Guidance, Counseling and Testing Services


Guidance and counseling is an integral part of the whole educational program. It aims to contribute actively in the attainment of the institution’s philosophy, vision, mission and goals as it is designed to assist students in assuming responsibility for their own actions and choices as well as in experiencing academic, personal /social, and career growth and development. Guidance counselors are seen as peripheral to the mainstream of education and occupy crucial positions that require careful consideration.

The Catanduanes State University Guidance, Counseling, and Testing Services promote and support students' academic, personal/social, career development. To achieve this goal, guidance, counseling, and testing services endeavor to design range of activities that assist students to make appropriate life choices to maintain academic standards and set goals for academic success, develop skills to improve their study habits and time management, exit from well-directed paths to self-fulfilling careers, and work through personal problems that may affect academic concerns and/or relationships.


Objectives of the Guidance, Counseling and Testing Services

In congruence with the national standards for guidance and counseling practice provided in R. A. 9258, the Guidance Counseling Act of 2004, and the mandates of CMO No. 9, s. 2013, which layout the framework that ensures that guidance programs are comprehensive in design and delivered in a systematic fashion for all students, the CSU Guidance, Counseling and Testing Office endeavors to pursue excellent student development and welfare by strengthening the CSU Guidance, Counseling and Testing services. Specifically, the GCTO assures to achieve the following objectives:

1. 1. Provide a comprehensive program that enhances students’ academic, personal/social, and career development through integrated guidance curriculum, individual planning, responsive services and system support.

1. 2. Carry out gender-sensitive and proactive counseling services for individuals and groups using interventions that facilitate positive regard for students’ behavior, feelings and attitudes, conducted legally and in accordance with existing rules and regulations.

1. 3. Collect students’ relevant information through appropriate standardized psychological and non-psychological assessment tools, ensuring the privacy and confidentiality therewith and guaranteeing safe and secure storage, maintenance and retrieval system.

1. 4. Provide a system of monitoring the effectiveness of the guidance activities and services and follow-up interventions to fully realize goals and objectives set.

1.5. Link with multidisciplinary units and agencies to ensure that student needs are adequately met.


Functions and Duties of the Guidance, Counseling and Testing Office Staff


1. GCTO Head
The GCTO Head is designated officer who develops a comprehensive guidance and counseling program that provides the structure for all of the activities and services required to work collaboratively with students, peers, parents/guardians, teachers, and administrators and establish continual enhancement through a comprehensive on-going evaluation process using relevant school/student data and other evaluative information essential for sustainability and for maintaining its relevance to the over-all educational program. The guidance specialist performs the following tasks:
- Works to develop the comprehensive guidance and counseling program to identify and determine alternative ways of assigning non-guidance and counseling duties, appropriate facilities, resources and materials and other support systems that are needed to fully implement the program based on recommended standards and performance-based criteria.
- Implements the guidance and counseling curriculum through the use of effective instructional skills and the careful planning of structured group sessions for all students, individual student planning by guiding individuals and groups of students and their parents/guardians through the development of personal plans of study, responsive services through the effective use of individual and small-group counseling, consultation, and referral skills, and system support through effective guidance and counseling program management and support for other educational programs.
- Performs other professional responsibilities as needed

2. Guidance Counselor III
- Provides individual counseling to students
- Provides small group counseling to students
- Provides orientation for new students
- Works with students and parents to help guide students’ academic, behavioral and social growth
- Works with individuals, groups and communities to improve mental health
- Encourages clients to discuss emotions and experiences
- Examines issues including substance abuse, aging, bullying, anger management, careers, depression, relationships, LGBTQ issues, self-image, stress, suicide and sexual harassment
- Performs other tasks as assigned by the GCT Officer.

Psychometrician
- The Psychometrician is a professional who administers standard and complex psychological tests and assessments used in the assessment of abilities, interest, values and skills of students and early detection and diagnosis of psychological disorders among students that will assist in providing relevant and significant interventions and management. The psychometricians score the aforementioned tests and interpret them to the clientele as well as perform the following tasks:

- Conducts a variety of psychological test procedures and score tests.
- Records test results ensuring adherence to testing and data collection protocols, including behavioral observations.
- Scores test results, organize, and present data in summary form and review the scoring, data, and summary reports for completeness and accuracy.
- Maintains test materials in proper working order.
- Assists in scheduling clientele for testing, confirming appointments, and maintaining client files.

4. Clerk
- Performs general clerical duties.
- Coordinates and maintains records for the GCTO.
- Creates and modifies various documents using Microsoft Office.
- Coordinates meetings and conferences for the GCTO and calls by the University management.
- Prepares meeting materials and assists in the development of Powerpoint presentations.
- Coordinates travel arrangements as needed.
- Keeps inventory of all office supplies and places orders for replenishment if needed.
- Records minutes at various meetings and archives them accordingly.
- Performs all other related duties as assigned.

5. Office Helper
- Provides general administrative and clerical support.
- Maintains electronic and hard copy filing system.
- Opens, sorts and distributes incoming correspondence.
- Performs data entry and scan documents.
- Prepares and modifies documents including correspondence, reports, drafts, memos and emails.
- Maintains office supplies for the GCTO.
- Performs all other related duties as assigned.


Guidance, Counseling and Testing Services


The Guidance, Counseling and Testing Office is responsible to fully implement a comprehensive guidance and counseling program addressing the academic, personal/social, and career development of all students through the delivery of guidance and counseling curriculum, individual student planning, and responsive services along with system support activities. It is a primary school mental health provider as it delivers services to all students, families, and communities of every school as well as serves as the point of contact for other units/agencies concerned with students’ welfare. Guidance Counselors are engaged in every facet of school and serve as the first line in each tier of interventions and consultations necessary in the academic life of every student.

The Philippine National Standards designed by the Technical Working Group for school counseling introduced a shift in thinking that explains school counseling as a program rather than a position within schools. This program is generally defined as “a coherent sequence of activities based upon a validated set of competencies”. The National standards for school counseling programs identify the attitudes, knowledge and skills for students that were deemed important by the profession, clarify the relationship of school counseling to the educational system, and address the contribution of school counseling to student success in school. Guidance counselors design, implement and evaluate a comprehensive array of services that include both preventative and developmental services to develop essential competencies in all students. Furthermore, the Philippine standards organized the guidance and counseling programs into three domains, namely, academic, career, and personal/social development under the program foundation component of the model. The other three components include delivery system, management and accountability. These components work together to achieve student competencies that define their knowledge, attitudes, and skills demonstrated in academic, career, and personal/social success as a result of participating in a standards-based guidance and counseling program.

The CSU-Guidance, Counseling and Testing Office serve all students using a proactive and preventive approach, which content focuses on three interrelated domains: Academic, College Career and Personal/Social Development.

The program is delivered by a team headed by a registered guidance counselor, guidance staff, guidance facilitators, and in coordination with the Deans of the different colleges. The primary delivery methods are one-on-one interaction, group presentations/discussions, individual planning, responsive services and consultation and collaboration. These methods are carried out through the following services and activities:

1. Individual Inventory Service.

This service aims to gather information about the student that will help her/him know and understand herself/himself and assist the teachers, counselors, administrators and parents in understanding the students. The data are gathered through test and non test techniques, systematically collected, evaluated, and interpreted to identify the characteristics and potentials of the students. The information is stored in individual folders and as e-records, accumulated as each student avail of the guidance and counseling services of the University. As a policy, student records are maintained in accordance with guidelines to protect privacy and confidentiality and in pursuit of the Data Privacy Act of 2012.

2. Orientation and Information.

This consists of accumulation and dissemination of information about the different guidance activities, career opportunities, and academic information for better adjustment and personal growth and students may be able to develop his/her decision making competencies. It is implemented through group guidance and information materials made available to the student through the Guidance bulletin board and flyers and brochures.

This service also assists new students and transferees in becoming at home in their new environment. Talks on various topics that deal with adjusting to college life and the various programs and services that the Guidance, Counseling and Testing Office offers are discussed. Old students are also reoriented with the various Guidance programs and services through symposiums, workshops, film showing, lectures, seminars and panel discussions and classroom sessions.

Issues and concerns which urgently need to be addressed are tackled through this service to reach out to larger student audience. Issues on Anti-Bullying, Sexual Harassment, Gender and Development and some others will be addressed, guided by legal mandates which include but is not limited to R. A. 7610, R. A. 9262, R. A. 9710, Child Protection Policy, etc.

3. Testing Service.

Learning styles, social adjustment, decision-making, leadership skills and life direction planning are assessed through the use of standardized and projective tests. A yearly assessment of students based on tests of mental ability, aptitude, personality and interests is conducted to college entrants to assess their capability to survive college life. Testing services are also extended to the applicants for employment to various positions in the University assessing their mental ability, aptitude, personality and interests.

4. Counseling Service.

Respect for the dignity of the person and recognition of individual differences underlie this service. This service is rendered through individual counseling, group counseling, home visits, and referrals. The latter is rendered to students in difficult situations needing specialized counseling or advising and therefore require further management and interventions. This service aims to help students attain self awareness and self-disclosure so that they can be responsible for themselves, overcome personal difficulties and realize their role as agents of transformation. Counseling may be walk in, referred, call in and/or peer counselors-assisted.

In handling students who come for counseling services, the GCTO ensure that privacy and confidentiality is maintained. The Office is so structured so that this policy is ensured. Information disclosed by the student clientele remains within the four corners of the counseling room and is stored in areas away from the prying eyes of unauthorized persons.

5. Referral Services.

Referral happens when a student with personal problems and complains of anxiety and depression, poor self image, relationship problem and family difficulties are referred to the guidance counselor, which in turn provides specialized counseling. However if the situation requires a highly specialized approach, clients may be referred to other professionals in the field required of the client’s condition. Cases which require the services of the medical specialist beyond the scope and expertise of the Guidance program are referred to the appropriate agencies/institutions. Students, faculty, professionals, and staff can refer and consult with how to assist members of the CSU community who may be facing difficulties beyond their capacity to help.

6. Follow-up Services.

Follow up services focuses on the graduates, school learners and counseled students to look into the effectiveness and adequacy of the guidance program and the educational program in general. Follow up is done through letters, telephone calls, personal interview or questionnaires. This may also include contact with school heads, counselors of former student to gain insight into her level of adjustment. Students and alumni can request their counselors for recommendation letters for graduate studies, study tours, scholarships, and employment.

7. Research and Extension Services.

Studies are carried on topics such as student needs, student problems, academic achievement, academic delinquency, student stress and other relevant issues. The Guidance, Counseling and Testing Office serve as resource speakers by invitations from other agencies/departments on topics with significant relevance to guidance and counseling functions. The office gets involved in the affairs of the University community particularly concerned with student welfare and development.


SYSTEM SUPPORT


1. Peer Facilitation Program

Peer facilitators help disseminate and carry out the various services while realizing the felt need to be or service to a greater number of students. As they are students themselves, they help correct the common misconceptions regarding guidance and counseling and inculcate a more positive and appropriate attitude towards the services and improve the student’s perception towards guidance counselors as threatening authority figures. This will facilitate the maximization of student’s awareness of the existence of a guidance office whose main concern is the holistic growth and development of an individual as a person with worth and dignity. Peers have more time to be with one another thus, have more chances of interaction and opportunities to observe behaviors than the guidance counselors. The peer facilitator acts as the “referral agent” or the bridge between the guidance personnel and reluctant students, between students themselves and even between faculty and students.


2. Job/Career Placement Program

Corollary to the GCTO is the Office of the Alumni and Placement Services (OAPS). The GCTO maintains close link with the OAPS to provide services to students who need assistance with their career plans and have questions and difficulties regarding their career and chosen courses.

Art. XII - Employee Welfare and Benefits, of the CASUNEA By-Laws requires the GCTO to provide post career orientation and direction to retiring employees. The service delineates post career counseling with post-employment livelihood training and other economic activities for retiring employees as parting legacy of the CSU.


3. Professional Development Activities

Guidance counselors are required by law to constantly update and upgrade their competencies to become effective and efficient in their jobs of assisting students through lifelong learning.


4. Research and Evaluation

Guidance Counselor should regularly conduct evaluation of its programs and services. This way, the Guidance Program gets to be updated and upgraded to the relevant and related needs of students. Accomplishment reports are regularly submitted and trends evaluated to see gaps in services that need to be improved for maximum clientele benefits.

Guidance, Counseling and Testing Office is also mandated to conduct research studies about services, programs and significantly related topics to the practice of guidance and counseling. Case studies are typically a qualitative report every guidance office engages in to obtain in-depth knowledge of cases which present significant data to the practice.


5. Community Extension Program

Community extension activities create opportunities to contribute and educate the community as well as build up a good University image for the CSU. Some of the activities under this program include acceptance of invitations as resource speaker specifically on such topics as career guidance and orientation, strengthening relationships/ parenting/mental health and other related areas or as facilitator to conduct team building activities, volunteer work, and other related activities requiring community involvement.

The GCTO participates in activities that impact global, national and/or local thrust and trends. Some of these activities are performed in expression of support for freedom of information, data privacy, career guidance and labor market information, healthy lifestyle, mental health and many more areas promoting and protecting the welfare and development of students. Currently, the active participation of GCTO in the provisions of CMO No. 18, s. 2018 on the implementation of measures on random drug testing of secondary and tertiary students aims at guidance and counseling together with the treatment and rehabilitation of any student found to have used or to be dependent on dangerous drugs.



Contact Information
Facebook: - CatSU Guidance
Email Address: - catsuguidance@gmail.com

Jowi B. Resayaga, Ma.ST
GCTO Head
0918-448-0146

Reference:
1. Catanduanes State University (2019) GUIDANCE MANUAL as per approved Board Resolution No. Series 2019.