A person who is considering becoming a counselor may want to know, “What is a typical day for a college counselor?” The answer to this depends on the specialty of the counselor within the college setting. There are career counselors, therapy counselors and academic counselors in colleges, and each of them have slightly different job duties on a daily basis.
Conduct Aptitude and Personality Assessments
College counselors often spend part of their day meeting with individual students or small groups of students and conducting aptitude tests or personality assessments. The counselor then scores the tests and meets with the students on an individual basis in order to explain their results and make recommendations. Aptitude tests and personality assessments could help a student choose a major or minor. The counselor also meets with teachers and advisors in order to help them help their students.
Identify Issues That Affect Academic Performance
A student who previously had no problems with academic performance in high school might get to college and find that all of their classes are highly challenging. College counselors identify issues that affect academic performance, such as skipping classes or not being able to afford the required textbook for the course. The counselors also work with students to develop better time management and study skills. They create a plan with the student and their academic advisor or a specific professor in order to improve performance in one or more college courses. College counselors may also meet with faculty members and administrators in order to identify systematic or institutional issues that could affect academic performance, such as slow internet connections, lack of Wi-Fi or insufficient campus housing.
Counsel Students On Personal Problems
Students can develop a variety of emotional and mental issues once in the college setting, or issues they had before might get worse under the more stressful environment. Some college counselors offer therapy for personal problems, explains the Bureau of Labor Statistics. For example, students may not react well to all of the freedom they have after leaving home and joining their peers in a highly social setting. Some students might start to have issues with alcohol abuse, relationships or peer pressure. Students may have problems with their roommates. Leaving home can be a big adjustment for some people, and they may need help coping with these big life changes. The college counselors may offer cognitive behavior therapy and other services to help students navigate through the culture shock of the college environment.
Help Students Create a Career Plan
College counselors who specialize as career counselors typically meet with students once per semester or once per year in order to help them create a career plan. These meetings may increase in frequency during a student’s last year of education. The counselor may offer direction on job applications, creating a resume and cover letter and how to conduct oneself in an interview.
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Being familiar with what a typical day is like for a college counselor could facilitate a person’s decision about the industry of employment they choose after earning a degree in psychology, social work or a related field. Knowledge of the daily duties of a college counselor could also help a person decide which specialty of counseling they would like to do in the higher education environment.