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What is counselling?

Counselling is a safe space to talk about any concerns (thoughts, feelings, experiences, behaviours) openly and without judgement with a professional who will assist you to sort through them and make positive changes. If you are having any difficulties in adjusting to life as a student, managing the demands of studying or coping with life's challenges, perhaps it's time to ask for assistance. 

Counselling for students at Box Hill Institute is free and confidential. For more information or to make an appointment to see a counsellor contact Student Life. All of our counsellors are either registered psychologists or social workers. 

For urgent assistance see After hours crisis assistance.

What is e-counselling?

Our e-counselling platform allows students to connect with a counsellor online.  

E-counselling can be a useful way to:

  • get comfortable speaking with a counsellor, before connecting face-to-face, via MS Teams or on the phone
  • check in with a counsellor to see how they may be able to help you, before committing to a session
  • seek support or resources for short-term concerns 

E-counselling is a private and confidential service. Log in with your network username and password here: Access E-Counselling

What is a psychologist?

A psychologist is a trained professional who works with people to improve their psychological health and wellbeing through talk-therapy. Psychologists can assist people to address factors that impact their thoughts, feelings and behaviours to contribute happier and more meaningful lives. A psychologist is not a medical doctor and cannot prescribe medication. If medication is appropriate, a referral to a psychiatrist or general practitioner can be arranged.

What is mental health? The World Health Organisation defines Mental Health as “a state of well-being in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his own community.” We can experience times of good mental health and poor mental health, as well as mental illness. Counselling is a tool that can be used to achieve or maintain good mental health.  
How can counselling help me?

Counselling offers the opportunity to explore your issues and feelings in a safe and confidential setting. A counsellor can work with you to generate and implement strategies for positive change. Where possible, the counsellors will work with you to develop a plan that you are comfortable with, to address your needs.

There are many reasons why people decide to seek counselling. These include:

  • study concerns
  • a lack of motivation
  • relationship difficulties
  • problems at work
  • stress
  • loss or bereavement
  • anxiety and panic
  • depression
  • mental health issues
  • alcohol or drug concerns

Student Life also provides a student assessment service. Our Psychologist (Educational Consultancy) can administer a number of assessment tasks to look holistically at how you learn. This can identify learning strengths and weaknesses. The assessment identifies which areas you might need extra support with to succeed in your course. It is not used to judge you, but to help identify the best way to support you with your studies.

What happens in the first session? In the first session the counsellor will review the intake form with you, and discuss confidentiality and informed consent. The counsellor will ask about what has brought you to counselling and what you are hoping to gain from counselling. You will then work together with your counsellor to achieve these goals.  

What do I have to say in a session?

You only have to say what you are comfortable with. Some people will say a lot in a counselling session, others won’t say much. There is no right or wrong way to do it, you can do what feels best for you. As you build a rapport with the counsellor, speaking openly with them often becomes easier.
Will the counsellor give me advice? The counsellors will help you to sort through your concerns, reflect on your behaviours, gain perspective and consider your options. They will provide you with feedback, they won’t make decisions for you.
Is what I talk about with the counsellor confidential? What you discuss with your counsellor is private and confidential; except in the circumstance that the counsellor is concerned for your safety or the safety of somebody else; or with your consent to discuss any issues with another person (for example, arranging special consideration with a teacher).

How long do the appointments run for?

Appointments generally run for about 50 minutes. This can be negotiated with your counsellor if need be.
How many sessions can I have? There is no set number of sessions that you need to attend or maximum that you can attend; however, this is a short term service. If ongoing assistance is required and can’t be provided by the counsellor, they will assist you with making a referral to an external service.  
How do I get in touch to ask questions or book an appointment?

You can call Student Life on 9286 9891.

You can email Student Life at studentlife@boxhill.edu.au

You can book an appointment online here

You can drop in to see a Counsellor at their office:

  • Elgar Campus: StudentHub, Building 3, Level 2
  • Lilydale Campus: Building L5, Level 2, Room L5.224
  • CAE: Building C1, Level 2, Room C1.204

 Do I need to be on campus for my appointment?  We are continuing to provide appointments flexibly where appropriate; however we are limiting the number of phone appointments due to the improved capacity for students to be on campus now. We strongly encourage any student who can attend an appointment on campus to do so, as this is the most effective way of engaging in counselling. MS Teams appointments can also be arranged if you are unable to attend the campus. Phone appointments may be arranged on a case by case basis. You can book an appointment online at your preferred campus here.  
 Telehealth etiquette   Counselling will not be effective if you are distracted during your session or not fully engaging in it. For this reason, we ask that you make sure that you have a quiet and private space ready for your session, and that you treat it as a serious appointment (i.e. not while you are driving, not from your bed, etc.). You can book a MS Teams appointment online here.  

Last modified: Tuesday, 9 May 2023, 3:19 PM