Counselling service and self-help
UTS offers a confidential counselling service to help with a wide range of personal, psychological, study-related and administrative difficulties. If you have urgent situations after-hours, please use the emergency contacts list.
Counsellors can help in situations where you:
- think you may have chosen the wrong course
- have stressful circumstances or psychological or emotional issues which interfere with your studies
- need help managing administrative problems, appeals or complaints
- want to develop better generic learning skills
- need help as you are on Academic Caution
Counselling services are available to:
- current UTS students
- international students
- couples, if both are students
In most situations the service is free of charge; a few services carry a charge that can be bulk billed to Medicare or Medibank Private (for students with Overseas Student Health Cover).
If you are concerned about the mental health of a student, please see our referrals section.
Inside a first counselling session video:
Counsellor and client walk down the hallway towards the counselling room
Counsellor: Our office is just up here. Come on in! Grab a seat!
The counsellor and client enter the room. The counsellor closes the door. They then take a seat
Counsellor : Okay. The counselling service helps students in two main ways here. The first is through an Intake appointment, which is a short appointment of 30 minutes, which is exactly what you’re attending for today. In this appointment, what we aim to do is go through the sort of supports that we can put in place for you from this day onwards and to really address the administrative and personal matters that are urgent for you today.
The second way we support students is through a full 50-minute Ongoing appointment.
One of the main things you need to keep in mind about us, is that we are a confidential service. So, Rosie, what it means is that the information that you give me today, that stays here with the Counselling Service. Okay?
Client : Yep.
Counsellor : I noticed that you've completed the First Visit Questionnaire that you have there. Were there any questions that you had for me about any of that?
Client : No that's fine.Counsellor : Okay. Great. Well, now what I might do is take that from you.
Counsellor reads the answer in the Questionnaire
Counsellor : So I've noticed, Rosie, that what you’ve ticked is Academic or Administrative Issues, and Stressful Circumstances, as the two main things that you want to focus on today. If it’s okay with you, what I might to is get you to basically fill me in on what brings you here today that relates to those things.
Client : Well, I'm an international student and in my first year. I'm studying Nursing. And last week my uncle died. I'm staying with him and my auntie while I’m here. It's a really big shock, and I'm pretty worried about my auntie.
Counsellor : I'm really sorry to hear that news. Tell me how have you been feeling, what’s been happening for you?
Client : Umm .. It's been really hard. Like, I haven't been eating, I haven't been sleeping, and I’m just crying all the time. Umm.. I haven't been able to study at all, and I missed uni yesterday because I went to the funeral. And I've got an assignment due tomorrow. I haven't had any time to work on it. I'm just really worried about my studies.
Counsellor : Obviously you're explaining how sadness has really been impacting on your life, and one of those areas is in your studies. Rosie, what you may not be aware of is that the university has this process called Special Consideration. And this is the process whereby the university recognises that things happen to people that are beyond their control, but certainly impact on their studies.
This is a copy of the Special Consideration form, which you can download from the UTS website. What I'll do is briefly run through it with you today, and our aim would be to fill this out today.
The form does require supporting documentation.
Client : Yeah, I did actually bring a death certificate today.
Counsellor : That's great. We'll attach that supporting documentation. You can go downstairs, lodge it at the Student Centre and then take the next step of emailing your academic.
Rosie, were there any other matters that you wanted to discuss with me today? Anything that's come up for you since we've been talking?
Client : No. That's pretty much it.
Counsellor : How are you feeling about your study concerns?
Client : I feel a lot better now that I know about this.
Counsellor : That's great. Something I would like to highlight is that sadness is obviously something that stays with us for a period of time. You might want to take up the opportunity of making another appointment to meet with me or any of the counselling staff on the team. For two reasons: for support for you around your sadness, and also if relevant to keep us up-to-date with how it's impacting on your studies.
Client : Yeah, I think I'd like to make another appointment.
Counsellor : Alright, we'll do that before you leave today. And before you go, I would like to give you just some additional information about grief and loss, and it includes some websites in there. So that, if you want to do some extra reading about it, you can do that in your own time.
Client : Thank you.
Counsellor : So, let's head out and make another appointment to meet up. Thanks, Rosie.
Every situation is different.
Get help early.
This session was a dramatic re-enactment produced by the Video Production Unit (MCU) for the Student Services Unit, University of Technology, Sydney. ©2008
In addition, UTS's Equity & Diversity Unit offer advice and support around your rights and responsibilities including discrimination and harassment, as well as UTS policy, legislation and procedural guidelines. They also provides links to mental health and wellbeing information and resources.
You can also access information on resolving grievances, disputes and appeals – information on the processes in place for resolving problems and dealing with grievances.
The Counselling Service is made available to service users subject to demand, which varies at different times in the academic year. Service users will be informed of the nature, frequency and duration of service that is reasonable, based on the level of demand, staff availability, and service user needs.
The University reserves the right to take all necessary action to protect the safety of its staff, students and facilities, and to ensure reasonable use of services and facilities. This may include revoking or placing conditions on access to facilities, services, or campus precincts.