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Professor Ebi Cocodia on counselling and talking therapies: SCU Buzz

Professor Ebi Cocodia holding open book in library


4 December 2023

What is counselling and how does it differ from other forms of therapy? In this episode of SCU Buzz, student host River sat down with Bachelor of Counselling Course Coordinator and registered integrative therapist, Professor Ebi Cocodia, to find out what counsellors do and what makes a good counsellor.

Counsellors use talking therapies to assist clients to overcome psychological hurdles. Professor Cocodia said: “As counsellors, we talk to the client, addressing the psychological issues they are having. It’s a supportive, guided conversation which can lead to profound changes.

“We believe that much of what we are doing will help the person long-term. Whether it’s a trauma they are going through or learning to sit with an emotion. We’re facilitating the process to help them reduce the distress associated with whatever they have been through and that leads to long-term healing.”

Professor Cocodia said the difference between a counsellor and a psychologist comes down to providing a diagnosis: “With counsellors, we do not diagnose. We will not tell you that you are bipolar or that you have ADHD.”

There are a range of career opportunities for counsellors, from working in not-for-profits to hospitals. Professor Cocodia said the are certain traits that mark a great counsellor.

“I like the idea that you want to help people. It’s also important to be a good listener. You want to be genuine and non-judgemental,” she said.

Southern Cross University is launching the Bachelor of Counselling in 2024. The course will prepare graduates to hit the ground running, with 200 hours of professional placement and a strong foundation in counselling theories and skills training.

“You will enjoy every step of the way. It’s a learning process because it’s not just about helping other people – you will learn more about yourself. Learning to be a counsellor is very exciting,” Professor Cocodia said.

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