Are There Homework Assignments In Counseling?
The first thing that comes to mind when we hear the word 'homework' is schoolwork done at home. On the contrary, Homework assignments in counseling are activities or exercises given to a client by practitioners in between sessions. In counseling, clients are sometimes assigned activities that are intended to fasten the recovery process. Such actions are vital in ensuring that the goals in the therapy session are met. Other than using the word 'homework,' terms such as 'self-help assignments,' 'home practice activities,' and 'between-session assignments' are often used.
Which Assignments Are Given In Counseling
There are various assignments given in counseling. These activities are assigned depending on the client's problem and goal of treatment and their ability to perform the given task. Some of those activities are:
- Journal writing – is a daily capture of essential events in writing that happened in a person's day. The writing should also include emotions. A client will be able to compare self from when they started the sessions until after sessions.
- A self-inventory worksheet aims to give a general idea about a person's strengths and weaknesses, making it easy for them to know their abilities.
- Mood tracking – entails keeping a record of one's mood, either good or bad, or any other mood. The client will be able to identify their moods at specific times.
- Letter writing – having a client write a letter to the significant other for the organization of their experience, not sending it.
Why Are Homework Assignments Important
- Breaks monotony – By having intervals between sessions, the practitioner does not have to talk all through, and the client is just a passive listener.
- Self-realization – Taking homework assignments in counseling helps one to be aware of their behavior and understand why they react the way they do. It boosts self-efficacy too.
- Improves individual skills – Doing activities that one loves and is well conversant with helps to better the specific skills they already have.
- Reinforcement – a client can practice the new experiences gained from the treatment sessions.
- To test cognitions – A client can be able to evaluate many of their cognitions. However, other cognitions can only be tested between sessions.
What Are Some Of Homework Noncompliance
Some clients may fail to complete their homework assignments, which may be a barrier to their treatment. Types of homework non-compliance are:
- Misunderstanding the homework assignment – a client fails to understand what was expected of them in that specific task. That is why a practitioner should initially explain the homework before issuing it out.
- Partial compliance – some clients may not complete the homework assignment and only carry out the easy part leaving behind the hard work.
- Refusal to do homework – The reasons why a client may refuse to complete homework are complicated or too much homework, misunderstanding the homework assignment, and exaggerated notion.
- Repeated excuses for non-compliance. A client may have repeated reasons for having incomplete homework. In such a case, the practitioner should discuss with the client the choices for change.