The Online Hub encourages you to look at the BACP 2009 online guidelines and the Telephone and E-Counselling Competencies to understand more about the importance of training.  

What BACP Says About Training To Work Online

From BACP 2009 (Anthony and Goss) Online Guidelines concerning training and supervision for working online:

TRAINING: “BACP now strongly recommends that practitioners undergo further specialist training in text-based online therapy. Such training should incorporate theoretical, practical and ethical considerations of online work ….” Page 05

SUPERVISION:  “….. practitioners should ensure that their supervision arrangements are adequate to support their online work. Supervisors who wish to supply such a service should ensure they are experienced and trained in online therapeutic work itself and have a full understanding of the issues and ethical concerns inherent in it.” page 09

BACP Working Online Good Practice in Action 047 EFfCP Supplementary Guidance.

“Changing the method of communication with clients introduces new challenges and opportunities that can be greatly assisted by appropriate training. Good practice requires that anyone making significant differences in their practice should give careful consideration to what will be involved and have taken adequate steps to be competent in the new ways of working before offering services to clients.”

On these pages you can read more about ACTO - The Association for Counselling and Therapy Online

We are reproducing here ACTO’s list of recommended training providers.  You will see that ACTO advises all practitioners to seek specific training before working online professionally. Listed below are training courses below offer this training; we do not endorse any individual course. In addition some university counsellor training courses include modules which introduce working online. However, in line with BACP, ACTO do not believe that online work is suitable for the newly trained psychological therapist and have therefore listed training courses which are only open to trained and experienced therapists.

List Of Training Organisations Providing Training To Work Online


From digital awareness and technology basics for the jobbing counsellor or psychotherapist, right through to full training to work online therapeutically – The Academy for Online Counselling & Psychotherapy can provide you and your organisation with all the guidance and training you will need. Find out more here

General Certificate in Online Counselling & Psychotherapy – 80 CPD hours

The General Certificate in Online Counselling & Psychotherapy course is intended as an introduction to working online for practitioners working online already, or who are intending to work online, within an existing agency or organisation or on an existing platform such as Dr Julian. Find out more details here.

Diploma in Online Counselling & Psychotherapy Ref: DIPOCP-007 – 300 CPD hours

A fully comprehensive course preparing you to be a professional online counsellor or psychotherapist eligible for ACTO Professional Member Status. This course is geared towards those setting up and running an online private practice and leaders and commissioners of services. Find out more details here

ProReal avatar therapy course

This course is open to anyone with a post diploma qualification in counselling, psychotherapy, or psychology. If you intend to use ProReal after qualification in an online setting we will require you to be qualified or in training with an ACTO approved training organisation. Find out more details here.

The Academy for Online Counselling & Psychotherapy can guide you about the level of training you might need, either as formal training or one-to-one mentoring designed for your specific need.

For organisations, The Academy for Online Counselling & Psychotherapy can train your staff and advice you on the setting up of your online service.

To find out more please contact Philippa Weitz on +44 (0)7880 501 116 or email for most information and a prospectus at


Relate offers an eight week online course for trained counsellors. The course is suitable for CPD and counts as 48 hours. Training and role play practice will include using therapeutic email, live chat and web cam. Learning is supported by course tutors, discussion groups and an online forum for students. Learning is largely self-paced, although group deadlines are given. Training courses take place regularly throughout the year.

The Online Therapy Institute

The Online Therapy Institute offers a 12 Module training in Online Therapy (email, chat, audio, video and related technologies). All training is held completely online, is self-paced to fit around other work and life commitments (also available to a 12 week structure). Includes one-to-one personal mentoring from Dr Kate Anthony, FBACP, and a rolling cohort of international students for co-learning opportunities.

Specialist Children & Young people training also available (tutored by Dr Jeanette Hennigan).

OCST Online Counselling Services & Training

Offers a variety of certificated training courses and workshops for therapists and supervisors to work online. The training provisions offer delegates the option of participating online, in either lone study (supported by the course tutor) which can be arranged at any point within a calendar year, or a second option of participating in an experiential online group course, which takes place a frequent intervals during a calendar year.

Online Training for Counsellors Ltd (OLT)

Online Training for Counsellors Ltd (OLT) offer training to Diploma level for counsellors, psychotherapists and psychologists who plan to work online. Their General Certificate in Online Counselling Skills (10 weeks) and Diploma in Online Therapeutic Counselling (24 weeks) and Diploma in Online Therapeutic Supervision (24 weeks) are externally validated by CPCAB (Counselling and Psychotherapy Central Awards Body).

These courses are delivered entirely online to groups of practitioners and take place at specific times during the year – further details and course outlines can be downloaded from their website. OLT tutors are all online practitioners who have completed one or more OLT courses. They have been invited to join the tutor team for their tutoring and mentoring skills as well as their understanding of the course material.

OLT also offer workshops on specific online therapeutic skills. Some of these are in the process of becoming downloadable courses, others are delivered to groups of workshop participants.

Disclaimer: PPH / OTH take no responsibility for the accuracy of the training courses described or the contents of the courses being offered and advise each practitioner to carefully check with the training organiser before signing up for any course.