BACP is recognised as the leading accreditation body for training courses in counselling and psychotherapy. We build strong collaborative relationships with our accredited course providers, working together to network, share knowledge and develop the highest standards of professional practice.

Benefits of course accreditation

  • gives external verification that your course meets stringent training, practice and quality assurance criteria
  • improves recruitment of students and course staff
  • free listing in our accredited courses directory, used by potential students to search for courses
  • use of the BACP accredited course logo for advertising, publicity and information materials
  • ongoing working relationship with BACP Professional Standards to ensure course continues to reflect highest practice standards


To be eligible for course accreditation:

  • the course provider must be a current organisational member of BACP
  • the majority of the course staff team must hold BACP or equivalent professional accreditation
  • all course staff must be members of a counselling or psychotherapy body that has a complaints procedure

The course must:

  • provide in-depth training in counselling or psychotherapy to practitioner level
  • include at least 400 hours of classroom-based tuition
  • include an integral supervised placement of at least 100 client hours
  • have been through the whole teaching and evaluation cycle from recruitment and admissions to graduation

We cannot accept applications from courses which have not yet graduated a cohort of students.

Please check the guide below for full details:

Accreditation of training courses - eligibility guide (pdf 0.6MB)


To apply, you'll need to complete a detailed written application showing how your course meets a range of criteria, together with supporting evidence. The criteria include:

  • admissions procedure
  • teaching and learning
  • knowledge
  • client work, placements and supervision
  • professional context
  • student assessment
  • course completion and evaluation

New applications are individually assessed by two professional assessors. If your application passes this stage, our assessment team will visit you to meet with staff and students, observe teaching and review coursework.


Accreditation is awarded for five years. To retain your accreditation for the full term, you'll need to:

  • maintain your BACP organisational membership
  • comply with the Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions
  • continue to meet all criteria for the course accreditation scheme
  • complete an annual monitoring report
  • inform us of any proposed changes to the course or the organisation, before they are implemented (see below)
  • abide by the course accreditation terms and conditions

If you do not meet these requirements, or if we uphold a professional conduct complaint against you, we may withdraw, suspend or impose conditions on your accreditation. We may also visit you for a quality assurance check. You will be charged for this visit.

You must inform students immediately if your accredited status ends or is suspended.

Annual monitoring process

We'll send you an annual monitoring report form every autumn. We'll assess your report and provide feedback on any points that require consideration. We may also request further information which you must provide. We'll also make any necessary updates to the accredited courses directory.

Renew your course accreditation

You'll need to renew your course accreditation every five years. The process is similar to your original accreditation, so advanced planning and preparation will make your renewal application less time-consuming and more likely to be successful.

We'll send you are renewal form and guidance on how to renew your accreditation six months before it expires. 

Course accreditation renewal process (pdf 0.3MB)

Proposed changes to an accredited course

You may need to use the following documents to inform us of any proposed changes to your course or your organisation. Please contact us before using any of these forms to discuss your individual circumstances.

Additional delivery procedure (pdf 98KB)

Additional delivery application form (doc 96KB)

Developmental changes procedure (pdf 112KB)

Developmental changes application form (doc 92KB)

Change of premises (pdf 60KB)

Extension to a course's accredited status (doc 0.1MB)

Organisational mergers policy (pdf 0.1MB)

Organisational mergers application form (doc 0.1MB)

If you have any questions about course accreditation, please email