Refer a Student to Student Counseling Services

Inform Students about Counseling and Provide Encouragement

If you believe a student would benefit from counseling, let the student know about our services and refer the student to us. Sometimes students are reluctant or afraid to reach out for professional help. Depending on your relationship with the student, you may offer additional support by walking them to our office or encouraging them to call us from your office while you are meeting with them or schedule an appointment on their phone through their patient portal.

Contact Student Counseling Services with a Referral

If you have encouraged a student to seek counseling and you would like for us to be aware of your concern, it is often very helpful to us for you to contact us and let us know more about your concerns. This allows us to better determine how to serve the student when they contact us for counseling services. Information from your experience also lets us know if the student may need an urgent or crisis counseling appointment. Our office can be reached at 205-934-5816, Monday –Friday, 8 a.m. –5 p.m.

Signs a Student May Need Counseling

Signs a Student May Need Counseling

  • The student remains distressed following repeated help from you or other staff members.
  • The student becomes increasingly isolated, unkempt, irritable, or disconnected.
  • The student’s academic or social performance deteriorates.
  • The student’s behavior reflects increased hopelessness or helplessness.
  • You find yourself doing on-going counseling rather than consultation or advising.

How to Refer

How to Refer

  • Speak to the student in a private setting, away from others
  • Share your concerns in a caring, straightforward and direct manner
  • Because many students initially resist the idea of counseling, be caring and firm in your recommendation that counseling would be helpful. Be clear about the reasons you are concerned by providing behavioral observations (e.g. missing class, change in behavior, concerning e-mail)
  • Suggest that the student call to make an appointment and provide the Student Counseling Services number (934-5816) and location (Student Health and Wellness Center, 1714 9th Avenue, South).
  • Remind the student that the services are FREE and CONFIDENTIAL

A Note on Confidentiality

A Note on Confidentiality

Student Counseling Services mental health providers are required by law and by professional ethics to protect the confidentiality of all communication between counselors and clients (except in cases where harm to self or harm to others is involved).

Consequently, a counselor cannot discuss the details of a student’s situation with others or even indicate whether the student is, in fact, in counseling, without having written permission from the student. Ideally, the student would share important information with you directly based on your need and your relationship.


Talking to a Student about Your Concern

Many faculty or staff find that they are concerned or worriedabout a student, but are uncertain, lack confidence, or are fearful about having a conversation with a student about their concerns. The Kognito for Faculty and Staff platform is an online training that uses interactive simulations to help you learn about how to have these kinds of conversations with students.