Education | Advanced Theories of Counseling
G622 | 5948 | Dr. Chuck Ridley
The purpose of this course primarily is to provide an in-depth
examination of major theoretical orientations to counseling and
psychotherapy, and secondarily to explore critical issues related to
counseling process and outcome. The course deviates in several ways
from the standard treatment of theories which one encounters in most
textbooks or undergraduate and masterís level courses on the
subject. First, the course encourages critical thinking about
theory, that is, the analysis of hypotheses, propositions and
philosophical underpinnings. Second, the course emphasizes empirical
research and the scientific basis of theories. This emphasis is
commensurate with a commitment to the scientist-practitioner model of
training. Third, skill building is not a major focus. While the
translation of theory and science into practice is admittedly
important, the practice component of the theory-research-practice
triad is emphasized in other parts of the curriculum. In short, this
advanced course seeks to teach students to examine theories
critically and scientifically.
More specific objectives include the following:
1. To promote an understanding of the function of theory in
clinical practice and research.
2. To critique counseling theories in light of competing
theories, research findings, and basic assumptions.
3. To encourage reading in primary source material.
4. To develop the ability to generate researchable questions
regarding counseling process and outcome.
5. To become acquainted with the important questions, issues,
and controversies among theories.
6. To promote the development of a personal orientation to
clinical and therapeutic change.
7. To explore other theoretical perspectives and conceptual
issues that are not theory specific.
The class will meet weekly (Monday, 2:30pm Ė 5:00pm for lecture and
discussion). The instructor will assume responsibility for most of
the lectures. Students are expected to participate in the
discussions, and they are encouraged to ask questions.
Freud, S. (1969). An Outline of Psycho-Analysis (Revised Ed.). New
Norton & Company, Inc.
Prochaska, J.O., & Norcross, J.C. (1999). Systems of psychotherapy:
transtheoretical analysis (4th Ed.). Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole.
Rogers, C.R. (1961). On Becoming a Person. Boston: Houghton
**Additional required readings are listed in Appendix B**
1. Midterm Examination (March 8, 2004)
2. Final Examination/Research Paper (May 3, 2004)
Total Possible 300
Final Examination/Creative Research Paper:
Develop a metatheory of psychotherapy change. Include in your theory
the following features: (a) basic principles and presuppositions,
(b) key constructs, (c) mechanisms of change, (d) intervention
strategies, (e) evaluation of change, and (f) empirical support.
1. Identify parsimonious principles across theories as well as
nonparsimonious principles that you deem are important.
2. Demonstrate broad coverage of theories.
3. Demonstrate a clear linkage between theoretical and
scientific aspects with practical aspects of the metatheory.
4. Carefully operationalize your constructs to avoid ambiguity.
5. Give credit to the sources of ideas that are not original.
6. Demonstrate the ability to integrate and synthesize ideas.
7. Write the paper in APA format.
8. Produce at least 20-25 pages of text, plus references.
Class Attendance and Participation:
*Class Attendance and Participation are implicit course
requirements. If, in the opinion of the instructor, a student falls
short on these criteria, the studentís overall grade may be reduced.
You are to completely read all of the required readings in Appendix
B. Failure to do so results in an automatic one half grade
reduction. Submit a written statement on May 5, 2004, certifying
that you have completed the required readings.
F Below 75%
January 12 Introduction; Are Theories Necessary?
19 Martin Luther King, Jr. - Holiday
26 Person-Centered Theory
February 2 Person-Centered Theory (continued)
9 Psychoanalytic Theory
16 Psychoanalytic Theory (continued)
23 Cognitive Ė Behavioral Theory
March 1 Cognitive - Behavioral Theory (continued)
8 Midterm Examination
15 Spring Break
22 Behavioral Theory
29 Behavioral Theory
April 5 Diversity Issues
12 Diversity Issues (continued)
19 Clinical and Therapeutic Processes
26 Clinical and Therapeutic Processes (continued)
May 3 Metatheory Paper Due
Additional Required Readings
Hershenson, D.B., Power, P.W., & Seligman, L. (1989). Mental health
counseling theory: Present states and future prospects. Journal of
Mental Health Counseling,
Lee, D.J. (1983). Philosophy and counseling: A metatheoretical
analysis. Personnel and Guidance Journal, 61(9), 517-521.
MacDonald, D. (1991). Philosophies that underlie models of mental
health counseling: More than meets the eye. Journal of Mental
Health Counseling, 13(3), 379-392.
Mahrer, A.R. (2000). Philosophy of science and the foundations of
psychotherapy. American Psychologist, 55(10), 1117-1125.
Ritzer, G. (1990). Metatheory in sociology. Sociological Forum, 5,
Rychlak, J.F. (1981). Fundamental dimensions of theoretical
orientation (Chapter 2). In J.F. Rychlak, A philosophy of science
for personality theory (2nd Ed.). Malabar, FL: Robert E. Kreiger.
Tjeltveit, A.C. (1989). The ubiquity of models of human beings in
psychotherapy: The need for rigorous reflection. Psychotherapy, 26
Turner, J.H. (1991). The misuse and use of metatheory. Sociological
Forum, 5, 37-53.
Rogers, C.R. (1959). A theory of therapy, personality, and
interpersonal relationships, as developed in the client-centered
framework. In S. Koch (Ed.), Psychology: A study of a science, Vol.
III Formulations of the person and the social context. New York:
McGraw Hill, 184-256.
Greenwald, A.G. (1992). New look 3: Unconscious cognition
reclaimed. American Psychologist, 47(6), 766-779.
American Psychological Association. (2003). Guidelines on
multicultural education, training, research, practice, and
organizational change for psychologists. American Psychologist, 58
Fuertes, J.N., & Gretchen, D. (2001). Emerging theories of
multicultural counseling. In J.G. Ponterotto, J.M. Casas, L.A.
Suzuki, & C.M. Alexander (Eds.). Handbook of Multicultural
counseling (2nd Ed.), (pp. 509-541). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Ridley, C.R., Liddle, M.C., Hill, C.L., & Li, L.C. (2001). Ethical
decision making in multicultural counseling. In J.G. Ponterotto,
J.M. Casas, L.A. Suzuki, & C.M.
Alexander (Eds.). Handbook of multicultural counseling (2nd Ed.),
(pp. 165-188). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Enns, C.Z. (2000). Gender issues in counseling. In S.D. Brown &
R.W. Lent (Eds.).
Handbook of counseling psychology (3rd ed.) (pp. 601-638). New
York: John Wiley.
Good, G.E. & Sherrod, N.B. (2001). Menís problems and effective
treatments: Theory and empirical support. In G.R. Brooks & G.E.
Good (Eds.). The new handbook of psychotherapy and counseling with
men: A comprehensive guide to settings, problems, and treatment
approaches (Vol. I). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Yoder, J.D., & Kahn, A.S. (1993). Working toward an inclusive
psychology of women. American Psychologist, 48(7), 850-856.
Bergin, A.E. (1991). Values and religious issues in psychotherapy
and mental health. American Psychologist, 46(4), 394-403.
Johnson, W.B., Ridley, C.R., & Nielsen, S.L. (2000). Religiously
sensitive rational emotive behavior therapy: Elegant solutions and
ethical risks. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 31
Miller, W.R. & Thoresen, C.E. (2003). Spirituality, religion, and
health: An emerging research field. American Psychologist, 58 (1),
Other Diversity Issues
Nosek, M.A. & Fuhrer, M.J. (1998). Independence among people with
disabilities: A heuristic model. In D.R. Atkinson & G. Hackett
(Eds.). Counseling Diverse Populations (2nd Ed), (pp. 141-154).
Boston, MA: McGraw Hill.
Heller, K. (1998). Prevention activities for older adults: Social
structures and personal competencies that maintain useful social
roles. In D.R. Atkinson & G. Hackett (Eds.). Counseling Diverse
Populations (2nd Ed.), (pp. 183-198). Boston, MA: McGraw Hill.
Browning, C., Reynolds, A.L., & Divorkin, S.H. (1991). Affirmative
psychotherapy for lesbian women. The Counseling Psychologist, 19,
Shanna, J.W. & Woods, W.J. (1991). Affirmative psychotherapy for gay
men. The Counseling Psychologist, 17, 197-215.