HUMAN SERVICES 300
Dr. Michael Russell, Professor
AND MESSAGES: Humanities Building 311-B. Mailboxes
in Philosophy, H 312, or Human Services EC 105.
278‑2752 (Voice and FAX. Recorder
will give out my cell number and home number in class.
Office hours: I will usually be in
my office between 1:30 and 3:30 on Monday and Tuesday (and lots of other times
too), but it’s best if you have an appointment:
I may be elsewhere.
TEXT: Corey, I NEVER KNEW I HAD A
CHOICE (7h edition)
Be sure you get the new—7th edition, which contains material
not in the edition used in previous semesters.
consent of instructor at first class meeting.
An experiential, theme‑oriented class exploring life choices in the
struggle for personal autonomy. Themes
include: body image, sex roles, love, sexuality, intimacy, marriage, alternative
life‑styles, loneliness, death, meaning and values.
course was originally intended for students preparing for therapy-related
helping professions, so that they might examine in their own lives the sorts of
issues they will encounter with their clients.
Because this sort of learning actually integrates the complexities of
human life across academic disciplines, it has been approved as an elective in
General Education, meeting requirement IV in Lifelong Learning.
Human Services 300 promotes a decidedly personal approach to the goals of
this requirement, which include understanding oneself from “an integrated
physiological, sociocultural and psychological organism.”
The interactive format of the course promotes understanding life from
different cultural perspectives. Most
broadly, the course promotes lifelong habits of reflectivity, integrating
ongoing academic development into personal application and sensitivity to ones
community. Additionally, through frequent writing assignments that emphasize
real-life concerns, the course meets the General Education goal of enhancing
may only take CHARACTER AND CONFLICT with the consent of the instructor.
That consent is typically given at the first class meeting, and is
contingent upon the student's becoming familiar with the nature and expectations
of the course, as explained in this distribution and as described by the
instructor. You should not finalize
your decision to take this course until you have had an opportunity to carefully
review this information.
AND CONFLICT is a different and emotionally challenging sort of a course.
The purpose of the course is to provide an opportunity for a more
personal sort of self‑understanding and expression than most of us usually
get, with a focus on issues and conflicts that affect you directly in your daily
lives; the readings and lectures are intended to contribute toward that end, but
the emphasis will be on small group interaction in which you are expected to be
an active participant in discussions of topics which will typically become
personal, emotional, and intimate. Topics
will include autonomy, masculinity and femininity, love, sex, marriage and
relationships, ones body, ones family, loneliness, encountering others, death
and loss, meaning, and other themes your group may develop on its own, including
discussing frankly and openly the nature of your interactions with one-another.
It is very important for you to understand in advance that these
discussions will be taking place on a decidedly personal rather than a detached
or typically academic level. Of
course no one will or could force you to talk about any specific topic that you
do not wish to disclose; but there will be "peer pressure" for you to
have a willingness, in general, to
be a contributing participant in actively focusing on and talking about areas of
your personal life which involve conflict and emotional sensitivity for you. If you
are not willing to do that, you will inhibit the readiness of others to fully
participate. In that case you
should not be taking this course, are not welcome to take it, and do not have
the required permission to take it.
class is intended for students who contemplate careers in one of the helping
professions (such as counseling, psychotherapy, social work), on the reasoning
that the ability to understand the struggles of others is rooted in the ability
to find counterpart struggles within oneself.
It is also presented as potentially contributing to the general education
appropriate to a university, provided that the student elects to take it after
being informed about its nature. If you feel that you are required to take this
course and yet do not want to be part of this sort of personal interaction and
disclosure, please discuss your reservations with the instructor to see whether
there might be some alternative. But
PLEASE do not deceive yourself by skimming over this attempt to caution and
inform you about what to expect and conclude that "you have a right to be
here" ‑‑ or you "need this course" because of some
requirement, whether or not you feel like being an active participant in the
course as described; you do not have that “right” any more than you would
have the right to sign up for a basketball course and then squat in the middle
of the court in everyone else's way. If
you do not want to participate in the ways indicated you will inhibit others who
do want this, and you will be in the way.
in the course the class will be sub‑divided into groups. Most of a typical class meeting will be in the small groups,
once the instructor has made some opening remarks on the theme for that meeting.
Student leaders who are being supervised by the instructor will conduct
the groups. The instructor will rotate among the groups.
Student leaders and the instructor meet to discuss the groups before
and/or after each class meeting. (In
the regular semester, though not Intersession nor Summer Session, student
leaders will also be discussing the content and nature of these groups in a
class they are taking on Group Leadership.)
The student leaders are expected to be fallible human beings, typically
working on their undergraduate degrees, whose job is to seek to encourage and
facilitate a group environment conducive to honest and personal interaction.
They will encourage you to participate, they will read and comment on the
papers you write, and they will attempt to contribute to meaningful interaction
within your group. The course is offered for a population that is presumed to be
composed of relatively well‑functioning individuals who wish to speak
openly with one another. Once
again, if you are not interested in being an open participant in this sort of an
experiential setting you ought not to be taking this course.
If you fear that you may not be emotionally prepared for this sort of
experience, you should discuss your concern with the instructor.
If for any of these reasons, in the opinion of the instructor, you prove
to inhibit the capacity of the group to carry on the kind of interactions for
which this course is intended, you may be required to discontinue attendance.
will be asked to promise to treat the personal disclosures of others as
confidential. Respect for
confidentiality is an absolute requirement of the course, and those who violate
this are subject to being dropped from the course without credit.
There are some important qualifications on this principle of
confidentiality. There is no way to guarantee that everyone will respect this
principle of confidentiality, but you are expected to commit yourself to it.
Also, if I believe that you present a significant risk to yourself or
others, or if I learn about a current risk of abuse to a child, I will have an
obligation to make a report of this danger.
I also reserve the right to confer with appropriate professionals should
I believe that my work with you requires outside consultation.
I may review content of group meetings in supervision meetings with the
group leaders from other groups. Please
feel free to discuss with me any concerns that may be raised by any of these
FOR CREDIT: ATTENDANCE IS MADATORY. WILLINGNESS
TO INTERACT OPENLY ABOUT PERSONAL ISSUES IS MANDATORY.
ALL WRITTEN ASSIGNMENTS ARE MANDATORY.
course is offered only on a credit no credit basis.
To get credit in the course you must turn in EACH of the reaction papers
indicated on the syllabus. These
are personal reaction papers and they are meant to provide a forum for you to
express and learn about yourself, your own views and struggles and experiences.
While the papers are written for you, the instructor and the group leaders will
read them. The papers will not be acceptable if they are too
brief, or insubstantial, or careless. You
will not get credit in this course unless your instructor accepts all your work.
Typing is preferred, but easily read longhand is acceptable. Papers may not be acceptable if they are especially messy,
hard to read, brief, superficial, or continually focused away from yourself and
your own reactions. The point
is not to debate or critique what others say or write, but to use each section
of each paper as a vehicle for expressing yourself, your own feelings about your
own struggles. Separate copies of your papers are to be provided to
each of your group leaders and to your instructor. I would prefer to get my copy by email.
you communicate with me by email, please always
start off the subject line with your first name, last initial, and group number,
and then what the message is about. Most
importantly, however you do this, always do it the same way so that I can easily
keep your correspondence organized. So,
if your name is Kathy Smith and I put you in group 2, your message subject
heading would look like this: “KathyS2
assignment 2 childhood.” I would
prefer you paste your paper into an email form.
If you must do it in an attachment, then also label your attachment with
the above system, and send it in Word. Please
do not send it as a “zip” file.
assignment has at least 3 parts. All
parts should be clearly identified and each page should have your name or
student number, the assignment number, the date and chapters discussed, and any
information about extra or missing sections, stapled together (not just paper
clip or folding). Since I may
read papers superficially, please indicate portions you especially want me to
class. Respond to something in the whole-class meeting in the instructor’s
introductory remarks or occasional “exercise” before or after the small groups meet.
The point is for you to be looking at yourself, not to critique or debate
the instructor. Find an opportunity
to reflect on something about you that was evoked.
Minimum length 75 words: suggested length, 200, but go on as long as you
Respond to your small group, emphasizing events and reactions to the most recent
meeting. Again, the
point is for you to be reflecting on you, not to analyze or lament the
experiences or ideas of others. This
should be about you; hopefully you will find a way to let others know in person
things you are thinking and feeling about them.
Challenge your self to say in group the things you write about.
Minimum length 150 words: suggested length 250 words, but go on as long
as you like.
(c) Respond to the chapter for the current meeting, as a means of
“getting primed” for the topic. Once
again, the point is to find a vehicle for you to focus on you, not to debate the
author of the text nor to dryly review each and every point made there.
Minimum length 75 words, but go on as long as you like.
Some assignments have additional sections
at every class is required. If you
miss, for any reason, you must:
every reasonable effort to notify me and your group BEFORE class.
Call my office (714) 278-2752. If
it’s really last minute, call my cell phone:
still have to write a reaction to the chapter for that day.
any absence, no matter what the reason, you must also read some sort of
“self-help” book or a book suitable for the sort of introspective thinking
promoted in this course. Get some ideas about appropriate books from the
instructor. 400 words minimum.
are also expected to turn in each paper on time, and in a reasonably neat and
readable form. In the
case of missing or late unacceptable portions of the assignments, at the
discretion of the instructor, you may be asked to provide an additional section,
exploring the possible significance of the problem section -- e.g., what does it
say about your life at the present, or your feelings about the topic or
situation that didn’t get written about as it was supposed to have been?
Minimum length: 100 words.
Assignment schedule, Summer 2003
1st meeting, June 3
to the course, Read syllabus and guidelines
2nd meeting, June 4 assignment 1
React to instructor’s portion of previous class
There won’t be a group portion to respond to.
Instead, discuss personal issues in your life that you may wish to
address in this course. This should
be presented as an autobiography.
Who are you? How did you get
to be that way? Who are some of the
important people in your life currently and previously?
c. Respond to some themes or
points in chapter 1.
3rd meeting, June 5, assignment 2
React to instructor’s portion of previous class
React to group meeting
React to Chapter 2, “Reviewing Your Childhood and Adolescence.” Fill
in some of the gaps in the autobiographical material you turned in yesterday.
4th meeting, June 10 assignment 3
React to instructor’s portion of previous class,
b. React to group portion of
previous class, c.
React to Chapter 3, “Adulthood and Autonomy”
5th meeting, June 11, assignment 4, same format as before.
React to Chapter 4, “Your Body
6th meeting, June 12, assignment
5. same format as before, Chapter 5,
7th meeting, June 17,
assignment 6, same format as before, React
to chapter 6, Love
8th meeting, June 18 assignment
7, same format, Chapter
9th meeting, June 19 assignment 8,
Chapter 8, sex roles
10th meeting, June 24, assignment 9, Chapter 9, sexuality
11th meeting, June 25, assignment
10, Work and
12TH meeting, June
26, assignment 11, Chapter
11, loneliness and
13th meeting, July
1, assignment 12, Chapter
12, Death and Loss
14th meeting, July 2, assignment
13, July 3, Meaning and values
15th meeting, July 3, Pathways to personal growth
16th meeting, July 8, assignment 14, same format as before,
but with a free topic: return to any chapter in the text.
make-up work should have been turned in by now.
17th meeting, July 9, Assignment:
to be announced. Feedback to others.
What did you learn, yourself?
18th meeting: July
to be announced (will include feedback to leaders and instructor)
WAIVER AND RELEASE OF LIABILITY
HUMAN SERVICES 300 --
CHARACTER AND CONFLICT
DR. MICHAEL RUSSELL, PROFESSOR
request the consent of the instructor to take
Human Services 300, Character and Conflict.
I have read the description of this course, above, and the nature of this
class has been explained to me. I
have had opportunity to raise questions or concerns I had about this. It has been explained to me, and I understand, that the
course resembles therapy, and also, why and how it is not therapy.
I am aware that the course emphasizes an
experiential group process. I understand that I will be expected to participate in
discussing topics which will focus
on emotions and personal conflicts of my own as well as others present, and that these groups will be led by students
who are not therapists, but who are seeking to learn about therapy.
I also understand that at this class, and throughout the semester in
connection with this class, I will be experiencing techniques and topics common
to counseling and psychotherapy, but that this is offered and undertaken for the
objective of education rather than as diagnosis
or treatment of psychological distress. I
understand that neither the instructor nor the student group leaders are
offering to diagnose or treat emotional disorders, nor to recommend this class
as a form of treatment for any psychological condition which I may have, and I
am not requesting them to diagnose or treat me, nor do I expect them to have the
same sorts of responsibilities to me that I might expect if I were to seek out
therapy independently of my educational objectives in this university.
I agree to respect the confidentiality of the disclosures of my
classmates, group leaders, and instructor,
when these might be embarrassing to them.
I expect that what I disclose about myself will be held in confidence,
but I understand that I cannot be guaranteed that this confidentiality will be
respected by my classmates. I
understand that there are exceptions to confidentiality, including matters of
danger to oneself or others, matters relating to potential child abuse, matters
where aspiring professionals or professionals in fields related to therapy seek
appropriate professional consultation.
I understand that my instructor is an
educator who, guided by discretion, and with due respect for
confidentiality, may draw from experiences with classes such as these when
lecturing or writing.
I understand that the instructor’s contributions to this course are
with the objective of education rather than in the capacity of an independent
practice of counseling or psychotherapy.
My signature on this page means that I have read this release and the materials the instructor has distributed which explain this
course. I understand the nature and
expectations of the course, and wish to be a participant.
I understand that if, in the sole opinion of the instructor, I am not
participating in the class in a way he or she believes conducive to its
purposes, I may be required to discontinue participation, and that in that
event, at the sole discretion of the Department Chair or her designee, I may (or
may not) be given the opportunity to complete course credit by alternative
means. I understand that by signing this page, or a page identical to it,
I knowingly give up legal recourse I might otherwise seek against the
State, the University, the instructor, the students and student group leaders in
this course. This release is
given freely and voluntarily.
PHONE STUDENT #