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A thematic analysis of young people's experience of counselling in five secondary schools in the UK

Lynass, Rosemarie and Pykhtina, Olga and Cooper, Mick (2012) A thematic analysis of young people's experience of counselling in five secondary schools in the UK. Counselling and Psychotherapy Research, 12 (1). pp. 53-62. ISSN 1473-3145

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Abstract

To investigate the views of young people on what they found helpful and unhelpful about school-based counselling as well as what they felt changed for them since having counselling. A semi-structured interview based on Elliott’s Change Interview was utilised. Eleven post-counselling interviews were analysed using thematic analysis. Participants expressed predominantly positive views of school-based counselling and a large number of changes were identified as having taken place since counselling. These changes were in three main domains: the emotional, interpersonal and behavioural. Participants viewed these changes as having had an important impact on their lives. The most commonly cited helpful aspects of counselling were related to talking or getting things out, and counsellor qualities. School-based counselling is an appropriate and valuable intervention for young people that is viewed positively by those who have experienced it.