Emory University's Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS) provides free, confidential services for students including: initial assessments, crisis intervention, community referrals, brief individual, couples, and group counseling; consultation; community outreach services; and educational workshops.
The staff at CAPS know that student life is a transitional period and can bring pressure and stress. We try to help students understand this period, find ways of coping with crises, and grow from their experiences. We also work with administrators, academic units, and other campus agencies to increase the effectiveness of student services in the area of mental health.
An Emory student interested in arranging an appointment can call (404) 727-7450 or come to CAPS between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 P.M., Monday through Friday.
Mission and Scope of Service
Emory University is invested in supporting the varied mental health needs of its diverse students, which involves attention to both individual student needs and the needs of its overall student body. This support is provided through various Campus Life offices including Counseling & Psychological Services, Student Health Services (e.g., most students needing psychotropic medications can be managed at Student Health Psychiatry without visit fees or session limits), Office of Health Promotions, Student Success Services, CASAA, and Residence Life, among others. Campus Life also partners with various offices across the university (e.g., Office of Spiritual & Religious Life, Office of Undergraduate Education) to provide additional student support. We believe that it is important to meet the needs of both our individual students and the overall student body in creating a healthy campus community. Within that framework, we feel fortunate, at Emory, to be able to offer such a wide breadth of support services to our students.
Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS) also offers an array of mental health services to support both individuals and the larger Emory community. These services include crisis intervention, initial assessments, brief individual and couples’ therapy, various types of group therapies, support/discussion groups, a biofeedback clinic, community-level interventions, and classes on stress management and emotion regulation. Because there continues to be an increase for an already high demand for our individual services, CAPS has introduced guidelines to our clinicians to operate from a brief-therapy model, which allows us to provide services to as many students as possible. Currently, this involves a general guideline to limit individual counseling to approximately 7 sessions beyond intake. For students needing more support after this, we connect them with other CAPS services, on-campus resources, or facilitate referrals to providers in the community that range from low-cost agencies to private practitioners who accept insurance.
There is always a difficult balance to maintain between providing sufficient depth of our services and meeting the breadth of demand for those services. Invariably, the wishes of many students for CAPS to provide unlimited individual services must make way for the parameters of what is reasonable to provide given our mission and inherent resource limits. In considering how to balance the depth/breadth dilemma, we recognize that our students do not arrive here with the same level of financial resources, and we must navigate through the realities of what it means to provide good clinical care using our best clinical judgment, while also considering issues of equity and social justice. Additionally, there are also realities that particular situations facing some students make seeking services away from the privacy available at CAPS (as we do not bill insurance) unfeasible or even unsafe. Because we are committed to meeting the mental health needs of both individuals and the overall Emory student community, we do our best to exercise our clinical judgment in deciding when and why it’s most appropriate to extend services beyond our session limit and when to facilitate a referral to another service within CAPS, on campus, or in the local community.
As we move forward, we aim to build more ways of enhancing mental health services at Emory. Our goal is to continue to improve on the efficacy of our clinical services while also aspiring to make them a bit less necessary as we work collectively to make Emory an increasingly healthy campus environment for all of our students.
All regularly enrolled, fully registered Emory undergraduate, graduate, and professional school students are eligible for cost free services at Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS). Emergency Resource Information:
Note: "Emergency/After-Hours" resources can also be accessed from any page on our website -- look for the red print in the top right corner.