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Postmodern Approach to

Student Affairs Practice


Lauren Kelly
CNSA 528
April 26, 2017
Postmodern Approaches

 Rooted in social constructionism


 Client is the expert
 Practitioner is collaborative, transparent, respectful, and curious
 Present and future-oriented
 Strengths and assets versus problems and deficits
 Problems exist externally
 There are many truths, realities, and meanings
Solution-Focused Brief Therapy
Insoo Kim Berg and Steve de Shazer
“ Solution-Focused Brief Therapy is a strengths-based
and future-oriented intervention that focuses on
working with the client or student to solution-build
rather than problem-solve…towards exploration of
resources, past success, and the identification of
goals and future hopes as opposed to present and
past problems.

Cynthia Franklin and Kristin W. Bolton
Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT)

 Three to eight 40 minute sessions:


 Rapport and relationship building
 Discussing problem, looking for exceptions, and forming goals
 Offering compliments, homework, and follow-up plan

 Exceptions to problems → resources and strengths


 Existing skill-sets, knowledge, beliefs, motivations, social networks or support
systems, and/or life experiences

 Termination: giving client motivation to utilize resources to respond to and


cope with future challenges
Solution-
 Exception Questions
Oriented
Questions
 Miracle Questions
What is a current problem
you are experiencing  Coping Questions
(personally, academically,
socially, professionally, etc.)?
 Scaling Questions

 Relationship Questions
Narrative Therapy
Michael White and David Epston
“ Narrative practices can assist in tracing the
history of problems, exploring their effects and
situating them in their broader social context
that allows for their deconstruction.


Alice Morgan
Narrative Therapy

 Externalizing conversations → objectify the problem


 “The person is not the problem, the problem is the problem”

 Identify unique outcomes: times when problem was nonexistent,


challenged, managed, or overcome

 Goal: re-author/create alternative narratives


 Utilize unique outcomes and existing strengths to explore a new interpretation,
outlook, and narrative
Tools in Narrative Practice

 Double-listening
 Listen and understand both the individual and their experience the problem

 Witnessing
 Actively listening and being fully present, engaged, and reflective: “What is the
person saying, how are they saying it, and what stand out?”

 Summarizing
 Reflect back the client’s own words through quotes, drawings, declarations, etc.
Externalizing
Conversations

 Objectify the problem


In groups of three, read your
scenario and answer the
following questions…  How could you uncover unique
outcomes to this problem?

 Re-authoring and alternative narratives


Application in Student Affairs Practice

 Solution-Focused Brief Therapy


 Student Conduct/Community Standards
 Academic Advising
 Supervision

 Narrative Therapy
 Diversity and Inclusion
 Career Counseling
 Conflict Resolution
“ Both Solution-Focused Brief Therapy and
Narrative Therapy are based on the optimistic
assumption that people are healthy,
competent, resourceful, and possess the
ability to construct solutions and alternative
stories that can enhance their lives.

Gerald Corey