Theories of Counselling & Psychotherapy

Curriculum Guideline

Effective Date:
Course Code
PSYC 3375
Theories of Counselling & Psychotherapy
Humanities & Social Sciences
Start Date
End Term
Semester Length
Max Class Size
Contact Hours
Lecture 4hrs. per week/semester
Method(s) Of Instruction
Learning Activities

Methods of instruction may include:

  • lecture
  • group activities
  • presentations
  • audiovisual media
  • guest lectures.
Course Description
This course surveys the major theories and techniques of contemporary counselling and psychotherapy, and explores topics such as evidence-based practice, culture and diversity, and common factors important to successful therapy. This course will help prepare students who are considering advanced study in counselling and psychotherapy.
Course Content
  1. Science, Diversity, and Ethics in Counselling and Psychotherapy.
  2. The Effectiveness of Contemporary Counselling and Psychotherapy.
  3. Evidence-Based Practice.
  4. Common Factors in Counselling and Psychotherapy.
  5. Contextual and Collaborative Assessment.
  6. Psychodynamic Theory and Techniques.
  7. Interpersonal Theory and Techniques.
  8. Humanistic Theory and Techniques.
  9. Cognitive Behavioural Theory and Techniques.
  10. Narrative Therapy and Social Constructivism.
  11. Family Theory and Techniques.
Learning Outcomes

At the conclusion of the course the successful student will be able to demonstrate knowledge of:

  1. Contemporary counselling and psychotherapy theories.
  2. Contemporary counselling and psychotherapy interventions.
  3. The effectiveness of contemporary counselling and psychotherapy interventions.
  4. Common factors and skills that are core to all counselling and psychotherapy interventions.
  5. Evidence-based practice and empirically supported therapies.
  6. Cultural and diversity issues in counselling and psychotherapy.
  7. Ethical issues in counselling and psychotherapy.
Means of Assessment

The course evaluation will be in accordance with Douglas College and Psychology Department policies. Evaluations will be based on the course objectives. The specific evaluation criteria will be provided by the instructor at the beginning of the semester.


An example of a possible evaluation scheme would be:

Research paper                                    20%                                           

Three exams at 20% each                     60%

Presentation                                         20%                                 

Total                                                  100%

Textbook Materials

Textbooks and Materials to be Purchased by Students:


Textbook(s) such as the following, the list to be updated periodically:

Sue, D., & Sue, D.M. (2008). Foundations of counselling and psychotherapy: Evidence-based practices for a  

    diverse society. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons Canada.


Capuzzi, D. & Gross, D. (2010). Counselling and psychotherapy: Theories and interventions (5th ed.).

    Alexandria, VA: American Counselling Association.