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Basic Counselling Skills

Basic Counselling Skills
A Helper's Manual

Third Edition
  • Richard Nelson-Jones - Fellow of the British Psychological Society and of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy

208 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
This Third Edition of Basic Counselling Skills remains the most accessible and practical introduction to the basic counseling skills essential for the helping professions.

Steeped in vivid case examples, experimental activities and therapeutic dialogue, this multidisciplinary book provides a thorough, step-by-step guide to the subject, working through each stage of the helping process.

The key skills covered include:

  • Starting, structuring and summarizing the helping process
  • Active listening
  • Offering challenges and feedback
  • Facilitating problem solving
  • Improving clients' self-tale, rules and perceptions
  • Coaching, demonstrating and rehearsing
  • Managing resistance and changing referrals
  • Conducting and terminating help

Accessible, practical and concise, this bestselling book also discusses ethical issues and dilemmas, multicultural and gender aware helping, providing a master class for anyone using counseling skills in the course of their work.

Who Are Counsellors and Helpers?
What Are Basic Counselling Skills?
Helpers and Clients as Diverse Persons
What You Bring to Counselling and Helping
The Helping Relationship
The Helping Process
Understanding the Internal Frame of Reference
Showing Attention and Interest
Paraphrasing and Reflecting Feelings
Starting, Structuring and Summarizing
Asking Questions
Offering Challenges and Feedback
Managing Resistances and Making Referrals
Facilitating Problem Solving
Coaching, Demonstrating and Rehearsing
Training Clients in Relaxation
Improving Clients' Self Talk
Improving Clients' Rules
Improving Clients' Perceptions
Negotiating Homework
Conducting Middle Sessions
Terminating Helping
Ethical Issues and Dilemmas
Multicultural and Gender Aware Helping
Getting Support and Being Supervised
Becoming more Skilled
Appendix 1: Annotated Bibliography
Appendix 2: Professional Associations in Britain, Australia and America

The author continues to provide a valuable contribution to the essential skills necessary for effective engagement and rapport in person centred counselling.

Dr John Adams
School of Nursing Studies, Cardiff University
June 11, 2012

Highly recommended for year 1 and 2 of diploma course for skills module

Ms Carol Lloyd
social studies, Chichester University
May 28, 2012

Richard's writing style is clear and practitioner centered. A good source of reading on the collection of key skills that can be used accross the helping professions.

Mr Jim Cantwell
Humanities , Waterford Institute of Technology
March 30, 2012

A good book for a range of disciplines, including the ones I am most associated with, namely Social work and counselling.

Mr Gerry Skelton
Continuing Education, Belfast Metropolitan College
March 16, 2012

Excellent text that is highly valuable to the undergradute student undertaking the BSc in Mental Health Nursing.

Dr Gerry McGhee
Please select your department, Please select your institution
March 13, 2012

Personally I can strongly recommend this book.

After I ordered the inspection copy the course was changed to focus on ‘mentalization’ by decision of teacher group that were assigned to teach in Winter/Spring 2012. This meant that the book no longer had a fit.

Mr Sven-Erik Olsson
Society & Health, Kristianstad University
March 11, 2012

A useful complement to classroom work on basic counselling skills. Chapters 7 - 11 particularly helpful for students new to using counselling skills in practice.

Ms Penny Thei
Faculty of Health and Social Care, London South Bank University
March 8, 2012

Divided into three parts, 'Basic Counselling Skills' begins with an introductory discussion of the nature and process of the helping relationship, including its affective and cognitive dimensions, issues surrounding diversity and, importantly, a discussion of the challenges that the process presents to helpers.

In part two the helping relationship is systematically broken down into a deatiled exposition of practical counselling skills, along with a wealth of examples and activities that can easily be employed as clasroom exercises.

The book concludes by situating the helping process, and the practical skills essential to that process, within the context of broader concerns and considerations such as ethical issues, helper supervision and the further development of counselling skills.

Throughout, the material is presented in a clear, accessible manner that will not only prove invaluable for those embarking on becoming helpers, but must also be understood as a worthy manual for the more experienced practitioner to refer to and reflect upon in order to maintain and devlop their counselling skills. Highly recommended.

Dr Marc Roberts
Psychiatry , Staffordshire University
March 8, 2012

Great to see this classic in its Third Edition. Goes beyond clinical practice and could be helpfully read by every person who works with people.

Mr Pamela Gawler-Wright
Psychotherapy, BeeLeaf Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy
March 6, 2012

A good clear and informative textbook which clearly outlines key counselling skills for work with clients. Insightful discussions of key ethical principles in counselling also.

Dr Paula Faller
Health and Social Care , Inchicore College of Further Education
March 6, 2012

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter Two: What are Basic Counselling Skills

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Richard Nelson-Jones

Also available as a South Asia Edition.

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