GCU Counseling Practicum Site Documentation Skills & Clinical Intake Discussion


Q1 : What activities did you participate in this week in your practicum site? Describe them. Did you enjoy them? What did you like the best? Worst? What will you change next week?

Q2 : Good documentation skills make life easier for clinicians. What challenges have you faced in writing progress notes, treatment plans, and conducting intake assessments?

Q3 : What do you see as the value of a good clinical intake assessment? Do you read assessments, conducted by others, prior to meeting with a new client? No. Why or why not?


Counselors should also ensure that clients feel comfortable. Doing so makes them feel in control, and through that, they discuss other less shameful/controversial issues first. This happens as the counselor continues to gain enough trust to eventually go back to the problems that bore apprehension in the first place. Counselors must seek to develop a positive rapport with their clients to have a strong therapeutic relationship. Clients interested in counselor self-disclosure are among the hardest to work with, as it is easy to get carried away sometimes. Such clients tend to take attention from them and begin to seem like they are answering the questions, a situation that could prove counterproductive or that could delay progress (SKOVHOLT, 2017).


SKOVHOLT, T. (2017). Master therapists: Exploring expertise in therapy and counseling. Oxford University Press.


Some of the activities that I participated in this week at my practicum site include Assessments, treatment plans, and relapse prevention plans. Through the assessment activity, I was able to find out about the symptoms the client is experiencing and whether they have any concerns, or questions. The information gathered is needed to form a holistic view of my clients and the problems with which they presented. The results are used to confirm a diagnosis and choose the right course of treatment for the client.

As a counselor, I update my client’s treatment plan regularly throughout the counseling process. The treatment plan is a fluid object, always changing as the goals are met and new ones added. The treatment plan outlined my proposed goals, as well as the approaches of my counseling process. I used the plan to direct the steps that I would take in treating the clients that I have been working with.

For a relapse prevention plan, I helped the clients manage setbacks as they take place throughout the counseling process. Relapse prevention has been essential during the counseling process since it is a form of self-management. Even though a client has a relapse we do not start over from square one. I try to teach the client to recognize the trigger and use different coping skills.

I liked the assessment plan the most because I got to know the client a little better and not just a piece of paper, which helped my counseling session be easier. By doing an assessment I can change various treatments. I will start teaching relapse prevention classes because, without a relapse prevention plan, a ‘lapse’ may provoke a return to the initial behaviors.

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