Theories of Counseling – CEFS 510

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

This course provides in-depth exploration of selected theories of counseling and psychotherapy, including empirically supported treatment modalities. Through this course, students learn about the nature and process of therapy, and begin to learn how to conceptualize client presentations and select appropriate interventions while considering issues of diversity. Students are encouraged to begin to define their own theoretical approach to their work with individuals, couples, and families.

Prerequisites

(CEFS 501 or COUN 501 or MAAC 501) and (CEFS 500 or COUN 500)

Rationale

The purpose of this course is to provide an overview of the major counseling theories and practices. Counseling theories provide the basis for the theoretical framework that guides one’s practice. However, the assimilation of theory into a theoretical orientation is more than an academic exercise. Counseling theories emanate from a philosophical foundation that influences therapeutic practice. This course is designed to help students gain the understanding and self-awareness needed to begin to develop their own theoretical orientation. Emphasis will be placed upon enabling students to develop a theoretical foundation upon which to base a counseling approach.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

This course is designed to meet the Department of Counselor Education and Family Studies Program Learning Outcomes 1–6. Students enrolled in clinical mental health counseling programs must demonstrate an understanding of counseling theories. Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to demonstrate required knowledge, skills, and professional development objectives pertaining to theory, including all of the following:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of a prescribed theoretical orientation to counseling. [Measured by Assignments B, C, D, E, F]
  2. Recognize the importance of having a commanding knowledge and understanding of a specified theory in order to incorporate ethically relevant strategies and techniques of the theory in the practice of counseling. [Measured by Assignments B, C, D, E, F]
  3. Evaluate prominent theories of counseling and psychotherapy for compatibility to biblical teachings. [Measured by Assignments B, C, D, E]
  4. Recognize and critically evaluate distinct strategies and techniques consistent with the philosophical underpinnings of the prescribed theory as well as demonstrate effective application of the fundamental components of the counseling process in a prescribed theoretical orientation to counseling. [Measured by Assignments B, D, E]
  5. Differentiate counseling strategies and techniques of the prescribed theory used in counseling individuals and groups. [Measured by Assignment B, C, D, E, F]
  6. Compare and contrast diversity issues relating to the prescribed theory as well as delineate the application of appropriate counseling strategies and techniques relating to the prescribed theory with diverse populations using relevant counseling strategies and techniques. [Measured by Assignments B, C, D, E].
  7. Integrate prescribed theoretical orientations to counseling into one’s unique counseling approach. [Measured by Assignments B, C, D, E]

 Course Objectives/Assessment Matrix:

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Performance

Assessments

Domain: Knowledge

 

Demonstrate an understanding of the major historical and contemporary theories and models of counseling

V.  B, C, D, E, F

Recognize distinct strategies and techniques consistent with the philosophical underpinnings of the prescribed theory;

V. B, D, E

Differentiate counseling strategies and techniques of the prescribed theory used in counseling individuals and groups;

V. B, D, E

Compare and contrast diversity issues relating to the prescribed theory as well as using relevant counseling strategies and techniques with diverse populations.

V. B, C, D, E, F

Domain: Behavioral Skills

 

Demonstrate effective application of the fundamental components of the counseling process in a prescribed theoretical orientation to counseling;

V. B, D, E, F

Critically evaluate and select counseling strategies and techniques consistent with the prescribed theory;

V. B, D, E

Delineate the application of appropriate counseling strategies and techniques relating to the prescribed theory with diverse populations.

V.. B, D, E

Domain: Professional Development

 

Begin to develop a personal model of counseling that is consistent with current professional research and practice in the field

V. C, D, E

Perceive the value of using various counseling strategies and techniques in practice.

V. B, C, D, E

Be receptive to diversity issues, as well as personal biases, when incorporating the prescribed theory into one’s professional practice;

V. B, C, D, E, F

Course Assignment

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student will participate in 4 Discussion Board Forums based on the counseling sessions and counseling theories in each module/week. For each forum, the student will be expected to discuss the ongoing counseling case. Each thread must be 300-350 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. Each thread must include at least 2 references in current APA format. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to 2 other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be 150-200 words, and must contain one reference in current APA format. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E, F, G)

The Counseling Project is divided into 3 parts: the Case Summary and Presenting Problems and 2 Conceptualization and Treatment Plans. The student will develop a short case summary about a fictional character (a TV, movie, or historical character is acceptable—but no cartoons or superheroes; this can also be a made-up character). This summary must be presented as if the fictional character is the client and the student is the therapist. The 2 Conceptualization and Treatment Plans are created using theories discussed throughout the course. Specific theories to choose from are detailed in the instructions found in Blackboard. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E, F, G)

There are 3 open-book/open-notes exams required in this course. Each exam will have 25 multiple-choice questions based on the assigned readings. Each exam has a 1-hour time limit to choose the correct answers. (MLO: A, B, E)