NURS 6650 Week 1 Practicum Journal Entry

NURS 6650 Week 1 Practicum Journal Entry

Week 1: Journal Entry

 The purpose of the week one journal entry is to review both a nursing theory and a counseling theory that will guide my practice as a student PMHNP. Also, this journal will cover three goals and objectives that I have for this practicum experience as well as a timeline for my practicum activities.

Nursing Theory

The nursing theory that I have chosen to guide my practice is the Theory of Interpersonal Relations by Hildegard Peplau. In psychotherapy, the relationship developed between the PMHNP and the patients is the base of treatment. The PMHNP must earn the clients trust for therapy to be effective. Peplau’s theory contains four phases of the professional and client relationship- orientation, identification, exploitation, and resolution (Fatemeh et al., 2017). During the orientation phase, the client defines their problem, and the mental health professional will complete their initial assessment. Gaining a patients trust is important because they need to be comfortable enough to be completely truthful so they can be treated properly. For example if a client has a history of sexual abuse in childhood and does not disclose it with the PMHNP then the form of treatment they need they may not receive. I have worked with several patients that have had difficulty disclosing childhood trauma until they felt comfortable enough with me. NURS 6650 Week 1 Practicum Journal Entry.

Second is the identification phase where a plan of care will be created, during this time the patient will feel as if they belong and that they have real potential to fix the problem. The third is the exploitation phase where the nursing plan will be implemented; actions will be taken in meeting the goals (Bittencourt et al., 2018). The last stage in Peplau’s theory is the resolution phase where the termination of the professional relationship is completed because the client’s needs have been met though their collaboration. I believe that it is critical to develop a strong bond with each client I work with; this theory can be used with every client. NURS 6650 Week 1 Practicum Journal Entry. 

Behavioral Theory

 The behavioral theory assumes that behavior is learned from the environment and individuals around us (McLeod, 2010). Thus, being said if a behavior is learned by a person it can be unlearned. I like the behavioral theory to use with individuals because it gives the opportunity to focus on current problematic behaviors that the client may be facing (McLeod, 2010). This theory only looks at observable behaviors, unlike the psychoanalytic theory that focuses on emotions. The reason I chose this theory is that my goal is to work with children that have mental health conditions that result in behavioral issues such as a child with autism or ADHD. Today behavior analysis is often used as a therapeutic technique to help children with autism, and developmental delays acquire new skills (Siti Ithriyah, 2018).  ABA is used to help children diagnosed with ASD to decrease negative behaviors that can affect learning and to increase the positive and helpful behaviors.

Goals for Psychotherapy with Groups & Families

            The first goal that I have for this course is to fully understand the laws and state regulations regarding group and family therapy in the state of Florida. There are many legal and ethical considerations when conducting group or family therapy, and it is crucial for the PMHNP to be aware of these regulations, so I will be able to protect myself as well as the clients I work with.

The second goal I have in this course is to have the ability to document on a group therapy session properly. Though I am a registered psychiatric nurse, I have never documented on a family or group therapy session so learning the documentation process and notes is very important for me to learn while in this course.

Lastly, the third goal I have in this course is to build confidence in running a group therapy session. I have done many assessments and therapy with individuals but when there are multiple people present with different opinions the therapy session can be tricky. NURS 6650 Week 1 Practicum Journal Entry.

Objectives for Psychotherapy with Groups & Families

            My first learning objective for this course is to have the capability to provide accurate psychiatric diagnoses for the clients I assess during practicum upon completion of the course. Second objective is to have the ability to recall important legal and ethical implications specific to the state of Florida when providing psychotherapy with groups and families. The last learning objective is to complete at least 5 full initial assessments with new clients during my practicum experience and to develop a plan of care with those clients.


My Course Timeline

 I will be completing a total of 10 weeks of clinicals with a total of at least 144 clinical hours. Each week I will be working with my preceptor for a minimum of two days per week at least 8 hours day. The first two weeks I plan to get acquainted with my preceptor Dr. Vega and the practicum site NURS 6650 Week 1 Practicum Journal Entry. During my first two weeks I plan to shadow Dr. Vega and get set up with the computer system that she uses. By week 3, I want to be comfortable with her computer system and the have the capability to chart properly on the therapy sessions that have been completed.

By weeks 4-5, I want to be more comfortable with the documentation process and complete notes on my own. Also, during weeks 3-6 I want to be treating patients by joint care with my preceptor until I become comfortable to become mostly independent. In weeks 7-10 I plan to be practicing mostly independently, after each session I will receive feedback from my preceptor, so I will be aware of specific areas that I can improve on.  I would like the opportunity to complete assessments on new patients to have the opportunity to formulate a proper psychiatric diagnosis and plan of care. By the last week of clinical I want to feel confident it my ability to provide psychotherapy to groups and families. NURS 6650 Week 1 Practicum Journal Entry.



 Annette M. Matthews, M. D. . author. (2005). Cognitive Behavioral Theories of Counseling: Traditional and Nontraditional Approaches. Psychiatric Services, (9), 1164–a.

Bittencourt, M. N., Dias Marques, M. I., & Mendes Diniz de Andrade Barroso, T. M. (2018). Contributions of nursing theories in the practice of the mental health promotion. Revista de Enfermagem Referência, 4(18), 125–132.

Cottone, R. R. (2017). Counseling Theories for Alcohol and Drug Education. Journal of Alcohol & Drug Education, (3), 86. Retrieved from

fatemeh cheraghi, mahnaz khatiban, reza borzou, parasto hosayni, & salam vatandost. (2017). Application of Peplau’s theory of Interpersonal Relations in Nursing Practice: A systematic, Vol 3, Iss 2, Pp 1-11 (2017), (2), 1. Retrieved from

McLeod, S. A. (2010). Behavioral therapy. Retrieved from NURS 6650 Week 1 Practicum Journal Entry

Norton, A. L., & Tan, T. X. (2018). The relationship between licensed mental health counselors’ political ideology and counseling theory preference. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry.

Siti Ithriyah. (2018). Effectiveness ABA Therapy for Children with Special Needs of Autism: A Study of Psycholinguistics View. Ethical Lingua: Journal of Language Teaching and Literature, Vol 5, Iss 2, Pp 149-158 (2018), (2), 149. NURS 6650 Week 1 Practicum Journal Entry


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