Counselling and Mental Health Support

In crisis?

Our Counselling and Mental Health Team at Keele are not an emergency service.  If you need advice for yourself or someone else please see our information about external support services.

As a University we understand that your overall wellbeing is integral to your student experience and academic journey. During this time you may experience difficulties and challenges along the way, there is a lot of different support available for you whilst you study at Keele University. 

At times it may be better for you to be referred to an external service such as Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Wellbeing Service (NHS), or our Student Assistance Programme (Health Assured).  Please click on the self-help resources button below for more details on these and other resources.


Core values, commitments and expectations

We will:

  • treat you with respect, ensuring your psychological and mental health support needs are carefully assessed and appropriate care pathways provided
  • ensure your wellbeing is prioritised and you are treated with sensitivity and empathy
    provide a welcoming, inclusive and accessible environment where you feel listened to and valued
  • evaluate the quality of our service to you, by seeking your feedback through clinical questionnaires and evaluation forms
  • provide a confidential service, ensuring that any information we gather is stored securely and handled sensitively
  • only share information when required to ensure a consistent approach, with your consent, except when there is an immediate serious risk of harm
  • offer consultation, support and training to colleagues across the University to raise awareness of the services we provide to support students experiencing emotional and psychological difficulty
  • offer advice to colleagues on how to respond effectively to students in distress
    make appropriate and timely referrals for support where needed
  • ensure our services are delivered by professionally qualified and experienced mental health advisers, counsellors, therapists, and wellbeing advisers, keeping up to date with developments in relevant research and good practice
  • promote good mental health and provide a wide range of resources including online services and a programme of workshops designed to help you to develop strategies to improve your wellbeing and overcome common mental health difficulties
  • triage all referrals into our service to ensure the most appropriate pathway and prioritise most significant needs

In order for us to offer an appropriate and timely service, we ask you to:

  • engage with self help support to maintain your own wellbeing
  • whenever you contact us, provide us with your full name and student ID, and ensure that your contact details in university systems are up to date
  • respond in a timely manner to offers of appointments so that we can provide support to all our students as quickly as possible
  • attend your appointments and provide at least 24 hours’ notice if you need to cancel or rearrange where possible.
  • register with a GP local to the University
  • contact us if you have any queries or feel there are any issues with your support
    treat staff and other users within the Counselling, Mental Health and Wellbeing Service with courtesy and respect
  • engage with alternative services that are appropriate to your needs
    follow the advice, guidance and support given to you by the service

Our service runs from 9am-5pm, Monday - Friday. Outside of these times students should access services in their local area in the first instance such as GP, mental health crisis services or one of the following services:

Frequently asked questions

Not under usual circumstances as the service is confidential. However, in some cases, our advisers may have concerns about your safety, or the safety of others and we may need to involve someone else.  We always work within the law, but if a situation of concern arose, we would consult you if possible and explain why we feel the need to speak to someone else about your circumstances. 

We aim to offer you an initial appointment within a week and try to keep waiting times for ongoing appointments to a minimum.  If we do suggest ongoing appointments, then we will contact you frequently to check how you’re managing.  Please make sure that you check your Keele email account and respond to our offers of appointments as this helps to keep waiting list times to a minimum. 

We would be happy to offer you some general advice about a friend or relative. However, we wouldn't be able to be specific or tell you if a person is accessing our service.

In the first instance we offer students up to six sessions.  We are committed to working in an ethical manner and want to see your life improve as quickly as possible.  Sometimes, at our initial appointment, we might identify that your needs are best met by an external provider and we’ll either liaise with them on your behalf or provide you with their contact details. 

We accept that sometimes in life we can't relate to everyone and this can happen in the counselling and mental health relationship. If you can, it might be worth discussing this with your adviser who can then talk through your concerns and arrange for you to be seen by someone else.

Sometimes students bring someone with them to their first session, to sit with them in the waiting room.  We've found that having someone with you in the consulting room can make it more difficult for you to open up and you may not get as much out of the session as possible.