Chapter 5: Counseling and Guidance

5.1. Overview

As a counselor, you have considerable latitude in determining those services that are reasonable and necessary to help the consumer reach his or her chosen employment goal.

You must apply and discuss with the consumer specific policies related to the implementation of services and required approvals before you add them to the IPE.

You should provide the consumer with information about services so that the consumer can make an informed choice from among the alternatives for

To the extent possible, services should be delivered in the

Key Terms

Fund Source Types:

Service Categories:

Service category definitions can be found in the Closure Services Definitions for RSA-911 Reporting Purposes guidance document.

Service categories include:

5.1.1 General Service Limitations

Policy encourages you to make judicious decisions. Limitations of policy cited as "ordinarily limited" apply to the typical situation. When the consumer's need exceeds these limits, document your decision-making process. See Chapter 1: Foundations, Roles, and Responsibilities, 1.2.8 Reflecting Quality Program Management in Documentation/Service Delivery Notes.

The area manager or other designated higher approval authority may grant individual exceptions to service limitations, except for those based in law or regulation, to ensure that those services necessary to achieve an employment outcome are not denied because of the limitation.

5.2 Counseling and Guidance

5.2.1 Overview

Counseling and guidance helps the consumer throughout the rehabilitation process and, in some cases, may be the only substantial service needed to achieve the employment outcome. Rehabilitation counseling is short-term and problem-centered and should not be considered "therapy." Refer the consumer who needs more intensive counseling services to an appropriate resource.

Work one-on-one to help the consumer

Whether or not listed in the IPE as a service, counseling and guidance

*Based on 34 CFR Section 361.48(c)

Essential aspects of counseling and guidance are

VR counselors are professional counselors unique to the field of vocational rehabilitation. While the goals, roles, and skills may be similar to those other counselors use, VR often poses additional challenges related to disability that must be identified so that counseling strategies can be incorporated into the counseling relationship to help the consumer. See Tips for Vocational Counseling and Guidance in the Toolbox for additional information.

5.2.2 The Frequency of Counseling and Guidance

Base the frequency and extent of counseling and guidance on such factors as

The effective use of your time in addressing the barriers identified through assessment will allow you to deliver sufficient vocational counseling to meet established goals and objectives. When the consumer appears to have severe thought disturbances or need an unusual amount of counseling, refer the consumer to another agency, such as local Texas Department of State Health Services centers, university psychology clinics, and other resources.

5.2.3 Counseling and Guidance as a Substantial Service

If counseling and guidance is the only VR service other than employment assistance, the case can meet the criteria for a successful closure only if it reflects that counseling was a substantial service (see Chapter 16: Closure). Ensuring that counseling was a substantial service may include focusing on topics that