Provisional Membership

Provisional Members of PACFA are fully qualified counsellors, psychotherapists and Aboriginal &Torres Strait Islander Healing Practitioners. They are Full (voting) members of PACFA.

Provisional Registrants have undertaken training that meets the requirements of the PACFA Training Standards, or training that is deemed equivalent to the PACFA Training Standards. They also meet the requirements for listing on the PACFA National Register as Provisional Registrants.

Membership Pathways

For applicants whose training meets the PACFA Training Standards 2020, membership is via the Accredited Training Pathway.

For applicants whose training is deemed equivalent to the PACFA Training Standards, PACFA membership is available via other membership pathways. For details see the Membership and Registration Requirements 2020.

(i) Accredited Training Pathway

The PACFA Training Standards 2020 came into effect on 8 October 2020. The PACFA Training Standards are based on the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) standards and levels of learning. See

Education and training in counselling and psychotherapy must be undertaken in an AQF (7-9) approved qualification at either the undergraduate or postgraduate levels. The minimum volume of learning requirements listed below apply to any program whether undergraduate or postgraduate.

400 hours of instruction (minimum) (applicable to AQF level 7-9).  This may be made up of

i) 200 hours direct person-to-person instruction of which 60 hours may be synchronous online (e.g., interactive webinars).

  • This equates to (140 hours) which must be solely taught face-to-face plus (60 hours) of synchronous training
  • The central focus of this person-to-person instruction is on interpersonal skills development

ii) 200 hours of instruction may be conducted via online asynchronous training for theory-based studies.

A minimum of 40 hours of face-to-face counselling or psychotherapy practice (client contact) with 10 hours of supervision (related to client contact) within training must be completed and assessed as successful by the training provider. Successful completion of supervised practice is required to be evidenced by a log signed by the responsible supervisor(s).

(ii) Equivalent Pathway

The requirements for the Equivalent training Pathway are the same as the requirements for the Accredited Training Pathway, except that the training program is not accredited by TEQSA, ASQA or PACFA.

Applicants under this Pathway can demonstrate completion of training that is equivalent to PACFA Training Standards. As the program is not accredited by PACFA, the program must be assessed by PACFA against the requirements of the PACFA Training Standards in terms of curriculum, volume of learning and supervised practice requirements.

An additional assessment fee applies to applications under this Pathway. For details see the Schedule of Fees.

(iii) Recognition of Prior Learning Pathway (RPL)

Where an applicant’s professional training, supervision and development do not fit the requirements of the PACFA Training Standards or equivalent, they may apply to PACFA for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for Provisional or Clinical membership or registration.

Applicants are required to provide substantial evidence in support of RPL applications in accordance with the Guidelines for Recognition of Prior Learning.

An additional assessment fee applies to applications under this Pathway. For details see the Schedule of Fees.

Registration Requirements

In addition to the above training and supervised practice requirements, Provisional members are required to:

  • Hold professional Indemnity Insurance
  • Maintain high standards of ethical practice
  • Undertake annual requirements for supervision and continuing professional development. For details of the annual renewal requirements, please see the Renewal Requirements page.


To apply for Provisional Membership of PACFA, please see the Join PACFA as an Individual page.

Grandfathering Arrangements

Grandfathering arrangements apply in limited circumstances for Applicants you completed training under the former PACFA Training Standards (2014). The final cut-off date for the grandfathering scheme is 31/12/2023.


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