Group effort

Counselors engaged in group work often marvel at the dynamic of ‘peer power’ to effect change in clients’ lives.


Dispatches from Nepal: Sharing stories, normalizing fears

ACA member Jeffrey Kottler is finding that empathy and a listening ear are the most effective counseling tools in earthquake ravaged Nepal.


The misrepresentation of black girls with brown skin

“… Many of us are guilty of rejecting our natural black selves in an attempt to conform to mainstream society. My fear is that this has a very harmful impact on the mental health of young black girls.”


Growing number of counselor positions available at

Good news: More and more jobs open to professional counselors are being posted at, the federal government’s job database.


Handle with care: Addressing child trauma in West Virginia

An innovative, multidisciplinary program in West Virginia aims to identify and treat child trauma in real time.


Cover Stories

Group effort

When a client seeks help, often the focused, tailored nature of individual counseling is exactly what he or she needs. But sometimes there is a particular alchemy in a group. Many clients benefit from group counseling, either in addition to or instead of individual treatment. Why is that? The counselors to whom we spoke pointed…continue reading


Ethical pitfalls of online testimonials and reviews

Chances are that an online review of a product or service has significantly influenced your decision to purchase something (or not purchase something) recently. In fact, one research study reports that 84 percent of Americans say online reviews influence such decisions (see Furthermore, 63 percent of customers say they are more likely to make…continue reading

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Exchanging ideas, forging friendships

Coming on the heels of its successful annual conference and expo in March in Orlando, Florida, the American Counseling Association is turning its attention to another conference in a tropical locale. This one, however, will be across an ocean. The inaugural American Counseling Association-Asia Pacific Counseling Conference 2015, or ACA-APCC 2015, will be held June…continue reading

Motivation to change

A 40-year-old man enters counseling to deal with “relationship issues.” He says his marriage is failing due to his use of online pornography and that his financial situation is in constant peril because of high gambling debts. He adds that he drinks alcohol daily and fears he is dependent on it to remain functional. In terms of…continue reading

Online Exclusives

Dispatches from Nepal: Sharing stories, normalizing fears

In the aftermath of the recent earthquakes that have devastated Nepal, Jeffrey Kottler has found that some of the most effective counseling tools available are empathy and a listening ear. Kottler, a professor of counseling at California State University Fullerton, is in Nepal to join the earthquake relief efforts of Empower Nepali Girls (ENG), the…continue reading

The misrepresentation of black girls with brown skin

I grew up in a low-income housing project on the South Side of Chicago. I faced many challenges as a young girl in this homogenous and sometimes destructive community. Of the many things I experienced while growing up poor, I’d like to raise some awareness of how black girls continue to suffer within culture because…continue reading

Knowledge Share

Counselor, know thyself

I was raised with my mother telling me that the three things you were not supposed to discuss in polite company were religion, politics and money. Historically, counselors have also been hesitant to talk about religion or religious issues. This hesitancy is grounded in the profession’s belief in the separation of church and state and the…continue reading

A visual picture of the human psyche

The Mandala Assessment Research Instrument (MARI) is a Jungian instrument based on symbols and colors that are chosen intuitively. When displayed on the developmental template of the Great Round, these symbols and colors reveal a visual picture of one’s psyche. Joan Kellogg developed MARI as an art therapy tool in the 1970s. An art therapist…continue reading

Reader Viewpoint

Explaining why opposites attract

The most potent of love potions, “romantic chemistry,” draws lovers into a trancelike experience that results in a steamy dance of infatuation, intrigue and sexual desire. Romantic chemistry, or the “urge to merge,” typically controls our rational mind, so much so that lessons learned and pledges made are neutralized in an instant. Although conscious desires,…continue reading

The end of counseling as we know it

In the mid-1960s, Joseph Weizenbaum, a pioneer in computer science working at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) artificial intelligence (AI) laboratory, developed a very simple computer program named ELIZA that was capable of having a conversation with a human being. ELIZA’s responses were programmed in a way that mimicked what might happen in a…continue reading