Exploring how Chinese primary school psychological counsellors understand and use therapeutic stories

Xi Liu, Antony Williams

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Psychological counsellors in western countries have used stories and storytelling for therapeutic purposes for decades. However, the development of the profession of school counselling in China is at an early stage and little research has been done on using therapeutic stories in Chinese primary school settings. This exploratory study presents qualitative data on using therapeutic stories collected from interviews with Chinese psychological counsellors who work with primary school students. Findings from a grounded theory analysis revealed that therapeutic stories were used by the participants in various therapeutic approaches. A spectrum of therapist directiveness was developed to integrate different ways of using therapeutic stories.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-154
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Journal for the Advancement of Counselling
Issue number1
Early online date19 May 2018
Publication statusPublished - 15 Mar 2019


  • China
  • school counselling
  • therapeutic storytelling
  • therapist directiveness

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