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 0.6MB)

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

Return your completed application by post, with payment for your membership fees, to:

Membership Services, BACP House, 15 St John’s Business Park, Lutterworth, Leicestershire LE17 4HB

We can't accept application forms by email.

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

Upgrade from student member

To upgrade from student member to individual member, log in to your member profile and upload a copy of your qualification for approval. Or you can email with a copy of your graduation certificate, or a letter on headed paper from your place of study confirming that you have successfully completed and graduated from your course. There's no need to complete a new application form. 

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.

Renew your individual membership

Your membership lasts for 12 months. We will send you a renewal notice about six weeks before your renewal date.

You'll need to log into your account to complete the membership terms and conditions, advise us of any changes to your circumstances and pay your membership fees. (If you pay by Direct Debit, your existing payment arrangement will continue unless you ask us to change it.)

If you have been an individual member for 24 months, you will not be able to renew your membership unless you have joined the BACP Register.

Reinstate your individual membership

If you do not renew, your membership will lapse on your renewal date. You have up to 31 days to go online and reinstate your membership.

After 31 days, you will need to contact us and complete our reinstatement forms. Please email