Audit of Counselling Services

27 April 2018

The Australian National University is about to begin an audit of the counselling services provided to students at ANU who have experienced sexual assault or sexual harassment.

Under Recommendation 7 of the Australian Human Rights Commission's report: Change the Course, "universities should conduct an audit of university counselling services to assess:

  • the capacity of university counselling services to respond to students' requests for counselling in an appropriately timely manner, and
  • how many university counselling staff have received training in working with sexual assault survivors.

As part of this audit, universities should collect data on:

  • the average length of time students are required to wait to see a university counsellor, and
  • the number of urgent/crisis requests for counselling  received."

The Terms of Reference of the audit are available here. The consultancy team, Kandie Allen-Kelly and Andrea Strachan, will be conducting interviews with key stakeholders during the weeks starting Monday 7 May and Monday 14 May.

Students who have accessed, or who have attempted to access counselling services at ANU, are invited to provide feedback to Kandie Allen-Kelly and Andrea Strachan about your experiences. You can contact them directly and confidentially at

Your feedback will be treated confidentially unless you request otherwise, in writing.  If you would like the consultants to contact you by phone, please provide them with your contact details and availability.

The consultants would like to know:

  • What you sought support for (not compulsory, but very helpful)?
  • How long it took to get an appointment?
  • Was the appointment long enough?
  • How often you saw a counsellor?
  • Whether that experience was beneficial to you?
  • If you went to see them as a result of sexual assault, attempted assault or sexual harassment, did they seem to have the depth of knowledge and understanding that would help people through these issues?
  • What could have been improved to make the service more helpful and accessible to you, if anything?

Students are encouraged to take part in this important audit to enable the University to determine if there are enough counselling staff and the right mix of counsellors to adequately support students who have experienced sexual assault or sexual harassment. More detail about support services available can be found here.