Benefits of individual membership


To be eligible for individual membership you must have successfully completed and graduated from a counselling or psychotherapy practitioner training course. Your course must have involved at least one year full time or two years’ part time classroom based tuition.

You must also have completed a supervised placement of at least 100 client contact hours as an integral part of your course. Your placement hours must have been:

  • carried out with genuine clients, rather than peers from your course, for example
  • in an appropriate setting with appropriate clients. Counselling services are an ideal setting as they are likely to assess whether clients are suitable for your level of competence. Your training provider should not allow placement hours through private practice or with client groups that have not been pre-assessed as suitable - such as children and young people or those with complex mental health needs.
  • assessed (or marked) as an integral part of your training
  • supervised. Supervision is important at all stages of seeing clients. For trainees, we recommend a ratio of one hour's supervision to eight hours counselling. We also recommend you see your supervisor fortnightly.

We can’t accept qualifications in disciplines such as psychology, hypnotherapy, social work or coaching, or those gained through online or distance learning.


As an individual member of BACP you'll be bound by our Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions and our Professional Conduct Procedure. You must read and agree to these as part of your application process.

You should also read our Membership policies and protocols

All individual members must work towards becoming a registered member. You need to join the BACP Register within 24 months of becoming an individual member.

How to apply

If you meet all the requirements above, you can apply to join BACP as an individual member online.

It should only take you 10 to 15 minutes to complete your application and you'll receive a confirmation email when it's been successfully submitted.

Alternatively, please download and complete the application form below: 

Membership application form (pdf 2MB)

To support your application, you'll need to provide a copy of your graduation certificate. You'll find full details in the application pack.

While the coronavirus guidelines are in force, we're unable to collect our mail regularly so please do not send us any documents or payments by post. Please use the online application process if you can, but if you need to complete the pdf version return it by email to

It may take up to 28 days to process your application.

International qualifications

If you completed a training course outside the UK, you must enclose a course handbook or transcript with your application so we can assess the level of training undertaken. Any evidence you provide should be translated into English by a certified translator.


Membership subscriptions run for a year and are reviewed annually.

If you’re receiving certain state benefits or have no personal income, you may be entitled to pay a reduced fee. You’ll need to provide evidence to support your claim, such as a letter from the Benefits Agency or a bank statement, with your application. See our Reduced fee policy.

How to renew, reinstate or upgrade your membership