University of Hawai'i

Maui Community College

Fall Classes - SOSER 245


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Assignment 1




Thursdays 5-8 pm; Kupaa 102

Course Syllabus for Fall 2003

Lee Stein, MSW, CSAC                      Phone: 984-3304

Office: Faculty Hale “E”                        “Safe Zone”

Office Hours:                Thursday 3:30 – 4:45 and by appointment


            This course provides theoretical and experiential training in facilitating psychoeducational, self-exploration and growth groups. It is designed to provide understanding and experience in selecting group members, establishing group norms and goals, setting group climates, developing group activities, promoting group and individual growth, and making appropriate group interventions. The course will be taught with a strong multicultural focus and attention to ethical dilemmas that can arise.

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In this course students will:

·        Explore and articulate why group counseling is considered the intervention of choice in dealing with many issues and why;

·        Practice strategies and skills essential for effective group work;

·        Examine various aspects group structure and dynamics;

·        Examine and practice ethical and effective ways to utilize interpersonal influence and when and if self-disclosure may be appropriate;

·        Practice strategies and skills that encourage the participation of all group members;

·        Explore and assess their own group participation and leadership style;

Practice at least fifty skills that will help them in the group counseling experience;
Discriminate between and practice different approaches to group work from the text, lectures, and assigned readings; and
Apply the knowledge and skills acquired in class and from assigned readings to everyday living experiences through in-class exercises and assignments.

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Note: Students will NOT, with this one class, become counselors, but will begin to examine the roles a competent counselor takes when facilitating group sessions.


REQUIRED TEXTBOOK: Intentional Group Counseling: A Microskills Approach by Ivey,

Pedersen, Ivey (2001); and other readings as assigned.

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            Course work will consist of group projects, experiential exercises, discussion, lecture, student presentations, videos, writing/sharing personal reactions, quizzes and readings.


This class will focus on understanding the dynamics of group counseling and the development of skills that lead to effective group leadership. Important aspects of learning occur through class interaction and participation. Therefore, regular attendance is vital if you are to do well in this class! You will be graded on your participation in class as well as the completion of assignments and exams.

HOMEWORK – homework assignments are intended to clarify the course content and prepare you for active class discussion/participation. You must read and familiarize yourself with the assigned readings prior to their scheduled discussion in order to participate thoughtfully in classroom discussions. You are to have read the assigned material for discussion on the date it is listed on the Course Calendar that follows.

EXTRA CREDIT - Extra credit assignments may be offered, but don’t count on it! Class attendance and participation, doing the homework, completing assignments, and taking exams are areas where you should focus your energy.

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            In order to create an effective and safe learning environment, class members are expected to treat one another and the instructor with respect at all times. Behaviorally this includes extending courtesy, attentiveness, politeness, consideration, care, and concern to others. Respectful and professional classroom behavior also includes removing hats, sunglasses, and turning off cell phones and pagers while in class. Academic dishonesty of any type will be dealt with as outlined in the Student Conduct Code (available from the Dean of Student Services Office, 984-3268).


Honoring Confidentiality: In order for the classroom environment to be truly conducive to effective learning, self-exploration must occur. Therefore, any self-disclosure by fellow students or the instructor is to be considered confidential and should not be repeated outside of the class. This respect for the process of others is especially important in a small community where we have all experienced the pain and betrayal of someone sharing what is only ours to share.


Your personal growth and satisfaction in this course will be greatly enhanced if you:

Are willing to participate in this class as fully as possible;
Are willing to suspend judgmental attitudes toward others and yourself;
Are willing to be sensitive to the thoughts, attitudes, feelings and behavior of others;
Recognize this class as a real life opportunity to practice your professional skills.

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GRADING (300 points possible: 100-90%=A; 89-80%=B; 79-70%=C; 69-60=D)

1.                  Attendance and Participation (60 points) – there are 15 classes, each worth 4 points if you both attend and participate. Each absence equals 4 missed points. Understand that your participation as a member of this class (group!) is as important as coming to class. If you do not actively participate in each class you stand to lose points! Group work is an interactional process! 

2.                  Exams (90 points) – there are 3 exams, each worth 30 points. Make-up exams are not allowed. However, you may take the end of the semester comprehensive exam in place of a missed exam or a low exam grade. You are responsible for material covered during class and from assigned readings. Exam dates are: 9/26; 10/24; 11/14. 

3.                  Group Facilitation (40 points each -80 points total) – pairs of students will become group leaders for 2 sessions with the members of our class. More on this later. Nov. 29 & Dec. 6th. 

4.                  Group Participation Reaction Paper (30 points) – you will participate in a formalized counseling or support group that is pre-approved by the instructor and write about your experience using the format provided. Due Nov. 29th.

5.                  Self-Assessment (30 points plus 10 points for presentation) – you will write an evaluation of your strengths and challenges as a group leader and group participant. This assignment includes sharing a summary of your evaluation with the class (10 points). Hint: pay attention when the instructor comments on qualities of a good counselor? They will be handy criteria on which to evaluate yourself. Due Dec. 6th

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            The college will make accommodations for students with special needs. If you are in need of some instructional accommodation because of a disability please let me know right away so that appropriate arrangements can be made.

IF YOU ARE HAVING DIFFICULTY WITH THE COURSE, PLEASE TALK TO ME RIGHT AWAY! I will do everything I can to help you do your best in this course and we can discuss options (such as “Credit/No Credit”). If you simply stop coming and don’t officially drop the course, you will receive an “F” grade on your record. If you do not want to speak to me about your situation, please see a student counselor (984-3325) or a guidance counselor.

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SOSE 245


DATE              TOPIC                           ASSIGNMENT

            Readings/assignments to be completed PRIOR to class where listed!

 Aug. 28          Introduction to Course

                        The Importance of Self-Awareness


Sept. 4            Multiculturalism & Ethics                       Pp. 1-18

Intentional Group Leadership                Ch. 1 pp. 19-38

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Sept. 11          Attending Behavior -                               Ch. 2 pp. 39-58

                        Listening and Process Skills

                        Skills Practice


Sept. 18          Focusing, Pacing, Leading, Linking        Ch. 3 pp. 59-80

                        Skills Practice


Sept. 25          INFO FEST #1 CH. 1-3 (and Pgs. 1-18)

The Basic Listening Sequence                   Ch. 4 pp. 81-106

                        Skills Practice


Oct. 2               Integrating Skills in a Group Session       Ch. 5 p. 107-130

                        Theme-Centered Groups

                        Skills Practice


Oct. 9               Integrating Skills in a Group Session        Ch. 6 p. 131-152

                        Skills Practice


Oct. 16             Skills & Strategies for Interpersonal         Ch. 7 p. 153-178

                         Influence Part 1- Listening, Reframing/

 Interpreting, Using Self-Disclosure, Giving Feedback

Skills Practice


Oct. 23             INFO FEST #2 CH 4-7

Skills & Strategies Part II                            Ch. 8 p. 179-202

                        Structuring, Logical Consequences, Eliciting

   & Reflecting Meaning

Skills Practice


Oct. 30             Structuring, Logical Consequences, Eliciting

   & Reflecting Meaning, Cont.

Skills Practice


Nov. 6             Skills & Strategies Part III                          Ch. 9 p. 203-236

                        Managing Conflict via Confrontation

                        Skills Practice


Nov. 13          Group Practice: Alternative Approaches   Ch. 10 p. 237-66

Skills Practice


Nov. 20            INFO FEST #3 CH 8-10

Group Partic. Reaction Paper Due     Review Readings

Assessing Your Leadership Style       Ch. 11 pp. 267-276 




Dec. 5             Group Sessions

Self-Assessment Due


Dec. 11           Group Sessions

Pot Luck/Closure

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