Psychoanalysis of Counselling Case Study


Read the case of Paula. Write a psychoanalytic essay reflecting how you would present the case of Paula to a group of psychoanalyst in a conference. Your essay should answer the following three questions:
1. A brief psychodynamic formulation of the patient’s issues/presenting problem. In your formulation, you might want to consider the patient’s psychodynamics, giving thought to predisposing, precipitating and maintaining factors. Your psychodynamic formulation should not be more than one third of your overall essay.
2. An outline of what psychodynamic treatment of this patient would look like. Here you would need to take account how the patient’s personal particulars are likely to manifest in the consulting room. You are encouraged to use psychoanalytic theory to elaborate your answer.
3. What you would anticipate the course of the treatment would be (how many sessions; what would be covered; what issues are likely to arise, prognosis etc.)
A few pointers
Make sure you answer all three questions. Give approximately equal weight to each question.
• Avoid presenting redundant information. The theory your present should be directly relevant to the case.
• The usual expectations surrounding academic writing pertain:
o Write clearly and succinctly
o Ensure that you stay on topic
o Corroborate your observations with reference to the scholarly literature/research
o Make provision for a critical/self reflective aspect
o Aim for depth of analysis rather than breadth
o Avoid simple redescriptions of the clinical material; explanation is required
• Reference your sources with suitable APA format.
A simple way to consider the task: Paula, the identified patient, presents at your consulting rooms requiring counselling. How would you, as a psychodynamic counsellor/psychotherapist, conceptualise her difficulties? How would you, as a psychodynamic counsellor/psychotherapist, anticipate and plan her treatment?