Workshop on “Counseling, Theory and Practice”

Venue : Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham ,  Amritapuri Campus

Resource Person:        Prof. Dr. Renjith R Pillai,

Department of Social Work,

Central University of Rajasthan.

Methedology:              Lecture, Interaction, discussion and Role plays

Participants: 3rd Semester MSW students and Faculty Members.


A one day special Workshop on “Counseling, Theory and Practice” was organized by Department of Social Work on 8th November 2013. Mr.V.S.K. Kurup (Faculty, Dept. of Social Work) addressed the gathering and welcomed the guest and speaker of the day – Dr. Renjith R Pillai, Assistant Professor, Department of Social Work, Central University of Rajasthan. Dr.Rajeev M.M, Chair Person, Department of Social Work also extended his warm greetings and gave a brief introduction about the subject “Counseling, Theory and Practice” highlighting its importance.


The Workshop included 3 sessions –

10.30 am – 12.15 pm  :           Counseling

1.00 pm – 2.30 pm      :           Interview and Role play

2.30 pm – 4.00 pm      :           Theoretical concepts of Counseling

The students comprehended a lot of Information during the course of workshop. The primary objective of the workshop was to enhance the counseling skills of the students.

The initial sitting started with a check list, check list which contains a list of essential qualities which a good counselor should be ingested with.The test consists of 24 questions and maximum score indicated better skill in counselling. The students were given a glimpse of idea about the required skills and qualities, enabling them to assess their self for being a good counselor. This was followed by discussion on the difference between counseling and psycho-therapy.

Dr. Renjith explained Counseling as a purposeful conversation through which one helps other at least to reduce the intensity of problem. It is a series of problem solving Interviews and a method of identifying practical solutions to life / work related problems where two people meet, communicate, explore and find solution.


Dr.Renjith emphasized the importance of developing knowledge, skills and practice for good counseling. He said accomplishment of attaining skills can only happen when one goes to field, make errors, assess, understand, intervene and learn. He also talked about life skills and its importance.

He explained the different counseling settings and situations, enacting the same with lot of activities which was more effective in order to realize the do’s and don’ts.

The main components discussed in the lecture was :

  • What is counseling?
  • Its features and essential elements
  • Different stages and techniques
  • Do’s and don’ts
  • Ethical guidelines
  • Types of counseling etc

The second session comprise of Interview wherein the importance of interviewing in counseling and the mode of interviewing was discussed. The features of good interview and the necessity of a peaceful environment during counseling sessions were highlighted. The other topics discussed were :

  • Required preparations for Interview
  • How to start an Interview
  • Assessment and planning
  • Tentative goals and strategies
  • Basic skills etc


The lecture was followed by Role play. Initially Dr.Renjith enacted an Interview situation. Later, the discussed and learned subject was practically rehearsed by the students in order to study the practical application of various techniques of counseling. Theory is impossible without practice and practice is meaningless without theory. In order to stress on this, The students were divided into two groups and each group was given an issue. Issues such as : A depressed woman due to forced marriage and followed consequences; Love failure of a youth;

The groups were then made to present the situations along with the portrayal of the intervention made by a counselor to solve the problems of the affected. It gave the students an opportunity to practically apply the skills and techniques of counseling. The first hand trial’s rights and wrongs were spotted and corrected from each minute bit of a moment or blink of an eye. There by discussions were held on the modes of counseling.

Another activity – A game named Chinese whisper was also played in order to learn the importance of effective communication. A game where one person passes a message orally stealthily to another and that person to the next person and so on. The last person is supposed tell out loud. Comparison on initial and last message was done. The activity emphasizes the necessity of communicating effectively. The session was an overall energizer after lunch.

The third session was all about the basic theoretical concepts of counseling. It includes :

  • Psycho Analytical Approach
  • Different irrational ideas that cause problems
  • Client Centered Approach
  • Crisis Intervention
  • Eclectic Approach
  • Couple’s Therapy
  • Transactional Analysis etc


The one day workshop concluded with the valedictory function, wherein Dr.Rajeev M.M, Chair Person, Department of Social Work, Amrita University expressed his gratitude on behalf of social work department to Dr. Renjith R Pillai. Certificates were distributed to the participants. The session officially got winded up by students feedback and vote of thanks by Student representative Ms. Jasmin R Pereira (S3 MSW).

Report by :

Jasmin R Pereira


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