Counselling Sydney

We are a free and confidential service, providing a safe environment for currently enrolled students to discuss a wide range of personal, psychological and study-related difficulties.

Our aim is to help students develop strategies and skills to resolve or manage problems that they face while studying, so that they can achieve their personal and academic goals.

All counsellors are highly-trained registered psychologists who provide short-term individual counselling. If longer term counselling or support is required, referral to another professional or community-based organisation can be facilitated by the counsellor. The service also offers various workshops, as advertised during the academic year.

  • Contact

    Location and Operating Hours

    If you would like to speak to a counsellor, you will need to make an appointment. During the semester, there are also advertised drop-in times during the week.

    Level 5, Pioneer House
    NDS5/524 and 525
    Monday to Friday
    9am to 5pm

    Level 1, NDS11/101
    Our counsellors are available at the Darlinghurst site on selected days of the week or by appointment during semester breaks.

    How do I contact the Counselling Service?
    Phone: (02) 8204 4220

    Please be aware that the Sydney Counselling Service phone and emails are being attended to Monday to Friday between the hours of 10.30am and 7.00pm.

  • Meet our team

    Counsellor - Ann-Maree Whelan (Counselling Psychologist, MAPS)

    Ann-Maree is a warm and experienced psychologist, who works from a strengths-based and trauma-informed perspective. She works collaboratively with clients using a wide range of evidence-based treatment approaches tailored to their individual needs. She aims to create a safe, non-judgemental and supportive therapeutic space where individuals can develop insight and create meaningful change in their lives and relationships.

    Ann-Maree has over 12 years’ experience in working with clients through life experiences such as neurodiversity, depression, anxiety, relationship difficulties, grief and loss. She has spent more than a decade working in student counselling in various university contexts as well as in private practice, and has had the pleasure of working at Notre Dame University since 2010.

    Ann-Maree is an AHPRA endorsed Counselling Psychologist, is a member of the Australian Psychological Society (APS), and a Fellow of the APS College of Counselling Psychology.

    Counsellor - Karin Austin (Counsellor Psychologist)

    Karin has worked as a Psychologist for more than 20 years, with a diverse range of people in various sectors, including community services, corporate organisations and in private practice.  She has substantial experience in the higher education sector and working with the challenges, transitions and stresses faced by University students.

    Karin offers a warm and engaging approach and deeply values the therapeutic relationship as core to the work of effective intervention.   Her strengths-based approach is based on understanding the broader context of student’s lives and creating space for connecting with inner resources and resilience.  She draws on a number of models and frameworks in her work and is particularly interested in therapeutic approaches that explore the integration of mind and body for optimal well-being.

    Karin has postgraduate qualifications in Counselling Psychology, is a full member of the Australian Psychological Society and is registered with AHPRA.

  • How do I make an appointment?

    You can contact us at (02) 8204 4220 or to make an appointment.

    All telephone and email contact is kept confidential, accessible only by counsellors.

    Please be aware that the Sydney Counselling Service phone and emails are being attended to Monday to Friday between the hours of 10.30am and 7.00pm.

  • What if I can’t attend my appointment?

    If you cannot attend an appointment, please call us at (02) 8204 4220 or email us at to cancel or reschedule. This enables the counsellors to see someone else who may also need an appointment.

    Please be aware that the Sydney Counselling Service phone and emails are being attended to Monday to Friday between the hours of 10.30am and 7.00pm.

  • What should I expect?

    Individual counselling sessions are typically 50 minutes. The number of sessions will vary, where students are seen on a short-term basis.

  • What do people talk about?

    Counselling is a process of talking and listening. It involves helping you develop new perspectives and skills to resolve problems.

    Some common issues students talk to us about include:

    • concerns about study-related issues (concentration, motivation, and exam anxiety)
    • difficulties in relationships with significant others (family, partners, and friends)
    • questions of identity, self-esteem and confidence
    • feelings of depression, anxiety and fear
    • loss or trauma
    • stress or conflict at home, work or university
    • coping with disabilities or health problems
  • Is counselling confidential?

    All information discussed during sessions at the Counselling Service remains confidential. It is important to be aware that any information provided is stored securely and is not available to a third party external to the service.

    The only exceptions to confidentiality are:

    • if you are considered at risk of causing serious harm to yourself or someone else
    • if reporting of information is required by law
    • if your file is subpoenaed by a court of law
    • if mandatory reporting obligations apply, such as for child abuse or notifiable conduct of a registered health practitioner or registered health student practitioner or registered health student.
  • What about emergencies or crisis situations?

    The Counselling Service is not a crisis service and does not provide after-hours consultations.

    If staff members or students require immediate and urgent assistance, then:

    Step 1: Ensure your safety and the safety of others
    Step 2: Contact 000 for emergency services
    Step 3: Advise Security (Broadway: 0403 458 011, Darlinghurst: 0406 318 213)

    After Hours Emergencies:
    If you require immediate and urgent assistance, please contact the following services:

    Police/Ambulance/Fire Brigade


    NSW Mental Health Line

    1800 011 511


    13 11 14


    Kids Helpline (up to 25 years)

    1800 551 800

    Camperdown Community Mental Health Team

    02 9515 9000

    Suicide Call Back Service

    1300 659 467

    beyond blue Support Service

    1300 224 636

    NSW Rape Crisis Line

    1800 424 017

    Alcohol and Drug Information Service