donate today Click to support us

Couples Counselling Training – Become a Couples Counsellor

Certificate in Couples Counselling from Basingstoke Counselling Service

Our hugely popular couples counselling training is back for 2024 and bookings are now open.

Led by Heidi Renton, of Tavistock Relationships, this 50-hour training will be running over five weekends from February to June 2024. Our course is open to qualified counsellors with a minimum of one-year post-qualifying counselling experience, who wish to add working with couples to their portfolio, or who are already working with couples and want to deepen their understanding of couples work.

Couples Counselling training for counsellors 2025 dates TBC

Location: Basingstoke Counselling Service, RG21 4AN

Join our counselling CPD mailing list to get notified when our 2025 Couples Counselling training is open for booking.

Course syllabus for couples counselling training

Our couples counselling training syllabus is experiential, underpinned by robust theory.

Weekend 1

Key principles of couple therapy:

  • What is a relationship? The nature of attraction and role of idealisation
  • The relationship is the patient
  • The focus of the couple therapist: maintaining a ‘couple state of mind’
  • The past in the present: using genograms; intergenerational patterns and shared sensitivities
  • What individuals bring to their relationships: the internal couple and repeated patterns of relationship dynamics
  • Working with the transference and countertransference

Weekend 2

The functions and meanings of desire and sex in a relationship:

  • Development of sexual identity; cultural and societal influences
  • Challenges to the sexual relationship, physical and emotional
  • Fertility issues and loss
  • Common sexual dysfunctions and causes: predisposing, precipitating and maintaining factors
  • Betrayal and shame – pornography and sex addiction

Weekend 3

Attachment theory and patterns:

  • Influence on couple choice; impact on the couple relationship
  • The therapist as an attachment figure; breaks and containment
  • Life stages in the couple relationship
  • Working with triangulation and affairs
  • Collusion and secrets in the consulting room

Weekend 4

Assessment, formulation and supporting the couple:

  • The presenting problem and ‘why now?’ for choosing couple therapy
  • Depression, mental health, and the ‘allocated patient’
  • Issues of violence and child protection
  • Helping couples understand, address and change damaging behaviours
  • Sustaining positive change

Weekend 5

Endings and beginnings:

  • Working with disappointment, blame, conflict and loss in the consulting room
  • Separation and divorce
  • New relationships and repeated patterns
  • Blended families

Requirements for our couples counselling training

  • You must be a qualified counsellor, with a minimum of one-year post-qualifying counselling experience.  
  • You must achieve a minimum of 80% attendance to be eligible for your Certificate in Couples Counselling. 
  • You must achieve the appropriate standard in skills practice, as assessed by our trainer, Heidi, at the end of the course to achieve your Certificate in Couples Counselling.


Our 50-hour couples counselling training takes place over five weekends, from 10am – 4pm, 2025 dates TBC.

About Heidi Renton

You will be able to draw from Heidi’s extensive knowledge and experience of couples counselling training: she qualified for her Masters as a Psychodynamic Couple and Individual Psychotherapist at Tavistock Relationships in London and then specialised with a further qualification at the same institution, in Psychosexual and Relationship Therapy.

Heidi has since lectured and tutored on both the Tavistock courses, from which she graduated, and works there as a Senior Clinician in Assessment and Relationship Psychotherapy, alongside running her own private practice. In addition, Heidi trains and supervises NHS and IAPT counsellors on the Tavistock’s Couple Therapy for Depression time-limited model.

She is a registered member of both the BACP and COSRT as well as a graduate member and international affiliate of the Tavistock Institute of Medical Psychology (TIMP).

Heidi left a successful career in business and media education to dedicate herself to helping people find happiness in their personal and intimate relationships.

Couples counselling training cancellation policy

Please note that in order to receive your discounted rate due to membership of BCS, ACS, RGT or Counsellors Staffroom, you must be a member for a duration of the course. Full course fees will be payable if you leave your discounted organisation during the course. 

In the unlikely event that unforeseen circumstances arise and BCS has to cancel the couples counselling training course, you will receive a full refund. In the event of cancellation by the you, the participant, BCS reserves the right to charge a cancellation fee as indicated by the table below. All requests for cancellations must be received in writing, with changes becoming effective on the date written confirmation is received.

Calendar days’ notice before the start date of the courseRefund applicable
90 calendar days or more before you are due to start the CourseFull refund (less a £25 admin fee)
Between 60 and 89 calendar days (inclusive)50% refund (less a £25 admin fee)
Between 30 and 59 calendar days (inclusive)25% refund (less a £25 admin fee)
Within 29 calendar days of the Course commencingNo refund given

Please ensure you meet the entry requirements prior to booking your place. If candidates do not meet the entry requirements you will be unable to attend the course and your withdrawal will be treated as a cancellation and subject to the above cancellation policy.

CPD for counsellors

Basingstoke Counselling Service runs CPD courses and training for counsellors and psychotherapists to continue our commitment of providing mental health support to the local community.

Continued professional development is key to the effectiveness of your work and helps to ensure that your clients are receiving safe and effective support.

Every year we run various CPD courses that you can view here, or you can sign up to our mailing list to be notified when new CPD courses become available for booking. Joining our mailing list is the quickest way to access all of our courses.