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Journal of Mental Health Counseling
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Volume 29, Number 3, July 2007


1. Paradigms of Counseling and Psychotherapy, Revisited: Is Social Constructivism a Paradigm? (Pages 189-203)

R. Rocco Cottone

This article revisits the criteria outlined for definition of “paradigms” of counseling and psychotherapy. It defines the emergence of social constructivism as a philosophy with implications for counseling and psychotherapy. It delimits social constructivism by proposing several social constructivist tenets. Social constructivism is assessed against paradigm criteria, and an opinion is offered as to whether social constructivism represents a paradigm of counseling and psychotherapy. Implications of the paradigm analysis for the practice of mental health counseling are outlined.
Full Article

2. The Mental Health Practitioner and Psychopharmacology (Pages 204-225)

Kevin P. Kaut; Josephine A. Dickinson

Today’s mental health practitioner is likely to be quite familiar with a rather diverse range of pharmacological issues confronting clients seeking mental health services. Indeed, drug therapies are commonplace, and in some cases, might be viewed as the primary intervention for a presenting problem. Pharmacological approaches to mental health concerns can be effective, and provide treatment options with significant therapeutic potential. Nevertheless, the current pharmacological and ever-growing biomedical milieu that so often characterizes modern health care can potentially undermine the importance of the bio-psycho-social perspective of mental health assessment and intervention.The growing emphasis on pharmacotherapy must certainly be recognized by the mental health practitioner, but frameworks for mental health service delivery should continually identify better ways to integrate pharmacological options with the psychological and socio-cultural context that influence the behaviors, cognitions, and emotions of clients.
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3. Existential Theory and Solution-Focused Strategies: Integration and Application (Pages 226-241)

Delini M. Fernando

A sound theoretical approach is essential to the professional integrity of mental health counselors. This article examines the basic concepts of existential theory, indicates how this theory provides a sound theoretical basis for mental health counseling, and supports the thesis that brief solutionfocused therapy is a clinical application of existential theory. An illustration of brief solutionfocused existential therapy is provided from the author’s experience counseling tsunami victims in Sri Lanka.
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4. Russian Speaking Immigrants from the Commonwealth of Independent States in the United States: Implications for Mental Health Counselors (Pages 242-258)

Gulnora Hundley; Glenn W. Lambie

In this article, we present common mental health issues facing Russian speaking immigrants from the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), highlighting the necessity for counselors to have an understanding and appreciation of these issues in order to provide effective treatment services. An introduction to CIS mental health services and a historical description of the influence of the communist government on health care in the CIS are provided.Additionally, we review the cultural beliefs and values of CIS immigrants regarding mental health services and their underutilization. Finally, a series of practical suggestions for mental health counselors providing services to Russian speaking immigrants are offered.
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5. Participation in Counseling: Does Family Matter? An Analysis of a Community Population (Pages 259-268)

Dawn Stupak; Misty K. Hook; Diane M. Hall

Premature termination from counseling is a significant problem for the field of counseling. In contrast to previous research on counseling dropout, in this study, the authors examined the impact of family participation and constellation as possible mediators. Archival data were collected from 113 client files at a non-profit community mental health agency in North Texas and chi square analyses were conducted. Results indicated that family participation was an important factor in counseling continuation. Implications for clinical practice, research, training, and public policy are discussed.
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6. The Experience of Online Counseling (Pages 269-282)

Shane Haberstroh; Thelma Duffey; Marcheta Evans; Robert Gee; Heather Trepal

In this qualitative study, the authors outline the experiences of 5 research participants who engaged in online chat-based counseling sessions. Participants discussed their experiences related to technological barriers, connecting with their counselor, interacting without visual or verbal feedback, receiving counseling in a personal space, and the flow and pace of the online sessions. The authors provide recommendations for the implementation of online counseling, including discussion of the limitations and benefits of this type of therapeutic conversation.
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