Student Development Centre
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Groups
- What is a group therapy like? What should I expect?
- Can I sign up for more than one group at a time?
- Can I sign up for everything and then decide which one I like the best?
- Can I do group counselling and individual counselling at the same time?
- My schedule conflicts with the group time. Can I arrive late or leave early?
- I can't make it to some of the sessions because of previous engagements. Can I still come?
- Will my personal information stay private?
- Do I have to participate if I don't feel comfortable?
- How do I know which group is best for me?
- Can I participate in a group if it's for observational or educational purposes?
- Why are you asking for my contact information?
The groups that are offered by SDC integrate psychological education with group discussion and emotional processing. Groups are generally small ranging from 5-15 people. It is a place for students to learn about new skills, increase self-awareness and share their personal experiences with others. It is taken into account that some people may be more comfortable sharing personal information than others. Group members are expected and encouraged to participate in group discussions and exercises. However, if you are not comfortable discussing something that is particularly difficult for you, you have a right to keep it to yourself and that right will be respected.
Students can only participate in ONE group at a time. Given the substantial 2 hours/week time commitment, the quantity of information and the work that each group requires, it is our ethical responsibility and in your best interest to only take on one group at a time.
No. Space is very limited in each group and it is not fair to other students who are willing to make a commitment to a specific group. If you are having trouble deciding which group is for you, please feel free to call SDC Psychological Services at 519-661-3031 for more information to make your choice easier.
It may be appropriate to do group therapy and individual therapy simultaneously and it may not.
If you are in ongoing therapy, consult with your individual therapist if it's a good idea for you to do both at the same time.
If you're having trouble deciding between groups, try to decide which area you would like to work on as a priority right now. You can always sign up for another group in the following term.
If you have read the group descriptions and are still having difficulty deciding which group is for you, please feel free to call SDC Psychological Services at 519-661-3031 for more information to make your choice easier.
This question may best be answered on an individual basis. If you cannot arrive on time or must leave early for the majority of the sessions
(For ex: 15 mins early/late or more) because of a class or schedule conflict, then it is not appropriate to participate in the at this point in time.
Such comings and goings can be disruptive for the other members of the group. Participating in the group during the following term or signing up for another group may be an
alternative option for you. If you would like clarification for your specific situation please call SDC Psychological Services at 519-661-3031 with your questions.
Attending a group does require a multi-week commitment. However if you have a previous engagement like a conference or a medical appointment or cannot attend due to illness, please let the group facilitator know ahead of time. As a general rule, it is not appropriate to miss any more than two sessions of a group.
Much like individual counselling, any personal information that is shared in the group counselling remains confidential (with the exception of the legal and ethical limits to confidentiality). Group members are also expected and required to keep information shared in group (like names, personal stories etc.) private.
Group members are expected and encouraged to participate in group discussions and exercises. However, if you are not comfortable discussing something that is particularly difficult for you, you have a right to keep it to yourself and the group will respect your privacy.
The groups offered by SDC Psychological Services are for personal purposes only. This is important for maintaining a sense of trust and comfort amongst the group members. If you are interested in professional development, there may more appropriate resources in the community.
It is important for us to have your contact information to confirm your registration in the group and to inform you in case a group session must be cancelled or postponed. Please check your email and voicemail in case a group session must be postponed due to counsellor illness or other unforeseen circumstances.
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