Introduction to Counseling Psychology

Describe a personal problem, struggle, or challenge that caused you some discomfort in your life. Select a situation that occurred at least one year ago. Be sure to include basic demographic information (age, sex, race, education, hometown); the presenting problem (what is it?); the history and development of the problem (when and how did it start?); the ways in which the problem has affected your life; the ways in which you have attempted to resolve the problem; relevant personal, medical, social, family, and academic history; and the current status of the problem in your life. Consider how satisfied you are with the final outcome.

Finally, consider the counseling interventions that would be best suited to addressing this problem and the counseling techniques that would best enhance adaptive behaviors for the future. (In other words, what approaches would you want a professional helper to employ if consulted on the problem?) Your paper should be 3 to 5 pages in length.

 

Exploration Paper 2

Think of an original presenting problem and evaluate it from the perspective of one of the theories we studied. Do not select the same personal problem or challenge you wrote about in exploration paper 1. You may select a problem you have observed in yourself or write about the situation of someone you know—but write the paper in the third person and in a formal style (“Mr. Smith has experienced panic attacks that have increased in severity over the past five years” rather than “I’ve been having some panic attacks lately.”)

Evaluate the presenting problem from your chosen theoretical orientation. Be sure to provide evidence from the person’s life that justifies the conceptualization. Also, consider ways in which the conceptualization might not be accurate. For example, what evidence is lacking or is contradictory? How might a counselor working from this theoretical orientation be helpful or not helpful?

Next, provide a basic treatment plan for resolving the problem from this theoretical orientation. When you plot the treatment plan, consider the reasons why each intervention, strategy, or technique might be helpful. Describe when and how you would employ each technique or strategy. Include a mini mental status exam as an appendix. Your paper should be at least 5 pages in length. 

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