III.A BRIEF THERAPY GUIDELINES

Effective Date: 
Fri, 08/01/2008
Reviewed: 
Wed, 11/01/2017
Revised: 
Wed, 11/01/2017
Policy: 
  1. CAPS offers time-limited counseling with an emphasis on assisting students with exploring issues and resolving concerns so they can achieve their academic goals and be successful in the University. Typically, goals within a brief therapy model can be acheived within eight individual psychotherapy sessions, but the number of sessions can vary based on the individual.  Interns, post-doctoral fellows, and those supervising interns or post-doctoral fellows are allowed to carry one long-term case per year for training purposes. Other staff may also be asked to carry a long-term case as indicated by the needs of the student.
  2. CAPS professional staff contract individually with clients for time-limited solution-oriented individual, couples, or family therapy.   If additional sessions beyond the contract are deemed necessary, the student is provided with appropriate referrals to off campus resources.
  3. Students may not receive individual counseling through CAPS when, in the clinical judgment of the professional staff member and/or a CAPS Management staff, off campus resources are more appropriate for their treatment.  The CAPS staff member will be responsible for explaining the limitations of the services to the client.  The staff member can ask a management team member to sit in on this discussion with the client, if necessary.  If the student is in crisis (danger to self, danger to others, or gravely disabled) CAPS will provide crisis services to stabilize the client consistent with ethical guidelines.
  4. Counseling session allotments are accounted for as follows:  Individual, on-call/crisis sessions, and initial assessment sessions all fall under the client's total individual session allotment. Couples and family counseling, group counseling, and testing sessions are not counted under this allotment.  These are considered adjunct services to the individual allotment.

The following criteria for long term counseling must be considered:

  1. The client's issues are sufficiently impairing to warrant the extended use of our services.
  2. The client's issues are not so entrenched that a single year of therapy would be of limited benefit.
  3. The client lacks sufficient financial resources to pursue long term treatment in the private sector.
  4. The client has not utilized the center's services for extended periods in previous years.
  5. Shorter term therapy is likely to be of limited benefit to the client.
  6. The case is determined to be suitable for specific intern training needs, which is determined in consultation with the Clinical Supervisor and/or Training Director.
Procedure: 

While these criteria are intended to be all encompassing, there may be some situations such as clients who meet most of the criteria and are judged by the clinical supervisors to offer an especially good training experience, or clients for whom more extensive therapy will likely facilitate their retention at the University.

Also, group counseling is offered on both a short and long term basis based on clinical appropriateness for the client or the group.

CAPS staff members and interns can request an extension of individual counseling sessions by documenting the request in the client's file and presenting a written request to the Clinical Director.