Case Study Example

Consultation Notes:


Sam is a 16-year-old boy in the middle of his junior year. Sam’s parents, Jen and Harvey, contacted me because they are concerned about his performance in school and his behavior in their home. Once he got his driver’s license, he started skipping class, and his grades are suffering. Additionally, he acts entitled (does not offer gratitude & seems ungrateful for the things his parents provide him) and won’t communicate effectively with them anymore. Frequent fights and general disobedience characterize homelife. Sam reports that he skips school because he does not like his classes, and he feels bored. He also states that he believes his parents treat him like a child, which makes him want to act out. Jen and Harvey hope that Sam can get back on track in school and treat them with more respect in the home. Sam stated that he does not believe my mentorship will help him, but he is willing to give it a try.

Overarching Goals:

  • 1: Communicate with parents

    • Teach and practice assertive communication and conflict resolution skills

    • Address the perceived childlike treatment 

    • Work with Sam to create an accountability system for behavior in the home

  • 2: Increase engagement with school

    • Categorize classes based on difficulty, competence, and preferences 

    • Create a reward system based on school performance

    • Help Sam budget his time to be successful in all classes, especially the ones he finds boring


  • 3: Increase gratitude/address entitlement 

    • Find opportunities to volunteer

    • Exercise Gratitude

    • Provide experiences for Sam to understand needs, wants, and privileges

Plan of Action:

  • My first priority is to build rapport with Sam while addressing his behavior in the home. We will create an incentive and consequence structure to modify and encourage appropriate behavior.  

  • Once Sam has learned more effective communication skills we will begin to work on organizational and time management skills. I will develop an incentive system that helps motivate Sam to work for success at home and school.

  • We will address Sam’s entitlement by seeking out volunteer opportunities and working on gratitude exercises. I have many readings and activities that I believe he will engage in and learn from.


I propose to meet with Sam 3x a week for 1-2 hours. Additionally, I will be available for 30-minute phone check-ins on the evenings I do not see Sam. I will keep a shared google doc that tracks all of our activities throughout the sessions as well as a weekly email detailing our progress. I will respond to emails daily. If it fits with your schedules, I am also open to incorporating you (Jen and Harvey) into one of our weekly sessions. In total, I anticipate spending 5-7 hours a week working with Sam to help meet his goals.

This is a sample of what the plan of action looks like. It is important to realize that every adolescent has different needs. I will work intentionally to create a plan of action that meets your needs and sets your son up for success.