About our service

Being a student presents a unique set of expectations and experiences that can have an impact on your wellbeing.

Our counselling service can provide you with free and confidential counselling to assist you in increasing in your sense of wellbeing and to achieve academic success.

Why you might want to speak to a counsellor

We offer therapeutic services when you want to talk about:

  • how to manage your safety
  • experiencing personal violence, sexual assault, domestic violence, and harassment
  • feeling highly distressed and seeking assistance with short-term strategies
  • experiencing difficulties adjusting to university life, including homesickness
  • exam stress and/or difficulties managing time and priorities
  • experiencing all levels of stress
  • experiencing difficulties with family and relationship issues that impact on your ability to study
  • sexuality and gender identity questions
  • all other factors which impacts upon student life or general wellbeing.

Your privacy and confidentially

We will ask you about personal and health information to allow us to provide you counselling services and ongoing support.

Your case may be discussed confidentially within our team to ensure we provide you the best outcomes. We will keep your personal and health information confidential.

Our responsibility

Our team follows the Code of Ethical Conduct by the Psychology Board of Australia and the Code of Ethical Conduct of the Australian Psychological Society; OR the Code of Ethical Conduct set out by the Australian Association of Social Workers, depending on their profession.

Storage of your information​

Information we collect about you will be stored securely and only kept for legal requirements before it is confidentially destroyed.​

See our Charles Sturt Privacy Management Plan for more information.

What to expect when talking with a Counsellor

  • Why see a counsellor

    You or a friend may want to speak to us if you are experiencing:

    • difficulties adjusting to university life, including homesickness
    • exam stress and/or difficulties managing your time and priorities
    • stress, irritability or anger
    • mild to moderate mental health issues, including anxiety and depression
    • difficulties with family and relationship issues
    • grief or loss
    • alcohol and drug issues
    • sexuality and gender identity questions
    • anything which impacts upon your life or general well-being.
  • What happens in counselling

    Counselling is:

    • voluntary
    • confidential within ethical and legal constraints
    • independent of Faculty and other university staff
    • non-judgemental.

    Counselling is not:

    • an indication you are ‘crazy’, ‘weak’, or ‘stupid’
    • two friends chatting
    • a means of discipline or punishment
    • telling you what you should or shouldn’t do.

    What happens in appointments

    • Appointments last for 50 minutes.
    • First appointment: Confidentiality is discussed and we spend time getting to know you. We may ask about how you are coping with university life, what your family and friends are like, and what feelings and thoughts you have been experiencing. This is to help work out the best solution for you.
    • Repeat Appointments: You can speak to us just once or a few times. Time between appointments is generally 1-2 weeks. This will allow you to try the strategies discussed with you.
    • Referrals: We may suggest that you see a doctor, a dietician, or another service or counsellor in town. We will try to recommend free or low-cost services.
    • Remember, these are your appointments so ask or tell us anything that is on your mind!

    While you are waiting for your appointment

    There maybe short delays when trying to book an appointment with the counselling service. While you are waiting for your appointment and require urgent assistance please contact alternative National Support Services.

  • What is Skype counselling

    Skype video counselling is a convenient alternative to traditional face-to-face counselling. Skype counselling allows you to build a professional therapeutic relationship with your counsellor. It allows your counsellor to see you and listen intently to your concerns or worries, and for you to see how your counsellor is responding to you.

    Skype Counselling is becoming an increasingly popular way for any student to connect with our experienced counsellors, especially in this ever changing fast paced society. It can be a convenient option as you don’t need to go into the counselling service, and you may feel more comfortable in the privacy of your own home.

    A Skype appointment is usually booked for one hour. Your counsellor will talk with you at the beginning of your first appointment about what will happen if you disconnect or there are technical issues. We recommend you find a private place where you will not be overheard to ensure your counselling session is private and confidential.

    In light of COVID-19, and to prioritise your safety and wellbeing, we have transitioned our counselling service to phone and Skype counselling.

  • What is Phone counselling

    Phone counselling is is a convenient alternative to traditional face-to-face counselling. it is beneficial because it enables you to connect with your counsellor wherever you are.  It can be a convenient option as you don’t need to go into the counselling service, and you may feel more comfortable in the privacy of your own home.

    A phone appointment is usually booked for one hour. Your counsellor will talk with you at the beginning of your first appointment about what will happen if you disconnect or there are technical issues. We recommend you find a private place where you will not be overheard to ensure your counselling session is private and confidential.

    In light of COVID-19, and to prioritise your safety and wellbeing, we have transitioned our counselling service to phone and Skype counselling.

  • Confidentiality

    We will ask you about personal and health information to allow us to provide you counselling services and ongoing support. We will keep your information private, except for a few circumstances.

  • Support for Special Consideration

    You will need documentation to apply for special consideration. We can only provide it if you either:

    1. are already a client of the Student Counselling Service and are working with us to achieve your personal and academic goals. You are required to have spoken to us more than once.
    2. have not had prior contact with us but you have experienced a serious, recent event or incident.

    If we are unable to provide documentation, a registered medical practitioner or counsellor external to the University who is aware of your circumstances may be able to. They will have to complete the Charles Sturt Medical Certificate.

    How to apply for Special Consideration

  • Counselling for online students

    If you live elsewhere in Australia or overseas, you can make an appointment via phone or Skype (webcam).

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