student counseling office

counseling approaches

About Counseling

Different people see difficulties in different things. That is why a variety of counseling techniques are used for different issues. The Student Counseling Office provides a wide array of counseling services. Choose the best one for you.

We take time to listen to what you have to say in our counseling sessions. You can work through the difficulties you are currently facing and discuss the appropriate next steps with us.

As a university student, you may have many stressors – academic/research accomplishments, your future, your own personality issues, your personal relationships, stressful situations in your daily and student life, personal difficulties, depression, anxiety, and other mental health-related issues. If you need to talk to someone, but do not know who to ask for help or what to do, if you want advice, or need help in clarifying the issues or finding solutions, or if you want to think about who you really are, the counseling service might be able to help you.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the psychological therapies that has been proven effective for various emotional issues and sleeping disorders. This therapy makes you think about the situations you find stressful and investigate the cross-interaction of the environment (situation) and individuals. No emotion comes out of the blue. “Emotion” and “physical reaction” change according to how you “think about” the ever-changing environment and consequently about how you “behave.” Cognitive behavioral therapy allows you to carefully analyze what is happening between the situation and the individual, or inside them to find the pattern causing “vicious cycles.” Then, we can work together to find how to improve and break the vicious cycle.


EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is one psychological therapy that has been proven effective for problems induced by trauma including PTSD. When we encounter overwhelmingly shocking or mind-shattering incidents, the brain sometimes fails to process the memories and stores them away as if keeping things in a freezer. Such traumatic memories can be triggered to resurface  by minor incidents in our daily lives, causing problems. EMDR uses the movement of the eyeballs to expedite the treatment process of traumatic memories and works on the root cause of the problems.

Support Groups and Counseling

Unlike elementary, junior high, or high school, university students do not see the same set of students every day. As a result, many students experience difficulties in interpersonal relationships. Some do not know how to communicate with friends, and others just cannot get along with people around them. You may want to know how other students are coping with classes, clubs, and part-time jobs, or you may be worried that you are behaving differently from everybody else. You may want to practice  and improve your communication skills. The Student Counseling Office provides support groups and counseling services to accommodate such needs.

When you join a group, you may meet friends you can share your feelings with. We are here to give you the opportunity to discuss various things such as usual ups and downs of student life. Sound interesting? Feel free to join us!

Psychological Testing

The more you know about your personality, uniqueness, and your strengths/weaknesses, you will be able to discover your own road map for the future. Take some time to look at yourself from different angles. If you want to take some psychological tests, sign up for an interview with our counselor.

(These psychological tests are not for the purpose of making the diagnoses, but to help you with self-understanding. If you feel you need a medical evaluation, please visit a medical institute.)

Student Counseling Office TOP

Become a peer supporter

Hokkaido University takes applications for peer supporters at designated times throughout the year. Peer supporters are paid part-time staff (administrative assistant) of the university. Check out the peer support unit web site or come to the Center for more information.

Thinking about visiting us?

If you would like to make a counseling appointment, please call us, email us, or even just drop by in person. Students with appointments are given priority, so we recommend making an appointment.