Conducting a Practice Counseling Session

Assignment: Conducting a Practice Counseling Session

As a clinical mental health counselor, you consciously use certain skills, such as open-ended questions, paraphrasing, reflection of feeling, and summarizing, to demonstrate to the client that you heard, understood, and empathized with what he or she said. These skills help to initiate rapport with the client, creating a safe and therapeutic environment where change can occur. These skills help the client to initiate change as you guide him or her through the counseling process.

Watching counseling professionals perform and explain these skills is a critical first step in developing these skills. You will take the next step in this Assignment by actually putting these skills into practice. This will give you the opportunity to objectively assess your own performance and get helpful feedback from your Instructor.

For this Assignment, you will videotape yourself as you implement core counseling skills. You will review videos of clients making statements and record yourself responding to these statements.

To Prepare:

· Review Chapter 6 from the Erford course text. Focus on the sections titled “Open Questions” and “Reflecting Skills.”

· Watch both of the Demonstration of Counseling Skills—Responding to Client Statements (statements 1 and 2) media programs in your Learning Resources.

· Pick one of these two sessions to focus on in your recording.

· Re-watch the media program you chose, and attend to the client’s statements in the session.

· Download and review the Counseling Skills Transcription Template, and use this template to complete the Assignment.

· Review the Video Recording Instructions document in this week’s Learning Resources for more information about preparing for and videotaping this Assignment.

· Review the Kaltura Uploader link found in the navigation of the classroom for helpful guidelines for creating and uploading your video for this Assignment. (Note: Please be mindful of the technical requirements needed when creating your video.)

Assignment (3- to 5-minute video):

· Select three client statements (from the media program you chose) to respond to. Transcribe these statements as directed in the Counseling Skills Transcription Template.

· In response to those statements, plan to demonstrate the following skills:

· Attending skills (pp. 193–196)

· One paraphrase (pp. 201–204)

· One reflection of feeling (pp. 205–207)

· One open question (p. 197)

· Record a 3- to 5-minute video of your responses to the client statements demonstrating the above skills. Please contact your Instructor if you struggle with the technology involved in this Assignment.

· First, read the transcribed client statements.

· Second, record your counseling skill responses (attending, paraphrase, reflection of feeling, or open question) to each statement.

· Do NOT write down and then read verbatim your counseling skill responses. While you might practice before you record, demonstrate these skills as if you are actually saying them to your client. You might consider putting a picture or object (such as a stuffed animal) in front of you to focus on as your “client.”

· Be sure to face the camera as you record so the audio and video quality are clear.

· Make sure you have sufficient lighting for the video recording.

· Minimize distractions while you record.

· Reduce noise levels (e.g., silence your smartphone, turn off the TV or radio).

· After making your video, transcribe your responses using the Counseling Skills Transcription Template located in the Learning Resources.

· Review the transcription, and if you see that you have performed a particular skill incorrectly, write in the correct skill as needed.

· Include a brief 1-page reflection describing the experience.

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