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Short-Term Therapy

Your Intake Appointment 

The first session of short-term therapy is a 50-minute intake appointment. 30 minutes before this session, you will be asked to complete some required paperwork, which includes a clinical questionnaire and a symptom assessment called the CCAPS. All the necessary forms can be found and completed via the Cowell Health Portal. After the therapist has reviewed the completed paperwork, the session will begin. The therapist will work with you to explore your concerns, your current life circumstances, your history, and work with you to develop goals for therapy. This plan may involve additional therapy appointments at CAPS or referral to additional on-campus or community resources.

Planning Next Steps 

After your intake session, you and your CAPS therapist will continue to meet as needed to provide you with support and collaboratively plan on how to achieve your goals. CAPS therapy sessions are typically scheduled every 2 weeks, 3 weeks, or 4 weeks depending on clinical need and availability. There are no limits on the number of therapy sessions you can have, but services are designed to be short-term. You and your therapist will check in regularly about your progress and next steps. If you end up wanting longer-term therapy, we can help connect you with other resources.

What Short-Term Therapy Can Help With

CAPS uses a short-term model of therapy for individuals and couples in order to use our resources most effectively and help as many students as possible. Even a brief time in therapy can help with issues such as: 

  • Personal: Stress and anxiety, mild depression, anger, loneliness, guilt, self-esteem, grief, and loss
  • Relationship: Romantic relationship difficulties, sexual concerns, roommate conflicts, difficulties with coworkers or classmates, concerns with family or friends
  • Developmental: Identity development, adjustment to college, life transitions, cultural concerns
  • Academic: Performance anxiety, stress, perfectionism, underachievement, motivation, concerns about future school and work
  • Other: Spiritual concerns, eating/body image concerns, healthy lifestyle choices, minor alcohol, and drug use concerns, sexual assault, discrimination, and oppression
When Short-Term Therapy Is Not Recommended

CAPS services aren’t always the best fit. If you need a particular type of treatment not offered at CAPS, or if you prefer weekly or ongoing therapy appointments, a Cowell Center case manager for a CAPS 24/7 patient navigator can provide you with referral support. 

There are many concerns that are best served outside of CAPS, such as:

  • Evidence or risk of significant deterioration in mental or emotional functioning, requiring more intensive treatment
  • Psychotic symptoms without a willingness to remain on medication for stabilization
  • Inability or unwillingness to provide the necessary information to thoroughly assess symptoms
  • Other issues requiring specialized services not available through CAPS, such as:
    • Significant substance use concerns, including substance dependence 
    • Long-term or severe suicidal intent that cannot be appropriately addressed with brief therapy
    • Long-term and severe self-injurious behaviors that cannot be appropriately addressed with brief therapy
    • Long-term or severe eating disorder with no period of remission, continual refusal of treatment, or posing as a medical danger
    • Formal psychological evaluation or testing
    • Court-mandated assessment or treatment
    • Noncompliance with treatment recommendations