Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy
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How do I become a Counsellor or Psychotherapist accredited by the IACP?

To become a Counsellor / Psychotherapist and accredited by the IACP it is necessary to fulfil two components; academic and practical.

Academic Requirements

The academic requirements are to have completed an IACP accredited course this link will direct you to the list of accredited courses that are available IACP List of Accredited Courses. All courses listed adhere to the IACP’s Course Accreditation Criteria. Courses can be part time or full time.

Practical Requirements

The practical requirement is to complete 450 supervised client therapy hours once you have successfully completed your course. There are other requirements which can be found at these links Join IACP & First Time Accreditation (

What is the benefit of doing an Accredited IACP course?

Students attending an IACP Accredited Courses will be assured that the course is sufficient for entry as a Student Member of IACP. Graduates of IACP Accredited Courses will be assured that the course meets the training/educational requirement for individual IACP Accredited Membership.

What is the purpose of Course Accreditation?

The IACP was established to promote standards and quality within the counselling / psychotherapy profession. Course Accreditation is in place to ensure that there is a standard for counselling and psychotherapy training in Ireland. This process ensures that courses adhere to the Course Accreditation Criteria, which can be downloaded from this link Course Accreditation Criteria (

The Course Accreditation Criteria is a document that was written to address all aspects of training and to ensure that within each aspect a minimum standard is set. This standard ensures that trainees are experienced and adept in all aspects of counselling and psychotherapy practice.

It is hoped that the opportunity to acquire ‘Accredited’ status will encourage the staff of training courses to monitor and develop their performance in ways which are creative and which lead to an enhancement of the quality of training on offer. 

If I successfully complete an Accredited Courses, can I automatically become an Accredited Member of IACP?

The successful completion of any course does not in itself guarantee accreditation, as it is only one requirement of an individual application. The other requirements for accreditation can be found in the 'Join Us' section of the website.

What course would the IACP recommend that I do?

The IACP cannot recommend specific accredited courses. All registered IACP accredited courses adhere to the IACP Course Accreditation Criteria and are monitored on an on-going basis. 

The course I plan on doing is not listed on the website; does this mean that it is not valid for accreditation?

A course which is not accredited by IACP may be in line with the IACP Course Accreditation Criteria and therefore valid for accreditation however the IACP have not verified this through the IACP course accreditation process. There is no guarantee therefore that the course does in fact adhere to the IACP Course Accreditation Criteria. 

My Course Provider offers a number of counselling and psychotherapy courses, however there is only one course listed as an accredited course on the IACP website. Is the IACP Accredited status not applied to all the courses available if it is the same course but just occurs on a different day or in a different location?

The IACP accredit courses separately. Although some Course Providers may run the same course in different locations or at different times in the same location this does not automatically ensure IACP accreditation.

Each course is different and is treated so by the IACP. While the course content and structure may be the same the staff, facilities and student cohort will be different and these are crucial element that cannot be overlooked by the IACP in course accreditation. Owing to this the IACP must treat each course separately in its assessment for IACP course accreditation.

Please Note: Accreditation is not attached to a Course Provider it is awarded to a specific course on a specific day at a specific time and in a specific location. When choosing a course please note the location, day and time specified on the IACP Register of Accredited Courses list. 

The Course Provider has advertised that the course meets the IACP criteria for course accreditation; can I assume that it would be awarded IACP accreditation?

A Course Provider cannot assume that they fulfil the necessary requirements for IACP Course Accreditation. In the past applicants from non-IACP accredited courses have not been awarded accreditation as their course did not meet the IACP's Course Accreditation Criteria.   

The Course Provider informed me that they have applied for accreditation; does this mean the course will be accredited?

The IACP cannot disclose any information relating to a Course Providers application for course accreditation.

If I have completed a course which is not accredited, what course details will be required when applying for accreditation?

Full details of requirements for IACP Accreditation can be found at 'Join Us' section of the website. If the course is an non-IACP Accredited Course, it is essential to include with the application course details showing that the courses criteria are equivalent to the current IACP Course Accreditation Criteria.

Please note: Accreditation is not guaranteed. The decision as to whether a non-IACP accredited course is satisfactory and acceptable is at the discretion of the Accreditation Committee, who decides whether applications meet the requirements for accreditation and recommend whether or not the award of individual accreditation is ratified by the Executive Committee.  

If my course was not awarded accreditation, will my students be eligible for individual accreditation with IACP?

Courses which have been refused accreditation by IACP, or which do not satisfy IACP criteria are unlikely to be acceptable for individual accreditation purposes.

Is there any distance learning courses with IACP accredited membership?

There are no distance learning courses accredited with the IACP. 

I am living in Australia and would like to complete a Counselling / Psychotherapy course over there will I be accredited if I return to Ireland?

There are no IACP accredited courses outside Ireland. The IACP have a reciprocity agreement with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).

If you complete a non-IACP accredited course and are looking for accreditation in Ireland you will be asked to demonstrate that your course meets the IACP Course Accreditation Criteria. This can be downloaded from this link Course Accreditation Criteria (

You will then be asked to fulfil the practical requirements for accreditation which entail 450 supervised client therapy hours. All requirements for accreditation are outlined on these links Join IACP; Pre-Accredited Membership ( & First Time Accreditation (

Please Note: When individuals complete a non-IACP accredited courses, accreditation will be at the discretion of the Accreditation Committee and is not guaranteed that accreditation will be awarded.

What is the shortest route possible into a career in counselling / psychotherapy?

There is no short route into the profession if you are seeking IACP accreditation, IACP accreditation takes time and dedication.

The list of currently accredited IACP courses is available at this link on our website IACP List of Accredited Courses. To adhere to the IACP Course Accreditation Criteria courses must be at least 2 years in duration.  The courses listed range in duration (from 2-5 years), part time and full time, location and price.

Once you complete the academic requirement you will be asked to fulfil the practical requirement for accreditation which is 450 supervised client therapy hours this takes a minimum of 2-5 years to complete. 

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