How to Make a Referral

Faculty and staff are not expected to provide psychological counselling. That is the role of the SCC staff. SCC's professional staff are trained to assess and intervene with emotional problems and psychological disorders. 

When you have decided that professional counselling is indicated, inform the student in a direct, concerned, straightforward manner.

Since many students initially resist the idea of counselling, it is useful to be:

  • Caring, but firm, in your judgment that counselling will be useful
  • Clear and concrete regarding the reason you are concerned
  • Familiar with resources on campus
  • Students are more likely to follow through successfully in therapy if you can project an attitude that says you think seeing a therapist is a positive, proactive step which will benefit them

Except in emergencies, it is important to allow the student to accept or refuse counselling.

Suggest that the student call or come in to make an appointment.

Give them SCC's phone number (519) 253-3000 Ext. 4616 and location (Rm. 293 CAW Student Centre).

Remind the student that our services are free and confidential. If they would like more information they can visit our website. 

Sometimes it is useful and necessary to help the student more directly to make an appointment.

In these instances, you can offer the use of your phone or call the SCC yourself, while the student is in your office. Occasionally, you may think it wise to walk the student over to the SCC. This can be especially helpful to students who are unsure about our location and/or are nervous about meeting a counsellor for the first time. 

Once you have made the referral you may want to follow-up a few days later by asking the student a general question like "How did it go?" This will get them talking about what they feel comfortable sharing without feeling interrogated. At the same time, you can confirm for yourself that they followed through with the appointment.

Please note: If you are concerned about a student but unsure about the appropriateness of the referral, please call the SCC at (519) 253-3000 Ext. 4616 and ask for a consultation with a counsellor.