One of the key factors influencing a student’s choice is the skills and training of the student counsellor. A good student counsellor also needs to ensure that he/she works with all staff and teachers at the institution to ensure that subject choices in institution are appropriate for a student’s career aspirations and higher education study choice. Parents and students will often both be involved in the decision-making process. The student counselling will :
- improve quality counselling in institutions
- help students make the right choices
- guide students to the right career paths
- access and understand information about the options available
- provide comprehensive information on the higher education programmes on offer
- make students aware that all the academic choices are not linked to career choices, the job markets keep changing
- allow students to make their own reasonable and practical choice where possible
- encourage information seeking, and independent learning
- encourage students to seek advice from multiple reliable information sources
- increase awareness of what is offered
- facilitate students’ and parents’ decision-making
- provide sources of information which assist in making academic/career decisions
- understand policies, procedures and requirements
- be familiar with requirements for entry into higher education institutions, from pre-requisites for courses, academic and English requirements, foundation programmes and pathways, through to applications and acceptance
- understand university procedures, deadlines and start times
- prepare students for cultural differences, living, and academic study in another country.
To address the needs of student counsellors, the on-line training programme has been enhanced for student counsellors through the addition of :
- reference materials including a specially written new publication for counsellors to use in their institution or workplace setting
- tailored face-to-face training workshops.
- training in using tools to assist in the counselling process
- support through collaboration, British Council and peer to peer support.
This training is designed to provide student counsellors with resources, guidance and tools to build their capacity to meet their specialist needs, working with their students in education settings.
Materials were developed to support the counsellors in their institutions, which have been provided through the publication ‘Student Counsellor Training – international education information and advice’. The guide has been produced specifically for the student counsellors. It is a comprehensive publication, bringing together the elements of the online and face-to-face training. It provides guidance, advice and information for counselling students for an international education in the UK. It also contains ‘how-to’ guides which can be used for classroom resources.
It contains the following sections :
- the Student Counsellor Training Programme
- introduction to the Guide
- meeting your students’ counselling and information needs
- the stages of the decision-making process
- making effective and creative use of resources
- effective communications
- tools to help you and your students through the decision-making process
- decision-making factors students need to consider
- applying to study
Tailored face-to-face training sessions and workshops include the following elements:
- introduction to the course –to provide a clear direction in the amount of time required to study each section of the on-line training.
- international education – transforming lives, transforming futures
- facilitating student decision-making
- choosing courses of study
- preparing for international education
- foundation programmes, routes and pathways
- quality assurance and university rankings.
During the training through collaboration of British Council staff and fellow counsellors we will ensure peer support and mentoring. Connecting counsellors for British Council and peer support, best-practice sharing and shared resources during the training is an important element of this programme. Throughout the training counsellors could use the facility of using collaboration tools. Networking of counsellors will be facilitated through the British Council, by setting up groups of counsellors who have enrolled on the training.
The training programme will be delivered through online portal. Each training participant will have password accessed individual portal. The units will be self-manageable. The training will run for a period of 8 study weeks. Approximately 3 to 4 hours of study per week will be required for the training. There will be self-assessments available in the online portal. At the end of the training participants there will be a end of training final assessment.
Three types of certificate are offered for this training programme :
- completion with pass certificate (those who will achieve above 50%)
- completion with distinction certificate (those who will achieve above 75%)
- certificate of attendance (those who will attend only the training sessions).
Studying the course is beneficial in several ways. The certificate* is recognised by UK institutions, and it demonstrates to students and parents that you have gained knowledge in the above areas. Furthermore, it will enable you to access support more easily from the British Council globally and in your country.
*Please note that the certificate is awarded to the candidate undertaking the course, and not the institution to which the participant works in.