About our counselling service

We offer free, private and confidential counselling services to all students.

What we do

Uni life can be fun, exciting and rewarding but at times can also be tough. With pressures, demands and life experiences sometimes impacting our studies and everyday life.

We are a team of professional counsellors, with qualifications in psychology and social work. We provide you with confidential short term individual counselling and related support. This involves helping you with referrals to other services within the university and the local community. All dependent on your needs. We also offer group programs and training opportunities throughout the year.

This service is available to you once you have enrolled with us.

You can choose to attend their session in person or remotely via telephone or Zoom (note during COVID19 restrictions we are only offering remote sessions).

You can see us for all sorts of reasons, no matter how big or small the problem may seem. Please do not exclude yourself from counselling because you think your problems are not serious enough. We encourage you to speak with us sooner rather than later. The earlier you connect with us, the sooner we can offer you the support you need. To guide you through the problem you are facing and get you back on track.

Talking to our counsellors can help you get a perspective on your situation before it becomes more of an issue. We are here to help and get you back to enjoying life again.'

You can also meet with a counsellor if you have concerns about a family member or friend.

Fill out our online request form and our friendly team will get in touch with you soon.

Book a counselling appointment

Triage sessions are usually 15-20 minutes in duration and take place over the phone. It is important that you are somewhere you can talk in private. The Duty Worker will ask you some questions to help us understand what support you are seeking. We also ask some questions to help us determine whether there are any immediate safety or risk concerns. Anything that you might need help with more immediately. At the end of the triage call, the Duty Worker will discuss the outcome with you. This may include:
  • offering you a counselling appointment
  • placing you on a waitlist for a counselling appointment and/ or
  • discussing other referral options.

Counselling sessions are usually 50 minutes in duration.

After your 10-15 minute triage session with one of our Duty Workers, you will be booked in to see a Counsellor for your first full session.

During this session, your Counsellor will listen and explore your circumstances. This enables them to understand what you are experiencing.

Counselling is a confidential and non-judgmental process that is built on trust. The only time that confidentially it waived is where there is a risk of harm to you or another, or we are required by law to disclose information.  The counselling relationship is built on mutual respect and collaboration. We work together with you to increase your insight into your experience and to build on your strengths so that you may overcome your problems.

In some cases, our initial discussions with you may reveal that referring to services in the community would be more appropriate. If that happens, we may still meet with you to provide support for study-related issues.

Specialist counselling services

We have dedicated Queer Counsellors who have experience in supporting students with diverse sexualities, sex and gender identities. You can talk to our Queer Counsellor about any range of issues that can impact your study or personal life.

Request an appointment

We provide a specific and culturally-sensitive support program for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Our counselling team work closely with La Trobe's Indigenous Student Services team to support Indigenous students throughout their time studying with us.

Our counsellors are located on the Melbourne Campus, and also travels to regional campuses. Support can also be provided via phone.

Request an appointment

We have a specialist Men's Health and Wellbeing Service including counselling available here at La Trobe.

Request an appointment

A Psychologist/Counsellor from Northern CASA, Jo Padbury, works on campus in Bundoora every Wednesday to make sexual assault specific counselling more accessible to La Trobe students

Students can access up to 16 free, confidential counselling sessions with Northern CASA during an episode of service delivery

Sessions can be in-person, via telehealth or via telephone

Jo is a female counsellor, however, if a student has a preference to see a male counsellor this can be arranged at Northern CASA

All counselling notes and records are kept according to privacy and confidentiality procedures at Northern CASA (not at the La Trobe Counselling Service)

Other information

There are peak times during the semester when demand for individual counselling is particularly high (e.g. in the weeks before the exam period). You may then be placed on a waiting list.

Visit our information page on what you can do while you wait for your counselling appointment

You can visit our Mental Health and Wellbeing Resource Hub for other resources while you wait.

There is a high demand for individual counselling and there is often a waiting list during peak times. If a student doesn't turn up to an appointment or cancels on the same day. It limits our capacity to offer the time to another student.

  • Notice of cancellation - if for any reason you cannot make your appointment, please call or email us as soon as possible to cancel or reschedule. The service requests at the least 24 hours’ notice before the scheduled time of the appointment to cancel or reschedule.
  • Missed appointments - if you miss two appointments without notice or adequate reason on two occasions, any ongoing occasions that the students fail to attend will be deducted from their 10 sessions per calendar year*.
  • Late arrivals - if you arrive more than 15 minutes late to your scheduled appointment. You will be deemed to have missed the appointment. Your session may also be given to a waiting client.

*Please note this does not apply to our Indigenous Counselling Services.

If you are on the wait list, do look out for missed calls or emails. If we do not hear back from you after several attempts, we may remove you from the wait list.

You can apply for special consideration when you have experienced adverse and unforeseeable circumstances that have a short-term negative impact on your ability to complete or attend an assessment task.

Legitimate grounds for special consideration fall into one of these categories:

  • serious illness or injury
  • emotional disturbance
  • misadventure.

We can provide supporting documentation for special consideration applications only for students who are currently engaged with our service or have been engaged with our service in the last 6 months.

Apply for special consideration

We provide consultancy and training to the University community on issues relating to student wellbeing. Training sessions will be secluded throughout the year and uploaded to our training calendar (coming soon!).

If you're a staff member, please visit our Counselling Service Page [Staff login required]

After-hours crisis line

We offer free and confidential out of hours mental health and wellbeing support for you through the University Crisis Line.

You can call: 1300 146 307 or text 0488 884 100 (5 pm - 9 am weekdays, 24 hours weekends, and public holidays) any time you need help.

External supports

In an emergency, always call: 000

  • Lifeline - Call: 13 11 14, text: 0477 13 11 14 or use their online chat, 24/7.
  • Headspace - Call: 1800 650 890 or chat online from 9.00 am–1.00 am, 7 days a week. For people ages 12-25 years and their families and friends.
  • Beyond Blue support service - for depression and anxiety-related difficulties. 24/7 call: 1300 22 4636, chat online (3.00 pm–12.00 am, 7 days a week), or email (get a response in 24 hours).
  • QLife -  LGBTI peer support and referral. Phone and webchat open from 3.00 pm–12.00 am every day.
  • MensLine - Telephone and online counselling and support for men 24/7.
  • First Nations support line - free and confidential health and wellbeing service specifically catered to First Nations people. Call: 1800 959 500, 24/7, 365 days.