How To Refer

You may also wish to refer if you feel overwhelmed or burdened by a student and/or a student's problem, if you have contact with the student on several occasions and it appears that the student is "stuck", or if the student has experienced a number of problems over an extended period of time.

How To Refer

When you think that a student might benefit from therapy, you may wish to refer that student directly to the University Counseling Center. In raising the issue with the student, it is best to be supportive and straightforward about your concern for his/her welfare.

You may want to speak specifically about the behaviors that have raised; your concern so that both you and the student share the same frame of reference about the situation. Most importantly, by speaking directly, you convey your respect and caring for the individual.

Except in emergencies, the most important thing to do is to present your concern in such a way as to enable the student to freely accept, consider, or refuse your recommendation.

Some suggested ways to recommend counseling

"You seem very upset; perhaps it might be helpful to call or visit the Counseling Center to talk about this with a clinician."

"Counseling is often helpful for people who feel the way you do. If you would like, you may use my telephone to call the Counseling Center to find out how you can make an appointment. If you would like , I would be glad to walk over with you to find out about speaking with a clinician."

"You don't have to continue feeling so depressed (anxious, isolated, stressed-out, angry, etc.). Counseling can help.  Why don't you stop by the Counseling Center and speak with a clinician?"

Although some people need time in order to think over the decision to seeking counseling, a caring and gentle suggestion is often enough.  If a student says emphatically, "NO", then it is important to respect and accept that decision and to perhaps leave the door open for later reconsideration.  Don't hesitate to follow-up privately with a student to let him/her know that you're available to talk and to ask if he/she made a successful contact with the Counseling Center.