PSY 4540 Week 4 Assignment 2 Counseling Interview
PSY 4540 Week 4 Assignment 2 Counseling Interview
Counseling is helping another person to make sense of what seems senseless. It is a process of empowerment that allows people to connect with the power they have within themselves—power they may never have been aware they possessed. The process of counseling may employ many methods, techniques, and interventions, but its end goals are almost always the same—to alleviate distress and to promote change. As mental health professionals we are often faced with individuals who are desperately searching for answers and a way out of what feels like an endless maze. The purpose of this book is to help you develop the skills you will need to help others navigate the challenges of life and find answers to the questions that trouble them.
Counseling is a profession that endeavors to assist individuals, couples, families, and groups to deal with a wide range of problems. Counseling may focus on emotional problems such as depression and anxiety; relationship issues such as divorce or infidelity; vocational difficulties like procrastination or performance problems; social issues like homelessness and prejudice; environmental issues such as coping with a natural disaster; or biological problems like chronic illness or infertility. Counseling is a relatively new resource available to individuals who are struggling to cope effectively. Only in the past century has counseling become a primary intervention for individuals experiencing psychological distress.
A considerable amount of time and energy has been devoted to distinguishing between counseling and psychotherapy (Adler, 1958; Corsini & Wedding, 2000; Patterson, 1973). We believe there are more similarities than differences between the two practices. As a result, we will use the terms counseling and psychotherapy interchangeably throughout this book. A therapeutic experience is an encounter that results in a desirable or beneficial effect. Whether you have been in formal therapy or not, you have probably had a therapeutic experience with a friend, family member, physician, massage or physical therapist, or through individual practices like journaling, meditation, or prayer. All of us have experienced the alleviation of distress through some type of therapeutic experience; however, these may not have been psychotherapy or counseling per se.
Counseling involves a professional relationship; it is therefore distinguished from the relationships we have with family or friends. Mental health professionals do not usually assess or treat people they know in other settings or capacities for ethical reasons (see Chapter 2). Typically, the counseling relationship is established for a specific reason—the reduction of symptoms, to effect change in a person’s life, or to develop a deeper understanding of the self. It is a relationship that is bound by clear ethical guidelines for conduct. These standards of practice (described in detail in Chapter 2) create a framework for the counselor and the client and are intended to protect the rights of the client. Each discipline within the field of mental health has its own unique code of ethics, but most principles of ethical practice are universal across disciplines.
The practice of counseling also employs a unique set of skills that are not utilized in other helping professions. Students often tell us that they have chosen counseling as a profession because they are “good at giving advice” or because people regularly turn to them for guidance. Although advice-giving is certainly a skill and one that may add value to others’ lives, it is not the hallmark of most counseling relationships. Rather, counseling is an endeavor that requires very particular types of listening, questioning, interpretation, and, at times, confrontation. The counselor and the client are on a journey together—a journey toward self-understanding and change. If you are to become a counselor who truly connects with clients and is effective, you must put aside your reliance on advice-giving. This textbook and the learning experiences you have at your internship or practicum site will provide you with an entirely new repertoire of skills for helping.
Discussion Questions (DQ)
• Initial responses to the DQ should address all components of the questions asked, include a minimum of one scholarly source, and be at least 250 words.
• Successful responses are substantive (i.e., add something new to the discussion, engage others in the discussion, well-developed idea) and include at least one scholarly source.
• One or two sentence responses, simple statements of agreement or “good post,” and responses that are off-topic will not count as substantive. Substantive responses should be at least 150 words.
• I encourage you to incorporate the readings from the week (as applicable) into your responses.
• Your initial responses to the mandatory DQ do not count toward participation and are graded separately.
• In addition to the DQ responses, you must post at least one reply to peers (or me) on three separate days, for a total of three replies.
• Participation posts do not require a scholarly source/citation (unless you cite someone else’s work).
• Part of your weekly participation includes viewing the weekly announcement and attesting to watching it in the comments. These announcements are made to ensure you understand everything that is due during the week.
APA Format and Writing Quality
• Familiarize yourself with APA format and practice using it correctly. It is used for most writing assignments for your degree. Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for APA paper templates, citation examples, tips, etc. Points will be deducted for poor use of APA format or absence of APA format (if required).
• Cite all sources of information! When in doubt, cite the source. Paraphrasing also requires a citation.
• I highly recommend using the APA Publication Manual, 6th edition.
Use of Direct Quotes
• I discourage overutilization of direct quotes in DQs and assignments at the Masters’ level and deduct points accordingly.
• As Masters’ level students, it is important that you be able to critically analyze and interpret information from journal articles and other resources. Simply restating someone else’s words does not demonstrate an understanding of the content or critical analysis of the content.
• It is best to paraphrase content and cite your source.
• For assignments that need to be submitted to LopesWrite, please be sure you have received your report and Similarity Index (SI) percentage BEFORE you do a “final submit” to me.
• Once you have received your report, please review it. This report will show you grammatical, punctuation, and spelling errors that can easily be fixed. Take the extra few minutes to review instead of getting counted off for these mistakes.
• Review your similarities. Did you forget to cite something? Did you not paraphrase well enough? Is your paper made up of someone else’s thoughts more than your own?
• Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for tips on improving your paper and SI score.
• The university’s policy on late assignments is 10% penalty PER DAY LATE. This also applies to late DQ replies.
• Please communicate with me if you anticipate having to submit an assignment late. I am happy to be flexible, with advance notice. We may be able to work out an extension based on extenuating circumstances.
• If you do not communicate with me before submitting an assignment late, the GCU late policy will be in effect.
• I do not accept assignments that are two or more weeks late unless we have worked out an extension.
• As per policy, no assignments are accepted after the last day of class. Any assignment submitted after midnight on the last day of class will not be accepted for grading.
• Communication is so very important. There are multiple ways to communicate with me:
o Questions to Instructor Forum: This is a great place to ask course content or assignment questions. If you have a question, there is a good chance one of your peers does as well. This is a public forum for the class.
o Individual Forum: This is a private forum to ask me questions or send me messages. This will be checked at least once every 24 hours.