collaborative consultation

This assignment is about demonstrating your understanding of what you have been studying and

applying what you have been learning. At times you will need to arrive at answers by thinking

logically and using common sense rather than finding answers in the readings.

There are five sections ( A, B, C, D, E ) in this assignment. Please answer all questions.


1. What are active listening responses and the reasons for using them ?

2. What are ‘I messages’ ? When do you use them and what are the reasons for using them ?

3. When is it appropriate for a collaborative consultant to make suggestions to a consultee about

how they might address difficulties or problems ?

4. Why is it important not to ask a question at the same time as making an active listening

response or when sending an ‘I message’ ?

5. Why is it important not to combine an active listening response and an ‘I message’ together in

the same response ?

6. Why when listening or speaking as a consultant is eye contact, positive facial expression, and

an open body posture so extremely important ?


For each of the following scenarios and responses, please indicate why you think the given

response is inappropriate and provide what you think would be a better response.

1. A year 9 student confides in you as a consultant:

“I don’t get along with people my age. My classmates are not my type. I feel as though I am

a person from another planet. My parents are divorced and hate each other. It is lonely

being me.”

Response: “I think you are lonely because no one likes you. How do you get on with your

parents ? Do you need to go to another school ?”

2. A mother confides in you as a consultant:

“I had a very unhappy time at school when I was girl. Now whenever I come into school for a

meeting with my child’s teacher, I start shaking, feeling stressed and have a headache.”

Response: “I know how you feel. But the more you do it the easier it gets. Just keep

persevering and it will get better.”

3. A teacher confides in you as a consultant about a year 8 student:

“I know why Tom is frequently absent from school. He is scared of me because I put

pressure on him to complete his homework, but I won’t change what I am doing “

Response: “You feel frustrated because Tom is missing so many days from school.”


4. You are in a picture theatre and someone keeps talking during the movie distracting your


Response to the person talking: “I came here to hear the movie. I want you to stop talking

during the movie.”

5. Someone has just broken up with her boy friend. After telling a friend what has happened

the friend responds:

Response: “Just forget about him. I always thought he was a jerk anyway. There are lots of

fish in the sea.”


In this section you are working as a consultant. Please indicate what you might initially say in

response to the following situations, applying what you have been studying.

1. You are in an IEP team meeting and the discussion is getting nowhere. You are feeling

frustrated and angry and decide to do something about it.

What might you say, when might you say it and who might you say it to ? Why ?

2. When working as a collaborative consultant with a class teacher and a boy’s parents, Sue

the teacher asks the parents to punish their son at home whenever he misbehaves at

school. As a collaborative consultant you are concerned at what the teacher has said.

Why might you be concerned at what the teacher said ?

As a collaborative consultant how might you respond and why ?


How might a collaborative consultant have tackled this consultation differently ?

Jenny, a 54 year old, went to see an endocrine specialist to help her manage her diabetes. On

her first visit the specialist weighed her, tested her blood sugar level, explored her symptoms and

asked about any medication she was taking. He then told Jenny she needed to lose 25 kilograms

and to go on a strict liquid only diet for the next 6 months and possibly for the rest of her life. He

told Jenny that if she lost this amount of weight she wouldn’t have any further symptoms of

diabetes. No mention was made of any other way of managing her diabetes. The specialist was

disappointed when Jenny appeared reluctant to follow his advice but the specialist didn’t explore

the reasons for her reluctance. He simply stressed how important it was for Jenny to follow his

advice and that this was the way to overcome her diabetes. The session ended with Jenny being

told to immediately start the liquid only diet which she could buy at her local chemist shop, and to

return to the specialist in two or three weeks time for a follow-up appointment.

If this specialist had been a collaborative consultant how might he have conducted this

consultation differently and why ?


Here is a transcript of the beginning of an interview with a teacher about classroom climate.

Please say how you think this section of the interview could be improved and why.

[I= Interviewer: T= Teacher]


Please say how you think this section of the interview could be improved and why.

I: Thanks very much for your time for doing this interview. This interview is about

classroom climate. By the way, how long have you been teaching ?

T: I have been teaching for eleven years.

I: Are you a class teacher ?

T: Yes, I am a class teacher.

I: What subjects do you teach ?

T: I teach Maths and Science.

I: You teach two subjects. That’s great. Teaching science is extremely important for

the future

I: During your teaching, what do you usually do to establish close relationships with

your students?

T: I learn about their backgrounds first, such as their family background. If they are reluctant

to come to school and unmotivated to learn, I will ask them “why”. I consider that family

background influences the students’ situation at school. And as a class-teacher I give them

advice as to what they should do.

I: How successful are you in doing this with all your students?

What gets in the way of you establishing good relationships with all your students?

T: I consider that it is successful although not for 100% of my students. But I think all my

students understand that I care for them.

I: What do you do to help isolated or rejected students to be accepted by classmates?

T: It doesn’t happen very often, but if it does I talk to their classmates. Firstly I get them to

think about how they would feel if they were rejected or isolated at school.

I explain that we are social human beings. We have to learn to live together in society, and

accept the existence of one another. We mustn’t isolate and reject one another. You need

to treat classmates as friends.

I: How successful are you in doing this? What gets in the way of you doing this?

T: It is very effective. My students are still young, they listen to what I say and it is important

to influence them to be supportive and kind, and to encourage them to care for and

empathise with their classmates.

In studying this part transcript please reflect on the introduction at the start, the questions asked,

what you know about active listening, and what is known about the conditions considered

important for effective collaboration.

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