I.     Course Prefix/Number: HSV 110

       Course Name: Counseling/Interviewing

       Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

Recommended PSY 101

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course reviews psychological principles and counseling techniques for public and social/human service workers. Content includes interview varieties, types and purposes; various communication techniques to establish rapport, question, reflect and help clients explore feelings and beliefs; and diagnostic and record-keeping systems. Skills developed largely through class exercises, role-plays and skill practice.

IV.   Learning Objectives

Upon successful completion of the course, students will:
  1. know the difference between counseling and interviewing and be familiar with the essential process of skill development.
  2. be able to establish rapport, observe, and encourage responding by clients.
  3. have effective confrontational skills.
  4. be able to assist the client to take action to his own benefit.
  5. be able to integrate their own skills base and begin to develop their own styles of counseling/interviewing.
  6. demonstrate documentation skills.

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

  1. The Processes of Interviewing and Counseling
    1. The difference between interviewing and counseling.
    2. Goals for interviewing and for counseling.
    3. The development of counseling skills.
    4. Using attending behaviors to establish rapport.
  2. Listening to and Observing the Client
    1. Questioning skills.
    2. Client observation skills
    3. Encouraging, paraphrasing, and summarizing for clarification.
    4. Reflecting feelings.
  3. Organizing the Interview
    1. Selecting and structuring skills to meet the client's needs.
    2. The use of listening skills.
    3. Knowing when it is time to achieve closure.
  4. Using advanced skills
    1. Confrontation.
    2. Focusing.
    3. Reflecting meaning to explore values and beliefs.
    4. Influencing the clients to take action for their own benefit.
  5. Integrating Skills.
    1. Putting skills together to "help."
    2. Developing a personal style of helping.
    3. Practicing new skills in a safe environment.
  6. Demonstrate Documentation Skills
    1. Objective assessment of case.
    2. Determine achievable goals.
    3. Note progress.
    4. Evaluate services.

VII.  Methods of Instruction

Methods of instruction may include lecture, discussion, use of pertinent audio-visual materials, and student presentations.  Extensive role-play opportunities will be provided for students to practice counseling/interviewing skills as they develop.  We would also provide students experience with simulated intake forms, progress notes, treatment/service plans and review of the same.  Students will be encouraged to participate in outside volunteer helping activities.

Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

Writing:  Students will be required to write for the class the equivalent of 12-15 typed pages of material that will be graded.  This writing may take the form of a research or term paper, summaries of journal articles, and/or a series of shorter, analytical papers.

Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

  • Meier, Scott T. and Susan R. Davis (2011).  Elements of Counseling (7th edition).  Cengage Learning.
  • Ivey, Allen E. and Mary Bradford Ivey (2010).  Intentional Interviewing and Counseling: Facilitating Client Development in a Multicultural Society (7th edition).  Cengage Learning.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

Grades are based on exams, written assignments, and classroom presentation as assigned by the instructor. Examinations will be given to determine competency in required skills.

XI.   Other Course Information

Attendance policies will be established by each instructor.

Each instructor will establish policies with respect to make-up exams, incomplete grades, etc., and include these and other course information in a written syllabus to be distributed to students early in the course.

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.