Therapeutic Engagement
12 Nov 2020

Training Available to Students for Therapeutic Engagement Online

Over the next couple of weeks, ICHAS will be providing training to help students when it comes to utilising technological platforms in Therapeutic Engagement. Due to the current COVID situation, we are aware that many students are now completing many of their client hours via online platforms. It is hoped that this course will help enhance students’ ability to deliver counselling via these forums. 

‘Technologically Facilitated Therapeutic Engagement Training’

This course will take place over two evenings and will assist students from all ICHAS programme streams completing client work via online forums such as telephone, zoom, etc while on their practice placement with the college.

It is designed specifically for Counselling and Psychotherapy practitioners to provide an introduction to the utilisation of these platforms in Counselling and Psychotherapy. It will explore some of the benefits as well as the challenges associated with using these forms of technology in Therapeutic Engagement. It will pay particular attention to Codes of Practice and Evidence-Based Guidelines for such therapeutic engagement. As well as that it will examine Ethical Issues associated with Technologically Facilitated Therapeutic Practice.

Week 1 Technologically Facilitated Therapy – Appraising the Evidence Base

There is considerable evidence supporting the use of Telephone and Internet-Based counselling and psychotherapeutic engagement. However, research also offers cautionary notes regarding its use. This Lecture will examine some of the Evidence and afford opportunities to discuss it in detail:

  • Theoretical understanding and therapeutic skills in online therapy provision
  • Ethical Guidelines & Dilemmas using Technologically Facilitated Therapy

This lecture will also explore issues relating to the Ethical use of Video and Telephone Counselling & Psychotherapy. It will draw on a series of Codes of Ethics and Practice both nationally and internationally. 


Week 2 The Therapeutic Relationship and Therapeutic Alliance in Online Counselling & Psychotherapy

One of the core foundations of any psychotherapeutic practice is the Therapeutic Relationship. The ways of establishing, maintaining, managing, and ending the Therapeutic Relationship will be examined as will issues of ensuring privacy, confidentiality, and adherence to Professional Guidelines. This will include

  • Best Practice Guidance using practical Exemplars in Technologically Facilitated Therapy
  • Best Practice in Ensuring Secure Communication
  • Supervision and Insurance. Best Practice in Contracting in Online Services. Considerations of Data Protection/Cybersecurity and working with special populations. Identifying & Managing Online Disinhibition Effect. 
  • Managing boundaries in a technological environment. Exploring the disinhibition effect in online therapy

Attendees during a recent workshop as part of Limerick Mental Health Week 2020

The current restrictions brought about due to COVID has had a big impact on students, especially as they prepare for their practice placements. The aim of this course will be to develop their skills when it comes to delivering counselling via technological platforms.

We will also have more training and workshops taking place in the second semester so make sure to follow us for all the latest news.