Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


Grief counseling for students in school is a need that comes unexpected, and thus demands prior preparation for the School Counselor. School is where we teach and help youth explore how to live a life. Death is a part of life. School Counselors can play an important role in helping students to identify what is normal when experiencing loss. The death marks the beginning of a transition period. Failure to communicate the needs of a student who is grieving can result in problems later in life. Grief is a unique journey that cannot be predicted or duplicated. Discussing and sharing the basic principles of grief allows for a process of healing to begin for the student. Emotions and moods can be experienced without being judged right or wrong. Muller (2001) has identified eleven coping strategies for students coping with loss. These strategies are applicable for School Counselors and school faculty interacting with students experiencing death. Lindholm & Schuurman (2002) describe ten types of death and possible resulting symptoms of the grieved youth. Balk (2002) works with four core issues of adolescent development to help understand how a young adult may grieve when a parent dies. The process of "remembering" (DeWitt, 2009) is a group process that helps the bereaved discover that the relationship with the deceased does not end with death, but continues by maintaining a connection through memories of how the deceased lived. The deceased person continues to be a part of the bereaved student's life as a source of comfort and strength, rather than a source of pathological bereavement.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Department of Curriculum and Instruction


Leadership, Counseling, Postsecondary Education

First Advisor

Jan Bartlett

Second Advisor

Victoria Robinson


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Date Original


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