Foundations Of Mental Health Counseling – Professional Development Project

I need this back by Thursday January 25, 2018 at 2pm.

I’m in the state of Georgia

My journey into counseling is based on my mom being diagnosed with mental illness when I was five years old. Me being in foster care and living with different family members and experiencing every form of abuse from the age of 5 until 18. I had anger issues and I was passive aggressive. I used comedy as a way to take the focus off me but it was mostly in school towards those who offended me.  As an adult I went through a process of forgiving which lead me to wanting to help others.

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PC 6106 Foundations of Mental Health Counseling

Required Assignment 1:  (200 pts)

Description of RA 1:Professional Development Project

In this assignment, you will develop a professional development plan and submit a 6-7 page reflection on the process.

Professional Development Project

Students will (1) interview a licensed professional counselor (i.e., not a social worker, marriage and family therapist, psychologist, case manager) currently practicing in the field about their position, responsibilities, credentials, training, involvement in the profession, specialty area, job market, self-care strategies, and advice to you as a counselor-in-training; (2) explore the ACA website, in terms of benefits, structure and content; and (3) identify licensing requirements (e.g., exams, hours, training) for the state in which you plan to acquire your license (i.e., contact the state/review the website) and certifications you plan to acquire (e.g., Registered Play Therapist, Nationally Certified Counselor); (4) describe your journey into counseling (“Why Am I Here?”).

The professional development project reflection paper should be 6-7 double-spaced pages: (a) summarize interview (including interviewee demographic contact information) and what you learned about the profession from the interview(2 pgs.), (b) review benefits of ACA membership (1/2-1 pg.), (c) summarize the licensure requirements in your state and create a plan and timeline for acquiring your professional counseling license and any additional certifications (2 pgs.), and (d) describe your unique path to the decision to becoming a counselor (“Why Am I Here”) (2 pgs.).

Your final product will be a 6-7 page Word document written in APA format. Your paper should be written in a clear, concise, and organized manner; demonstrate ethical scholarship in accurate representation and attribution of sources; and display accurate spelling, grammar, and punctuation.

RA 1 Grading Criteria

CACREP Core Standards: 2.F.1.d; 2.F.1.f; 2.F.1.h;

CMHC Standards: 5.C.2.a; 5.C.2.k


Assignment Components


Max Points


Select a licensed professional   counselor

Selected a licensed   professional counselor, described interviewee’s professional background and   rationale for selecting interviewee.

/12 pts.


Interview a licensed professional   counselor

Gathered information   about interviewee’s position, responsibilities, credentials, training,   involvement in the profession, specialty area, job market, self-care   strategies, and advice to counselors-in-training. Demonstrated meaningful   reflection on interview experience and described relevance to experience as a   counselor-in-training.

/60 pts


Explore the ACA website, in terms   of benefits, structure and content

Reviewed and described purpose of   ACA and benefits of ACA membership.

/24 pts.


Identify licensing   requirements and certifications

Created a plan for   acquiring professional counseling license using current licensure board   requirements and cited appropriately; included timeline with projected dates   for completion of process. Described specialty areas of interest, additional   training required and certification process.

/32 pts.


Why Am I Here?   (reflection)

Described personal journey into the field of counseling.   Included: First time the student considered counseling as a career, how life   experiences prepared the student to become a counselor, attributes possessed   that will make the student an effective counselor, etc.

Must include two   sources from peer-reviewed journals, cited correctly, and included in a   reference list.

/48 pts


Academic Writing


Write in a clear,   concise, and organized manner; demonstrate ethical scholarship in accurate   representation and attribution of sources (i.e. APA); and display accurate   spelling, grammar, and punctuation.

Written in a clear,   concise, and organized manner; demonstrated ethical scholarship in   appropriate and accurate representation and attribution of sources; and   displayed accurate spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Use of scholarly   sources aligns with specified assignment requirements.

/24 pts



/ 200 pts.

The Place of Techniques and Evaluation in Counseling

Drawing on Techniques from Various Approaches

Techniques of Therapy

Applications of the Approaches

Contributions to Multicultural Counseling

Limitations in Multicultural Counseling

Contributions of the Approaches

Overview of Contemporary Counseling Models

Ego-Defense Mechanisms


Comparison of Freud’s Psychosexual Stages and Erikson’s Psychosocial Stages


The Basic Philosophies


Key Concepts


Goals of Therapy


The Therapeutic Relationship

Limitations of the Approaches








The Place of Techniques and Evaluation in Counseling

Drawing on Techniques from Various Approaches


Techniques of Therapy

Psychoanalytic therapy The key techniques are interpretation, dream analysis, free association, analysis of resistance, analysis of transference, and countertransference. Techniques are designed to help clients gain access to their unconscious conflicts, which leads to insight and eventual assimilation of new material by the ego.
Adlerian therapy Adlerians pay more attention to the subjective experiences of clients than to using techniques. Some techniques include gathering life-history data (family constellation, early recollections, personal priorities), sharing interpretations with clients, offering encouragement, and assisting clients in searching for new possibilities.
Existential therapy Few techniques flow from this approach because it stresses understanding first and technique second. The therapist can borrow techniques from other approaches and incorporate them in an existential framework. Diagnosis, testing, and external measurements are not deemed important. Issues addressed are freedom and responsibility, isolation and relationships, meaning and meaninglessness, living and dying.
Person-centered therapy This approach uses few techniques but stresses the attitudes of the therapist and a “way of being.” Therapists strive for active listening, reflection of feelings, clarification, “being there” for the client, and focusing on the moment-to-moment experiencing of the client. This model does not include diagnostic testing, interpretation, taking a case history, or questioning or probing for information.
Gestalt therapy A wide range of experiments are designed to intensify experiencing and to integrate conflicting feelings. Experiments are co-created by therapist and client through an I/Thou dialogue. Therapists have latitude to creatively invent their own experiments. Formal diagnosis and testing are not a required part of therapy.
Behavior therapy The main techniques are reinforcement, shaping, modeling, systematic desensitization, relaxation methods, flooding, eye movement and desensitization reprocessing, cognitive restructuring, social skills training, self-management programs, mindfulness and acceptance methods, behavioral rehearsal, and coaching. Diagnosis or assessment is done at the outset to determine a treatment plan. Questions concentrate on “what,” “how,” and “when” (but not “why”). Contracts and homework assignments are also typically used.
Cognitive behavior therapy Therapists use a variety of cognitive, emotive, and behavioral techniques; diverse methods are tailored to suit individual clients. This is an active, directive, time-limited, present-centered, psychoeducational, structured therapy. Some techniques include engaging in Socratic dialogue, collaborative empiricism, debating irrational beliefs, carrying out homework assignments, gathering data on assumptions one has made, keeping a record of activities, forming alternative interpretations, learning new coping skills, changing one’s language and thinking patterns, role playing, imagery, confronting faulty beliefs, self-instructional training, and stress inoculation training.
Choice theory/ Reality therapy This is an active, directive, and didactic therapy. Skillful questioning is a central technique used for the duration of the therapy process. Various techniques may be used to get clients to evaluate what they are presently doing to see if they are willing to change. If clients decide that their present behavior is not effective, they develop a specific plan for change and make a commitment to follow through.
Feminist therapy Although techniques from traditional approaches are used, feminist practitioners tend to employ consciousness-raising techniques aimed at helping clients recognize the impact of gender-role socialization on their lives. Other techniques frequently used include gender-role analysis and intervention, power analysis and intervention, demystifying therapy, bibliotherapy, journal writing, therapist self-disclosure, assertiveness training, reframing and relabeling, cognitive restructuring, identifying and challenging untested beliefs, role playing, psychodramatic methods, group work, and social action.
Postmodern approaches In solution-focused therapy the main technique involves change-talk, with emphasis on times in a client’s life when the problem was not a problem. Other techniques include creative use of questioning, the miracle question, and scaling questions, which assist clients in developing alternative stories. In narrative therapy, specific techniques include listening to a client’s problem-saturated story without getting stuck, externalizing and naming the problem, externalizing conversations, and discovering clues to competence. Narrative therapists often write letters to clients and assist them in finding an audience that will support their changes and new stories.
Family systems therapy A variety of techniques may be used, depending on the particular theoretical orientation of the therapist. Some techniques include genograms, teaching, asking questions, joining the family, tracking sequences, family mapping, reframing, restructuring, enactments, and setting boundaries. Techniques may be experiential, cognitive, or behavioral in nature. Most are designed to bring about change in a short time.



Techniques of Therapy




















Applications of the Approaches

Psychoanalytic therapy Candidates for analytic therapy include professionals who want to become therapists, people who have had intensive therapy and want to go further, and those who are in psychological pain. Analytic therapy is not recommended for self-centered and impulsive individuals or for people with psychotic disorders. Techniques can be applied to individual and group therapy.
Adlerian therapy Because the approach is based on a growth model, it is applicable to such varied spheres of life as child guidance, parent–child counseling, marital and family therapy, individual counseling with all age groups, correctional and rehabilitation counseling, group counseling, substance abuse programs, and brief counseling. It is ideally suited to preventive care and alleviating a broad range of conditions that interfere with growth.
Existential therapy This approach is especially suited to people facing a developmental crisis or a transition in life and for those with existential concerns (making choices, dealing with freedom and responsibility, coping with guilt and anxiety, making sense of life, and finding values) or those seeking personal enhancement. The approach can be applied to both individual and group counseling, and to couples and family therapy, crisis intervention, and community mental health work.
Person-centered therapy Has wide applicability to individual and group counseling. It is especially well suited for the initial phases of crisis intervention work. Its principles have been applied to couples and family therapy, community programs, administration and management, and human relations training. It is a useful approach for teaching, parent–child relations, and for working with groups of people from diverse cultural backgrounds.
Gestalt therapy Addresses a wide range of problems and populations: crisis intervention, treatment of a range of psychosomatic disorders, couples and family therapy, awareness training of mental health professionals, behavior problems in children, and teaching and learning. It is well suited to both individual and group counseling. The methods are powerful catalysts for opening up feelings and getting clients into contact with their present-centered experience.
Behavior therapy A pragmatic approach based on empirical validation of results. Enjoys wide applicability to individual, group, couples, and family counseling. Some problems to which the approach is well suited are phobic disorders, depression, trauma, sexual disorders, children’s behavioral disorders, stuttering, and prevention of cardiovascular disease. Beyond clinical practice, its principles are applied in fields such as pediatrics, stress management, behavioral medicine, education, and geriatrics.
Cognitive behavior therapy Has been widely applied to treatment of depression, anxiety, relationship problems, stress management, skill training, substance abuse, assertion training, eating disorders, panic attacks, performance anxiety, and social phobias. CBT is especially useful for assisting people in modifying their cognitions. Many self-help approaches utilize its principles. CBT can be applied to a wide range of client populations with a variety of specific problems.
Choice theory/ Reality therapy Geared to teaching people ways of using choice theory in everyday living to increase effective behaviors. It has been applied to individual counseling with a wide range of clients, group counseling, working with youthful law offenders, and couples and family therapy. In some instances it is well suited to brief therapy and crisis intervention.
Feminist therapy Principles and techniques can be applied to a range of therapeutic modalities such as individual therapy, relationship counseling, family therapy, group counseling, and community intervention. The approach can be applied to both women and men with the goal of bringing about empowerment.