Group Therapy Documentation – Children and Adolescents

Group Therapy Documentation – Children and Adolescents

Students will:

  • Develop effective documentation skills to examine group therapy sessions with children and adolescents *
  • Develop diagnoses for child and adolescent clients receiving group psychotherapy *
  • Analyze legal and ethical implications of counseling child and adolescent clients with psychiatric disorders *

Select two clients you observed or counseled this week during a group therapy session for children and adolescents. Note: The two clients you select must have attended the same group session. If you select the same group you selected for the Week 8 or Week 9 Journal Entries, you must select different clients.

Then, address in your Practicum Journal the following:

  • Using the Group Therapy Progress Note in this week’s Learning Resources, document the group session.
  • Describe each client (without violating HIPAA regulations), and identify any pertinent history or medical information, including prescribed medications.
  • Using the DSM-5, explain and justify your diagnosis for each client.
  • Explain any legal and/or ethical implications related to counseling each client.
  • Support your approach with evidence-based literature.



Group Therapy Documentation


Research in healthcare depicts that the interconnections among family members are a major factor in drug use disorders and their therapies. Psychotherapists tend to agree that interactions within families can affect their emotional health. Therefore, they may fail to control the advancement of substance abuse disorders (Cazzell & Anderson, 2016). However, it is also essential to understand that environmental and other contextual issues may contribute to the use of substance by teenagers (Arcangelo et al., 2017). The paper documents a group therapy session involving two teenagers.

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Group Session Documentation

James reveals that he has an addiction for tobacco smoking. His engagement with cigarettes started three years ago and he is finding it difficult to quit. He reveals that his father is a smoker, a thing that influenced him to start smoking. He also shows that his addiction has affected his cognitive activities to the extent that his academic performances have dropped. In addition, James reveals that his social life has also been affected by his habits. He recalls that most of the time, he wants to stay alone. This act helps him to smoke without disturbance.

Anthony, on the other hand, depicts that he is fond of marijuana. His medical history reveals that he grew up as a healthy child. He was also brought up in a well-off family. However, his engagement with friends from his neighborhood got him addicted to smoking marijuana. He reveals that he started the habit as way to belong in the group.  The act has made it difficult to relate with his family. Both James and Anthony reveal that they want to quit their substance abuse habits. They show willingness to change as they have realized the challenges the drugs get them through. They both reveal an intention to lead a normal teenage life, where they can engage in normal activities like other people.

Clients’ Description

James Jackson is a 16-year-old boy Caucasian boy. He lives with his parents and has a younger brother. His parents are engineers by profession and they spend most of the time away from the family. James reveals that watching his father’s smoking habits made him a smoker. James reveals that his family was well-off. This feature made it easier for him to get money for buying cigarettes at any time.


Anthony Jimenez is a 15-year-old Hispanic boy with persisting marijuana smoking habit. He lives with his parents and has two siblings; a younger sister and an older brother. Being a second-born child, he reveals that his parents were not strict to him as they were to his brother. The client reveals that his freedom led to his smoking habits when he developed a close relationship with children from his neighborhood. He is determined to quit marijuana as he feels it may ruin his youthful years.

Clients’ Diagnosis

The subjective information for James reveals that he has a persistent smoking habit. He takes large amounts of tobacco and wants to quit without success. He also has cravings for the drug. This shows that he has a substance-abuse disorder. Anthony’s smoking habit has brought him poor association with people around him.  The act has made his academic performance to drop. Despite his urge to stop, he is unable to quit the problem He is also diagnosed of substance-abuse disorder (Groenman, Janssen, & Oosterlaan, 2017).

Legal and Ethical Implications

Since the clients are minors, it is prudent to attain approval of consent from the parents. Moreover, it is essential for the practitioner not disclose the information provided by the clients during a private session. It is also ethical to report to the parents any issue that may cause harm to the clients. The client also needs to only use an evidence-based framework to enhance better outcomes (Fulton, 2016).



Arcangelo, V. P., Peterson, A. M., Wilbur, V., & Reinhold, J. A. (Eds.). (2017).

Pharmacotherapeutics for advanced practice: A practical approach (4thed.). Ambler, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Cazzell, M., & Anderson, M. (2016). The impact of critical thinking on clinical judgment during

simulation with senior nursing students. Nursing Education Perspectives, 37(2), 83-90.

Fulton, C. L. (2016). Mindfulness, self-compassion, and counselor characteristics and

session variables. Journal of Mental Health Counseling38(4), 360-374.

Groenman, A. P., Janssen, T. W., & Oosterlaan, J. (2017). Childhood psychiatric disorders as

risk factor for subsequent substance abuse: A meta-analysis. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 56(7), 556-569.


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