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Guidance Counselling & Lifespan Development MA

Course Details

Course Code: MAGCLDTPAD

Available: Part- Time

Duration: 2 Years

Faculty: Education and Health Sciences

Course Type: Taught

Fees: For Information on Fees, see section below.

Contact(s):

Name:
Dr. Lucy Hearne
Address:
School of Education
Email:
Lucy.hearne@ul.ie
Tel:
+353-61-202931

Brief Description

The focus of the professional MA in Guidance Counselling and Lifespan Development is to qualify practicing teachers and other professionals to become professionally qualified Guidance Counsellors competent to practice in a range of settings.  The professional Guidance Counsellor employs specific skills with individuals in the areas of personal, social, educational and career counselling.  To fulfil this role, trainees on the programme are educated in a broad range of knowledge, skills and competencies in the context of a lifelong learning framework.

This MA programme is approved by the Department of Education and Skills for the purposes of employment as a guidance counsellor in the post primary and further education sector.

Master of Arts (MA) in Guidance Counselling and Lifespan Development (Level 9, 90 ECTS credits)

Introduction

The focus of the professional MA in Guidance Counselling and Lifespan Development is to qualify practicing teachers and other professionals to become professionally qualified Guidance Counsellors competent to practice in a range of settings.  The professional Guidance Counsellor employs specific skills with individuals in the areas of personal, social, educational and career counselling.  To fulfil this role, trainees on the programme are educated in a broad range of knowledge, skills and competencies in the context of a lifelong learning framework.   

There is a very strong focus on the trainee’s personal development on the MA programme which aims to promote self-awareness and insight for a deeper appreciation of the guidance counselling process with clients across the lifespan.  Therefore, it is a requirement of the programme that trainees avail of external counselling provided by an accredited counsellor, psychologist or psychotherapist in each academic year of the MA programme.  Details of which are provided to trainees when they commence on the programme. 

Programme Delivery
The programme is offered over two academic years on a part-time basis. It consists of a combination of seven taught modules, professional practice placements in Year 2 and a research dissertation in Year 2.  The average class contact time per week for each of the first three semesters of the programme is 6 hours, with a reduction in Semester 2, Year 2 to take account of the demands of undertaking a research dissertation.  It is important to note that this professional programme requires a significant level of personal commitment from participants in terms of attendance, contribution, self-directed learning, assignment work and their own time management.

This MA programme is approved by the Department of Education and Skills for the purposes of employment as a guidance counsellor in the post primary and further education sector.

Programme Centre: University of Limerick.

The curriculum is underpinned by an andragogical approach that aims to develop graduates who are knowledgeable, self-directed, articulate, collaborative, reflective and ethically aware of professional standards in guidance counselling.

Year 1 Year 2
Semester 1: 
  • Counselling Theory and Practice 1
  • Professional Practice in Guidance Counselling
Semester 1: 
  • Counselling Theory and Practice 2
  • Contemporary Perspectives on Vocational Development and Progression Across the Lifespan
  • Practicum 1: Educational Practice Placement
Semester 2:  
  • Psychology of Human Development
  • Theory and Skills of Experiential Group Learning
Semester 2: 
  • Guidance in Adult & Continuing Education
  • Practicum 2: Educational Practice Placement
  • Dissertation 1
Summer Semester: 
  • Theory and Practice of Psychological Assessment
  • Advanced Research Methods in Guidance Counselling
Summer Semester: 
  • Dissertation 2

Content of modules can be found by using the search option on the book of modules.

Candidates for this initial qualification in guidance counselling shall be required to possess either of the following:

A Degree in Education at 2.2 or above from a concurrent undergraduate programme, or a Higher Diploma/Masters in Education, or an approved equivalent professional teaching qualification or

  • An Honours Degree at 2.2 or above in a cognate discipline such as psychology, social and community work, human resources and health sciences. 
  • Consideration will also be given to candidates in line with UL's Policy for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). 

Where candidates are non-native English language speakers, they must also satisfy the English Language Requirements of UL. 

As the number of places on the programme is limited the selection process is competitive and will include short listing prior to an interview (group and individual on the same day). 

It is a UL requirement that students taking this post-graduate programme will need to undergo a Garda clearance process.

What to Include with your Application

  • Full degree transcript and certificates/awards (including English translation if applicable)
  • English language qualifications (if English is not your first language) 
  • A copy of your birth certificate/passport
  • Please state your centre preference on the application form
  • An up-to-date CV in word format
  • A 500 word Personal Statement describing your interest and reason for applying for the programme.

 English Language Requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English must provide evidence of either prior successful completion of a degree qualification taught through the medium of English or meet one of the criteria below (no longer than two years prior to application):

Acceptable English Language qualifications include the following:

  • Matriculation examinations from European countries where English is presented as a subject and an acceptable level is achieved
  • Irish Leaving Certificate English –Ordinary Level Grade D or above
  • TOEFL – 580 (paper based) or 90 (internet based)
  • IELTS – Minimum score of 6.5 with no less than 6 in any one component.
  • English Test for English and Academic Purposes (ETAPP) – Grade C1
  • GCE ‘O’ level English Language/GCSE English Language – Grade C or above
  • Cambridge Assessment English –Certificate of Proficiency in English - Grade C / Certificate in Advanced English Grade B
  • GCE Examination Boards – Oxford Delegacy of Local Examinations – Grade C / Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate – School Certificate Pass 1-6 / University of London Entrance and School Examinations Council – School Certificate Pass 1-6

Results in examinations other than those listed above may also be accepted as meeting our English language requirements. Contact the International Education Division for advice.
 

Graduate of this programme have availed of opportunities to work as qualified guidance counsellors in the post-primary, further, higher and adult education sector, public employment sector and private practice.  They have also progressed into further professional studies and research.