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Assignment: Practicum – Week 1 Journal Entry

As a future advanced practice nurse, it is important that you are able to connect your classroom experience to your practicum experience. By applying the concepts you study in the classroom to clinical settings, you enhance your professional competency. Each week, you complete an Assignment that prompts you to reflect on your practicum experiences and relate them to the material presented in the classroom. This week, you begin documenting your practicum experiences in your Practicum Journal.


  • Analyze nursing and counseling theories to guide practice in psychotherapy*
  • Develop goals and objectives for personal practicum experiences*
  • Create timelines for practicum activities*

* The Assignment related to this Learning Objective is introduced this week and submitted in Week 4.

In preparation for this course’s practicum experience, address the following in your Practicum Journal:

  • Reviewthe media Clinical Interview: Intake, Assessment,& Therapeutic Alliance in your Learning Resources.
  • Selectone nursing theory and one counseling theory to best guide your practice inpsychotherapy.

Note: For guidance onnursing and counseling theories, refer to the Wheeler textbook in this week’s LearningResources.

  • Explain why you selected these theories. Support your approach with evidence-basedliterature.
  • Developat least three goals and at least three objectives for the practicum experiencein this course.
  • Create a timeline of practicum activities basedon your practicum requirements.

Note: Be sure to use the Practicum Journal Template, located in this week’s Learning Resources.


Submit your Assignment.

Week 1: Foundations of Psychotherapy

“Unexpressed emotions will never die. They are buried alive and will come forth later in uglier ways.”

—Sigmund Freud

While working with a patient in the late 1800s, Sigmund Freud discovered the health benefits of talking about emotions and illnesses. When Sigmund Freud introduced his “talking cure” (fundamental psychotherapy), his efforts were met with considerable skepticism. However, as more and more psychiatrists learned that Freud’s methods brought about change in patients who suffered from a variety of mental health issues, his methods were adopted and refined. Today, psychotherapy is recognized as a viable treatment for a wide variety of mental health issues, many of which are examined throughout this course.

This week, as you explore the foundations of psychotherapy, you consider its biological basis. You also examine the influence of culture, religion, and socioeconomics on psychotherapy treatments. Finally, you begin preparing for your practicum experience by examining counseling theories and developing goals to guide your practice.

Photo Credit: Joe Houghton – www.joehoughtonphotography.ie / Moment / Getty Images

Learning Resources

Required Readings

American Nurses Association. (2014).
Psychiatric-mental health nursing: Scope and standards of practice (2nd ed.). Washington, DC: Author.

  • Standard 1 “Assessment” (pages 44 & 45)

Note: Throughout the program you will be reading excerpts from the ANA’s Scope & Standards of Practice for Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing. It is essential to your success on the ANCC board certification exam for Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioners that you know the scope of practice of the advanced practice psychiatric/mental health nurse. You should also be able to differentiate between the generalist RN role in psychiatric/mental health nursing and the advanced practice nurse role.

Wheeler, K. (Eds.). (2014).
Psychotherapy for the advanced practice psychiatric nurse: A how-to guide for evidence-based practice (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Springer Publishing Company.

  • Chapter 1, “The Nurse Psychotherapist and a Framework for Practice” (pp. 3–52)


Holttum, S. (2014). When bad things happen our brains change but psychotherapy and support can help the recovery of our brains and our lives.
Mental Health and Social Inclusion, 18(2), 52–58. doi:10.1108/MHSI-02-2014-0006

Note: You will access this article from the Walden Library databases.

Petiprin, A. (2016). Psychiatric and mental health nursing. Nursing Theory. Retrieved from

Fisher, M. A. (2016). Introduction. In
Confidentiality limits in psychotherapy: Ethics checklists for mental health professionals (pp. 3–12). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. doi:10.1037/14860-001

Document: Practicum Journal Template (Word document)

Note: This template is provided by the School of Nursing and is designated to document practicum activity. You are required to use this template for all journal entry submissions.

Document: Midterm Exam Study Guide (Word document)

Document: Final Exam Study Guide (Word document)

Document: Nurse Practitioner (NP) Student Clinical Orientation (PowerPoint file)


Required Media

Laureate Education (Producer). (2016).
Introduction to psychotherapy with individuals [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Note: The approximate length of this media piece is 2 minutes.

Laureate Education (Producer). (2015e).
Therapies are helpful: Dodo bird conjecture [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Provided courtesy of the Laureate International Network of Universities.

Note: The approximate length of this media piece is 2 minutes.

Laureate Education (Producer). (2015f).
Therapies change and integrate different approaches over time [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Provided courtesy of the Laureate International Network of Universities.

Note: The approximate length of this media piece is 1 minute.

Sommers-Flanagan, J., & Sommers-Flanagan, R. (2012).
Clinical interview: Intake, assessment, & therapeutic alliance [Video file]. Mill Valley, CA: Psychotherapy.net.

Note: You will access this media from the Walden Library databases. The approximate length of this media piece is 124 minutes.

Sommers-Flanagan, J., & Sommers-Flanagan, R. (2013).
Counseling and psychotherapy theories in context and practice [Video file]. Mill Valley, CA: Psychotherapy.net.

Note: For this week, view the Introduction and Psychoanalytical Approaches only. You will access this media from the Walden Library databases.