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UCD Student Counselling Service Information 2023-2024

About the Service

The UCD Student Counselling Service is a confidential service available to all registered students, free of charge. The aim of the service is to provide easily accessible professional psychological support to assist students with personal challenges that affects their lives as University students. Some of the typical reasons for students seeking support from the UCD Student Counselling Service include difficulties in day-to-day coping, relationship difficulties, issues around identity, academic concerns, family difficulties, social anxieties, mood changes, stress or past/ present traumatic events. The university counsellors are professionally qualified psychologists and psychotherapists who employ a range of psychological therapies depending on the presenting issues and assessed needs of students who attend. The counselling team appreciates the different needs of students coming from other cultures and backgrounds.

The student counselling service is not designed to provide the following:

  • Diagnostic assessments,
  • Step down services post hospital admission,
  • Reports for court purposes or to resolve medical or legal disputes,
  • Long term therapy input,
  • Psychological intervention where the best practice would require a more specialised or multi-disciplinary team based approach.

A student’s first meeting will be devoted to listening and exploring their concerns, explaining how the service works, answering any questions that a student has and developing a plan about the possible options that best meet a student's needs.

Boundaries and confidentiality

All counselling sessions are strictly confidential. No information about students including the fact that they have visited the counselling service, will be released to anyone outside the service without the students permission (except in the case of legal subpoena). Ethically, however, we are required to disclose information if that is necessary to protect you or someone else from imminent danger.

Limits to Confidentiality

  • If there is a significant and / or immediate risk of a student harming himself or herself
  • If there is a significant and / or immediate risk of a student harming other people
  • In situations where a vulnerable person such as child may be at risk of harm
  • In situations where a student discloses a serious criminal offence
  • If notes / records are subpoenaed by a court of law in relation to a criminal offence
  • If a student discloses any incident/s of child sexual abuse and / or significant incident/s of child neglect, child emotional abuse or child physical abuse, past or present, counsellors are legally obliged to make a report to the Child and Family Agency (TUSLA) under The Children First Act 2015. This report will be made in collaboration with the designated UCD Child Protection Officer (CPO) (For more information see http://www.tusla.ie/children-first).

At the first appointment with a counsellor students can ask any questions about confidentiality procedures and limitations. With the students consent we can liaise with other UCD services and external agencies, but the student must advise that they want this to occur and will be asked to complete a release of information form for this to occur.

GDPR

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into effect on 25 May 2018. By registering with the Student Counselling Service a student gives consent for the service to retain personal details. Students have a right to access and a right to correct personal details that are held by the service. Records will be retained for a period of seven years once counselling has ended and will not be released to any third party without consent. To access personal data, a student needs to send a request in writing to the Clinical Manager at student.counselling@ucd.ie. The Student Counselling Service Data Protection Privacy Statement is available on request or on the service website. For more information on data protection please see (opens in a new window)http://gdprandyou.ie/.

UCD Student Counselling Registration Form

To better understand our service, we ask students to first consult the Frequently Asked Questions page on our website. You need to be signed into your ucdconnect email account to access the form successfully. By submitting the registration form you indicate agreement with the information contained in this information sheet.  When we receive this form you will be registered with the Service and we will be in contact with you as soon as possible. If you have not heard from us to confirm your registration within 2 weeks of registering and you are concerned about your position on our waiting list, we invite you to follow up with us by phoning us on 01 716 3159.

Once you have consulted the information and wish to proceed with your registration, please complete the following (opens in a new window)UCD Student Counselling Service Registration Form by clicking on the embedded link, completing the form, and then clicking submit. The registration form will be open Monday to Friday from 09.30am until 2pm (excluding bank holidays and college closures). 

If you are experiencing acute and overwhelming emotional distress for example, any of the following signs that indicate severity:

  • Enduring low mood and you are finding it difficult to get up and perform simple daily tasks.
  • Pervasive sense of despair and hopelessness about the future
  • Strong suicidal urges/plan to end your life.
  • Overwhelming anxiety that severely disrupts your everyday life. 
  • Feelings of paranoia or very unusual thought processes 
  • Hearing voices 
  • Alcohol or substance abuse issues  

We would advise you to contact the UCD GP or your own GP to make an appointment as well as registering with the counselling service.

If you or somebody else is seriously physically injured or in immediate danger it is advisable to contact the emergency services straight away.

  • Call 017167999 on campus Or
  • 999 or 112 in the Republic of Ireland and the UK
  • 112 in EU countries
  • Or attend your local hospital Accident and Emergency Department.