COUN 6250/COUN 8250/COUN 6250A/COUN 6250F: Week 1: The Group Counselor Essay Assignment Paper

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 COUN 6250/COUN 8250/COUN 6250A/COUN 6250F: Week 1: The Group Counselor Essay Assignment Paper

COUN 6250/COUN 8250/COUN 6250A/COUN 6250F: Group Process and Dynamics | Week 1

Counseling groups provide members the opportunity to share perspectives and receive useful feedback and information while under the skilled leadership of a professional counselor. The group leader’s ability to effectively facilitate a mental health counseling group requires a purposeful integration of the leader, both personally and professionally. The skills acquired in conducting individual counseling sessions, such as relationship building and active listening, serve as a foundation upon which the group counseling skills are scaffolded. The group leader’s self-awareness of personal attributes is utilized to promote the group process.

Consider the potential goals of group counseling and the ways the counselor may facilitate the group process to accomplish those goals. Reflect on the leader attributes that might best move a group toward a successful completion. What knowledge, skills, and experience might you need to lead such a group? As you consider your personal experiences in groups, you might gain insight into the reasons why many counseling professionals use group work to meet the needs of their clients.

In this first week of Group Process and Dynamics, you begin to explore the personal characteristics and leadership skills a group counselor needs to have in order to be effective.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Analyze leadership skills for growth and development

Learning Resources

Note: To access this week’s required library resources, please click on the link to the Course Readings List, found in the Course Materials section of your Syllabus.

Required Readings

Corey, M. S., Corey, G., & Corey, C. (2018). Groups: Process and practice (10th ed.). Boston, MA: Cengage.

  • Chapter 1, “Introduction to Group Work: A Multicultural Perspective” (pp. 5–12)
  • Chapter 2, “The Group Counselor” (pp. 27–47)

Corey, G., Corey, M. S., & Haynes, R. (2014). Groups in action: Evolution and challenges (2nd ed.). Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole, Cengage.

  • Introduction: “A Guide for Reviewing the Program: Evolution of a Group” (pp. 1–8)

Luft, L. (1982). The Johari Window: A graphic model of awareness in interpersonal relations. In NTL Institute, NTL Reading Book for Human Relations Training.

Required Media

Corey G., Corey, M. S., & Haynes, R. (2014). Groups in action: Evolution and challenges [Video file]. Borderline Productions.

  • Program 1, Evolution of a Group, Section 1: “Forming a Group” This brief introduction includes an explanation of the context and purpose of the recording. It also includes an overview of group stages.
  • Note: The approximate length of this media piece is 7 minutes.

The Groups in Action film comes with your textbook package, either as a DVD or an access code. If you have an access code, use the instructions included with your text to view the film on the Cengage website.

Laureate Education (Producer). (2017). The Group Counselor [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Optional Resources

Rubel, D. J. & Kline, W. B. (2008). An exploratory study of expert group leadership. The Journal for Specialists in Group Work, 33(2), 138–160. doi: 10.1080/01933920801977363

Note: You will access this article from the Walden Library databases.

A First Look at the Groups in Action Video

In addition to your required text, you will view the video Groups in Action to see a group led by Gerald and Marianne Schneider Corey. At specific times during the video, you will see an icon appear that directs you to the workbook for a more detailed explanation.

As an initial activity this week, please view Program 1, Section 1, “Forming a Group” of the video and read Groups in Action: Evolution and Challenges workbook pp. 1–8. These segments set the stage for viewing the video and using the workbook in coordination with it.

This week, you begin to examine group counseling and group leadership skills. You may be overwhelmed by the many facets of group work and the group counseling skills required of the group leader. The counseling skills you have acquired for individual client sessions will have some common features of group leadership, but they alone are not adequate for effective group facilitation. You are not expected to have yet mastered the group leadership skills, but, as a counselor in training, you are asked to reflect upon and identify those skills with which you feel most comfortable and those skills which will require you to seek additional training.

For this Journal Assignment, you will reflect on your leadership skills self-assessment and examine opportunities for growth and enhancing your leadership skills.

To prepare:

  • Take the “Self-Assessment of Leadership Skills” on pages 45–47 of the Corey, Corey, & Corey (2018) course text.
  • Reflect on those skills that are strengths for you and those that may represent growth areas. Review Luft’s (1982) seminal article and analyze in which of the four of Johari’s windows your skill strengths and growth areas reside.

The Journal Assignment (no more than 1 page in length, not counting your APA cover page):

  • Describe two skills from the assessment that are relative strengths for you and two skills that are opportunities for growth.
  • For the growth areas identified, provide a strategy for enhancing these group leadership skills.


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