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COU202 Counselling Practice



Client counseling and helping a client to set and achieve their goals is a very painstaking and investing job. There are many hurdles and obstacles that need to be overcome in a client counselling session. For example- it is at times difficult to get a client to talk about his or her feelings, to recollect and report the details of the triggering incidents, the kind of trauma or the after-thoughts they have been having, etc. There are many types of counselling approached and theories that the theorists all around the world follow to help their clients to yield the results from therapies and counselling (Tamadoni et al., 2017).

This report aims to analyze a role play conducted by the researcher. The report will demonstrate how the Egan’s framework was followed throughout the role play, how a total person centric approach was followed by the counsellor, how the goals were set and the rationale behind the goal setting etc.

Egan’s Framework

Egan proposed a counseling model that aimed to help the counsellors to provide results to their clients that are transformational and long lasting. It also helps the clients in empowering them and taking charge of their lives. Egan’s model is divided into three stages-

The goal of client counselling is to transform the good intentions of the counsellor into actual results for the client, therefore, it is very important to help the clients to be able to set some realistic, tangible and actually measurable targets (Egan, 2018).

The three stages of Egan’s framework can be described as –


This is the stage where the counsellor needs to explore and dig out the details related to a client. This is the stage where the counsellor needs to show attributes of empathy, active listening, acceptance, etc. questioning is one important attribute that cannot be missed in this stage at all. This is simply because the counsellor needs to know everything about the mentee. The mentee is under a trauma or a difficult state of mind therefore, it is the job of the counsellor to dig out as much details as is possible to get a better view of the problem.


In the second stage of the Egan’s framework of counselling the counsellor needs to challenge the views of the mentee and discover the possibilities of the situation and the perception of the client during a session. In the challenging stage, the counsellor will have to provide alternate details to the client and the alternative questions such as how the situation may look like from a third person’s view, this stage is very crucial for goal setting (Cahill and Egan, 2018).


This is the stage where the mentor or the counsellor helps the mentee or the client to understand the possible options that they have. This is the goals setting stage where the counsellor along with the client sets the goals determined for the betterment of the client. The counsellor has taken a view of the situation from the previous stages and this is the stage where the proactive thinking and implementation of goals begin to happen.

In the role play, the video clearly shows that the counsellor has followed the Egan’s framework quite clearly. In the video, the counsellor can be seen comforting the client and then slowly transitioning in to the exploration stage by stating – so Mary what brings you here? The counsellor can be seen asking many questions to the client like – How long have you been married? Did you try to talk to your husband related to your issues? This is how the counsellor is entering the exploration stage of Egan’s framework. The counsellor has been very wise with the client and she can be seen demonstrating the attributes of active listening, empathy and exploration.

The role play then moves to the second stage of Egan’s framework, the counsellor asks the client that what she wants to do, does she want to have a baby with her husband, etc. the questions like these show that the counsellor has clearly followed the Egan’s framework and thus, has been quite person centric with the approach of counselling. The video then shows that the counsellor is able to set goals for the client. The counsellor then gradually moves to the third and last stage of the Egan’s framework as the counsellor helps the client to set the goals in her marriage life. The main issue of the client is that she is facing a troubled marriage. She and her husband has been living separately even though they live in the same house. Mary and her husband does not sleep in the same room. The counsellor then helps the client to first establish her goals because she helps the client to first decide that she is having issues in her marriage and related to having a baby. The counsellor asks whether her concern is about the baby or is it about her husband.

 Person Centric Approach

The counsellor has followed a very person centric approach in the entire counselling session. In a person centric approach, the counsellors focus on the person and their unique needs and circumstances. The focus in a person centric approach is on the person and not his or her weaknesses, disability or the problems but only on the person. In a person centric approach, the counsellors help the clients to meet their desires and the focus is laid on helping the client to achieve their personal goals (Turnnidge, and Côté, 2017).

In the role play it can be clearly seen that the counsellor is asking all the right questions to help the client to open up about her issues. The client states that she and her husband had decided during their marriage that when they go on to have a baby eventually, her husband will take up a part time job because they need money to support their finances. All the money that the couple make at the moment go into their home loan as they had purchased a house after the marriage. The client wanted to have a baby but her husband was reluctant on taking a part time job (Low, 2017). The counsellor focused on Mary as a person and tried to help her to set the goals that would help her to fulfill her own desires and eventually receive long lasting results from the counselling sessions.

Counselling Skills Used

The counsellor has used the skills of active listening and empathy for the client. The counsellor has been very keen on listening to what Mary had to say. The counsellor approached the client with all the relevant follow up questions and showed empathy to the client as and when she would disclose the things that were sad and made her unhappy. She tried to explore the details of the client’s life and the marriage life. She was keen on asking many questions so that the client could open up about her issues.

Goals Setting

The counsellor collaborated with the client throughout the session and then asked her about the desires and aspirations that the client has in order to solve her issues. The counsellor then asks the client whether her issues are with her marriage altogether or is it just the part where the client wants to have a baby and receive financial support from her husband. The counsellor aided the client to first determine this and then proceed further in her life and quest towards her life and its happiness.

Personal Reflection

I feel I did well as a counsellor. From the very beginning my focus and goal was clear- to help the client is every possible way. The client was initially not very talkative and open about the issues, I used the right questions to help her to open up. My key focus was to listen to the client effectively and not to miss any detail at all. The strengths that I thing I had were that I was able to ask the right questions and help her open up in very less time. I could feel that the client was comfortable talking to me. The limitations that I faced as a counsellor were that the client was not very clear about her goals, she did not know what she wanted to do. When asked that you want to work on your marriage as a whole or is it just that you want to have a baby with your husband- she could not give a very definitive answer. Therefore, the limitation was majorly from the responses of the client.

If I could I would change the direction of questions that I had asked initially. I should have focused more on the dynamics of the relationship of the client and should have understood the background of their marriage first.


The role play was very enlightening for me. I was able to learn a lot. This report summarizes my views and experience as a counsellor in the role play. I have also disclosed how I have demonstrated various skills and what limitations I had faced. I have also described about the Egan’s framework and the person centric approach that I had followed.


Cahill, S. M., & Egan, B. E. (2017). Perceptions of occupational therapy involvement in school mental health: A pilot study. The Open Journal of Occupational Therapy5(1), 5. ‘

Egan, A. (2018). An exploratory study of guidance counsellors’ perception of the collaborative nature of their work with school management and peer teachers in the post-primary sector.

Low, M. (2017). A novel clinical framework: the use of dispositions in clinical practice. A person centred approach. Journal of evaluation in clinical practice23(5), 1062-1070.

Tamadoni, M., Janbozorgi, M., Azarbaijani, M., Ali, G., & Tabatabaei, S. K. R. (2017). A study to assess the effectiveness of training package and group counseling with framework of skilled helper model on social, intellectual and occupational wellness of the students. Macro ergonomics: An approach to improve safety effi ciency and the quality of working life, 153.

Turnnidge, J., & Côté, J. (2017). Transformational coaching workshop: Applying a person-centred approach to coach development programs. International Sport Coaching Journal4(3), 314-325.

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