Assisting Emotionally Troubled Students

Due to your role at the University, students in distress may sometimes turn to you for support, advice, and referral to other sources of help. You might also observe students who appear to be having difficulties and wonder how you might be able to reach out to them. Or others might come to you expressing concerns about a student who is disturbing to others.

Here are some tips that will help you to be a good listener and to increase a student's willingness to accept a referral to the Counseling Center or other resources:

  • Talk with the student in private
  • Listen carefully
  • Show interest and concern
  • Limit constructive criticism
  • Respect the student's values and beliefs

What to look for that might suggest that a student is experiencing more stress than he or she can handle:

  • Serious grade problems or a decline in quality of work
  • Difficulty making decisions (classes to take, work hours, leisure time)
  • Depression suggested by a sad expression, low motivation, change in eating and sleeping patterns, tearfulness, hopelessness
  • Excessive worry, agitation, irritability, aggressiveness
  • Strange behavior or speech (usually soft, loud, fast, slow)
  • Excessive contact with advisor or supervisor
  • Change in appearance or poor hygiene

Emergency situations which require an immediate referral:

  • Expressions of suicidal thoughts and intent
  • Expressions of violence towards others
  • Severe loss of emotional control Bizarre behavior or gross impairment in thinking ability

Referral Sources

Counseling Center
Division of Student Affairs
104 College Park
Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green, OH 43403
(419) 372-2081

Student Health Service 
Student Health Center
Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green, OH 43403
(419) 372-2271

Psychological Services Center   
Department of Psychology
Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green, OH 43403
(419) 372-2540

Behavioral Connections of Wood County, Inc. 
315 Thurstin Avenue
Bowling Green, OH 43402
(419) 352-5387

The Link: 24 Hour Crisis Intervention 
(419) 352-1545

The BGSU Counseling Center assists students with educational, social, and personal concerns that may interfere with their academic progress. Counseling is generally offered to students on an individual basis; however, students are at times given the option of being seen in either group or couples counseling. Counseling services are available by appointments, except under emergency circumstances. Although there are no specific limits on the number of counseling sessions available to students, our goal is to provide quality services in as short a time as possible.

Counseling Services are made available to any enrolled BGSU student. There is no charge for counseling services. Staff members of the Counseling Center are available to consult with faculty, staff, or others who have concerns pertaining to the well-being of university students. Please refer to Help Us to Help You: A guide to making referrals & requesting services for assistance in accessing consultation and presentation services.

Prepared by:

Elizabeth Yarris, Ph.D.
Psychologist
Counseling Center
Division of Student Affairs
104 College Park, Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green, OH 43403
(419) 372-2081