Student Wellness Services Counselling

Counselling services

UCalgary students can connect with our counselling team for support with a variety of mental health and well-being concerns. 

UCalgary counselling services

Our clinic provides free and confidential counselling to UCalgary students. For timely access to mental health support, Student Wellness Services now offers single session counselling.

How do I see a counsellor?

Single Session Counselling appointments are available on a bookable basis. To book an appointment, call 403-210-9355 or book online.

How do I prepare for counselling?

Before you meet with a counsellor, consider what you want to be different as a result of accessing counselling. Think about how you'll know if counselling is (or has been) helping?

Cancellation policy

Please give one full business day's notice if you need to cancel an appointment. You might be billed for late cancellations or missed appointments.

Why seek counselling?

Common concerns

Our counsellors can help you address concerns, no matter where you are on the Mental Health Continuum. Common concerns students experience are stress and anxiety, depression, loneliness and isolation, and relationship issues. If you’re dealing with these or other issues, counselling might be right for you.

Positive outcomes

For counselling to be effective, it’s important to build a trusting relationship with your counsellor. Talking to a counsellor can help you make positive change to your expectations or behaviours to improve your mental health and well-being.

One-at-a-time counselling

Single session counselling provides faster access to support at the time when students (you!) need it most. You might think of it as “one at a time” counselling: For your counselling appointment you will have about an hour to explore concerns, gain insights, and co-create some ideas and strategies you can leave the appointment with. You can access single session counselling as many times as you need.

What to expect

The counsellor's role is to listen closely and help create a collaborative plan based on your own values, skills, and strengths. Many of our students find that one session of counselling meets their needs, but if you feel at the end of the session something more is needed, you can discuss this with the counsellor, and further supports on or off campus will also be explored.

Is there a session limit?

You may access Single Session Counselling more than once; however, before rebooking we hope you have had an opportunity to engage in the next steps or plans co-created during your previous session. This will help you maximize your counselling experience.

Brief individual counselling

Student Wellness Services (SWS) also uses a short-term, goal-focused counselling model. We provide individual counselling using traditional 50-minute sessions to address concerns that may interfere with students realizing their optimum level of wellness. Students referred to brief individual counselling will collaborate with their counsellor to address what is achievable within our short-term model. Progress toward goals is assessed in each session.

Why is counselling brief?

The mandate of Alberta post-secondary institutions is to provide counselling services using a brief (short-term) counselling model. This also helps to ensure we can support as many students as possible. Most students are able to meet their counselling goals within this model.

Is there a session limit?

There is no specific limit to the number of counselling sessions you can receive. Counsellors will work with you to address your concerns within the brief counselling model. They can also support you in accessing additional mental health support in the community, if needed.

What if I want or need longer-term counselling?

If it’s determined that longer term and/or more specialized support would be beneficial, you'll be supported in the transition to appropriate community support.

Indigenous counselling

Students who self-identify as Indigenous can book an appointment with a Student Wellness Services counsellor or Student Support Advisor located at the Writing Symbols Lodge. In addition to wellness support, students can access cultural and spiritual advising when needed. Opportunities to seek ceremonies, Knowledge Keepers, and Elders are all available to students as well.


Students requesting this support can access One-at-a-time counselling with the option to utilize Brief individual counselling services if necessary.

Book an appointment for Indigenous counselling

Coordinated care

Indigenous students in search of wellness support can connect with a Student Support Advisor to access coordinated care. This method of wellness support provides a primary advisor students can work with. Coordinated care can help you with:

  • productive goal setting
  • practical problem solving and planning
  • regularly scheduled supportive check-ins
  • access to cultural wellness supports
  • assistance with resource navigation
  • referrals to campus and community resources

Speak to a Student Support Advisor

Embedded counselling

Counsellors are embedded in certain faculties and departments to support students directly in their locations on campus. See below for a current list of the locations and how you can access services.

Faculties and Departments

Career Services (for career-related mental health concerns): By referral from a career services specialist

Student Success Centre (for academic-related concerns): By referral from an academic development specialists in the Student Success Centre

Veterinary Medicine: Upon request there are limited early evening appointments available. Contact, call 403.210.9355, or submit an appointment request form and indicate that you are a student in Veterinary Medicine and would like an appointment. Due to a renovation to the physical space at Foothills campus these appointments are currently only available virtually.

In an emergency or crisis

If you're experiencing a crisis and feel unable to cope, and/or Student Wellness Services is closed, contact our after-hours support. They are available at any time of the day or night to offer assistance.

Urgent Support

Urgent support is available for students in very high distress. You can access it at Student Wellness Services Monday to Friday at 3 p.m.

Examples of urgent situations include (but are not limited to):

  • Feeling suicidal and at risk of acting on these feelings
  • A recent trauma, such as sexual or physical assault
  • Struggling with thoughts that you might severely hurt another person(s)
  • Experiencing a panic attack

Direct access services

Mental health support includes more than one-on-one counselling. Find the right service option for you.

Peer support

Want to talk to someone who gets it? Find a peer support program that fits your schedule. Find peer support options »

Self-help resources

Learn new coping skills and strategies at your own pace. Our online learning options include videos, online mindfulness, and webinars. View self-help resources »


Looking for effective strategies to maintain positive mental health? Register for one of our workshops »


Looking to learn new skills to maintain your well-being? View our group programs to find the right support for you. Find a group program »