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Frequently Asked Questions

What is counselling and psychotherapy?

Counselling and psychotherapy are professional activities that utilise an interpersonal relationship to enable people to develop understanding about themselves and make changes in their lives. Professional counsellors and psychotherapists work within a clearly contracted, principles relationship that enables individuals to obtain assistance in exploring and resolving issues they wish to manage.

Professional counselling and psychotherapy:

Although counselling and psychotherapy overlap considerably, there are also some differences.

Originally prepared by a working party chaired by Dr Jan Grant, Edith Cowan University, and adopted at the 1997 conference of the Standing Conference of Educators and Trainers in Counselling and Psychotherapy, later to become PACFA.

How do counsellors and psychotherapists obtain training?

There are a number of legitimate and well established paths for training in these areas.
They are offered through a variety of training providers. PACFA has set national standards for training in consultation with a wide number of providers. To view these in full please refer to and go to the training standards.

How do I choose a counsellor or psychotherapist?

Some hints on choosing a counsellor or psychotherapist include:

What should I ask the counsellor or psychotherapists when I ring them?

Counsellors and psychotherapists often receive referrals from other health practitioners eg doctors, specialists, psychiatrists, mental health practitioners. They can obtain information about CAPA members via the website and the Find a Practitioner page.

PDFs give me trouble. Any Advice?

Here are some of your common questions answered by Adobe:

If you need to download the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader this may help: