Different Types of Army Counseling

What are the different types of Army Counseling?  After searching through FM 6-22 and several other resources online, here are the different types of Army Counseling that I could find.  Please keep in mind that you could find a situation that might fit into one or more categories.

  1. Event Oriented Counseling: Probably the most common type of counseling in the Army, an event oriented counseling is for a specific event, such as being late for formation, missing a suspense, failing an inspection, etc.
  2. Reception and Integration Counseling: When a new Soldier, Officer or NCO arrives at a unit, their first line supervisor is responsible for conducting the RSOI Counseling.  This tells the Soldier their job description, personal and professional expectations, information about the unit, etc.
  3. Crisis Counseling: When a Soldier faces a crisis such as a divorce, a marital affair, a death in the family or any other traumatic event, their supervisor should conduct a crisis counseling with them.
  4. Referral Counseling: A Referral Counseling is when a Soldier gets referred to the Chaplain, the Army Substance Abuse Program, Mental Health Agency, or another agency.  It’s basically when the supervisor tells the Soldier they are being referred somewhere.
  5. Promotion Counseling: When a Soldier is eligible for promotion, gets selected for promotion, or non-selected for a promotion, their supervisor should do a Promotion Counseling with them.
  6. Adverse Separation Counseling: In the event the soldier will be separated from the military for something adverse, the rater or commander will do an Adverse Separation Counseling telling them what they did wrong, what will happen and what their rights are.
  7. Performance Counseling: A Performance Counseling simply covers a Soldier’s performance during a specific period of time, normally monthly or quarterly.
  8. Professional Growth Counseling: A Professional Growth Counseling tells the Soldier about career advancement, attending military schools, what they need to do to improve, what they need to do to get promoted, etc.

All Army Counseling is done on DA Form 4856.  To the best of my knowledge, these are the only types of Army Counseling in the Army.  In the event that I missed an example, please let me know by leaving a comment to this post. If you have any questions, or anything you would like to add to this post about the types of Army counseling, please do so in the comment area below. Thanks.

chuck holmes

Chuck Holmes
Former Army Major (resigned)
Publisher, Part-Time-Commander.com
Email: mrchuckholmes@gmail.com

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5 thoughts on “Different Types of Army Counseling”

  1. My favorite type of counseling is the verbal, on the spot correction. That works most of the time, but when things get serious it does make sense to sit down and put things in writing. Fortunately, I don’t have to do that very often.

  2. Suzanne Bowen

    Maybe another part of an new NCO job counseling session would be encouraging the new NCO to ask questions once initial has been completed? Misunderstandings can occur so easily. Asking questions now is better making mistakes later. I can imagine divorce counseling is one of the most difficult of all counseling. It can affect the new recruit or NCO in their Army jobs financially, physically and emotionally. Sometimes the results can be as drastic as sudden homelessness (personal, social, financial), negative aggression toward everyone (personal, social), and chronic insomnia (physical).

    1. I agree with you Suzanne. Crisis Counseling should also include the ability of the new NCO to ask questions in a manner that would enable him or her to repeat what they’ve been told and ask questions. That would be an appropriate way to assure the new NCO of getting the counseling needed.

  3. Neil ODonnell

    The counseling resources for soldiers are quite expansive. The Adverse Separation Counseling exemplifies the importance the Army places on its soldiers. I think Crisis Counseling, particularly for soldiers dealing with a death in the family or a divorce, is arguably the most important counseling component given the daily stress soldiers face. That said, I imagine the Adverse Separation Counseling would help the Army and medical personnel identify soldiers in need of Crisis Counseling who would otherwise be missed.

  4. Such an important topic to cover. It’s great to know that there are many different types of counseling available and that you can recieve very specific and specialized care depending on your issue.

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