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Counseling Course Descriptions

COUN 504:  Internship

Students are offered the opportunity to integrate academic and clinical skills while placed in community-based settings and working with clients who manifest a variety of personal issues and problems.

COUN 507:  Current Issues in Counseling
(See list at bottom of page for previous offering syllabi)

A selection of courses in the COUN 507 series, Current Issues in Counseling, is offered each quarter. Courses are offered based on a combination of student interest and issues in the profession. The following are examples of previously offered COUN 507 courses.

COUN 509:  Practicum: Counseling

COUN 509:  Practicum: Group Counseling

COUN 509:  Peer Supervision

COUN 525:  Guidance for the Classroom Teacher

A study of the responsibilities and procedures of teachers for guiding students at all levels in becoming more effective and capable persons.

COUN 526:  Effective Teaching

This course is designed to meet the education and student teaching requirements for Track II School Counseling students. Topics covered include effective teaching strategies designed to help school counselors-in-training meet the Teachers Standards and Practices Commission (TSPC) prescribing teaching competencies: planning for instruction, establishing a classroom climate conducive to learning, implementing instructional plans, evaluating pupil achievement, fostering professional relationship and addressing organizational expectations. Students are required to complete a 200 hour teaching practicum in the field (125 hours of observation and 75 hours as classroom teacher) and complete a work sample. Students are expected to complete two credits per term during one school year.

COUN 527:  Counseling Individuals with Diverse Needs

This course is designed to prepare counselors to provide collaborative services for individuals with diverse needs in elementary, secondary and postsecondary educational settings. Topics include the legal mandates that impact educational requirements and services for students with disabilities, including eligibility and various types of disabling conditions related to educational success. Issues related to counseling students and family members, transitional planning and collaborating with special educators and other services providers will also be covered.

COUN 530: Introduction to Psychiatric Diagnoses

This course covers the causation, criteria, diagnosis and classification of the major psychiatric disorders. Emphasis is placed on both the traditional medical model and on the psychosocial model of diagnosis. Developmental aspects associated with abnormal personalities will also be discussed.

COUN 531:  Foundations of Substance Abuse Counseling

This course provides an overview of the biological, psychological, social and spiritual dimensions of substance abuse and dependency. Addictive behaviors are presented as part of a continuum of mental and emotional disorders. The course emphasizes the biological substrate and developmental course of addictions as well as the relationship of addictive behavior to common psychological disorders. Models and theories of addictive behavior that the professional counselor needs to understand when treating clients with addictive and co-occurring disorders are reviewed.

COUN 541:  Introduction to Counseling

This purpose of this course is to introduce students interested in school, community, rehabilitation or couples, marriage and family counseling to the broad spectrum of counseling as well as its history, theories, procedures, professional issues, ethical standards, accreditation, licensure and major specialties.

COUN 543:  Interpersonal Relations 

This course looks at the development of the self with an emphasis on creative growth and the nature of interaction with others. Topics include communication and belief systems in relation to self-acceptance.

COUN 545:  Youth at Risk

This course is designed to provide participants with an overview of information focused on counseling and teaching youth at risk. Emphasis will be placed on identifying youth at risk for depression, suicide, eating disorders, pregnancy, AIDS, use and abuse of alcohol and drugs, homelessness, gang membership and several other at risk behaviors. Ideas for primary, secondary and tertiary prevention from individual, family, school and community perspectives will also be presented. Particular attention will be paid to guidelines for development of tragedy response plans for school campuses in conjunction with the topic of tertiary prevention. Presented in a varied format structured to include lecture/discussion, audio-visual presentations, participant self-evaluation of their own at-risk behaviors, role-plays and small group discussion.

COUN 551:  Theories and Interventions I 

This course is designed for those who wish to increase their understanding of counseling theory, interventions (techniques/strategies) and research. The Psychoanalytic, Jungian, Adlerian, Client-Centered and Gestalt approaches to counseling will be studied with the focus on the three parameters mentioned above. Course content can be applied to both individual and group counseling.

COUN 552:  Theories and Interventions II

This course is designed for those who wish to increase their understanding of counseling theory, interventions (techniques/strategies) and research. The Transactional Analysis, Rational-Emotive, Reality and other cognitive behavioral approaches to counseling will be studied with the focus on the three parameters mentioned above. Course content can be applied to both individual and group counseling.

COUN 553:  Advanced Therapeutic Strategies

This course focuses on advanced interventions for clients seeking personal counseling. Emphasis is focused upon cognitive-behavioral, brief therapy and selected experiential interventions and their use in treatment planning. The theory and research connected with the application of these interventions in the treatment planning process is also addressed.

COUN 555:  Counseling Children and Youth

This course provides a theoretical overview of the growth and development of children and youth. Emphasis is placed on translating theory into practice through a "person-environment interaction" conception of counseling, consultation, and educational intervention in school settings.

COUN 566:  Appraisal Instruments

This one-credit course accompanies COUN 567 and is intended to be an evaluation and application practicum of tests used in each counselor education specialty track.

COUN 567:  Using Tests in Counseling

The course is a graduate level introduction to testing. It offers the student the option of test usage in the counseling process and introduces issues related to such usage. The course acquaints the student, through hands-on experience, with test taking, scoring, norming, profiling and interpreting.

COUN 568:  Career and Lifestyle Planning

This course examines the theoretical research foundation for career choices, factors that influence choices, the role of information, the skills and practices of effective helpers, the exploration/testing/labor market information sources which contribute to the value choices that are made and related issues and problems.

COUN 569:  Developmental Foundations of Counseling

This course provides a theoretical overview of life-span growth and development emphasizing cognitive-intellectual, cognitive-moral, emotional-self, and social aspects of developmental growth in the human being. Emphasis is placed on translating theory into practice through a "person-environment interaction" conception of counseling, consultation, and educational intervention.

COUN 570:  Ethical and Legal Issues

This course is designed to further develop the professional identity of counselors by studying the content and application of the ethical standards of the American Counseling Association, the American Psychological Association and related professional organizations. In addition, the course addresses legal issues in counseling and laws that affect the practice of counseling.

COUN 571:  Group Counseling 

This course includes the study of group guidance, group counseling, and group therapy in both school and agency settings. Topics such as membership roles, leadership styles, stages of group life, nonverbal communication in groups, ethical and professional issues relating to groups, theoretical models for group work, group practice with special groups and research on group process and outcome will be presented. Students enrolled in the course also will be expected to participate in a co-facilitated, ongoing small group experience which will require sensitivity to the contributions of other group members.

COUN 572:  Systemic Perspectives on Human Sexuality

This course examines the expression of human sexuality and intimacy across the life span, attitudes about sexuality, common problems of sexual functioning and therapeutic interventions. Students will assess personal values and the process of sexual value development as well as review outcome research on current treatment models and controversies in the field.

COUN 573:  Contemporary Couples, Marriage and Family Systems

This course focuses on contemporary marriage and family systems as they exist in American society today. Students explore the past, present, and future of these systems including changing demographics and their implications for professionals.

COUN 574:  Family Life Cycle and Transitions

This course examines family development as a foundational framework for family therapy. Students gain an opportunity to consider symptoms and dysfunctions as related to tasks and challenges of reorganization at transition points within the developmental context.

COUN 575:  Foundations of Couples, Marriage and Family Counseling

This course constitutes an introduction to the theory and methodology of marriage and family counseling. Attention is given to the major family interactional patterns which lead to family system breakdowns as well as the development of skills in the identification of such patterns. Topics include family process assessment techniques, beginning work with families, dealing with resistance in family counseling, use of "self," doubling, sculpting, etc., are interventions which are taught using an experiential format.

COUN 576:  Parents, Families and Communities in Schools

This course examines effective methods for including parents, families and communities in schools. It emphasizes a systems perspective that includes consultation and collaboration in addressing academic, career and personal/social success for all students. Family dynamics and influence on school success will also be addressed. Application of school counseling consultation, collaboration and family support for all students will result in a school-based project integrated into a school's comprehensive counseling program.

COUN 577:  Family Therapy

This course analyzes the range of normative/paranormative problems experienced by family members, particularly in parental and parent/child relationships. Students examine family case studies and participate in role playing activities geared to enhance family therapy skills.

COUN 578:  Couples Therapy 

In this course students learn to conceptualize and intervene systematically with couple units. Attention is given to maintaining therapeutic balance, developing an intersystem treatment plan, and asking systemic/interactional questions. A major emphasis is supervised skill practice through role play.

COUN 579:  Advanced Systemic Interventions: Couples and Families

This course analyzes current therapeutic assessment tools and interventions grounded in systemic theory/research as they pertain to family transitions. Success in this course builds upon requisite mastery of major systemic concepts that have to do with systemic function, structure and motivation as related to assessing similarities and differences between normative and paranormative marriage and family transitions. Appropriate systemic assessment integrates with systemic therapeutic interventions in resolving crisis resulting from family transitional difficulty, chronic illness, divorce, separation, remarriage or death.

COUN 580:  Supervision

This course presents a systemic model of clinical supervision and its application to the supervisory process. The relationship of the model to existing conceptual and empirical literature is also overviewed. Techniques and skills for debriefing and mentoring supervisees are also addressed.

COUN 581:  Multicultural Perspectives in Counseling

A study of the human, ecological and societal forces influencing the provision of counseling services to culturally diverse students and other clients in educational and community settings. Current issues, problems and trends will be examined. Increased competence in individual and group counseling strategies and techniques will be emphasized, using didactic and experiential approaches.

COUN 582: Research and Program Evaluation in Counseling

This course covers the areas of research design, basic psychometric principles and statistical procedures, test/scale construction, program evaluation, needs assessment, process/outcome measurement and writing research reports. Specific applications to community, rehabilitation and school counseling settings are made throughout the course.

COUN 583:  Job Placement and Development

This course is designed to provide students with a solid undertaking of job placement principles, practice and knowledge needed to assist people with disabilities in securing and maintaining employment, job development and marketing techniques required for seeking both competitive and supported employment.

COUN 585:  Diagnosis and Treatment Planning I

First in a sequence of two courses introducing students to the diagnosis and treatment of psychiatric disorders as outlined in the current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Emphasis is on diagnostic reasoning, basic map and thinking process embedded in the current DSM. Students will also look at the use of decision trees to arrive at accurate diagnoses and an overview of conditions covered in the DSM will be discussed.

COUN 586:  Psychopharmacology and Mental Illness

This course examines important psychotropic medications and their therapeutic applications. Topics include drug efficacy, side effects, treatment of specific disorders such as anxiety and mood disorders, psychoactive substance use disorders, and schizophrenia.

COUN 587:  Foundations of Mental Health Services

This course examines community mental health movement, policy, service sequence, and related legislation; organization and delivery of mental health services at the federal, state, and local levels; influences and trends in service delivery.

COUN 588:  Diagnosis and Treatment Planning II

Second in a sequence of two courses that examines the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders as outlined in the current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual.

COUN 589:  Action Research in Counseling

This course is designed to enable counselors to conduct action research in counseling settings. Students have the opportunity to develop an action research project directly related to improving comprehensive counseling programs. This course emphasizes developing research projects that address the academic, career and personal/social success of all students.

COUN 590:  Foundations of Rehabilitation Counseling

This is an introductory course for students pursuing graduate study in rehabilitation counseling and is also oriented toward students with a more peripheral interest in related human service fields. The course is intended to provide a broad overview of the profession of rehabilitation counseling with an emphasis on both theoretical and practical aspects of the field.

COUN 591:  Medical Aspects of Disability

This course covers the most common physical, sensory and mental disabilities encountered by the rehabilitation professional. The major symptomatology, diagnostic procedures, treatment modalities, functional implications, and psychosocial and vocational correlates of each disabling condition will be discussed.

COUN 592:  Psychosocial Aspects of Disability

This course covers the psychological and social aspects of adjustment and adaptation to a variety of disabling conditions. Theoretical and practical issues relating to various types of physical, psychiatric, mental and social disabilities will be examined and discussed.

COUN 593:  Case Management

Students will study case management systems and skills as used in both public and private rehabilitation and related other human service agencies. Topics include case identification, referral, eligibility determination, assessment, goal setting, plan development, intervention strategies, case monitoring, inter-agency coordination, advocacy, promotion of self-advocacy by client, software systems, information flow, organizational structures, time management, critical case management skills, funding sources and billing as well as other topics of interest to the student.

COUN 594:  Occupational Analysis/Vocational Evaluation

Content and experiences presented through this course are design to familiarize the student with the basic principles and imperatives of occupational analysis and vocational evaluation and how these are applied and used in real world settings. Didactic instruction, experiential research, and collegial participation will be used to help students integrate course teachings into a core of personal and professional understanding which can then be applied to many different settings or systems.

COUN 595:  Contemporary Issues and Applications in Rehabilitation Counseling

This course covers contemporary issues in the field of rehabilitation counseling as well as recent applications of rehabilitation theories, technologies, assessment procedures and counseling modalities to a variety of rehabilitation settings and across rehabilitation populations.

COUN 596:  Foundations of School Counseling

This is an introductory course for students pursuing graduate study in school counseling. The course is intended to provide a broad overview of the school counseling profession with an emphasis on both theoretical and practical aspects of comprehensive school counseling programs. Field study required.

COUN 599:  Portfolio

Professional portfolio is designed for students who have completed a master's degree in counseling, social work, psychology or other mental health related field and whose program of studies was clinically focused and accredited. Professional portfolio is also designed to assist candidates for a Continuing School Counselor License who have to submit a portfolio documenting their fulfillment of the licensure requirements defined by OAR 584-070-0090. The goal of the portfolio is to assess the educational and experiential background of students to define additional counseling courses that will enable them to meet license standards in the State of Oregon. Permission of instructor or admission into Licensure Only option.

Current Issues in Counseling COUN 507

A selection of courses in the COUN 507 series, Current Issues in Counseling, is offered each quarter. Courses are offered based on a combination of student interest and issues in the profession. The following are examples of previously offered COUN 507 courses.

Abused Clients


School Law

Adoption Experience

Gay/Lesbian Counseling

Treatment Planning and Diversity

Anger Management

Gestalt Therapy

Art Therapy

Grief and Loss

Assertiveness Training

Jungian Approach

Career Counseling

Non-traditional Therapies

Case Conceptualization

Counseling the College-Bound Student


Portfolio Presentation: Continuing Licensure

Crisis Counseling

Psychiatric Rehabilitation

Developing a Private Practice
Disability and the Law

Solution Focused Therapy

Eating Disorders

Stress Management

Families in Crisis: Physical and Sexual Abuse

Stress Management: Child and Youth

Families in Crisis: Separation and Divorce

Stress and Coping

Families in Crisis: Step Families

Spirituality and Religious Values in Counseling