A Brief Primer of Helping Skills

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A Brief Primer of Helping Skills is a highly readable, accessible, and practical introduction to the skills of helping and making a difference in people’s lives. In an engaging and concise style, author Jeffrey A. Kottler gives students in various professions an overview of the theory, process, and skills of helping methods. It is designed as an operating manual for those in human service professions to learn the basics involved in developing helping relationships, assessing and diagnosing complaints, promoting exploration and understanding, and designing and implementing action plans.

Key Features

  • Offers a brief introduction to the helping process: Written in an accessible and conversational style, this book helps students and professionals become familiar with the basic process quickly.
  • Provides personal applications: This book helps students enrich their lives while learning how to be more helpful to others.
  • Includes applications to a variety of settings and disciplines: Students can actually use material and skills in the book in all the various domains in which they function—at work, in volunteer agencies, with friends and family.
  • Uses an integrative approach: The best features of all major theories and research are combined into a unified model of helping that is responsive to different needs.

Intended Audience

This supplemental text is ideal for introductory undergraduate and graduate courses such as Introduction to Social Work, Introduction to Counseling, and Introduction to Human Services in the fields of counseling, psychology, human services, social work, education, family studies, marital and family therapy, pastoral work, nursing, human resource development, and other helping professions. It is also an excellent resource for beginning practitioners.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781412959223
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications
  • Publication date: 10/30/2007
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Jeffrey A. Kottler, Ph D, one of the most prolific authors in the fields of psychology and education, is professor of counseling at California State University, Fullerton. He has authored more than a dozen texts for counselors and teachers that are used in universities around the world, as well as a dozen books each for practicing therapists and educators. Some of his most highly regarded works include: Counseling Skills for Teachers, On Being a Therapist, Creative Breakthroughs in Therapy, Learning Group Leadership, and Changing People’s Lives While Transforming Your Own. Jeffrey has worked as a teacher, counselor, and therapist in preschool, middle school, mental health center, crisis center, university, community college, and private practice settings. He served as a Fulbright Scholar and Senior Lecturer in Peru (1980) and Iceland (2000) and has been a visiting professor in New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Nepal.

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Table of Contents

Ch 1: Learning Helping Skills
Why be a Helper?
Changes in the Field
A Daunting Journey
Making a Difference
Personal Qualities
Take Some Advice
For Review
For Reflection and Practice
Further Reading
Ch 2: Theories of Helping
Internalizing Theories
What Theories Can Do For You
Theories You Should Know About
Conclusions About Theory
For Review
For Reflection and Practice
For Further Reading
Ch 3: Processes and Stages
Stages of Helping
Stage I: Pretreatment
Stage II: Exploration
Stage III: Insight
Stage IV: Action
Stave V: Evaluation
Closure Issues
For Review
For Reflection and Practice
For Further Reading
Ch 4: Helping Relationships
Reflect Back
Uses of the Helping Relationship
Customized Relationships
Basically Speaking
Practical Issues
Getting the Relationship Started
For Review
For Reflection and Practice
For Further Reading
Ch 5: Exploration Skills
Internal Attitudes
Attending Behaviors
Practice Makes Perfect
Presenting Yourself
Time to Practice
Eliciting Information
Asking Questions
Assessing Strengths and Resources
Formulating Diagnoses
Assessing Risk
Responding to Content
Responding to Feelings
Try It Out
Facing Silence
Establishing Goals
Making the Transition to Action
For Review
For Reflection and Practice
For Further Reading
Ch 6: Action Skills
A Check-off List
Ways of Taking Action
Planning an Intervention
Contracting for Change
Teaching People to Think Differently
Constructing Alternative Stories
Role-playing and Rehearsal
Behavioral Interventions
Giving Feedback
Using Imagery
Dealing With Resistance
Employing Adjuncts
When You Don't Have Enough Time
For Review
For Reflection and Practice
For Further Reading
Ch 7: Brief Interventions
Some Cautionary Advice
Principles of Brief Intervention
A Different Way of Thinking About Change
An Abbreviated Process
Reframing Problems
Look for Exceptions
Find Out What Works
Miracle Question
A Single Session
Crisis Intervention
Choose Your Method Carefully
For Review
For Reflection and Practice
For Further Reading
Ch 8: Leading Groups
Differences Between Group and Individual Sessions
Some Advantages and Disadvantages
Work With a Co-leader
When to Intervene in Groups
Practical Considerations in Running a Group
For Review
For Reflection and Practice
For Further Reading
Ch 9: Looking at Yourself
Practicing What You Preach
Making Helping a Lifestyle
Ethical Issues
Getting the Most From Supervision
Joys of Helping
For Review
For Reflection and Practice
For Further Reading

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