Focused Psychological Strategies in Mental Health

Focused Psychological Strategies in Mental Health

Assignment format:  total 2000 words

This assignment can be formatted using subheadings (e.g: Part A, Part B etc). Please include a short introduction and conclusion.

1. Part A: 1000 words (20 marks)

Choosing two theories from;

  • Cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT)
  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
  • Interpersonal Therapy 

Compare and contrast two of these approaches in terms of the:

  1. Key theoretical themes
  2. How change is conceptualised
  3. Therapeutic aims
  4. Role of the practitioner and consumer
  5. Common interventions

2. Part B: 1000 words (20 marks)

Case study

Paul is 22 year old unemployed man from a Jewish background. He did well at school but has not been employed since. Paul lives with his mother, father and young sister in the suburbs of a large Australian city. He studied IT at TAFE for one year but dropped out before he completed the course in his second year. He has recently been diagnosed with depression by his GP and has been referred to you for brief counselling. While Paul and his GP discussed medication, Paul asked to try counselling first. Paul reports to you in his first session that he has difficulty getting to sleep so he often stays up until the early hours of the morning. He states he has lost five kilograms in the last ten weeks, feels tired all the time and doesn’t leave his bedroom much. He states he doesn’t drink much alcohol, but he uses marijuana most days, particularly to get to sleep. He reported that he spends a lot of his time playing computer games, some with online friends but rarely talks or sees his other friends. He informed you he had a relationship with a girlfriend at school that lasted for 18 months, but has not been in a serious relationship for the last three years. He hasn’t dated anyone in the past year. He reports he wants to become a creative writer, but can’t seem to find the motivation to sit and write. He states he has a poor relationship with his mother who complains that he doesn’t do enough to help at home. His informed you that his father is a professional musician who has expressed his disappointment that he seems to be wasting his life and not working. Paul reports he is happy to attend counselling as he wants to feel better, but he doesn’t want to take anti-depressant medication.

Instructions

Choose one of the following theoretical approaches to work with Paul in brief counselling: CBT, ACT or Interpersonal therapy.

  • Outline your case conceptualisation/formulation including your hypothesis(s) relating to his presentation, motivation for change and any contextual features that may be important in treating Paul
  • Substantiate why you have chosen this particular theoretical approach using relevant literature and resources
  • Identify what you believe Paul’s goals for counselling would be and discuss any challenges or barriers that may exist in moving forward for Paul
  • Describe broadly the process you would enact to work with Paul, including at least 2 interventions, in order to create positive change using your chosen theoretical approach
  • Identify any challenges you may face as Paul’s counsellor and discuss your strategies for managing these challenges

Your assignment must include an introduction and conclusion. The introduction should provide your assessor with a preview of the key areas that will be covered in your paper and the main point/s you will be arguing. The body of the paper must follow the structure you put forward in your introduction. Each area of analysis you have outlined needs to be well supported by the literature (Please make sure you use only reputable sources for this – see Referencing section below). Each area of analysis should speak to strengths and weaknesses of your point to demonstrate critical thinking. The purpose of your conclusion is to bring together the main points you have argued. The conclusion needs to be brief and generally no new information is introduced. For assignments that require a higher degree of self-reflection, the conclusion can also include key personal learning.

Make sure you clearly understand the difference between “objective” and “subjective” arguments. Academic arguments need to be objective, this means your assignment is based on contemporary, peer-reviewed, sources (published within the past 10 years, unless the work is by a seminal author) and not your own opinion.  You must write in a critical manner than responds to the essence of the question, rather than a descriptive manner. Good critical analysis will go beyond identifying what you are being asked to identify. It demonstrates a capacity to analyse the potential impact of what you identify (drawing on literature), it accounts for multiple perspectives and demonstrates a capacity to question your own assumptions. Focused Psychological Strategies in Mental Health

Academic papers are required to be written in 3rd person and reflective papers must be written in first person. Both are academic styles of writing, the key difference between them is that in reflective papers the author is the subject being critically analysed. When you are asked to reflect on your own process, the relevant section will always be in first person and must demonstrate substantiated critical reflection. This means that on such occasions your response should include your own perspective but this perspective must be linked to theory.

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