Student Counsellor Required: Edinburgh, Scotland


Heriot Watt University University 

Grade and Salary:              Grade 7, £36,023.00 – £45,585.00 (Pro-rata)

FTE and Working Pattern:  0.6 fte- 3 days a week, hybrid permanent role

Holidays:                              33 days (pro-rata), plus 9 buildings closed days

Job purpose

Heriot-Watt University, in common with all other Higher Education Institutions, has seen a significant rise in both the extent and severity of mental health difficulties in the student community. The role focuses on assessing the needs of students who present with emotional difficulties in order to ensure that appropriate interventions are delivered. This will range from providing on-going counselling; providing therapeutic support; making referrals to external agencies; and liaising with external professionals to ensure appropriate care and support.

Main duties

  • Undertake initial assessments of students presenting at the Counselling and Support service to assess their needs, monitor risk, and offer appropriate response.
  • Provide high quality counselling and support according to the professional practice agreed with the Counselling Manager and in compliance with the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy Ethical Framework;
  • Liaise with Wellbeing colleagues, academic staff, and external services to negotiate appropriate support and responses for individual students
  • Provide therapeutic support to a wide range of students to address their presenting emotional or psychological issues, including those who may have mental health difficulties
  • Work flexibly from home or campus, according to service needs
  • Participate in service development and liaise with other professional staff, as directed by the Counselling Manager
  • Maintain appropriate records and make use of the IT based systems and provide written reports as directed by the Counselling Manager or Head of Student Wellbeing.
  • Assist in the development and delivery of Wellbeing workshops and training for students and staff
  • Undertake continuing professional development as appropriate and engage in external clinical supervision, and case management with the Counselling Manager
  • Any other task as requested by the Counselling Manager or Head of Student Wellbeing

Person Specification

This section details the attributes e.g. skills, knowledge/qualifications and competencies which are required in order to undertake the full remit of the role.

Education & Qualifications


  • Professional counselling qualification
  • BACP accredited counsellor, UKCP registered psychotherapist, or HCPC registered counselling psychologist or eligible for such accreditation


  • Extensive experience in providing counselling
  • Extensive experience of conducting Mental health assessments including risk assessments
  • Experience in working within student services

Competencies, Skills & Knowledge   

  • Highly developed assessment skills and the ability to make professional judgments as to which interventions are most appropriate
  • Highly developed practitioner and therapeutic skills with the ability to provide a range of interventions, based on assessed need
  • Capacity to work with a range of professionals
  • Experience of developing and delivering training materials and workshops
  • Excellent organizational, communication and networking skills
  • Outstanding customer service skills, dealing with a broad range of students and staff
  • Ability to work flexibly to plan and prioritise workload, and to meet deadlines
  • Effective team working
  • Excellent verbal and written English language skills
  • Excellent IT skills including sound working knowledge of Microsoft Office applications,
  • Understanding of the factors affecting student mental health
  • Understanding of equality and diversity issues
  • Knowledge of relevant legislation


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