FAQs – Faculty of Engineering

Frequently Asked Questions

TalkSpot is a mental health service that provides confidential consultations uniquely tailored to the needs of engineering students through same-day appointments. The TalkSpot counselor can help you with specific problems and introduce you to what it’s like to speak with a trained mental health clinician.

You can share what’s on your mind to get perspective, problem-solve and receive suggestions for resources or support.

Appointments are booked same-day on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. The online booking system opens each morning for you to schedule an appointment during the available appointment hours for that day.

Occasionally when it’s very busy, the TalkSpot counselor might not have enough time to see everyone; however, there are TalkSpot hours every day, Monday through Friday, so you can try again the next day.

This service is open to all undergraduate and graduate students within the Faculty of Engineering. TalkSpot is the best fit for the following people:

  • Students who have never been to counseling before, are not sure if it’s right for them and wonder what it’s like to talk with a counselor
  • Students who are not interested in ongoing counseling but would like the perspective of a counselor
  • Students who have a specific problem and would like to talk it through with someone
  • Students experiencing academic or personal issues who are not sure whether their challenges warrant professional support
  • Students who are interested in learning more about what campus resources are available to them and how to access them

Depending on your preference, your session will take place via videoconference or in a private office with wide, cushioned chairs. The office door has a blind that can be pulled down for privacy. During your session, the TalkSpot counselor will listen closely to your concerns and provide support, perspective and suggestions for resources.

Counselors with both TalkSpot and the Student Wellness Centre are trained mental health clinicians from Regulated Health Professions (governed by the legislative framework and colleges that regulate the professions in the public interest). You might also refer to them as therapists.

All students at McMaster University can access the Student Wellness Centre to meet with a counselor and sometimes participate in weekly or biweekly appointments after completing an intake procedure.

TalkSpot is only offered to students within the Faculty of Engineering, as a convenient same-day service and does not provide weekly or biweekly appointments. Students can meet for an appointment with a trained counselor who is familiar with the unique challenges facing engineering students.

Absolutely. The TalkSpot counsellor will talk through your issue with you and help you determine the best way forward.

There is no wrong answer to this! TalkSpot is a safe, confidential, accessible service that you are welcome to visit through a same-day appointment if you’re ever unsure. If you and the TalkSpot counselor decide that ongoing counseling is right for you, the counselor can help make the transition as smooth as possible by phoning ahead together or walking over with you, if you are comfortable.

Absolutely. All co-op students can visit TalkSpot, either in person or virtually, regardless of whether they are on a work term. You can talk about what’s going on to get it off your chest, discuss potential coping strategies, and make a plan to move forward. The only limitation is that you must be within the province of Ontario.

Due to the brief and informal nature of TalkSpot visits, the TalkSpot counsellor is not able to complete medical documentation for students. However, you can visit TalkSpot if you would like to discuss your mental health challenges and problem-solve how to best submit the appropriate documentation for your needs.

If you believe you need to be seen sooner than the appointment you were given, it’s best to call the Student Wellness Centre directly (905-525-9140 ext. 27700) and explain your situation.

Since regular counseling visits are not available at TalkSpot, following up with the referral is a good idea. You can ask your counselor through the Student Wellness Centre for support on how to follow up if you are unsure. If you have done this already and are still feeling intimated by the process of reaching out to a new healthcare provider in the community, you are welcome to make a same-day TalkSpot appointment and you and the TalkSpot counselor can make the phone call together.