hepatitis, HIV treatment and dental care. The goal of these outlets is to provide:

  • Opportunistic health care;
  • Increased temporal and spatial availability of health care;
  • Trustworthy services of health care;
  • Cost-effective mode of health care; and
  • Targeted and tailored services.

In the United States as of 2011, 211 NSPs were known to be operating in 32 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Indian Nations. The bulk of funding has come from state and local governments, since for most of the last several decades, federal funding for needle exchange programs has been specifically banned.

Globally, as of 2008, at least 77 countries and territories offer NSPs with varying structures, aims, and goals. Some countries use needle exchange services as part of integrated programmes to contain drug use, while others aim simply to contain HIV infection as their top priority, considering a reduction in the incidence of drug use as a much lower priority. Acceptance of NSPs vary widely from country to country. On the one hand, in Australia and New Zealand, electronic dispensing machines are available at selected locations such as the Auckland needle exchange and the Christchurch needle exchange, allowing needle exchange service 24 hours to registered users. On the other hand, over half of the countries in Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa retain the death penalty for drug offenses, although some have not carried out executions in recent years.


Low-threshold programmes offering needle exchange have faced much opposition on political and moral grounds. Concerns are often expressed that NSPs may encourage drug use, or may actually increase the number of dirty needles in the community. Another fear is that NSPs may draw drug activity into the communities in which they operate. It has also been argued that in fighting disease, needle exchanges take attention away from bigger drug problems, and that, contrary to saving lives, they actually contribute to drug-related deaths. Even in Australia, which is considered a leading country in harm reduction, a survey showed that a third of the public believed that NSPs encouraged drug use, and 20% believed that NSPs dispensed drugs. In the United States, the ambivalent public attitude towards NSPs is often reflected in police interference, with 43% of NSP programme managers reporting frequent (at least monthly) client harassment, 31% reporting frequent confiscation of clients’ syringes, 12% reporting frequent client arrest, and 26% reporting uninvited police appearances at programme sites. A single 1997 study which showed a correlation between frequent programme use and elevated rates of HIV infection among IDUs in Vancouver, Canada, has become widely cited by opponents of NSPs as demonstrating their counter-productiveness.

Authors from the 1997 Vancouver study have, in multiple publications, issued disclaimers against the misuse of their work by opponents of NSPs. They point out that frequent attendees of the program tended to be young and often indulged in extreme high-risk behaviours. The 1997 results were hence of statistically biased sampling. They have emphasized that the correct message to be derived from their 1997 study can be read in the title of their work: “Needle exchange is not enough”. This is the same message presented by many other articles since.

Comprehensive, systematic surveys of the costs and effectiveness of low-threshold primary healthcare programmes are not available due to the heterogeneity of these programmes and the study designs. Narrower focus studies dealing solely with the needle exchange issue are abundant, however, and generally support the thesis that NSPs reduce the risk of prevalence of HIV, hepatitis and other blood-borne diseases. These studies suggest that such outlets improve the overall health status of IDUs and save on the health budget by reducing episodes in emergency departments and tertiary hospitals. In Australia, monitoring of drug users participating in NSPs showed the incidence of HIV among NSP clients to be essentially identical to that of the general population. Fears that NSPs may draw drug activity into the communities in which they operate are contradicted by a study that showed that by far the greatest number of clients of an NSP in Chicago came to the area to exchange needles (60%) rather than to buy drugs (3.8%).

Internationally, support for the effectiveness of low-threshold programmes including needle exchange have come from studies conducted in Afghanistan, China, Spain, Taiwan, Estonia, Canada, Iran, and many other countries. However, in many countries, there is strong opposition to such programmes.

Despite the lack of randomised clinical trials demonstrating the impact of low-threshold services, the available evidence, barriers to service access and the late presentation of seriously ill IDUs to hospital, suggests the ongoing need for targeted and low-threshold services. In addition, prevention of HIV and hepatitis C transmission is clearly possible for those unable or unwilling to stop injecting drug use, and a range of countries using low-threshold approach have achieved control or virtual elimination of HIV transmission among people who inject drugs. For these reasons, organisations ranging from the US National Institutes of Health, the Centres for Disease Control, the American Bar Association, the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, the World Health Organisation, the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction and many others have endorsed low-threshold programmes including needle exchange.

What is Career Counselling?


Career counselling is a type of advice-giving and support provided by career counsellors to their clients, to help the clients manage their journey through life, learning and work changes (career).

This includes career exploration, making career choices, managing career changes, lifelong career development and dealing with other career-related issues. There is no agreed definition of career counselling worldwide, mainly due to conceptual, cultural and linguistic differences. However, the terminology of ‘career counselling’ typically denotes a professional intervention which is conducted either one-on-one or in a small group. Career counselling is related to other types of counselling (e.g. marriage or clinical counselling). What unites all types of professional counselling is the role of practitioners, who combine giving advice on their topic of expertise with counselling techniques that support clients in making complex decisions and facing difficult situations.


There is considerable variation in the terminology that is used worldwide to describe this activity. In addition to the linguistic variation between US English (counselling) and British English (counselling), there are also a range of alternate terms which are in common use. These include:

  • Career guidance;
  • Career coaching;
  • Guidance counselling;
  • Personal guidance;
  • Career consulting; and
  • A range of related terminologies.

This frequently leads writers and commentators to combine multiple terms e.g. career guidance and counselling to be inclusive. However, care should be exercised when moving from one terminology to another as each term has its own history and cultural significance. An alternate term is ‘career guidance’. This term is sometimes used as a synonym for career counselling, but can also be used to describe a broader range of interventions beyond one-to-one counselling.

Brief History and New Approaches

Career counselling has a long history going back to at least as far as the late nineteenth century. An important defining work for the field was Frank Parsons’ Choosing a Vocation which was published in 1909. Parsons was strongly rooted in the American progressive social reform movement, but as the field developed it moved away from this origin and became increasingly understood as a branch of counselling psychology.

While until the 1970s a strongly normative approach was characterised for theories (e.g. of Donald E. Super’s life-span approach) and practice of career counselling (e.g. concept of matching), new models have their starting point in the individual needs and transferable skills of the clients while managing biographical breaks and discontinuities. Career development is no longer viewed as a linear process which reflects a predictable world of work. More consideration is now placed on nonlinear, chance and unplanned influences.

This change of perspective is evident in the constructivist and social constructionist paradigms for career counselling. The constructivist/social constructionist paradigms are applied as narrative career counselling that emphasizes personal stories and the meaning individuals generate in relation to their education and work.

Postmodern career counselling is a reflective process of assisting clients in creating self through writing and revising biographical narratives taking place in a context of multiple choice from a diversity of options and constraints. The shift moves from emphasizing career choice to empowering self-affirmation and improving decision making. Recently this approach is widely applied in Australia such as in Athlete Career and Education (ACE) programme by Australian Sports Commission and Scope for artists by Ausdance.

While career counselling has its origins in the USA and the English speaking world it has now spread to become a worldwide activity that can be found to some extent in all countries.

Career counselling includes a wide variety of professional activities which help people deal with career-related challenges. Career counsellors work with adolescents seeking to explore career options, experienced professionals contemplating a career change, parents who want to return to the world of work after taking time to raise their child, or people seeking employment. Career counselling is also offered in various settings, including in groups and individually, in person or by means of digital communication.

Several approaches have been undertaken to systemize the variety of professional activities related to career guidance and counselling. In the most recent attempt, the Network for Innovation in Career Guidance and Counselling in Europe (NICE) – a consortium of 45 European institutions of higher education in the field of career counselling – has agreed on a system of professional roles for guidance counsellors. Each of these five roles is seen as an important facet of the career guidance and counselling profession. Career counsellors performing in any of these roles are expected to behave professionally, e.g. by following ethical standards in their practice. The NICE Professional Roles (NPR) are:

  • Career educators “suppor[t] people in developing their own career management competences”.
  • Career information and assessment experts “suppor[t] people in assessing their personal characteristics and needs, then connecting them with the labour market and education systems”.
  • Career counsellors “suppor[t] individuals in understanding their situations, so as to work through issues towards solutions”.
  • Programme and service managers “ensur[e] the quality and delivery of career guidance and counselling organisations’ services”.
  • Social systems intervener and developers “suppor[t] clients (even) in crisis and works to change systems for the better”.

The description of the NICE professional roles (NPR) draws on a variety of prior models to define the central activities and competences of guidance counsellors. The NPR can, therefore, be understood as a state-of-the-art framework which includes all relevant aspects of career counselling. For this reason, other models have not been included here so far. Models which are reflected in the NPR include:

  • BEQU: “Kompetenzprofil für Beratende” (Germany, 2011).
  • CEDEFOP “Practitioner Competences” (2009).
  • ENTO: “National Occupational Standards for Advice and Guidance” (Great Britain, 2006).
  • IAEVG: “International Competences for Educational and Vocational Guidance” (2003).
  • Savickas, M.: “Career Counselling” (USA, 2011).

Benefits and Challenges


Empirical research attests the effectiveness of career counselling. Professional career counsellors can support people with career-related challenges. Through their expertise in career development and labour markets, they can put a person’s qualifications, experience, strengths and weakness in a broad perspective while also considering their desired salary, personal hobbies and interests, location, job market and educational possibilities. Through their counselling and teaching abilities, career counsellors can additionally support people in gaining a better understanding of what really matters for them personally, how they can plan their careers autonomously, or help them in making tough decisions and getting through times of crisis. Finally, career counsellors are often capable of supporting their clients in finding suitable placements/ jobs, in working out conflicts with their employers, or finding the support of other helpful services. It is due to these various benefits of career counselling that policy makers in many countries publicly fund guidance services. For example, the European Union understands career guidance and counselling as an instrument to effectively combat social exclusion and increase citizens’ employability.


One of the major challenges associated with career counselling is encouraging participants to engage in the process. For example, in the UK 70% of people under 14 say they have had no careers advice while 45% of people over 14 have had no or very poor/limited advice.

In a related issue some client groups tend to reject the interventions made by professional career counsellors preferring to rely on the advice of peers or superiors within their own profession. Jackson et al. found that 44% of doctors in training felt that senior members of their own profession were best placed to give careers advice. Furthermore, it is recognised that the giving of career advice is something that is widely spread through a range of formal and informal roles. In addition to career counsellors it is also common for psychologists, teachers, managers, trainers and Human Resources (HR) specialists to give formal support in career choices.

Similarly it is also common for people to seek informal support from friends and family around their career choices and to bypass career professionals altogether. In the 2010s, increasingly people rely on career web portals to seek advice on resume writing and handling interviews and to do research on various professions and companies. It has also possible to get a vocational assessment done online.


There is no international standard qualification for professional career counsellors, although various certificates are offered nationally and internationally (e.g. by professional associations). The number of degree programmes in career guidance and/or career counselling is growing worldwide. The title “career counsellor” is unregulated, unlike engineers or psychologists whose professional titles are legally protected. At the same time, policy makers agree that the competence of career counsellors is one of the most important factors in ensuring that people receive high quality support in dealing with their career questions. Depending on the country of their education, career counsellors may have a variety of academic backgrounds. In Europe, for instance, degrees in (vocational/ industrial/ organisation) psychology and educational sciences are among the most common, but backgrounds in sociology, public administration and other sciences are also frequent. At the same time, many training programmes for career counsellors are becoming increasingly multidisciplinary.

Professional Career Guidance Centres

There are career guidance and counselling centres all over the world that give advice on higher studies, possibilities, chances and nature of courses and institutes. There are also services providing online counselling to people about their career or conducting psychometric tests to determine the person’s aptitude and interests.

Career Assessment

Assessment tools used in career counselling to help clients make realistic career decisions. These tools generally fall into three categories:

  • Interest inventories;
  • Personality inventories; and
  • Aptitude tests.

Interest inventories are usually based on the premise that if you have similar interests to people in an occupation who like their job, you will probably like that occupation also. Thus, interest inventories may suggest occupations that the client has not thought of and which have a good chance of being something that the client will be happy with. The most common interest inventory is a measure of vocational interests across six domains: Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, Conventional. People often report a mixture of these domains, usually with one predominant domain.

Aptitude tests can predict with good odds whether a particular person will be able to be successful in a particular occupation. For example, a student who wants to be a physicist is unlikely to succeed if he cannot do the math. An aptitude test will tell him if he is likely to do well in advanced math, which is necessary for physics. There are also aptitude tests which can predict success or failure in many different occupations.

Personality inventories are sometimes used to help people with career choice. The use of these inventories for this purpose is questionable, because in any occupation there are people with many different personalities. A popular personality inventory is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. It is based on Carl Jung’s theory of personality, but Jung never approved it. According to Jung most people fall in the middle of each scale, but the MBTI ignores this and puts everyone in a type category. For example, according to the MBTI, everyone is either an extrovert or an introvert. According to Jung, most people are somewhere in between, and people at the extremes are rare. The validity of the MBTI for career choice is highly questionable.

Counsellors in Select Countries

In the United States

In the United States, the designation, “career counsellor” is not legally protected; that is, anyone can call themselves a career counsellor. However, CACREP, the accrediting body for counsellor education programmes requires that these programmes include one course in career counselling as a part of the coursework for a masters in counselling.

The National Career Development Association (NCDA), the credentialing body for career counsellors, provides various certifications for qualified career counsellors. For those university-trained counsellors or psychologists who have devoted a certain number of years to career counselling and taken specific coursework, it offers a Master Career Counsellor (MCC) credential. The National Career Development Association is the only professional association of career counsellors in the United States that provides certification in career counselling.

In Australia

In Australia, career counselling may be provided by professionals from various disciplines (e.g. psychology, education, guidance, and counselling). The Professional Standards for Australian Career Development Practitioners provide guidelines about appropriate qualifications and competencies for career counselling. There are a range of postgraduate degrees (e.g. Master, Doctor) that are endorsed for career development practice according to the Professional Standards. The Career Industry Council of Australia (CICA) endorses career development programmes in Australia. There are other relevant qualifications but these may necessarily not be endorsed under the provisions of the Professional Standards by CICA. A Diploma of Counselling and a Certificate IV in Career Development are offered at TAFE colleges and other registered training organisations throughout Australia.

In India

In India, career counselling is a vast area of professional service driven by factors like huge talent availability in the country and huge higher education network comprising Graduation, Post Graduation and multiple professional courses. There are many leading career guidance centres in India like. Leading bodies in India that drive policy level initiatives for students and working professionals are: Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD), University Grants Commission (UGC), All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE), National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) among others.

Book: An Introduction to Counselling and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice

Book Title:

An Introduction to Counselling and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice.

Author(s): John McLeod.

Year: 2019.

Edition: Sixth (6th).

Publisher: Open University Press.

Type(s): Paperback and Kindle.


John McLeod’s bestseller provides a comprehensive, research-informed overview of the theory and practice of counselling and psychotherapy. This new edition has been expanded to cover emerging aspects of contemporary practice, such as debates around neuroscience and integration; third-wave cognitive–behavioural therapies such as ACT, mindfulness and FAP; the experience of being a client; motivational interviewing; interpersonal psychotherapy; social dimensions of therapy; leaving therapy; gender and sexuality; spirituality; and key counselling and therapeutic skills and techniques.

This sixth edition has been fully updated and revised throughout and is separated into a four-part structure for easy navigation.

Book: An Introduction to Counselling and Psychotherapy: From Theory to Practice

Book Title:

An Introduction to Counselling and Psychotherapy: From Theory to Practice.

Author(s): Andrew Reeves.

Year: 2018.

Edition: Second (2nd), Updated Edition.

Publisher: SAGE Publications Ltd.

Type(s): Hardcover, Paperback and Kindle.


This book introduces readers to everything they need to know about counselling and psychotherapy theory, skills and practice. Drawing on years of experience as a counselling practitioner and educator, Andrew Reeves links theory to the development of appropriate skills and locates it within the context of therapeutic practice. Features including chapter summaries, discussion questions, prompts for reflection, case examples and further reading help students to apply what they’ve learnt and give them the confidence to progress into practice. The book covers:

  • Key theoretical approaches.
  • Personal development.
  • Counselling skills.
  • Professional settings.
  • Law, policy, values and ethics.
  • Working with difference and diversity.
  • Client and present issues, and more.

Learning is also supported by a wealth of online resources such as case studies and videos that show what theory looks like in practice, as well as journal articles to help extend knowledge. This is the essential text for any trainee practitioner, or for anyone needing an introduction to the foundations of counselling theory and practice.

Book: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy – A CBT Guide To Theories & Professional Practice

Book Title:

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy – A CBT Guide To Theories & Professional Practice.

Author(s): Bill Andrews.

Year: 2019.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Independently Published.

Type(s): Paperback and Kindle.


Here is finally a complete guide on CBT that is for the mental health practitioner as well as the clients. The guide is expansive on CBT with new ideas and suggestions for both clinical and non-professional settings.

The book’s main purpose will help you deliver:

  • Hacks for fast and effective treatments to most mental health issues.
  • A complete professional guide for mental health practitioners of all levels.
  • Detailed explanations and simple strategies anyone can help implement.
  • Effective uses including suggested therapies for most mental health disorders.

A well researched cognitive therapy guide explores powerful tools & suggested therapies, including everything you should know about CBT and it’s effective uses.

Both professional practitioner and even mental health novices can benefit from this power packed guide.

Finally you can deal with disorders in a fast and powerful way and we also include a complete range of important topics most other CBT guides omit like:

  • Changing Maladaptive Thinking.
  • Cognitive Behavioural Assessment Model Explanations.
  • Intervention & Treatment Analysis.
  • The Power of CBT: Removal of Erroneous Thinking.
  • Cognitive Distortion Made Whole.
  • Reducing Emotional Distress with CBT.
  • Modern CBT & the Latest Tools and More!

Book: Counselling Psychology: A Textbook for Study and Practice

Book Title:

Counselling Psychology: A Textbook for Study and Practice.

Author(s): David Murphy (Editor).

Year: 2017.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell.

Type(s): Hardcover, Paperback, and Kindle.


An excellent resource for students at undergraduate or graduate level, Counselling Psychology: A Textbook for Study and Practice provides valuable insights into the key issues associated with theory and practice in this field. The contributors represent a diverse array of approaches, reflecting the rich diversity within the area, and care is taken to avoid favouring any one approach. The book begins with an overview of the historical and philosophical foundations of counselling psychology, before taking a detailed look at major therapeutic approaches and exploring issues associated with specific client populations, ethics, research design, and more. In particular, the text seeks to explain how counselling psychology differs from and informs other areas of contemporary applied psychology. The result is an engaging balance of the personal and academically rigorous, presented in a highly accessible format.

  • An authoritative introduction to and key issues involved with the theory and practice of counselling psychology for students and practitioners at all levels.
  • Considers all major approaches to psychotherapy including existential, person-centred experiential, psychodynamic, and cognitive-behavioural.
  • Explores issues commonly encountered when working with specific client groups including children, people with intellectual disabilities, and emergency trauma victims.

What is a School Counsellor?


A school counsellor is a professional who works in primary (elementary and middle) schools or secondary schools to provide academic, career, college access/affordability/admission, and social-emotional competencies to all students through a school counselling programme.

Academic, Career, College, and Social-Emotional Interventions and Services

The four main school counselling programme interventions include school counselling curriculum classroom lessons and annual academic, career/college access/affordability/admission, and social-emotional planning for every student; and group and individual counselling for some students. School counselling is an integral part of the education system in countries representing over half of the world’s population and in other countries it is emerging as a critical support for elementary, middle, and high school learning, post-secondary options, and social-emotional/mental health.

An outdated, classist, racist term for the profession was guidance counsellor; school counsellor is used as the school counsellor’s role is advocating for every student’s academic, career, college access/affordability/attainment, and social-emotional competencies and success in all schools. In the Americas, Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Pacific, some countries with no formal school counselling programmes use teachers or psychologists to do school counselling emphasizing career development.

Countries vary in how a school counselling programme and services are provided based on economics (funding for schools and school counselling programmes), social capital (independent versus public schools), and school counsellor certification and credentialing movements in education departments, professional associations, and local, state/province, and national legislation. School counselling is established in 62 countries and emerging in another seven.

An international scoping project on school-based counselling showed school counselling is mandatory in 39 countries, 32 US states, one Australian state, 3 German states, 2 countries in the United Kingdom, and three provinces in Canada. The largest accreditation body for Counsellor Education/School Counselling programmes is the Council for the Accreditation of Counselling and Related Educational Programmes (CACREP). International Counsellor Education programmes are accredited through a CACREP affiliate, the International Registry of Counsellor Education Programmes (IRCEP).

In some countries, school counselling is provided by school counselling specialists (for example, Botswana, China, Finland, Israel, Malta, Nigeria, Romania, Taiwan, Turkey, United States). In other cases, school counselling is provided by classroom teachers who either have such duties added to their typical teaching load or teach only a limited load that also includes school counselling activities (India, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, Zambia). The IAEVG focuses on career development with some international school counselling articles and conference presentations. Both the IAEVG and the Vanguard of Counsellors promote school counselling internationally.

History, School Counsellor-to-Student Ratios, and Mandates


After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the post-Soviet Psychologists of Armenia and the government developed the School Counsellor position in Armenian Schools.


While national policy supports school counselling, only one Australian state requires it. The school counsellor-to-student ratio ranges from 1:850 in the Australian Capital Territory to 1:18,000 in Tasmania. School counsellors play an integral part in the Australian schooling system; they provide support to teachers, parents, and students. Their roles include counselling students and assisting parents/guardians to make informed decisions about their child’s education for learning and behavioural issues. School counsellors assist schools and parents/guardians in assessing disabilities and they collaborate with outside agencies to provide the best support for schools, teachers, students, and parents.


Austria mandates school counselling at the high school level.


The Bahamas mandate school counselling.


Although not mandated, some school counselling occurs in schools and community centres in three regions of the country.


Bhutan mandates school counselling programme for all schools. All schools have fulltime school guidance counsellors.


Botswana mandates school counselling


School Counsellors in Brazil have large caseloads.


The roots of school counselling stemmed from a response to the conditions created by the industrial revolution in the early 1900s. Originally, school counselling was often referred to as vocational guidance, where the goal of the profession was to help individuals find their path in a time where individuals previous ways of making a living had been displaced. As people moved towards industrialised cities, counselling was required to help students navigate these new vocations. With a great discrepancy between the rich and the poor, vocational counselling was initiated to help support disadvantaged students. After World War II, vocational guidance began to shift towards a new movement of counselling, which provided a theoretical backing. As the role of school counsellors progressed into the 1970s, there has become more uncertainty as to what the role entails. This role confusion continues into the 21st century, where there is a lack of clear consensus between counsellors, other teachers, administration, students and parents on what school counsellors should be prioritising.

Throughout Canada, the emerging trend among school counselling programmes is to provide a comprehensive and cohesive approach. These programmes address the personal, social, educational and career development of students. A comprehensive programme consists of 4 components, including developmental school counselling classroom lessons, individual student planning, responsive services, and school and community support.

  • Developmental School Counselling lessons involve small group and class presentations about valuable life skills, which is generally supported through classroom curriculum.
  • Individual student planning involves assessing students abilities, providing advice on goals and planning transitions to work and school.
  • Responsive services includes counselling with students, consulting with parents and teachers, and referrals to outside agencies.
  • Support from the school and community includes such things as professional development, community outreach and program management.

The process to become a school counsellor varies drastically across each province, with some requiring a graduate level degree in counselling while others require a teaching certification or both. Some provinces also require registration with the relevant provincial College of Registered Psychotherapists. These differences highlight the vast range of expertise required within the role of a school counsellor. Regardless of the professional requirements, all school counsellors are expected to advise students within the realm of mental health support, course choices, special education and career planning. The Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association, Canada’s leading association for counselling and psychotherapy, is working towards alignment among the provinces through partnership and collaboration between provinces. Recent conferences share information on the differences and similarities within each province and how progress is being made to ensure proper regulations are in place at a national level.

In the province of Ontario, Canada, school counsellors are found in both elementary and secondary settings, to varying degrees. The Greater Toronto Area, the largest metropolis in the country, has school counsellors in 31% of elementary schools, however the remainder of the province averages 6%. Additionally, the elementary schools that have a school counsellor are scheduled for an average of 1.5 days per week. These counsellors are generally classroom teachers for the remainder of the time. In secondary schools in Ontario, Canada, the average ratio of students to school counsellors is 396:1. In 10% of Ontario schools, this average increases to 826:1. There is concern among administration that these staffing levels are not sufficient to meet the needs of students. This has been proven in recent articles appearing in the news featuring student stories of frustration as they prepare for graduation without the support they expected from school counsellors. Considering the extensive expectations placed on school counsellors, future research needs to address whether or not they can be met within one profession while effectively equipping students with support and information.

School counsellors reported in 2004 at a conference in Winnipeg on issues such as budget cuts, lack of clarity about school counsellor roles, high student-to-school counsellor ratios, especially in elementary schools, and how using a comprehensive school counselling model helped clarify school counsellor roles with teachers and administrators and strengthened the profession. More than 15 years later, the profession is continuing to evolve and meet the changing needs of 21st century students in Canada.


China has put substantial financial resources into school counselling with strong growth in urban areas but less than 1% of rural students receive it; China does not mandate school counselling.

In China, Thomason & Qiong discussed the main influences on school counselling as Chinese philosophers Confucius and Lao-Tzu, who provided early models of child and adult development who influenced the work of Abraham Maslow and Carl Rogers.

Only 15% of high school students are admitted to college in China, so entrance exams are fiercely competitive. Students entering university graduate at a rate of 99%. Much pressure is put on children and adolescents to study and attend college. This pressure is a central focus of school counselling in China. An additional stressor is that there are not enough places for students to attend college, and over one-third of college graduates cannot find jobs, so career and employment counselling and development are also central in school counselling.

In China, there is a stigma related to social-emotional and mental health issues; therefore, even though most universities and many (urban) primary and secondary schools have school counsellors, many students are reluctant to seek counselling for issues such as anxiety and depression. There is no national system of certifying school counsellors. Most are trained in Western-developed cognitive methods including REBT, Rogerian, Family Systems, Behaviour Modification, and Object Relations. School Counsellors also recommend Chinese methods such as qi-gong (deep breathing) and acupuncture, as well as music therapy. Chinese school counsellors work within a traditional Chinese world view of a community and family-based system that lessens the focus on the individual. In Hong Kong, Hui (2000) discussed work moving toward comprehensive school counselling programs and eliminating the older remediation-style model.

Middle school students are a priority for school counselling services in China.

Costa Rica

Costa Rica mandates school counselling.


School counselling is only available in certain schools.


In 1991 Cyprus mandated school counselling with a goal of a 1:60 school counsellor-to-student ratio and one full-time school counsellor for every high school but neither of these goals has been accomplished.

Czech Republic

The Czech Republic mandates school counselling.


Denmark mandates school counselling.


School counselling services are delivered by elementary school psychologists with a ratio of 1 school psychologist to every 3,080 students.


School counselling is only available in certain schools.


In Finland, legislation has been passed for a school counselling system. The Basic Education Act of 1998 stated that every student must receive school counselling services. All Finnish school counsellors must have a teaching certificate, a master’s degree in a specific academic subject, and a specialised certificate in school counselling. Finland has a school counsellor-to-student ratio of 1:245.


France mandates school counselling in high schools.


Gambia mandates school counselling.


The school counsellor-to-student ratio in Georgia is 1:615.


Two German states require school counselling at all education levels; high school counselling is established in all states.


Ghana mandates school counselling.


There are provisions for academic and career counselling in middle and high schools but school counselling is not mandated. Social-emotional and mental-health counselling is done in community agencies. The National Guidance Resources Centre in Greece was established by researchers at Athens University of Economics & Business (ASOEE) in 1993 under the leadership of Professor Emmanuel J. Yannakoudakis. The team received funding under the European Union (PETRA II Programme): The establishment of a national occupational guidance resources centre in 1993-1994. The team organised seminars and lectures to train the first career counsellors in Greece in 1993. Further research projects at Athens University of Economics & Business were implemented as part of the European Union (LEONARDO Programme):

  • A pilot project on the use of multimedia for career analysis, 1995-1999;
  • Guidance toward the future, 1995-1999;
  • On the move to a guidance system, 1996-2001; and
  • Eurostage for guidance systems, 1996-1999.


School counselling is present in high schools.

Hong Kong

Hong Kong mandates school counselling.


Iceland mandates school counselling.


In India, the Central Board of Secondary Education guidelines expect one school counsellor appointed for every affiliated school, but this is less than 3% of all Indian students attending public schools.


Indonesia mandates school counselling in middle and high school.


Middle school students are the priority for school counselling in Iran. It is mandated in high schools but there are not enough school counsellors particularly in rural areas.


In Ireland, school counselling began in County Dublin in the 1960s and went countrywide in the 1970s. However, legislation in the early 1980s severely curtailed the movement due to budget constraints. The main organization for the school counselling profession is the Institute of Guidance Counsellors (IGC), which has a code of ethics.


In Israel, a 2005 study by Erhard & Harel of 600 elementary, middle, and high school counsellors found that a third of school counsellors were delivering primarily traditional individual counselling services, about a third were delivering preventive classroom counselling curriculum lessons, and a third were delivering both individual counselling services and school counselling curriculum lessons in a comprehensive developmental school counselling programme. School counsellor roles varied due to three elements: the school counsellor’s personal preferences, school level, and the principal’s expectations. Erhard & Harel stated that the profession in Israel, like many other countries, is transforming from marginal and ancillary services to a comprehensive school counselling approach integral in the total school’s education program. In 2011-2012, Israel had a school counsellor-to-student ratio of 1:570.


School counselling is not well developed in Italy.


In Japan, school counselling is a recent phenomenon with school counsellors being introduced in the mid-1990s and often part-time focused on behavioural issues. Middle school students are the priority for school counselling in Japan and it is mandated.


Jordan mandates school counselling with 1,950 school counsellors working in 2011-2012.


School counselling was introduced in Latvia in 1929 but disappeared in World War II.


In Lebanon, the government sponsored the first training of school counsellors for public elementary and middle schools in 1996. There are now school counsellors in 1/5 of the elementary and middle schools in Lebanon but none in high schools. School counsellors have been trained in delivering preventive, developmental, and remedial services. Private schools have some school counsellors serving all grade levels but the focus is individual counselling and remedial. Challenges include regular violence and wartime strife, not enough resources, and a lack of a professional school counselling organisation, assigned school counsellors covering two or more schools, and only two school counselling graduate programmes in the country. Last, for persons trained in Western models of school counselling there are dangers of overlooking unique cultural and family aspects of Lebanese society.


School counselling was introduced in 1931 but disappeared during World War II.


Macau mandates school counselling.


Malaysia mandates school counselling in middle and high school.


In Malta, school counselling services began in 1968 in the Department of Education based on recommendations from a UNESCO consultant and used these titles: Education Officer, School Counsellor, and Guidance Teacher. Through the 1990s they included school counsellor positions in primary and trade schools in addition to secondary schools. Guidance teachers are mandated at a 1:300 teacher to student ratio. Malta mandates school counselling.


Nepal mandates school counselling.

New Zealand

New Zealand mandates school counselling but since 1988 when education was decentralised, there has been a decline in the prevalence of school counsellors and the quality and service delivery of school counselling.


In Nigeria, school counselling began in 1959 in some high schools. It rarely exists at the elementary level. Where there are federally funded secondary schools, there are some professionally trained school counsellors. However, in many cases, teachers function as career educators. School counsellors often have teaching and other responsibilities that take time away from their school counselling tasks. The Counselling Association of Nigeria (CASSON) was formed in 1976 to promote the profession, but there is no code of ethics. However, a certification/licensure board has been formed. Aluede, Adomeh, & Afen-Akpaida (2004) discussed the over-reliance on textbooks from the US and the need for school counsellors in Nigeria to take a whole-school approach, lessen individual approaches, and honour the traditional African world view valuing the family and community’s roles in decision-making as paramount for effective decision-making in schools.


Norway mandates school counselling.


There are some school counselling services at the high school level.


The Philippines mandates school counselling in middle and high school. The Congress of the Philippines passed the Guidance and Counselling Act of 2004 with a specific focus on Professional Practice, Ethics, National Certification, and the creation of a Regulatory Body, and specialists in school counselling are subject to this law.


School counselling was introduced in 1918 but disappeared during World War II.


Portugal mandates school counselling at the high school level.


Romania mandates school counselling.


School counselling focuses on trauma-based counselling. It focuses on academic performance, prevention, and intervention with HIV/AIDS, and establishing peace-building clubs.

Saudi Arabia

School counselling is developing in Saudi Arabia. In 2010, 90% of high schools had some type of school counselling service.


School counselling is available in certain schools.


Singapore mandates school counselling.


Slovakia mandates school counselling.

South Korea

In South Korea, school counsellors must teach a subject besides counselling, but not all school counsellors are appointed to counselling positions, even though Korean law requires school counsellors in all middle and high schools.


Spain provides school counselling at the high school level although it is unclear if mandated. There was around one counsellor for every 1,000 primary and secondary (high school) students as of 2018.

St. Kitts

St. Kitts mandates school counselling.


Sweden mandates school counselling. In Sweden, school counsellors’ work was divided into two work groups in the 1970s. The work groups are called “kurator” and “studie -och yrkesvägledare.” They worked with communication methodology but the kurator’s work is more therapeutic, often psychological and social-emotional issues, and the studie-och yrkesvägledare’s work is future-focused with educational and career development. Studie- och yrkesvägledaren work in primary, secondary, adult education, higher education and various training centres and most have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Study and Career Guidance.


School counselling is found at the high school level.


School counselling has focused on trauma-based counselling of students. Prior to the war it was done in schools but it is now found in either a school club or refugee camp sponsored and staffed by UNICEF.


In Taiwan, school counselling traditionally was done by “guidance teachers.” Recent advocacy by the Chinese Guidance and Counselling Association pushed for licensure for school counsellors in Taiwan’s public schools. Prior to this time, the focus had been primarily individual and group counselling, play therapy, career counselling and development, and stress related to national university examinations.


Tanzania mandates school counselling.


The Thai government has put substantial funding into school counsleling but does not mandate it.

Trinidad and Tobago

Trinidad and Tobago mandate school counselling.


Turkey mandates school counselling and it is in all schools.


Uganda mandates school counselling.

United Arab Emirates

There is some school counselling at the high-school level in the United Arab Emirates.

United Kingdom

School counselling originated in the UK to support underachieving students and involved specialist training for teachers. Head of Year (e.g. Head of Year 7, Head of Year 8, etc.) are school staff members, usually teachers, who oversee a year group within a secondary school. These Heads of Year ensure students within the year cohort behave properly within the school, but these Heads also support students in their social and emotional well-being and course and career planning options. Wales and Northern Ireland require school counselling.

United States

In the United States, the school counselling profession began with the vocational guidance movement in the early 20th century now known as career development. Jesse B. Davis was the first to provide a systematic school counselling programme focused on career development. In 1907, he became the principal of a high school and encouraged the school English teachers to use compositions and lessons to relate career interests, develop character, and avoid behavioural problems. Many others during this time focused on what is now called career development. For example, in 1908, Frank Parsons, “Father of Career Counselling” established the Bureau of Vocational Guidance to assist young people transition from school to work.

From the 1920s to the 1930s, school counselling grew because of the rise of progressive education in schools. This movement emphasized personal, social, and moral development. Many schools reacted to this movement as anti-educational, saying that schools should teach only the fundamentals of education. Combined with the economic hardship of the Great Depression, both challenges led to a decline in school counselling. At the same time, the National Association for College Admission Counselling was established as the first professional association focused on counselling and advising high school students into college. In the early 1940s, the school counselling movement was influenced by the need for counsellors to help assess students for wartime needs. At the same time, researcher Carl Rogers’ emphasized the power of non-directive helping relationships and counselling for all ages and the profession of counselling was influenced to shift from directive “guidance” to non-directive or person-centred “counselling” as the basis for school counselling.

In the 1950s the government established the Guidance and Personnel Services Section in the Division of State and Local School Systems. In 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik I. Out of concern that the Russians were winning the space race and that there were not enough scientists and mathematicians, the government passed the National Defence Education Act, spurring growth in vocational and career counselling through larger funding. In the 1950s the American School Counsellor Association (ASCA) was founded as one of the early divisions of what is now known as the American Counselling Association (ACA).

In the 1960s, new legislation and professional developments refined the school counselling profession (Schmidt,[40] 2003). The 1960s continued large amounts of federal funding for land-grant colleges and universities to establish Counsellor Education master’s and doctoral programmes. School counselling shifted from a primary focus on career development to adding social-emotional issues paralleling the rise of social justice and civil rights movements. In the early 1970s, Dr. Norm Gysbers’s research and advocacy helped the profession shift from school counsellors as solitary professionals focused on individual academic, career, and social-emotional student issues to a comprehensive developmental school counselling programme for all students K-12 that included individual and group counselling for some students and classroom lessons and annual advising/planning and activities for every student. He and his colleagues’ research evidenced strong correlations between fully implemented school counselling programmes and student academic success; a critical part of the evidence base for the school counselling profession was their work in Missouri. Dr. Chris Sink & associates showed similar evidence-based success for school counselling programmes at the elementary and middle school levels in Washington State.

School counselling in the 1980s and early 1990s was not influenced by corporate educational reform efforts. The profession had little evidence of systemic effectiveness for school counsellors and only correlational evidence of the effectiveness of school counselling programmes. In response, consulted with elementary, middle, and high school counsellors and created the American School Counsellor Association (ASCA) Student Standards with three core domains (Academic, Career, Personal/Social), nine standards, and specific competencies and indicators for K-12 students. There was no research base, however, for school counselling standards as an effective educational reform strategy. A year later, Whiston & Sexton published the first systemic meta-analysis of school counselling outcome research in academic, career, and personal/social domains and individual counselling, group counselling, classroom lessons, and parent/guardian workshop effectiveness.

In the late 1990s, former mathematics teacher, school counsellor, and administrator Pat Martin, was hired by corporate-funded educational reform group, The Education Trust, to focus the school counselling profession on equity issues by helping close achievement and opportunity gaps harming children and adolescents of colour, poor and working class children and adolescents, bilingual children and adolescents, and children and adolescents with disabilities. Martin, under considerable heat from Counsellor Educators who were not open to her equity-focused message of change, developed focus groups of K-12 students, parents, guardians, teachers, building leaders, and superintendents, and interviewed professors of School Counsellor Education. She hired Oregon State University School Counsellor Education professor emeritus Dr. Reese House, and after several years of work in the late 1990s they created, in 2003, the National Centre for Transforming School Counselling (NCTSC).

The NCTSC focused on changing school counsellor education at the graduate level and changing school counsellor practice in state and local districts to teach school counsellors how to help recognise, prevent, and close achievement and opportunity gaps. In their initial focus groups, they found what Hart & Jacobi had indicated years earlier – too many school counsellors were gatekeepers for the status quo instead of advocates for the academic success of every child and adolescent. Too many school counsellors used inequitable practices, supported inequitable school policies, and were unwilling to change.

This professional behaviour kept many students from non-dominant backgrounds (i.e. students of colour, poor and working class students, students with disabilities, and bilingual students) from receiving challenging coursework (AP, IB, and honours classes) and academic, career, and college access/affordability/admission skills needed to successfully graduate from high school and pursue post-secondary options including college. In 1998, the Education Trust received a grant from the DeWitt Wallace/Reader’s Digest to fund six $500,000 grants for Counsellor Education/School Counselling programmes, with a focus on rural and urban settings, to transform School Counsellor Education programmes to teach advocacy, leadership, teaming and collaboration, equity assessment using data, and culturally competent programme counselling and coordination skills in addition to counselling: Indiana State University, the University of Georgia, the University of West Georgia, the University of California-Northridge, the University of North Florida, and, the Ohio State University were the recipients. Over 25 additional Counsellor Education/School Counselling programmes nationwide became companion institutions in the following decade with average grants of $3000. By 2008, NCTSC consultants had worked in over 100 school districts and major cities and rural areas to transform the work of school counsellors nationwide.

In 2002, the American School Counsellor Association released Dr. Trish Hatch and Dr. Judy Bowers’ work: the ASCA National Model: A framework for school counselling programmes comprising key school counselling components: ASCA National Standards, and the skill-based focus for closing achievement and opportunity gaps from the Education Trust’s new vision of school counselling into one document. The model drew from major theoreticians in school counselling with four key areas: Foundation (school counselling programme mission statements, vision, statements, belief statements, and annual goals); Delivery (direct services including individual and group counselling; classroom counselling lessons; planning and advising for all students); Management (use of action plans and results reports for closing gaps, small group work and classroom lessons; a school counselling programme assessment, an administrator-school counsellor annual agreement, a time-tracker tool, and a school counselling data tool; and Accountability (school counsellor annual evaluation and use of a School Counselling Programme Advisory Council to monitor data, outcomes, and effectiveness). In 2003, Dr. Jay Carey and Dr. Carey Dimmitt created the Centre for School Counselling Outcome Research and Evaluation (CSCORE) at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst as a clearinghouse for evidence-based practice with regular research briefs, original research projects, and eventual co-sponsorship of the annual Evidence-Based School Counselling conference in 2013.

In 2004, the ASCA Ethical Standards for School Counsellors was revised to focus on issues of equity, closing achievement and opportunity gaps, and ensuring all K-12 students received access to a school counselling programme. Also in 2004, an equity-focused entity on school counsellors’ role in college readiness and admission counselling, the National Office for School Counsellor Advocacy (NOSCA) emerged at The College Board led by Pat Martin and Dr. Vivian Lee. NOSCA developed scholarships for research on college counselling by K-12 school counsellors taught in School Counsellor Education programmes.

In 2008, the first NOSCA study was released by Dr. Jay Carey and colleagues focused on innovations in selected College Board “Inspiration Award” schools where school counsellors collaborated inside and outside their schools for high college-going rates and strong college-going cultures in schools with large numbers of students of non-dominant backgrounds. In 2008, ASCA released School Counselling Competencies focused on assisting school counselling programmes to effectively implement the ASCA National Model.

In 2010, the Centre for Excellence in School Counselling and Leadership (CESCAL) at San Diego State University co-sponsored the first of four school counsellor and educator conferences devoted to the needs of lesbian, bisexual, gay, and transgender students in San Diego, California. ASCA published a 5th edition of the ASCA Ethical Standards for School Counsellors.

In 2011, Counselling at the Crossroads: The perspectives and promise of school counsellors in American education, the largest survey of high school and middle school counsellors in the United States with over 5,300 interviews, was released by Pat Martin and Dr. Vivian Lee by the National Office for School Counsellor Advocacy, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, and the American School Counsellor Association. The study shared school counsellors’ views on educational policies, practices, and reform, and how many of them, especially in urban and rural school settings, were not given the chance to focus on what they were trained to do, especially career and college access and readiness counselling for all students, in part due to high caseloads and inappropriate tasks.

School counsellors suggested changes in their role to be accountable for success of all students and how school systems needed to change so school counsellors could be key advocates and leaders for every student’s success. Implications for public policy and district and school-wide change were addressed. The National Centre for Transforming School Counselling released a brief, Poised to Lead: How School Counsellors Can Drive Career and College Readiness, challenging all schools to utilise school counsellors for equity and access for challenging coursework (AP, IB, honours) for all students and ensuring college and career access skills and competencies as a major focus for school counsellors K-12.

In 2012, CSCORE assisted in evaluating and publishing six statewide research studies assessing the effectiveness of school counselling programmes based on statewide systemic use of school counselling programmes such as the ASCA National Model and published their outcomes in the American School Counsellor Association research journal Professional School Counselling. Research indicated strong correlational evidence between fully implemented school counselling programmes and low school counsellor-to-student ratios provided better student academic success, greater career and college access/readiness/admission, and reduced social-emotional issue concerns included better school safety, reduced disciplinary issues, and better attendance.

Also in 2012, the American School Counsellor Association released the third edition of the ASCA National Model.

From 2014-2016, the White House, under the Office of the First Lady Michelle Obama, partnered with key school counsellor educators and college access professionals nationwide to focus on the roles of school counsellors and college access professionals. Their collaboration resulted in a series of national Reach Higher/School Counselling and College Access convenings at Harvard University, San Diego State University, the University of North Florida, and American University. Michelle Obama and her staff also began the Reach Higher and Better Make Room programmes to focus on college access for underrepresented students, and she began hosting the American School Counsellor Association’s School Counsellor of the Year awards ceremony at the White House. The initiatives culminated in an unprecedented collaboration among multiple major professional associations focused on school counselling and college access including the American Counselling Association, the American School Counsellor Association, the National Association for College Admission Counselling, the College Board, and ACT raising the profile and prominence of the role of school counsellors collaborating on college access, affordability, and admission for all students.

In 2015, ASCA replaced the ASCA National Student Standards with the evidence-based ASCA Mindsets & Behaviours for Student Success: K-12 College and Career Readiness Standards for Every Student, created from meta-analyses done by the University of Chicago’s Consortium on Educational Reform showing key components of raising student academic success over multiple well-designed research studies. While an improvement over the lack of research in the ASCA student standards that they replaced, school counsellors shared feedback that they do not go into enough depth for career, college access/admission/affordability, and social-emotional competencies.

In 2016, ASCA published a newly revised sixth version of the ASCA Ethical Standards for School Counsellors using two rounds of feedback from practicing school counsellors in all 50 states; it also included, for the first time, a Glossary of ethical terms for heightened clarity.

In 2019, ASCA released the 4th edition of the ASCA National Model, a Framework for School Counselling Programmes. Changes included fewer templates and combined templates from the 3rd edition after school counsellor feedback that the 3rd edition had become too complex and onerous. The four outside-the-diamond skills from the first three editions: advocacy, leadership, teaming and collaboration, and systemic change were incorporated throughout the model and no longer part of the diamond graphic organiser. The four quadrants of the model were changed to verbs and action-oriented words to better clarify the key components:

  1. Define (formerly Foundation).
  2. Deliver (formerly Delivery System).
  3. Manage (formerly Management System).
  4. Assess (formerly Accountability System).

The three types of data collected by school counsellors in school counselling programmes have shifted in name to:

  1. Participation data (formerly process).
  2. Mindsets & Behaviours data (formerly perception, i.e. learning).
  3. Outcome data (results).

The 4th edition, while easier to read and use than prior editions, did not cover the history of how the model changed over time and neglected any mention of the original authors, Drs. Trish Hatch and Judy Bowers.


School counselling is mandated in Venezuela and it has focused on cultural competency.


School counselling is mandated in Vietnam.

Roles, School Counselling Programmes, Ethics, and School Counselling Professional Associations

Professional school counsellors ideally implement a school counselling programme that promotes and enhances student achievement (Hatch & Bowers, 2003, 2005; ASCA, 2012). A framework for appropriate and inappropriate school counsellor responsibilities and roles is outlined in the ASCA National Model (Hatch & Bowers, 2003, 2005; ASCA, 2012). School counsellors, in US states, have a master’s degree in school counselling from a Counsellor Education graduate programme. China requires at least three years of college experience. In Japan, school counsellors were added in the mid-1990s, part-time, primarily focused on behavioural issues. In Taiwan, they are often teachers with recent legislation requiring school counselling licensure focused on individual and group counselling for academic, career, and personal issues. In Korea, school counsellors are mandated in middle and high schools.

School counsellors are employed in elementary, middle, and high schools, in district supervisory settings, in Counsellor Education faculty positions (usually with an earned Ph.D. in Counsellor Education in the USA or related graduate doctorates abroad), and post-secondary settings doing academic, career, college access/affordability/admission, and social-emotional counselling, consultation, and programme coordination. Their work includes a focus on developmental stages of student growth, including the needs, tasks, and student interests related to those stages(Schmidt,[40] 2003).

Professional school counsellors meet the needs of student in three basic domains: academic development, career development and college access/affordability/admission, and social-emotional development (Dahir & Campbell, 1997; Hatch & Bowers, 2003, 2005; ASCA, 2012). Knowledge, understanding and skill in these domains are developed through classroom instruction, appraisal, consultation, counselling, coordination, and collaboration. For example, in appraisal, school counsellors may use a variety of personality and career assessment methods to help students explore career and college needs and interests.

Schools play a key role in assessment, access to services, and possible referral to appropriate outside support systems. They provide intervention, prevention, and services to support students’ academic, career, and post-secondary education as well as social-emotional growth. The role of school counsellors is expansive. School counsellors address mental health issues, crisis intervention, and advising for course selection. School counsellors consult with all stakeholders to support student needs and may also focus on experiential learning, cooperative education, internships, career shadowing, and entrance to specialised high school programmes.

School counsellor interventions include individual and group counselling for some students. For example, if a student’s behaviour is interfering with his or her achievement, the school counsellor may observe that student in a class, provide consultation to teachers and other stakeholders to develop (with the student) a plan to address the behavioural issue(s), and then collaborate to implement and evaluate the plan. They also provide consultation services to family members such as college access/affordability/admission, career development, parenting skills, study skills, child and adolescent development, mental health issues, and help with school-home transitions.

School counsellor interventions for all students include annual academic/career/college access/affordability/admission planning K-12 and leading classroom developmental lessons on academic, career/college, and social-emotional topics. The topics of mental health, multiculturalism (Portman, 2009), anti-racism, and school safety are important areas of focus for school counsellors. Often school counsellors will coordinate outside groups to help with student needs such as academics, or coordinate a program that teaches about child abuse or drugs, through on-stage drama.

School counsellors develop, implement, and evaluate school counselling programmes that deliver academic, career, college access/affordability/admission, and social-emotional competencies to all students in their schools. For example, the ASCA National Model (Hatch & Bowers, 2003, 2005; ASCA, 2012) includes the following four main areas:

  • Foundation (Define as of 2019) – a school counselling programme mission statement, a vision statement, a beliefs statement, SMART Goals; ASCA Mindsets & Behaviours & ASCA Code of Ethics;
  • Delivery System (Deliver as of 2019) – how school counselling core curriculum lessons, planning for every student, and individual and group counselling are delivered in direct and indirect services to students (80% of school counsellor time);
  • Management System (Manage as of 2019) – calendars; use of data tool; use of time tool; administrator-school counsellor agreement; school counselling programme advisory council; small group, school counselling core curriculum, and closing the gap action plans; and
  • Accountability System (Assess as of 2019) – school counselling program assessment; small group, school counselling core curriculum, and closing-the-gap results reports; and school counsellor performance evaluations based on school counsellor competencies.

The school counselling programme model (ASCA, 2012, 2019) is implemented using key skills from the National Centre for Transforming School Counselling’s Transforming School Counselling Initiative: Advocacy, Leadership, Teaming and Collaboration, and Systemic Change.

Many provinces in Canada offer a career pathway programme, which helps to prepare students for the employment market and support a smooth school-to-work transition.

School Counsellors are expected to follow a professional code of ethics in many countries. For example, In the US, they are the American School Counsellor Association (ASCA) School Counsellor Ethical Code, the American Counselling Association (ACA) Code of Ethics, and the National Association for College Admission Counselling (NACAC) Statement of Principles of Good Practice (SPGP).

Some school counsellors experience role confusion, given the many tasks they are expected to perform. The demands on the school counsellor to be a generalist who performs roles in leadership, advocacy, essential services, and curriculum development can be too much if there is not a clear mission, vision, and comprehensive school counselling programme in place. Additionally, some school counsellors are stretched too thin to provide mental health support on top of their other duties.

The role of a school counsellor is critical and needs to be supported by all stakeholders to ensure equity and access for all students, particularly those with the fewest resources. The roles of school counsellors are expanding and changing with time. As roles change, school counsellors help students prosper in academics, career, post-secondary, and social-emotional domains. School counsellors reduce and bridge the inequalities facing students in educational systems.

School Counsellors around the world are affiliated with various national and regional school counselling associations, and abide by their guidelines.

Elementary School Counselling

Elementary school counsellors provide academic, career, college access, and personal and social competencies and planning to all students, and individual and group counselling for some students and their families to meet the developmental needs of young children K-6. Transitions from pre-school to elementary school and from elementary school to middle school are an important focus for elementary school counsellors. Increased emphasis is placed on accountability for helping close achievement and opportunity gaps at the elementary level as more school counselling programmes move to evidence-based work with data and specific results.

School counselling programmes that deliver specific competencies to all students help to close achievement and opportunity gaps. To facilitate individual and group school counselling interventions, school counsellors use developmental, cognitive-behavioural, person-centred (Rogerian) listening and influencing skills, systemic, family, multicultural, narrative, and play therapy theories and techniques. released a research study showing the effectiveness of elementary school counselling programmes in Washington state.

Middle School Counselling

Middle school counsellors provide school counselling curriculum lessons on academic, career, college access, and personal and social competencies, advising and academic/career/college access planning to all students and individual and group counselling for some students and their families to meet the needs of older children/early adolescents in grades 7 and 8.

Middle School College Access curricula have been developed to assist students and their families before reaching high school. To facilitate the school counselling process, school counsellors use theories and techniques including developmental, cognitive-behavioural, person-centred (Rogerian) listening and influencing skills, systemic, family, multicultural, narrative, and play therapy. Transitional issues to ensure successful transitions to high school are a key area including career exploration and assessment with seventh and eighth grade students. Sink, Akos, Turnbull, & Mvududu released a study in 2008 confirming the effectiveness of middle school comprehensive school counselling programmes in Washington state.

High School Counselling

High school counsellors provide academic, career, college access, and personal and social competencies with developmental classroom lessons and planning to all students, and individual and group counselling for some students and their families to meet the developmental needs of adolescents (Hatch & Bowers, 2003, 2005, 2012). Emphasis is on college access counselling at the early high school level as more school counselling programmes move to evidence-based work with data and specific results that show how school counselling programmes help to close achievement, opportunity, and attainment gaps ensuring all students have access to school counselling programmes and early college access/affordability/admission activities. The breadth of demands high school counsellors face, from educational attainment (high school graduation and some students’ preparation for careers and college) to student social and mental health, has led to ambiguous role definition. Summarising a 2011 national survey of more than 5,330 middle school and high school counsellors, researchers argued:

“Despite the aspirations of counselors to effectively help students succeed in school and fulfill their dreams, the mission and roles of counselors in the education system must be more clearly defined; schools must create measures of accountability to track their effectiveness; and policymakers and key stakeholders must integrate counselors into reform efforts to maximize their impact in schools across America”.

Transitional issues to ensure successful transitions to college, other post-secondary educational options, and careers are a key area. The high school counsellor helps students and their families prepare for post-secondary education including college and careers (e.g. college, careers) by engaging students and their families in accessing and evaluating accurate information on what the National Office for School Counsellor Advocacy calls the 8 essential elements of college and career counselling:

  1. College Aspirations.
  2. Academic Planning for Career and College Readiness.
  3. Enrichment and Extracurricular Engagement.
  4. College and Career Exploration and Selection Processes.
  5. College and Career Assessments.
  6. College Affordability Planning.
  7. College and Career Admission Processes.
  8. Transition from High School Graduation to College Enrolment.

Some students turn to private college admissions advisors but there is no research evidence that private college admissions advisors have any effectiveness in assisting students attain selective college admissions.

Lapan, Gysbers & Sun showed correlational evidence of the effectiveness of fully implemented school counseling programs on high school students’ academic success. Carey et al.’s 2008 study showed specific best practices from high school counsel.ors raising college-going rates within a strong college-going environment in multiple USA-based high schools with large numbers of students of nondominant cultural identities.

Education Credentials, Certification, and Accreditation

The education of school counsellors around the world varies based on the laws and cultures of countries and the historical influences of their educational and credentialing systems and professional identities related to who delivers academic, career, college readiness, and personal/social information, advising, curriculum, and counselling and related services.

In Canada, the educational requirements to become a school counsellor vary by province.

In China, there is no national certification or licensure system for school counsellors.

Korea requires school counsellors in all middle and high schools.

In the Philippines, school counsellors must be licensed with a master’s degree in counselling.

Taiwan instituted school counsellor licensure for public schools.

In the US, a school counsellor is a certified educator with a master’s degree in school counselling (usually from a Counsellor Education graduate programme) with school counselling graduate training including qualifications and skills to address all students’ academic, career, college access and personal/social needs. Once you have completed your master’s degree you can take one of 2 certification options in order to become fully licensed as a professional school counsellor.

Over half of all Counsellor Education programmes that offer school counselling are accredited by the Council on the Accreditation of Counselling and Related Educational Programmes (CACREP) and all in the US with one in Canada. In 2010 one was under review in Mexico. CACREP maintains a current list of accredited programmes and programmes in the accreditation process on their website. CACREP desires to accredit more international counselling university programmes.

According to CACREP, an accredited school counselling programme offers coursework in Professional Identity and Ethics, Human Development, Counselling Theories, Group Work, Career Counselling, Multicultural Counselling, Assessment, Research and Programme Evaluation, and Clinical Coursework – a 100-hour practicum and a 600-hour internship under supervision of a school counselling faculty member and a certified school counsellor site supervisor.

When CACREP released the 2009 Standards, the accreditation process became performance-based including evidence of school counsellor candidate learning outcomes. In addition, CACREP tightened the school counselling standards with specific evidence needed for how school counselling students receive education in foundations; counselling prevention and intervention; diversity and advocacy; assessment; research and evaluation; academic development; collaboration and consultation; and leadership in K-12 school counselling contexts.

Certification practices for school counsellors vary internationally. School counsellors in the US may opt for national certification through two different boards. The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) requires a two-to-three year process of performance based assessment, and demonstrate (in writing) content knowledge in human growth/development, diverse populations, school counselling programmes, theories, data, and change and collaboration. In February 2005, 30 states offered financial incentives for this certification.

Also in the US, The National Board for Certified Counsellors (NBCC) requires passing the National Certified School Counsellor Examination (NCSC), including 40 multiple choice questions and seven simulated cases assessing school counsellors’ abilities to make critical decisions. Additionally, a master’s degree and three years of supervised experience are required. NBPTS also requires three years of experience, however state certification is required (41 of 50 states require a master’s degree). At least four states offer financial incentives for the NCSC certification.

Job Growth and Earnings

The rate of job growth and earnings for school counsellors depends on the country that one is employed in and how the school is funded – public or independent. School counsellors working in international schools or “American” schools globally may find similar work environments and expectations to the US. School counsellor pay varies based on school counsellor roles, identity, expectations, and legal and certification requirements and expectations of each country. According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH), the median salary for school counsellors in the US in 2010 was (USD) $53,380 or $25.67 hourly. According to an infographic designed by Wake Forest University, the median salary of school counsellors in the US was $43,690. The US has 267,000 employees in titles such as school counsellor or related titles in education and advising and college and career counselling. The projected growth for school counsellors is 14-19% or faster than average than other occupations in the US with a predicted 94,000 job openings from 2008-2018. In Australia, a survey by the Australian Guidance and Counselling Association found that school counsellor salary ranged from (AUD) the high 50,000s to the mid 80,000s.

Among all counselling specialty areas, public elementary, middle and high school counsellors are (2009) paid the highest salary on average of all counsellors. Budget cuts, however, have affected placement of public school counsellors in Canada, Ireland, the United States, and other countries. In the United States, rural areas and urban areas traditionally have been under-served by school counsellors in public schools due to both funding shortages and often a lack of best practice models. With the expectation of school counsellors to work with data, research, and evidence-based practice, school counsellors who show and share results in assisting to close achievement, opportunity, and attainment gaps are in the best position to argue for increased school counselling resources and positions for their programmes.

Notable School Counsellors

  • Jamaal Bowman, US politician.
  • Fernando Cabrera, US politician.
  • Ern Condon, Canadian politician.
  • Derrick Dalley, Canadian politician.
  • Susie Sadlowski Garza, US politician.
  • François Gendron, Canadian politician.
  • Steve Lindberg, US politician.
  • Lillian Ortiz-Self, US politician.
  • Tony Resch, US lacrosse player.
  • Tom Tillberry, US politician.
  • Tom Villa, US politician.

What is a Mental Health Counsellor?


A mental health counsellor (MHC), or counsellor, is a person who works with individuals and groups to promote optimum mental and emotional health.

Such persons may help individuals deal with issues associated with addiction and substance abuse; family, parenting, and marital problems; stress management; self-esteem; and ageing. The United States Bureau of Labour Statistics distinguishes “Mental Health Counsellors” from “Social Workers”, “Psychiatrists“, and “Psychologists“.


The legal definition of a counsellor, and hence the legal scope of practice, varies with jurisdiction. In some jurisdictions across the US, counsellors, marriage and family therapists, and psychologists have virtually identical definitions: evaluating and treating mental and behavioural disorders. In spite of such definitions, many mental health professionals reject the medical model (which assumes that clients are “disordered”) in favour of broader viewpoints, such as those that emerged from systems psychology.

Service Users

MHCs work with individuals, couples, families, and groups to address and treat emotional and mental disorders and to promote mental health. Most mental health counsellors in the US work in outpatient and residential care centres, individual and family services, and local governments. They are trained in a variety of therapeutic techniques used to address issues, including depression, anxiety, addiction and substance abuse, suicidal impulses, stress, problems with self-esteem, and grief. They also help with job and career concerns, educational decisions, issues related to mental and emotional health, and family, parenting, marital, or other relationship problems. Some career concerns include helping employees who have mental health conditions to manage their health condition whilst adhering to organisational demands to demonstrate performance and commitment to their work. MHCs also continue to play a growing role in the military mental health crisis, helping military personnel and their families deal with issues such as PTSD. MHCs often work closely with other mental health specialists, such as psychiatrists, psychologists, clinical social workers, psychiatric nurses, and school counsellors. Many mental health counsellors look to help their clients have a concise whole body treatment plan that addresses all the needs of the client. In the United States, MHCs diagnose as well as treat mental illness, though the scope of practice for mental health practitioners varies from state to state.


United States

Licensing requirements can vary depending on which state a mental health counsellor practices in. Across the United States, mental health counselling licensure is required to independently practice, but can be practiced without a license if under close supervision of a licensed practitioner. Licensing titles for mental health counsellors vary from state to state: Licensed Mental Health Counsellor (LMHC), Licensed Professional Counsellor (LPC), Licensed Professional Clinical Counsellor (LPCC), and various forms of these titles may list differently per state statues. The title “Mental Health Counsellor” (or variation thereof) is often a protected title and thus it may be a violation of state law for persons to hold themselves as such without a proper credential.

A licensed mental health counsellor holds a minimum of a master’s degree in counselling or another closely related field in mental health care. After obtaining a master’s degree, mental health counsellors complete two to three years (depending on various state statutes) of clinical work under the supervision of a licensed or certified mental health professional. The qualifications for licensure are similar to those for marriage and family therapists and for clinical social workers. Becoming a counsellor and using it in daily life to help others to learn more about themselves is not a reason for someone to pursue a degree within this field. Ethics within this profession require the counsellor to remain professional to be able to adequately treat patients. Remaining detached as the witness to a client’s thought, feelings, and emotions can be a hard thing to do, but will ultimately reassure a patient that there are no judgement to what they will share. Guiding a patient to understand themselves and their choices is also another aspect of this profession.

What is the American Counselling Association?


The American Counselling Association (ACA) is a membership organisation representing licensed professional counsellors (LPCs), counselling students, and other counselling professionals in the United States. It is the world’s largest association exclusively representing professional counsellors.

The non-profit organisation serves more than 55,000 members from various practice settings, including mental health counselling, marriage and family counselling, addictions and substance use disorder counselling, school counselling, rehabilitation counselling, and career and employment counselling. Counselling professors and students are also represented.

Its stated mission is to “enhance the quality of life in society by promoting the development of professional counsellors, advancing the counselling profession, and using the profession and practice of counselling to promote respect for human dignity and diversity”.

The association headquarters is located in Alexandria, Virginia.

Brief History

The group was founded in 1952 as the American Personnel and Guidance Association (APGA), formed by the merger of the National Vocational Guidance Association (NVGA), the National Association of Guidance and Counselor Trainers (NAGCT), the Student Personnel Association for Teacher Education (SPATE), and the American College Personnel Association (ACPA).

The American Personnel and Guidance Association changed its name to the American Association of Counselling and Development (AACD) in 1983. On 01 July 1992, the association adopted its current name.

ACA presidents are elected by association membership for a one-year term.

Branches & Divisions

There are 20 chartered divisions within the American Counselling Association. These divisions provide leadership, resources and information unique to specialised areas and/or principles of counselling. Divisions are chartered by ACA elect division officers who govern their activities independently and carry a voice in national ACA governance. Members enhance their professional identity and practice by joining one or more divisions. ACA has 56 chartered branches in the US, Europe and Latin America.


ACA publishes books, journals and other educational materials on counselling topics. The organisation’s flagship magazine, Counselling Today, is published once a month and sent to all ACA members via US mail.

ACA Takes a Stand

In 2016, ACA moved its 2017 San Francisco Conference & Expo from Nashville, Tennessee to San Francisco, California after Tennessee’s legislature passed a discriminatory bill, HB 1840/SB 1556, targeting members of the LGBTQ community and others. The bill allowed counsellors in Tennessee to turn clients away based on “strongly held principles.'” “The legislation ‘denies services to those most in need, targets the counseling profession’ and violates the ACA’s code of ethics, the group said.”

“Tennessee’s governor, Republican Bill Haslam signed the bill into law on April 27, insisting it was not meant to be discriminatory. But opponents said the law permits therapists and counselors to deny treatment to gay, lesbian, transgender and other patients. After Haslam signed the bill, ACA members debated the issue and decided not to hold the meeting in Tennessee. Officials said the association received bids from 13 cities after deciding to nix Nashville, but chose San Francisco as ‘the best choice and … an inclusive and inviting city’ for its members.”

What is the National Board for Certified Counsellors?


The National Board for Certified Counsellors, Inc. and Affiliates (NBCC) is an international certifying organisation for professional counsellors in the United States. It is an independent, not-for-profit credentialing organisation based in Greensboro, North Carolina. The purpose of the organisation is to establish and monitor a national certification system for professional counsellors, to identify certified counsellors, and to maintain a register of them.

NBCC has more than 66,000 certified counsellors across the US and in more than 40 countries. Its examinations for professional counsellors are used by all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico to license counsellors.

Brief History

In December 1979, the American Personnel and Guidance Association (APGA) Board of Directors approved a plan to create a generic counsellor certification registry. In February 1982, the APGA President chose the members of the first NBCC Board, and the board’s first meeting was in April 1982. In July 1982, NBCC was incorporated as a not-for-profit entity separate from APGA. The separation ensured an unbiased certification process and an assumption of liability on the part of NBCC.

The NBCC established and now monitors a national certification system, to identify for professionals and the public those counsellors who have voluntarily sought and obtained certification. Unlike other professional mental health entities such as the American Counselling Association (ACA), the American Psychological Association (APA), and the Association for Counsellor Education and Supervision (ACES), NBCC does not have members. Instead, NBCC sets its own policies and procedures for national certification in professional counselling, administers the National Counsellor Examination to applicants, and keeps a register of counsellors who achieve certification.

Since 2001, NBCC has worked to pass legislation adding licensed professional counsellors (LPC) and marriage and family therapists (MFT) to Medicare. Medicare is the largest health care programme in the United States and currently recognises psychiatrists, psychologists, clinical social workers and psychiatric nurses for outpatient mental health services, but does not reimburse LPCs or MFTs for behavioural health services. As a result, a client who sees an LPC or MFT has to immediately cease therapy at the age of 65, when the government mandates that they must leave their health insurance to enrol in Medicare. NBCC believes that this Medicare exclusion of LPCs and MFTs should be removed, because they can play an important role in a functioning mental health system by maximising the capacity of the behavioural health workforce.


The certification programme recognises counsellors who have met predetermined standards in their training, experience, and performance on the National Counsellor Examination for Licensure and Certification (NCE).

National Certified Counsellor (NCC)

NBCC’s flagship certification is the National Certified Counsellor (NCC). The NCC is a generic certification for professional counsellors and does not designate a particular specialty area. Holding an NCC indicates that a counsellor is nationally board certified. There are currently over 63,000 NCCs in the US and many other countries.

The current requirements to become an NCC include:

  • A graduate degree in counselling (or one with a major in counselling) from a regionally accredited college or university.
  • At least 48 semester hours of graduate-level coursework, including at least one course in each of nine specified areas, as well as at least six semester hours of supervised field experience.
  • At least 3,000 hours of post-master’s counselling experience in an applied setting over a minimum of 24 months, 100 of which must be supervised by a qualified supervisor.
  • A passing score on the associated National Counsellor Exam (NCE).

After 01 January 2022, NCC applicants will be required to have a degree from a counsellor education programme accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counselling and Related Educational Programmes (CACREP), which includes a minimum of 60 semester hours of coursework.

The NCC is the board certification for counsellors. It is not required for supervised or independent practice; it identifies counsellors who have voluntarily sought and met established professional standards, and who continue to fulfil requirements governing continuing education credits and certification renewal. Certification is not a substitute for state-mandated licensure. However, many states use the NCE examination as part of their licensing requirements.

Specialty Certifications

In addition to the NCC, NBCC administers three specialty certifications that each have the NCC credential as a prerequisite, along with other requirements.

  • Certified Clinical Mental Health Counsellor (CCMHC).
  • Master Addictions Counsellor (MAC).
  • National Certified School Counsellor (NCSC).

Affiliates and Divisions

Since its establishment in 1982, NBCC has expanded to include:

  • The Centre for Credentialing & Education (CCE):
    • Created in 1995, CCE provides practitioners and organisations with assessments, business support services, and credentialing in a variety of fields, including counselling supervision, coaching, distance counselling, and human services.
    • CCE manages the Mental Health Facilitator (MHF) programme, which educates community members and leaders in providing basic mental health care and resources to their neighbours, especially in locations where mental health care is difficult to access.
  • NBCC International (NBCC-I):
    • Created in 2003, NBCC-I’s purpose is to promote the counselling profession worldwide.
    • With a focus on cultural sensitivity and understanding, as well as public awareness of the meaning of quality in professional counselling, NBCC-I offers programmes and institutes all over the world. NBCC-I also manages the international portion of the MHF programme.
  • The NBCC Foundation (NBCCF):
    • Created in 2005, NBCCF uses scholarships, fellowships, and capacity-building grants to encourage counsellors and counsellors-in-training to pursue careers as professional counsellors serving high-priority populations.
    • Increasing access to mental health care in rural, military, and minority communities is a major focus for NBCCF.
  • The European Board for Certified Counsellors (EBCC):
    • Created in 2010, EBCC is the hub for NBCC-I’s work in Europe.
    • EBCC provides support for European countries that are developing their own professional counselling efforts.
  • The Professional Counsellor (TPC):
    • Published by NBCC since 2011, TPC is a peer-reviewed, open-access, academic journal.
    • It is published online in a continuous format, and covers a wide range of topics including: mental and behavioural health counselling; school counselling; career counselling; couple, marriage, and family counselling; counselling supervision; theory development; professional counselling ethics; international counselling and multicultural issues; programme applications; and integrative reviews from counselling and related fields.