Psychological Services essentially focuses on different forms of counselling, including individual therapy, couples therapy, group therapy and psychoeducation. There is also an advisory (walk-in) service where you can receive immediate brief support and be directed to the appropriate resources/service. Support groups are available on request.
The aim of these services is to provide you with the tools to improve your personal and academic functioning. This process can be beneficial towards your personal growth and development.
Ever thought of joining a group at PsyCaD?
Joining a group can be an ideal way of addressing your concerns, as groups are formed to target certain problems such as adjusting to university, overcoming a low self-esteem, managing anger, managing stress, or dealing with the loss of a loved one. A psychologist will carefully select a group of 5 to 10 members with a similar problem. Groups usually meet every week for an hour or two. Group members can be a source of support and offer suggestions on how to handle certain challenges. Through this process of sharing experiences you will learn about yourself, the importance of helping others and new ways of coping.
Different services are available to both staff and students to provide relevant and appropriate support.
Student Support Services
The PsyCaD crisis line is a 24-hour service offered to all who are in need of immediate support and guidance in a crisis situation. When individuals have to cope with a crisis situation, they can contact a counsellor for assistance on 082-054-1137. The crisis line counsellor can offer immediate emotional assistance, as well as practical referral information.
Walk-in (Advisory) Process
Every student who enters PsyCaD is seen for a brief 15-minute consultation with a professional, so that the student can book for a formal appointment or be referred to the appropriate support service. These services could include therapy, career assessment or workshops.
PsyCaD offers a variety of therapy or counselling services, including individual counselling, couples' counselling and group counselling sessions. Sessions are free for UJ students and are generally 50 minutes in duration.
Every year PsyCaD runs a project called The Peer Buddy Program − a helping scheme made up of students ('peer buddies') who are trained and given opportunities to offer support and information to fellow students within the UJ community. Peer buddies are second- or third-year students who have been successfully selected to form part of the Peer Buddy Program. This year the peer buddies on each campus are acting as mentors to first-year students, offering them guidance, support and a helping relationship to facilitate adjustment to university.
Orange Carpet PsyCaD Support Project
This PsyCaD project is directed toward all Orange Carpet students. The aim is to assist Orange Carpet students (OCs) to maintain their outstanding academic performance and to optimise their potential. Our main focus is the psycho-social-emotional-behavioural aspects of the student's life. We assist by addressing issues such as stress, anxiety, depression, adjustment to university or anything that may have a negative impact on the academic performance and well-being of the OCs. If issues relating to funding, accommodation or study problems are causes for concern, we will assist where we can through referral to the correct departments/persons − where the OCs will receive assistance, guidance, encouragement and support.
PsyCaD offers interactive career and psychological workshops that are facilitated by PsyCaD staff members. The workshops are based on a variety of topics that are relevant to staff and students, as well as the broader community, and are delivered as requested by students, staff, faculties or relevant stakeholders in the community.
Faculty Liaison Process
Faculty liaison is an initiative run by the psychologists at PsyCaD to promote holistic service provision to all stakeholders at the University of Johannesburg (UJ). Faculty liaison is a multi-faceted process that involves the following:
- The creation of relationships between PsyCaD psychologists and key role players within various UJ faculties.
- The provision of a contact person within PsyCaD for members of Faculties to express needs that have arisen so that interventions from PsyCaD can be implemented.
- The provision of information by PsyCaD to faculties regarding available services or other resources requested by the faculty.
- Information on how PsyCaD can improve service delivery to students and/or staff.
- PsyCaD psychologists make faculties aware of the needs of students to develop ways to support the students within the faculties.
Residence Liaison Programme
PsyCaD services provides support to all house wardens, committees and residences. The aim is to ensure the psychological wellbeing of the students at the residences.
Support services to academically underperforming students
PsyCaD prioritises the support of all students at UJ − especially those who appear to be academically underperforming for various reasons. A number of PsyCaD interventions are available to support academically underperforming students, i.e. students with general academic underperformance concerns, students with an academic probation (F5) or students who have been academically excluded (F7). The support includes:
- Psychometric evaluations in order to:
- provide students with information regarding their learning potential, study strengths and weaknesses, values, motives, personality and career interests;
- guide recommendations to aid in pointing students to the correct support services available at UJ, or within the UJ community;
- provide information on other interventions PsyCaD may need to develop to support academically underperforming students; and
- assist members of faculty in understanding how best these students can be supported.
- The Academic Success Plan − a form of academic counselling − providing students with useful information, recommendations and guidance in order to improve their academic performance.
- Assistance with general study and career planning; both of which may be an underlying reason for poor academic performance.
Community Psychology Project
The Community Psychology project is coordinated in conjunction with the Department of Psychology Master's Program. This year the master's students are running two projects as part of their practical course requirements. The first is a needs assessment and visibility intervention designed to prevent gender-based violence. The second focuses on suicide awareness. These projects are envisioned to be ongoing with subsequent batches of master's students continuing with interventions and evaluating the success of these interventions.