236695 Using motivational interviewing tools in educational settings

Monday, October 31, 2011

Lisa A. Sheldon, MS , School of Public Health and Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Amherst, MA
Motivational interviewing (MI) is a client-directed method for making changes, increasing helpful behaviors and decreasing unhelpful behaviors. Inherently useful in educational settings, MI capitalizes on an individual's intrinsic motivation and interest in change and goal attainment using a non-confrontational approach.

Traditionally used in clinical and counseling settings, motivational interviewing (MI) is directly applicable in academic settings to engage public health students to take responsibility for their educational and career goals. Useful in teaching, counseling and advising, MI frames goals in practical, attainable, step-wise fashion. The OARS and FRAMES methods can be used to guide students through complex academic and career decisions, and daily student life. Mentors and advisers will find MI tools useful for goal setting and increasing student motivations related to the pursuit of challenging goals, both immediate and far-reaching.

Teachers and advisers who use MI enhance listening and problem-solving skills to become more effective communicators and develop strong professional relationships with students. MI is an effective framework for creating dialogue, rapport and ultimately helping to motivate students. Following specific techniques and a methodological approach, MI can help students see alternative paths toward their goal and take ownership. It is possible to tailor motivational interviewing techniques and specific tools to suit the practitioner's personality and style while still achieving success. Professors and advisors will find motivational interviewing no more time consuming than other student-centered approaches and with clear benefits.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Other professions or practice related to public health
Public health or related education

Learning Objectives:
1. Demonstrate the key principals of motivational interviewing using specific methodologies intended to elicit change and reduce ambivalence in students. 2. Formulate plans to incorporate elements of motivational interviewing into teaching and advising to help students who face potential challenges and obstacles to take responsibility for educational and career goal attainment. 3. Design strategies to adapt the motivational interviewing method to mesh with individual teaching and advising styles, and student needs.

Keywords: Education, Career Development

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I have conducted two workshops on this topic for college faculty, published a peer-reviewed article on the topic, presented at an international conference on the topic, and used this methodology in research activities in the field of public health and in public health education.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.