brief report of SDeakin University

SDeakin University is seeking student feedback on a number of key services offered to current students.
Alison Burns of Deakin University has commissioned you to research and write a brief report that
evaluates the current state and future direction of one of the following Deakin University services:

Deakin wishes to increase student use and satisfaction with these services. These reports will be evaluated
and selected findings will be collated into a final report to be submitted to the head of each service.
Research
All the research material you need is on the Deakin University website. You may have to do some outside
investigation to help you decide on your Recommendations.
Writing
You need to use formal report structure with headings and a two-tier numbering system. Your report
should include:
• A title page
• an Executive Summary
• an Introduction covering scope, objective, purpose and use of the report. It should also include a brief
outline of the service and its objectives.
• an evaluation of the current service, including key issues, strengths and weaknesses that either help or
hinder the service in achieving its objectives.
• an evaluation of 2-3 potential improvements to the service
• a persuasive Conclusion, arguing for the implementation of at least one of your improvements
• 3–4 Recommendations outlining actions required to implement of your improvement
• Appendices (optional)
• Reference list
Your recommendations should provide clear strategic directions for Deakin University i.e. they should
clearly indicate what actions Deakin take in order of priority.
Word Count – 1000 words
As the reports need to be collated into a longer report you need to keep to the limit of 1000 words. The
word limit does not include the Executive summary, Table of Contents, appendices or reference list.
31/07/14 11:01 AM
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Assessment 2 Evaluative Report Brief

Evaluation Report on Deakin University Counseling and Personal Development Service

Name

Course number

Instructor’s name

Date

Table of contents

Table of Contents…………………………………………………………1

  1. Executive summary……………………………………………………2

2.0 Introduction …………………………………………………………..3

3.0 Key issues in the current service……………………………………….3

3.1 Strengths……………………………………………………….4

3.2 Weaknesses……………………………………………………4

4.0 Potential improvements to the service…………………………………5

5.0 Conclusion…………………………………………………………….6

  • Recommendations…………………………………………………….6

References…………………………………………………………………7

1.0 Executive summary

This report explains the current Deakin University counseling and personal development services, its strengths, weaknesses and recommendations for improving the service. The university’s website provides important information about what students should expect in booking appointments  at various periods of the semester, cost implications, how counseling is conducted, what kind of help to expect, their responsibilities, confidentiality consideration, and the type of staff offering counseling. The service is requires putting up measures of addressing emergency cases and using social media as an important tool in disseminating helpful information. This may be accomplished by conducting a survey about the need for social media in counseling, creating awareness on the service and hiring an additional staff to handle online counseling needs.

2.0 Introduction

Dedicated social workers and counselors are the pillars of the Deakin University Counseling and personal development services. They are skilled in psychology, and they collaborate to ensure that they meet the objective of students managing the issues that impact on their potential to reach their personal and career goals. The counseling professionals provide short-term services and offer referrals to specialists in the community to assist students with long-term therapy needs (Deakin University Australia, 2014). For students to access the counseling services, they must be knowledgeable on the dynamics involved in booking a session (Deakin-Human Resources Division, 2014). This report aims at evaluating the prevailing state of the counseling services at Deakin University Australia and the predictable future developments. It aims at identifying the areas that the service could improve to enhance student satisfaction with the services.

3.0 Key issues in the current service

The University website provides details about available services. It provides essential information for students intending to make an appointment with the counselors. The website information is readily accessible from computers at the university as well as outside the university. Accessibility to information about the service is important for both prospective students and current students as it prepares them on what to expect (Deakin-Human Resources Division, 2014).

Students must schedule an appointment either through a phone call or the receptionist at the Deakin University counseling and personal development center. They are also informed about the long waiting periods that they may experience during peak times. This helps students to be prompt in scheduling appointments as soon as begin experiencing problems to counteract the need for emergency counseling. The counselors are certified and provide up to six sessions to enrolled students at no cost. They can also get referrals for more complicated problems in external counseling centers. 

3.1 Strengths

Counseling service at Deakin ensures that students understand that they are solely responsible for dealing with their problems. It is clear that counselors’ only play a role in listening, offering advice on university procedures such as special consideration, and guiding students to change their perspectives to problems by thinking of creative solutions. It manages students’ expectations on the nature of help they can obtain from the service (National Association for College Admission Counselling, 2000).

Deakin counseling and personal development service is based on professional standards of confidentiality that influences students’ readiness to seek the service. Students have faith that the professionals are certified and that they observe privacy and confidentiality principles. The service is also easy to schedule as working students can schedule an interview through a phone calls rather than taking time off work to visit the center’s receptionist. The service is also helpful because students can attend up to six 50-minute sessions to fully resolve their problems. The sessions adequately enable students to successfully accomplish their developmental tasks at sufficient levels (Yuksel-Sahin, 2009).

3.2 Weaknesses

The counseling service has a very long waiting period during peak hours which may dishearten students with very pressing needs. For instance, students undergoing emotional breakdown, depression and suicidal thoughts require emergency counseling to resolve their problems. However, the university’s 1-2 weeks waiting period bars students from accessing timely help. Deciding to see a counselor is a difficult step and the prolonged waiting period may result in the decision to withdraw the intentions to seek assistance altogether. This ultimately hurts students’ academic and social health. It may also be too late as students with suicidal thoughts who may end their life before getting a chance to see a counselor (Frostberg State University Counseling & Psychological Services, 2013).

Technological communication is on the rise in the contemporary globalized world and university services require embracing social media communication. Students are mostly young people that are continually hooked to social media tools. The University counseling service does not have a social media platform where it can share important resources that can assist students to deal with common social and academic problems without necessarily having to see a counselor. It does not share videos, articles and audio resources detailing possible solutions to common problems amongst university students. The counseling service also does not have provisions where a staff member can admit students with acute psychological distress in emergency situations (Wachtel, 2008).  

4.0 Potential improvements to the service

The service may improve by establishing a hotline that addresses emergency situations such as suicide attempts. It is because the fatality of suicidal insinuations is   best made by mental health experts. (Woodside, H.Oberman, Cole, & Carruth, 2007). It is important for counselors to make immediate referrals of students that make statements about how they may be considering committing suicide. The hotline will also address problems associated with delays during peak times and allow university staff to admit students showing signs of acute distress in emergencies.

Improving access to counsel through social media platforms is imperative in helping students to be proactive in resolving general problems such as time management, self-esteem, and academic improvement. The counseling and personal development service center can upload helpful resources that students can download resources to address their specific needs (Reinkraut, 2008). This may free up the counselors to attend to students with more serious problems particularly during peak periods.  

5.0 Conclusion

            Many students are young and use the internet on their smart phones to communicate because it is faster as compared to visiting the center to book an appointment. Facebook, twitter and integral are some of the social media platforms that the counseling center can use to disseminate important counseling and guidance material for proactive students seeking solutions to common university problems. They can also use social media to schedule appointments with psychologists and counselors and get feedback in a faster and more convenient way.

6.0 Recommendations

The counseling center may begin by carrying out a survey about how many students prefer scheduling appointments through online social media rather than the existing methods. It would be followed by counseling fair where the students and counselors collaborate to plan and execute an open air counseling services awareness creation. Students can access instant personality tests and also get information about the new way of accessing services through Facebook or twitter. The counseling and personal development must also recruit and hire a social media counselor that is responsible for addressing questions asked through various social media platforms, uploading relevant print, or audiovisual resources to address common university students’ problems and schedule appointments for students.

References List

Deakin University Australia., 2014, July 15. Counselling. Retrieved august 15, 2014, from Deakin University Australia: http://www.deakin.edu.au/life-at-deakin/health-safety-wellbeing/counselling

Frostberg State University Counseling & Psychological Services., 2013, August. Counseling & Psychological Services Referral Guide for Faculty and Staff. Retrieved August 26, 2014, from frostburg.edu: http://www.frostburg.edu/fsu/assets/File/Counseling/FSReferralGuide.pdf

National Association for College Admission Counselling., 2000, July. Statement on Counselor Comptencies. Retrieved August 26, 2014, from National Association for College Admission Counselling: h

Reinkraut, R., 2008. Moral Awareness and Therapists Use of Self. Journal of Pedagogy, Pluralism and Practice, 13, 1-17.

Wachtel, P. L., 2008. Relational Theory and the Practice of Psychotherapy. New York: Guilford Press.

Woodside, M., H.Oberman, A., Cole, K. and Carruth, E., 2007. Learning to be a Counselor: A Prepartion Point of View. Counselor Education and Supervision, 47(1), 14-28. Yuksel-Sahin, F., 2009. The Evaluation of Counseling and Guidance Services Based on Teacher Views and Their Prediction Based on Some Variables. International Journal of Instru

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