COUN5841 Family Counselling

Graduate Diploma Level Unit

Duration: One Trimester

Level: 2nd year

Credit Points: 8 (out of a total of 96 points)

Prerequisites: COUN5131 Counselling Practice and COUN5141 Counselling Theories

Mode(s) of Delivery: Blended Online

Core/Elective: Elective

Unit Description

This unit introduces students to frameworks, models and skills for counselling families and couples. It provides an overview of the development of family counselling, an understanding of the theoretical foundations of family counselling, knowledge in assessment processes, and interventions for common presenting issues. Specific understanding is gained in the areas of attachment, working with children, young people, couples, family violence, and abuse. Students will gain knowledge in counselling diverse families, and awareness of the professional and ethical issues involved in counselling families. Skills in observing and conceptualising family functioning, and practice skills for working with families are developed through practice sessions and assignments.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the unit students will be able to:

  • Identify the purpose of family counselling and the tasks and role of the family counsellor
  • Differentiate family counselling from individual counselling
  • Use a genogram as an assessment tool to identify multi-generational patterns
  • Identify attachment styles and analyse how these impact on family relationships
  • Develop knowledge and skills to work with culturally diverse families
  • Apply principles and skills of systems theory to family counselling

Unit Workload

The workload for this unit is 12 hours per week.


The required text book for this unit  can be found by viewing the Discipline of Counselling textbook list by selecting the course and trimester at the following link:

Academic Misconduct

Ethical conduct and academic integrity and honesty are fundamental to the mission of ACAP. Academic misconduct will not be tolerated by the college. This includes plagiarism of any nature. It is your responsibility to make sure that you understand what constitutes plagiarism in order to ensure that you do not engage in it. Please refer to the Academic Misconduct Policy for full details.


Unit information may be subject to change prior to the teaching trimester commencing. Once term has commenced please review the Unit Outline in your class space to ensure your trimester study plan is correct.