Advanced human services professional practitioners cannot reflect everything that a service user has said. Instead, it is best to select a few key statements to summarize that will keep the conversation moving forward. Remember that summaries are deliberate. They seek to explore and draw out ambivalence on the part of the service user, to ensure the accuracy of the practitioner’s assessment, and to focus on areas of desired change.

In this Discussion, you will practice writing summaries for the service user in your case study. 


To Prepare

  • Review your Course Announcements for possible information related to this week’s Discussion and Assignment.
  • Review the Learning Resources on summarizing. Focus on the different types and examples of summaries.
  • Go to the Hart City virtual community using the link that is provided in the Learning Resources. Once you are in the community, review the case study you were assigned.
  • Create three open-ended questions you would ask the service user in the case study. The questions must be different than those you asked in Week 3.
  • Given what you know about the service user, think about how they would answer each question.
  • Create a summary based on what you think the service user would say in response to the questions. 

 Post three open-ended questions you think would be most appropriate to ask your Hart City service user, and explain why. Be sure that the questions you ask are different than those you asked in Week 3. Write what you think the service user would say in response to each question. Be specific. Finally, write a summary based on what you think the service user would say in response to the questions. 




Alma is a 40-year-old woman who has just been admitted to the Hart City Substance Abuse Clinic via a court order. She had three driving under the influence (DUI) offenses in the past year. Recently, while driving under the influence, she jumped a curve and hit a pedestrian. He survived; however, he needs extensive rehabilitation. The police convicted Alma of reckless endangerment as well as drunk driving and ordered her to an inpatient facility. Alma is married with four children all under the age of 16. She is the chief executive officer (CEO) of a multinational organization. Her job requires her to travel two weeks each month. Early on, Alma and her husband decided that he would stay home and raise the children. He is also a writer, but he has yet to publish anything significant. Alma has been the sole financial provider for her family for 16 years. Alma adamantly denies that she has a substance abuse problem and does not want to stay in treatment for the required 30 days. She is hostile towards the staff and in need of an intake assessment and referral for treatment. Her family is also in need of referrals for emotional support.

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