Student Counseling Department (Previously known as the Office of Supporting Students) at the Deanship of Student Affairs was established in 2002. The objectives and tasks of the department are: providing the necessary and specialized support for university students in general and students with special needs , taking care of social, psychological and academic affairs, believing in their right to grow and learn, in order to supply the civil community with psychologically healthy individuals who have a high capacity to adapt with themselves and the surrounding environment.
Student Counseling Service provides services to students through two divisions:
Division to Support Students with Special Needs
Division of Counseling and Mental Health
Division to support people with special needs
Division of supporting people with special needs works on transforming the university environment to a less restrictive environment in which a student with special needs is able to achieve the highest degree of adapting because there are points of support which he/she can refer to it for help and support (ex. Department of Student Guidance)
Goals of the division of supporting students with special needs:
1. To provide psychological support to university students with special needs in all their three categories: visual, hearing and mobility impairment, including:
· Assisting the student with special needs to accept his/her condition.
· Assisting the student with special needs on promoting one’s positive self-concept, and working to raise one’s self-esteem.
· Assisting the student with special needs on promoting self-support and care.
2. Developing their communication skills and stress management.
· Enabling students with special needs enrolled in the University to achieve the highest degree of psychological and social adjustment, and academic achievement, according to the extent of their abilities.
· Holding courses that enable students with special needs to build their skills, each according to his field and needs.
· Increasing awareness of the students’ needs and their characteristics within the university campus.
· Study the problems of these students and work to resolve them.
Services provided for students with special needs
· Receiving new students with special needs and introducing them to important facilities at the university, such as: restaurants, the clinic, the library, finance, and recreational facilities, and encouraging the social communication skills they have.
· Introducing the students to their lecture halls
· Following-up procedures for students with special needs that grant them the discount given by the university on charges of credit hours, which amounts to 90% for graduate students, and undergraduate students.
· Assisting students in registration and organizing the schedule in each semester where an early time is determined before the registration of other university students to enable students with special needs to determine the academic schedule in proportion to his/her health.
· The provision of recreational services from trips and cultural activities include:
o Publication of a variety of topics in the newspaper (Voice of the students).
o Participation in the celebrations of the ‘White Cane Day’
o Encouraging the students' creativity through the support of a Periodic Journal for people with special needs.
o Participation in various exhibitions.
o Participation in national celebrations and events.
· Provision of guidance services and counseling for students with special needs in the university and studying their family, academic, adaptive and social problems, and working on resolving them.
· Cooperation with agencies and support institutions for people with special needs in Jordan and the Arab countries to exchange experiences and materials.
· The provision of academic subjects in a manner to suit the needs of groups of students with various special needs, so as to provide:
o Recording audio academic subjects for blind and visually impaired students.
o provide a "Braille" hard copy for blind students.
o Provide a group volunteering students to read academic materials for blind students directly.
o The use of speaking-computers in the department for academic purposes.
· The provision of speaking-computers for blind and visually impaired students in the department, and the appointment of staff holding a bachelor's degree in computer science, and one of them with hearing disabilities to help deaf students.
· Communication with various departments and divisions within the university to solve the problems of students with special needs.
· Continuous communication with the parents of the students to facilitate the process of integrating children with special needs at the university.
· Modifying the physical environment within the university to facilitate the movement and mobility of students with special needs, where this process is done through stages including:
o Establishing special pathways for individuals with mobility challenges at the entrances of university colleges and buildings.
o Modifying the pathways and sidewalks within the university to facilitate the movement of students who use wheelchairs or those who suffer from difficulties in movement and use crutches.
o Construction of corridors within the colleges to facilitate access to lecture halls in the first floors.
o Start rehabilitation of health facilities within the university to facilitate their use by these students, after the necessary studies in this regard.
· Holding specialized courses for university students with special needs in several areas:
o Motor skills and mobility course for new students under the supervision of staff from the department who are trained and qualified to do so in order to train them to use their senses effectively and to enable blind students to identify their balance point and their relationship to things around them, and develop their willingness and ability to move safely from one place to another, and concepts that are focused on in the course (road signs, internal and external arrangements of buildings, knowledge of trends and relative measure, and adapting in the new situation.) The course aims at providing students with independent mobility skills using a white cane and introducing students to the university and its facilities and the provision of the students with life skills such as dealing with food, clothing, transportation, and increasing the level of students' confidence.
· Sign Language (courses for beginners and others advanced)
o Designed to facilitate academic and life matters of deaf students through providing the university students with communication skills in sign language, for it is considered the main language of communication among deaf students and between the students of the university because it is dependent on sight, and the hands, arms and body movements and gestures. Courses of sign language were held within two levels, the first serving as a foundation course covering up to 1000 concepts and terms that lie in the different areas of life (social relations, family, home, education, shapes, colors and numbers, animals, vegetables and fruits, public life, other terms), while the second level: is the advanced level which qualifies university trainee students learning sign language to acquire basic skills in translation, where focus on the translation of texts, concepts and different gestures to sign language that depends mainly on the motor rhythm of the body, especially the "hands", for the hand is a great way to express through the fingers and formations, and it can also laugh and cry, rejoice, get angry, show desire, and release tension.
· The "Braille" method
o Aims to shed light on the needs of students with special needs and challenges facing them during education as well as to strengthen communication between university students and the students with visual disabilities and to educate them in a way that the blind can be communicated with through this method.
· Training students with visual disabilities on speaking-computer skills and teaching computer skills to deaf students and enhancing memory and resistance to memory loss.
· Support the individual and collective creativity of students with special needs, such as the support provided by the university for a deaf student, through which he/she designed a computer program to teach Standard Arabic Sign Language. The university has also sponsored the printing of covers of the educational CD, nominated him for the Award of King Abdullah II Bin Al Hussein of Creativity, and presented him with the appropriate support to attend a conference in Qatar as an expert in sign language
· Organizing the two operating systems of work and volunteer students.
· Translation of lectures to deaf students by the teacher and sign language interpreter who resides constantly in front of deaf students. These lectures are translated immediately.
· Translation of examinations for deaf students in sign language.
· Teaching academic subjects and reviewing them for the deaf students in their personal hall at the Student Counseling Center. That is done through scheduling appointments to review each subject so that they are re-explained to the deaf students and all the concepts are clarified in sign language.
· Immediate interpretation in sign language of all activities and events attended by the deaf students at the university.
· Accompanying deaf students in their meetings with members of the faculty or administration at the university.
· Switching halls of the students with mobility challenges to the ground floor in case the lecture halls on the higher floors are not accessible. There have been conductions of field surveys of some buildings for colleges to reflect on the possibility of establishing an electric elevator in cooperation with the Department of Engineering at the University.
Division of Counseling and Mental Health
Counseling is seen as an essential part of the Department of Student Counseling Program in the Deanship of Student Affairs at the University of Jordan.
psychological counseling is known as a process that includes interaction between the mentor and the client (suffering from difficulty) in a special position, in order to help him change his behavior and reach to a suitable solution for his problem.
Psychological counseling services
1- Individual counseling (case study): is concerned with helping the individual know himself, his experiences, and his needs, and help him find the right solution to the problems that he suffers (to enable the student to solve their own problems), that is done through several psychological sessions and follow-ups to reach with the client the desired goals that were identified in the beginning of the counseling process.
2- Group therapy: deals with the problem / difficulty experienced by a particular group of people numbering between (2-8) members. In group counseling, there are discussions about the collective expectations of how members will benefit from the program, in addition to discussing their experiences with their particular difficulty / problem within the limits of confidentiality, in an atmosphere of safety and unconditional acceptance.
3- Psychological Counseling: It is done between the psychologist, and the guided (the student) who suffers from a simple. The job of the specialist is to help him get rid of the emotions that are associated with his problem so that he can think clearly and solve his problem.
4- Family Counseling: This is by helping family members (students with disabilities, for example) to accept his disability, and help them adapt to and reduce the negative effects of disability on the character of the disabled, and also to understand the family life and responsibilities to achieve the stability, compatibility and psychological care family
5- counseling to achieve happiness family, and continuity, as the most powerful groups in terms of their effects in the formation of individual character, and guide his behavior.
6- Provide outreach programs for students of the university and the local community and those include:
o Making students aware of the seriousness of drugs through holding exhibitions, different seminars, and plays in collaboration with the competent authorities such as the Drug Enforcement Administration.
o Publication of specialized articles in the Student Voice newspaper, various periodicals, and the Jordan Without Drugs magazine.
o Various announcements for psychological services.
o Various announcements for psychological services.
o Periodical psychological awareness publications.
o Educating students with issues of interest to their personal development.
o Field trips to specialized institutions such as the Drug Enforcement Administration, the nursing home, and the Family Protection Department.
7- Hold training courses for students including:
o Meditation skills, emotional intelligence, awareness of the body, deep muscle relaxation, study skills, social communication skills, self-assertion skill, stress management, accept the self and the prevention of drug ... and others.
o Anti-drug agents course
Courses for the anti-drugs agents in cooperation with the Drug Enforcement Administration (General Security) based on the importance of fighting this scourge and working to activate the prevention strategy that guides the students themselves to understand purpose of protection given that they are able to prevent damage and staying away from it and through this awareness build a shield against attacks by drugs or desire and yearning factors, therefore trained students have been prepared to lead in educating students of the dangers of drugs and the threat it imposes on the basic components of society, from individuals and groups and the importance of concerted efforts to combat and eradicate it.
o Establishment of friends of the psychological counseling committee: with the aim of integrating the student with the local community by spreading psychological awareness and highlighting the role of the Department of Student Counseling.
Through the design of advertisements; field trips, monitoring training workshops, use of the Internet within the education program (it's done by students from the university with special needs students.)
8. Cooperation with various authorities and institutions in the provision of psychological services.
9. Meeting with the parents of the students
Providing psychological counseling for faculty and staff regarding the students and methods of dealing with them.
11. Cooperation with the local community through:
A. Provide psychological counseling to members of the community.
B. Provide psychological counseling services to members of the community
12. Bringing awareness through the role of psychological counseling for university students, especially for new students.
13. Send students emails with topics of interest, such as: study skills, and mind maps; and how to make presentations and many others. And visually disabled student can access their e-mail through the speaking computer provided by the university.
14. Participation in various exhibitions
Achievements of the Department of Student Advising
• Sign Language Dictionary
The Director of the Department and two sign language interpreters with the support of the Deanship of Student Affairs at the University of Jordan and the Deanship of Scientific Research wrote the sign language dictionary titles "Concepts and Terminology in Special Education," with the belief in the development of services for students with special needs who are suffering from hearing disabilities to enrich their academic knowledge and facilitate communicate with other teachers and specialists and students.
And to be an approved comprehensive scientific guide for students with special needs who are hearing impaired. And it is considered the first academic (dictionary) in Jordan and the Arab world, "as known to the authors," it contains a broad definition of guidance for special education, and a set of concepts and key terms in this science, which are organized all in a unified framework. As the sign language is a means of sharing knowledge, and expression of feelings and needs of different individuals, and to lay the foundations of understanding, and promote the common life, and stimulate intellectual development associated with the indicative linguistic growth that helps the formation of concepts and mental images, and sign language also enables deaf individuals to express what is on his mind, and to ease his inner psychological distress that hinder him and that appears in the different behavior attitudes.
o Her Royal Highness Princess Basma bint Talal wrote a letter of thanks to the authors thanking them for the extraordinary effort they put, where she said, "This book in its style and illustrations that, made it an indispensable reference to all those who deal with our deaf children, through the integration of this group in the community and giving them the opportunities they deserve."
The food menu on the Braille system for the blind
The blind in the University of Jordan are now able to do without the help of others when they use the university cafeteria, as issued by the Department of Student Counseling at the Deanship of Student Affairs, in a move first of its kind, a menu with the food varieties and prices for the blind students in Braille as it’s the primary means for reading and writing for the blind or visually impaired. Where the Braille on the basis of six key points works to convert any written material, such as: letters, numbers, and even musical notes into prominent characters (Braille method) to enable blind individuals to read it.