NCT breastfeeding counsellor training

In collaboration with the University of Worcester, we offer the only university-accredited qualification which allows you to become a breastfeeding counsellor working in the community and as a specialist contributor to our NCT Signature antenatal courses.

   

Overview

Highlights of this role

Breastfeeding is the option many new mums choose for feeding their baby – whether exclusively or in combination with formula. But for many reasons, it may not always be the easiest option. That’s where NCT breastfeeding counsellors come in.

Offering often vital practical and emotional support, they are an essential part of the support we offer to new mums (and their partners). They are also available to anyone who wants to talk about breastfeeding – including partners and grandparents.

Now – with University of Worcester – you can train to be a paid breastfeeding counsellor. Once you’ve completed your training you’ll be a key member of our specialist team of NCT breastfeeding counsellors.

Your training includes specialist modules on working with and leading groups so you can facilitate paid breastfeeding sessions on NCT Signature Antenatal courses and at postnatal groups, such as Baby Café.

You might also spend some time (paid) taking calls on out national feeding helpline and provide voluntary support in your local community.

For many of your clients your work will be life-changing. While you don’t need any medical experience to train we believe the ability to empathise with parents is vital, so to enter our breastfeeding counsellor training you need to have breastfed your own child for six months or more.

During your course you can choose to add to your training to deliver other NCT antenatal and postnatal services.

Once qualified you will hold the highly-respected NCT Licence-to-Practise. Plus, you’ll be insured by us and also receive on-going training and development to help keep your knowledge and skills up to date. You will:

  • Use our evidence-based approach to work with new mums and families, in small groups, at events, face-to-face, over the phone or by email.
  • Use your counselling and support skills to work through physical and emotional issues to help parents make choices about how to feed their babies.
  • And because you’ll be self-employed you can choose where and when you work.

What will I earn?

Before you start your new life as an NCT breastfeeding counsellor we want you to be confident it’s the right choice for you – personally, professionally and financially. Because we’re a charity, unlike some commercial support providers, we're happy to tell you up-front what we pay.

Along with the everlasting thanks of countless new parents, along with a proportion of voluntary work, you’ll be paid on an hourly basis, varying according to where you work and the experience you build up.

NCT breastfeeding counsellors choose the sessions they would like to run on NCT Signature courses or at a Baby Café, on a self-employed basis. They might also take on other paid or voluntary work.

  • Exactly how much you earn with us will depend on the size of the area you choose to work across, plus the length and number of session you deliver.
  • For example, in 2016 the average number of NCT sessions that counsellors chose to deliver was eight, (average three hours each); although our busier counsellors typically delivered around 37 NCT sessions each. We’ll also pay you for the support you provide to our helpline.
  • Dependent on experience, outside London the hourly rate for an NCT Breastfeeding Counsellors is between £18.20 and £29.60 an hour. In London, the rate can be between £23.40 and £38.30 an hour.

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Course format

To become a paid NCT breastfeeding counsellor you need to successfully complete years one (Level 4) and two (Level 5) of our foundation degree course. The course has five required modules at Level 4, and a variety of optional modules, including breastfeeding counsellor, at Level 5.

You have the choice of full- or part-time study. You’ll get a personal tutor to support you and keep you motivated, and there are regular group sessions and tutorials run in locations around the country. Much of the course is convenient, self-directed distance learning.

What modules will I study?

Level 4 - one year full time or two years part-time:

  • Reflective practice and listening skills.
  • Facilitating learning in groups.
  • Giving birth.
  • Breastfeeding knowledge.
  • New baby - new family.

Level 5 - one year part-time

  • Developing knowledge as a breastfeeding counsellor
  • Developing skills as a breastfeeding counsellor

You can also choose to take another Level 5 option, either alongside or after this, and become qualified in a second role, i.e. Postnatal Practitioner. This might make year two a full-time option.

If you have any more questions, have a look at the related documents on the right for more detail, check out our FAQs or contact our friendly admissions team directly using our enquiry form, who are waiting to help you.

Commitment

You need to apply as soon as possible because as the deadline for applications is 30 June 2017 or until the course is full, if this is sooner. The course starts in September 2017 and will run through until June next year.

Whether you choose to study full or part-time, to make sure you can work at your best and meet course targets, your coursework is distributed evenly throughout the year. 

The part-time option needs only around 15 hours study a week, consisting of self-directed study and occasional tutorials/study days/assessment days. In addition you also need to participate in work based learning. With this option it will take four years to achieve a foundation degree.

The full-time option needs around 30 hours study a week, also consisting of self-directed study and occasional tutorials/study days/assessment days. In addition you also need to participate in work based learning. With this option it will take just two years to achieve a foundation degree.

To help you make the most of the time available and support you to achieve your potential the University of Worcester has developed arrange of Study Skills Advice Sheets to help you to plan and carry out your coursework and assessments.

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Requirements

What qualifications do I need to study?

To be accepted on a course you will need a minimum of:

  • One A Level (or equivalent)  at grade C or above.
  • Or an equivalent  qualification e.g. BTEC or CACHE Level 3 diploma which carries 32 UCAS tariff points. These qualifications do not have to be in a related subject.

Don’t worry if you don’t have these qualifications, because we also run an access to training course specially designed to prepare you for our degree course. Just use our enquiry form for more details.

How much will it cost?

Students who already have a degree

NCT and University of Worcester (UW) do all they can to assist students will the cost of studying.

NCT and University of Worcester will subsidise the Birth and Beyond Foundation Degree students who are not able to access government student finance. We have a generous non-repayable grant of £2,000 for full-time students, and £1,000 for part-time.

We also have bursary funding of up to 70% of fees available for students who:

  • Volunteered for NCT in a significant role.
  • Trained and volunteered as a Peer Supporter.
  • Work in an area where NCT has a shortage of practitioners.
  • Have a household income below £60,000 p.a.
  • Have high travel expenses.

Please ask us for details by using our enquiry form.

Students who do not yet have a degree

As with other degree courses, government student finance is available for first-time degree students from England. Because of this you will not be eligible for a bursary, although you might also qualify for support directly from University of Worcester. There’s a different process if you’re a student from Scotland, Wales, or Northern Ireland. Contact the education authority if you live in the Channel Islands (Jersey, Guernsey) or Isle of Man.

Level 4

Students who are not eligible for student finance will automatically be awarded an NCT/UW grant, and can in addition apply for bursaries. Together the maximum grant and bursary awarded will be 70% of the fees.

To find out how much the fees are and how much NCT grants and bursaries could help you please see the table below.

  No student finance?
You pay per year...
NCT/UW grant Bursary value Full fee per year
if eligible for student finance
Full-time £2,100 - £4,890 £2,000 Up to £2,790 £6,890
Part-time £1,100 - 2,612 £1,000 Up to £1,512 £3,612

Fees, grant and bursary figures provided are for the academic year 2017/18, and are subject to change.

Level 5

Students who are not eligible for student finance will automatically be awarded an NCT/UW grant, and can in addition apply for bursaries. Together the maximum grant and bursary awarded will be 70% of the fees.

To find out how much the fees are and how much NCT grants and bursaries could help you please see the table below.

  No student finance?
You pay per year...
NCT/UW grant Bursary value Full fee per year
if eligible for student finance
Breastfeeding counsellor
£550 - £1,306 £500 Up to £756 £1,806

To learn more about grants and bursaries we offer, visit our student funding and bursaries page. If you have any further questions about the eligibility criteria and application process, ask us using the course enquiry form.

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Apply

Full-time
Simply apply via UCAS using Institution Code W80 and Course Code L521.

Part-time
Go to the University of Worcester foundation degree online application form and click on the 'Applying' tab.

Still got some questions? Need some more help with your application?

Please complete the course enquiry form or call us on 020 8752 2453.