Counselling Psychology report
Imagine that you are writing a technical report for the director of an NHS trust to determine if they should employ a counselling psychologist to help them treat some
of their patients who suffer with a range of mental health and medical problems. Your report needs to be written in a manner that an employer will be able to
understand and should outline the potential benefits of employing a counselling psychologist.
You should include the areas listed below, that a counselling psychologist would be able to advise the organisation about.
Type of problem counselling psychologists can help with Theoretical orientations
Type of therapeutic interventions that would be available
Writing a technical report:
This assignment has been chosen because it is the type of writing which graduates are more likely to be asked to do in their employment. It will be helpful for you to
be able to demonstrate that you have experience and skill in report writing. This coursework also helps you to prepare for writing technical reports at Level 5.
Although technical reports can vary, the common purpose is to communicate information clearly. For this assignment you have been asked to summarise relevant literature
and to reach some form of conclusion. Please note, there is no right or wrong answer but you will need to build an argument supported by evidence. Do not ignore any
evidence which goes against your argument, you need to acknowledge it.
Before you start to write, think about the message you want to convey; who your audience is (technical or general public – this will tell you whether you need to
explain technical terminology). For the purpose of this assignment consider your audience to be educated people from outside of the field who need to make an informed
decision. Although technical reports can vary, please write this one in prose and do not use bullet points.
You should use the following subheadings in your report:
1. Recommendation of report
Your report should start by summarising the conclusion you will be making. This should be a standalone statement without discussion.
2. Summary of supporting evidence
You then need to justify your recommendation with evidence. You need to quickly take the reader from being uninformed to a position where they can understand the
document. Make sure that your writing is clear and concise. You should use examples from the research literature and reference using APA format. You do not need to go
into great detail but communicate sufficient information so that the reader believes that you are knowledgeable on the topic (i.e., that you have done your research
and you understand it).
3. Sources of further information
In addition to providing references for sources which you cite directly, you should also provide your reader with a list of sources of further information, should they
wish to gain a deeper understanding of this area. This does not have to be a long list but you should include at least one additional source that provides more
detailed information on the topic that is beyond the scope of the report. Make sure you tell the reader why the source(s) add extra information.
This is the reference list for everything which you have directly cited in your report.
These subheadings will help the reader to navigate your report more efficiently. By placing the overall recommendation at the start of the report, someone who does not
have the time to fully read your rationale would be able to quickly identify and understand your key message. In real world settings, this can be vital in ensuring
that correct decisions are made and informed by sound evidence.
As you research material, it may help to categorise it as follows:
1. Obviously important information which must go into the report because it is completely relevant to the objectives;
2. Borderline information which might be useful to some readers, or which might amplify or substantiate other more important material;
3. Information which is interesting (or not) to the writer, but which is not relevant to the objectives of the report.
This will help you to ensure that your report stays focused. Remember to keep referring back to the question asked to make sure you accurately categorise. It is very
easy to allow your reading to take you off in slightly different directions.
Literature review, summary and recommendations
Criteria to grade quality:
Five criteria will be used to assess the project:
1. Demonstrated links to appropriate readings (20%)
2. Scope of analysis and links to theory (20%)
3. Depth of analysis (20%)
4. Presentation of a convincing argument (20%)
5. Clear recommendations based on the analysis or argument