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Exam structure

SGfB Mitglieder müssen nur die Prüfungsteile machen, welche mit einem * markiert sind.

Failure to pass the exam:

According to PO 6.4, the unsatisfactory parts of the examination can be repeated twice. For the repetition of individual parts of the examination, the examination board determines the fees. An examination cancellation by the candidates is considered as a failed examination.

Examination part 1:
Diploma thesis


The thesis is written and prepared in advance.

  • The thesis includes a description of a counseling process in the psychosocial field with an individual, couple or group. In it, candidates deal in a differentiated manner with their own consulting practice and the available and applied theories, approaches, goals and methods and quality assurance.
  • It is evident from the diploma thesis that the candidates are able to describe, reflect and evaluate a complex counseling process in an independent and practice-oriented manner and to present themselves as competent, self-responsible counselors in the psychosocial field. The client’s presentation contains the information relevant to the counseling process.

The described procedures are based on the problems and questions of the people to be advised. The counselor explains conclusively which theories guide her actions, which methodological approach she sees and to what extent she can apply it competently herself.


Scope of the thesis 40 – 60 pages. See Formalities.

  • Overview of a counseling process of at least 3 sessions in the field of psychosocial counseling (5 pages of text*).
  • Compressed representation of each session (max. 1 text page per session)
  • Description of a counseling sequence including the transcript of an audio or video recording (8-10 min.). This can be identical to the exposure from PT 3. The reflection of the applied approaches, theories, methods, interventions, as well as their effect on the counseling process and the own experience should be woven into this presentation (25 text pages*)
  • In-depth theoretical presentation of a thematic aspect of the consulting process (6 text pages*)
  • Differentiated examination of one’s behavior as a counselor, the counseling style developed, the process of one’s own development as a counselor, and the findings for further development (10 text pages*).
  • Bibliography and sources

* Guideline value


The following elements are assessed:

  • Overview of the course of a consulting process
  • Detailed description of at least one sequence of the process and course and the chosen and applied goals, concepts, methods, procedures and interventions as well as their effect on the counseling process (according to audio or video protocol)
  • Theoretical examination and reflection
  • Examination of personal counseling style and process as a counselor.
  • Formal design of the written thesis
  • Formal Criteria:

  • The thesis is complete according to the given structure
  • The statements are understandable and linguistically correct
  • The display is clear
  • Content Criteria:

  • The topic and the question(s) are well-founded, relevant to consulting and practice-oriented
  • The questions to be worked on are precisely formulated
  • Any described practical situations fit the topic or the question(s)
  • The presentation of relevant theories and considerations is technically correct
  • The answers and conclusions refer to the questions posed
  • Based on the answers concrete conclusions have been drawn
  • The work is critically evaluated
  • Candidates are able to theoretically justify their interventions. Their procedures are based on the problems or questions of the persons to be advised; they explain which theories guide their actions, which methodical procedure they see and whether they themselves apply it competently. In addition, they reflect on possible options.


  • Candidates confirm in writing that they have written the thesis themselves.
  • As a guideline for the length of the thesis, a number of 40-60 A4 text pages (without bibliography and appendix) with font size 11, line spacing 1.5.
  • Sources must be cited correctly and listed in the bibliography: Author, year of publication, title, place, publisher.
  • Three copies of the thesis must be submitted by the deadline specified by the examination board (2 copies bound by post, one copy electronically by email).
  • Failure to meet the deadline will result in non-admission to the exam.

The evaluation of the examination part is carried out according to the assessment sheet examination part 1.

Examination part 2:
Consulting concept


Candidates write a personal counseling concept that provides information about their counseling activities and makes them tangible as a counselor.

In it, they explain which image of man (filled with their own personality) guides them, in what it is founded and why this conviction is shared. Likewise, according to which theories, goals and methods they work in the corresponding consulting approach and how they evaluate their consulting activities. The theoretical models are to be linked with the concrete own work as a counselor.


The consulting concept includes statements on the following topics in particular:

  • Personal and professional requirements: Qualification, core competencies
  • Image of man/ ethical principles/ legal foundations
  • Consulting approach
  • Theories guiding action
  • Clientele, target groups incl. Delimitations
  • General and specific consulting goals, incl. Delimitations
  • Relationship management (e.g. voluntariness, confidentiality)
  • Consulting methods
  • Consulting process from initial meeting to conclusion
  • Record keeping, administration, marketing
  • Professional quality assurance: evaluation, continuing education
  • Interaction within the consulting concept


The counseling concept clearly and concisely presents the self-image as a counselor and the understanding of one’s own activity in psychosocial counseling.


  • A guideline for the size of the consulting concept is 15-20 A4 text pages (without appendix) with font size 11, line spacing 1.5.
  • Citations must be correctly declared and the work must be accompanied by a declaration of independence.
  • Three copies of the consulting concept are submitted by the deadline specified by the board of examiners.
  • Failure to meet the deadline will result in non-admission to the exam.

The assessment of the examination part is based on the assessment sheet in the download area above. Candidates whose assessment sheet (for each of the first examinations) is not listed in the download area must request the assessment sheet from the secretariat.

Examination part 3:
Consulting practice with audio or video recording

Assessment based on a consultation session with audio or video recording. The exam is oral with an exam time of 75 minutes (including playing the audio or video recording).


Candidates make an audio or video recording of a counseling session in advance of the exam and select one or two sequences from it totaling 8 – 10 minutes.

Notes on the selection of the sequence or sequences

  • The recording should show at least two or more interventions by the counselor
  • It shows changes of the client in relation to the counseling goal
  • To note: Experts judge based on what they see and hear; what happened before or after serves as background information

Candidates transcribe the selected consultation sequences. In addition, the corresponding case presentation is written in the size of one DIN A4 page. The case presentation contains information on

  • Client:in or clientele
  • Request or problem definition
  • Session context
  • Consulting target
  • Length of the selected sequence(s)

The lines in the transcript are numbered.

Candidates bring the audio or video sequence and all the technical equipment required to play the sequence to the examination. Transcript and case presentation will be brought in triplicate.

English-speaking candidates are eligible to submit an English-language audio or video recording, an English-language transcript, and an English-language case presentation for Examination Part 3.


The test proceeds in three phases:

  1. Candidates describe the counseling situation and describe the counseling process. The experts ask questions.
  2. The candidates show the selected consulting sequence.
  3. The experts ask questions about the presented consulting excerpt, the consulting process and the underlying consulting concept. They give the candidates the opportunity to answer the questions in terms of their own consulting concept.


The selected consulting sequence is reviewed by two experts in each case.

In the examination interview, the candidate explains the counseling sequence against the background of the respective counseling concept.

General criteria: basic consulting competences

  • Perception and reflection
    The candidates

    • describe the consulting situation
    • perceive client needs and reflect on the counseling process
    • perceive themselves
  • Communication and conversation
    The candidates

    • establish and maintain contact
    • communicate clearly
    • apply conversation techniques
    • address and deal with conflicts
  • Design of the consulting relationship
    The candidates

    • Establish professional relationships, make them conducive, maintain them, and terminate them for counseling completion
  • Role awareness
    The candidates

    • assume a clear role, describe and question it
    • recognize and respect the limits of the consulting activity
  • Process design and interventions
    The candidates

    • Use appropriate methods and design interventions effectively

The candidates

  • explain the chosen procedure against the background of their own consulting concept and the guiding theories and models
  • make further references to their consulting concept

The overall evaluation is made in relation to general and approach-specific criteria.


The following measures are to be taken for data protection:

  • The client is informed in advance about the aim and purpose of the use of the recordings in training and examination
  • The client’s consent form for the use of the recording is submitted with the examination materials. 1 original, 2 copies
  • All persons involved in the examination (secretariat, examination board, examination experts, observers) are subject to the duty of confidentiality.

Examination part 3 lasts a total of 75 minutes incl. playing the audio or video recording. Candidates bring the audio or video sequence and all the technical equipment required to play the sequence to the examination.

The assessment of the examination part is based on the assessment sheet in the download area above. Candidates whose assessment form (for each of the first examinations) is not listed in the download area must request the assessment form from the secretariat.

Examination part 4:
Final colloquium


In the final interview, candidates demonstrate that they are able to convincingly describe their own behavior as counselors, critically reflect on it, give plausible and theory-based reasons for it, realistically assess it, and derive conclusions for further professional development. The final colloquium lasts 90 minutes.


  • Candidates present their counseling concept (approx. 10 min.) and relate their reflection to the practical example (examination part 3).
  • The experts ask questions about the relevant consulting behavior and about the candidates’ statements as consultants.
  • They ask candidates to reflect on, justify, and evaluate the behaviors and statements addressed, identify indicated changes in behavior, and formulate conclusions for professional development.


  • Presentation:
    The essential aspects of the consulting concept are presented clearly and comprehensibly. The candidates can specify individual points of the concept.
  • Communication:
    Candidates communicate congruently, actively, consciously, and appropriately for the situation. The statements are free of contradictions and comprehensible. One’s own positions are defended calmly and with conviction. The candidates respond adequately to questions, criticism and suggestions from the experts.
  • Conceptual and analytical thinking:
    Ideas and proposals are presented clearly and vividly. The argumentation is conclusive, coherent and theoretically sound.
  • Systemic, networked thinking:
    In ideas, reasoning, or argumentation, candidates refer to the system context.
  • Flexibility and situational response:
    Candidates respond flexibly and appropriately to unexpected situations and changing circumstances.
  • Self-reflection:
    Candidates describe their own strengths, abilities and limitations, demonstrating resource awareness.
  • Professional Ethics:
    Candidates act on the basis of reflected principles and are able to represent them.


The presentation of the consulting concept takes about 10 minutes. Flipchart, pin board and a projection device are available as aids. Candidates bring technical equipment for presenting the consulting concept to the examination.

The whole part of the exam lasts 90 minutes.

The evaluation of the examination part is carried out according to the assessment sheet examination part 4.