What is Counseling?

Counseling provides an opportunity for individuals to improve decision making, develop coping skills, increase confidence, overcome blocks to personal effectiveness, and acquire greater self-awareness. In counseling, students can explore and express feelings, examine beliefs and ways of thinking about the world, reflect on patterns of behavior, and make healthy changes.

Relationship issues and personal development are often central to students’ desire for counseling. Others may seek counseling for psychological problems such as depression, anxiety, concerns with eating or substance use, or difficulties in adjustment. Counseling can help students explore concerns related to identity, experiences of oppression, and personal trauma.

At CAPS, individual, group, and relationship counseling are offered. Treatment may include referral for medical evaluation or to other campus and community resources. After an initial assessment, one or more of the following may be recommended.

Individual counseling provides an opportunity to explore feelings and express them better, examine beliefs, and work toward making healthy changes. Students will learn skills and strategies to manage distress and navigate relationships. Individual counseling off-campus is sometimes recommended if a student’s needs cannot be met by CAPS services.

Group counseling offers an individual a chance to understand emotions, reduce symptoms, and explore interpersonal patterns with the support of peers. Each semester CAPS offers general counseling groups as well as groups addressing particular topics and concerns. Near the beginning of each semester, groups are announced on the CAPS website and publicized elsewhere on campus. Membership in some groups is limited, so inquire early in the semester. 

Workshops provide a place for students to develop new skills for managing common concerns such as anxiety, depression, and relationship issues. Information is presented in a structured format and focused on learning and practicing skills.

Couples counseling is available to partners who want to improve an intimate relationship. To be eligible, both partners must be currently enrolled at UNC Charlotte.