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Frequently Asked Questions

If you're thinking about studying at Northumbria, below are a list of answers to questions that the Counselling and Mental Health Team are most frequently asked before students join us.

If a student has concerns regarding their mental health and wellbeing that they are finding difficult to manage on their own, this could be anything that is getting in the way of them studying and enjoying life at university, including concerns about relationships, sexuality and gender, friendship difficulties, feeling anxious or isolated, stress, experiencing low mood and homesickness.

We offer a range of short term, brief, therapeutic and psychoeducational interventions to help you explore any difficulties, develop coping strategies, and help you to get back on track and engaging with your studies. Support can be 1-2-1 with a practitioner either online or in person, attending one of our psychoeducational workshops, with our 24/7 dedicated counselling and advice helpline or online via our guided CBT self-help programmes.

Interventions are tailored to the needs of the student and can include, single session wellbeing plans, short term counselling, low intensity CBT, practical symptom management, psychoeducation, and where appropriate support to access further psychological therapies and support via the NHS and secondary care.

We also work closely with the Accessibility and Inclusion Team to ensure students who have a mental health diagnosis access the support and adjustments they might need whilst studying. More information about this process and the team can be found here.

Take a look at our service overview for further information and service model for further information.

The team are made up of multidisciplinary experienced practitioners from a range of mental health backgrounds. This includes professionally qualified counsellors, psychological wellbeing practitioners, mental health nurses and social workers.

Students can access the Counselling and Advice helpline and online Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) platform at times that are convenient to them, current students can find out more information about these services via their Student Portal.

Students can register for an initial appointment with the Counselling and Mental Health Team by completing a short form via their Student Portal. The team will then meet with the student at an initial appointment to discuss their mental health difficulties and advise on the next steps in terms of support.

Students registering with the service can expect to speak to a practitioner at an initial telephone appointment to ascertain your needs, after which, they may have to wait depending on the type of support identified at this initial appointment. Waiting times for therapeutic interventions can vary throughout the academic year depending on demand however, students can use our instant access 24/7 counselling and advice helpline for immediate access to support.

The service is not a crisis or emergency service and current students who feel they cannot keep themselves safe should visit the 'Accessing immediate Mental Health Support' on the Student Portal.

This service is free for all UK based Northumbria University students.

We want students to feel safe in talking about sensitive issues and provide a strictly confidential service. Information about students or the content of their sessions will not be shared outside of the Counselling and Mental Health Team without their permission.


The only exceptions are when there is a significant concern that you or other people are at serious risk of harm or where we have legal obligation to share information via a court order. In these circumstances wherever possible, we will work with you keep you informed of what and with who this is being shared.

There may be times when it is beneficial for the service to liaise with others on a students behalf such as with a GP or healthcare provider. We would always do this in agreement with the student and this would be discussed openly with their practitioner.

If you have concerns about a student’s mental health and wellbeing then we ask that you encourage them to speak to someone, for example, their personal tutor, their GP, the University's counselling and advice helpline, or to make contact with the University’s Counselling and Mental Health Team via the registration form on the Student Portal.

If you have a serious welfare or safety concern regarding a student then you contact our Ask4help (0191 227 4646) who will be able to pass on information to the relevant team.

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