This course aims to provide a good foundation in Counselling and knowledge on related theories in the area of mental health & abnormal psychology, sociology and psychology and their application to counselling. The practical aspect of the course includes basic counselling skills and personal development.

The course is conducted over a year during weekends at the Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of Sri Jayewardenepura, and the University Psychiatry Unit, Teaching Hospital Colombo South. Students who successfully complete both practical and theory components are awarded the diploma.




  • Age between 20 - 55 years

Minimum Qualification

  • Pass 3 subjects in one sitting at the Advanced Level Examination

Additional Qualifications

  • Possess a degree from a recognized university (recognized by the University Grants Commission)
  • Have a certificate from recognized nursing school and registration with Ceylon Medical Council
  • Have a diploma in social work from Ceylon School of Social work
  • Posses a license to practice as an occupational therapist in Sri Lanka obtained from Ceylon Medical Council




General Objectives

At the end of the training programme a trainee should be able to;

  • Function as a competent counselor who is capable of counselling the service seeker with compassion and highest ethical standards.
  • Identify those with special needs and refer them to appropriate agencies.


Specific Objectives

At the end of the course a trainee should be able to;

  1. Describe the concepts of counselling
  2. Describe the basic concepts of sociology relevant to counselling
  3. Describe the basic concepts of psychology relevant to counselling
  4. Describe the concepts of health (mental, physical and social)
  5. Describe human behavior and deviations from the norm
  6. Demonstrate appropriate communication skills
  7. Identify the psychological needs of service users and provide appropriate support
  8. Identify clients with serious mental illnesses and refer to relevant mental health services
  9. Identify existing support services in Sri Lanka and refer as needed
  10. Identify the existing support services in Sri Lanka
  11. Identify and refer to appropriate support services when necessary
  12. Function with highest ethical standards




Consist of 19 modules, the course is delivered in a variety of modes including lectures, group discussions and practical exercises and role plays in a learning atmosphere. Students will be awarded 30 credits for successful completion of each module.


Module 01 Introduction to Psychology and Counselling
Module 02 Theories of Personality
Module 03 Treatment Methods
Module 04 Developmental Psychology and Life Cycle
Module 05 Self Development
Module 06 Elements of Anatomy, Physiology and Bio-chemistry
Module 07 Basic concepts of Sociology relevant to counselling
Module 08 mental Health and Abnormal Psychology
Module 09 Communication and Counselling Skills Development
Module 10 Problem Solving Counselling
Module 11 Special Applications of Counselling
Module 12 Knowledge of support services in Sri Lanka to mentally ill and socially disabled
Module 13 Referral Counselling
Module 14 Ethics in Counselling
Module 15 Electives
Module 16 Clinical attachment programme
Module 17 Project work
Module 18 Social Responsibility
Module 19 Nutrition Counselling

  • Language of instructions - Sinhala and English
  • Course fee - 75,600/-
    This payment has to be made in full at the time of registration.




Course commences each year in February. Applications are called in September/October through advertisements in the Sunday Sinhala and English newspapers. Sample application will be available online when the course is advetised in the newspapers. Suitable applicants are then called for an interview. The course is conducted in the Sinhala/English medium.

Department Telephone Number : 011 2802497, 011 2758599