Kapitel 1

Woolfe, R., Strawbridge, S., Douglas, B. & Dryden, W. (2009). Handbook of Counselling Psychology, 3.ed. London: SAGE.  Del I, II og IV.

Counselling psychology has developed from process of psychologies development from Wundts study of attention to William James’ theory of the self as a product of relations, to Meads theory of the self as mirrored in others, to Cooleys ”looking-glass-self” theory, to Maslow, Rogers and Mays idea about psychology as a humanistic discipline.


Counselling Psychology is phenomenology, psychoanalysis, cognitive-behavioural therapy and constructivist, narrative and systemic traditions.


As a difference from other psychological therapies, counselling psychology focuses on the client-therapeutic relationship, relationships in general and the therapist’s technical expertise in relation to the clients psychiatric disorders. It is a more practical oriented approach and not as scientific. It is an alternative to the medical model of patient-expert relation.


Humanistic psychology – as Rogers explained it – is against the determinism of behaviour, created be the scientification of all knowledge from enlightenment. They ask “is it appropriate to use the same methods to study both the natural and the human world?”.


Counselling Psychology’s holistically and developmentally perspective on the human development is from Maslows theory of “self-actualization”, the human in the process of becoming and Rogers theory of “the fully functioning person”, a person is open for experiences and adaption.


Counselling Psychology is a positive psychology – it focuses on being with the client as a contrast to doing something to the patient. It focuses on being-in-relation with the client.


The therapist is a human with problems but he can advise the client – it has similarities to mindfulness, where the therapists uses their own experience to guide the clients.


Structuralism: understands human behaviour from a symbolic system of meaning, the language.

Post-structuralism: criticises that a system can explain everything – it still has the language as focus, but it is not the only thing

Postmodernism: criticises grand-theories and totalized meta-narratives. It will rather focus on small narratives.


There are a difference between the scientific psychology and the practical psychology.

Counselling Psychology focuses on the client-therapeutic relationship rather than the psychological approaches.


McDonaldization: is the bureaucratic and dehumanising nature of contemporary American social life. Quantity above quality, the industrialization of human contact (Ritzer, 1993).


Counselling Psychology is health care and it uses symptomatology rather than diagnoses – it is problematic with the medical model’s diagnoses because it is a interactive package rather than a subjective treatment.

It is dangerous to give the client the innocent sick-role which demands others help and is not something that the client can work with herself.


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