Discussion: Psychotherapeutic Approaches to Group Therapy with Children and Adolescents

Group therapy may be beneficial for children and adolescents, because it often provides an environment that normalizes clients’ thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. However, as with any therapeutic approach, group therapy might not be appropriate for every client, every setting, or even every therapist. When selecting therapies, you must always consider the psychodynamics of the client and your own skill set.

This week, as you assess and develop diagnoses for clients presenting for child and adolescent group psychotherapy, you examine the effectiveness of this therapeutic approach. You also consider legal and ethical implications of counseling children and adolescent clients with psychiatric disorders.

Learning Objectives

Students will:
  • Assess clients presenting with disruptive behavior
  • Analyze group therapeutic approaches for treating clients presenting with disruptive behavior
  • Evaluate outcomes for clients presenting with disruptive behavior
To prepare:
  • Review this week’s Learning Resources and reflect on the insights they provide.
  • Read the case study I am Feeling Like I’m Going Crazy
  • For guidance on assessing the client, refer to pages 137-142 of the Wheeler text in this week’s Learning Resources.

Note: For this Discussion, you are required to complete your initial post before you will be able to view and respond to your colleagues’ postings. Begin by clicking on the Post to Discussion Question link and then select Create Thread to complete your initial post. Remember, once you click submit, you cannot delete or edit your own posts, and you cannot post anonymously. Please check your post carefully before clicking Submit!

By Day 3

Post an explanation of the most likely DSM-5 diagnosis for the client in the case study. Be sure to link those behaviors to the criteria in the DSM-5. Then, explain group therapeutic approaches you might use with this client.  Explain expected outcomes for the client based on these therapeutic approaches. Finally consider legal and ethical implications of counseling children and adolescent clients with psychiatric disorders. Support your approach with evidence-based literature.

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