Guidance and Testing Office


A caring and accommodating group of counselors dedicated to help Marians become the persons they are capable of becoming fully functioning, mature and productive individuals.


We dedicate ourselves to assist Marians become competent in their world, creative in their life’s adjustment, supportive of their community that reflects a true image of Christ and Mother Mary.


 The Guidance and Testing Office aims to assist students in making appropriate choices and adjustments in their vocational-occupational, educational-academic, personal-social and interpersonal-intrapersonal life through a thorough analysis of themselves, their environment and their options which are anchored on the Institutional core values of Excellence, Innovation, Communion, and Passion for Christ’s Mission


The Guidance Office, SMU- Golden Jubilee Souvenir Program (1928-1978) started with two programs in the School Year 1974-1975. These were the Group Guidance and Physical Examination. 

The Group Guidance Program makes possible the guidance of small groups of students by the faculty advisers.  These small group meet regularly to discuss relevant topics decided upon by both students and advisers. The program has the following aims: 1. To discover students with hidden or inherent talents and to help them develop their potentialities by recommending them for membership in the various school organization; 2. To spot students with problem and to help them found solutions to these problems; and 3. To extend assistance to students who find difficulties with their academic work.

During these years; 1974-1975, Saint Mary’s College Guidance and Testing Office serve a college population of 2379, besides a high school student of 588 and elementary school children numbering 922, totaling 3089 students. The Guidance and Testing Office of the College has served not only its own students but also students of the different high school of the Province of Nueva Vizcaya, Ifugao and Quirino.

In 1971-1974, the Guidance Office was designated as Test Center of the FAPE College Entrance Test of the 1973 (The First) NCEE for the past 4 years, it has administered, scored, and interpreted Psychological Test to CICM Secondary School of the prelature of Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya and has assisted these said schools in making their guidance and testing programs functional. It has extended the services to 47 high schools (from Private and Public) guidance counselors of Region II, in coordination with SMC Graduate School and funded by CICM US promotion, it sponsored a summer institute in guidance last April – May, 1974 (SMU Golden Jubilee Book, 1928-1978). 

The College Guidance Center sponsored an Orientational Seminar for Administrators and Guidance Counselors of all Catholic Secondary Schools of Nueva Vizcaya and Quirino last July 11, 1974 at SMC’s Guidance Center. 

Miss Dalisay Browner and Miss Sofia Juanino who are both guidance counselor composed the project staff. They conducted the lectures about the place of guidance in the educational system; 1. It’s aims and services of the guidance program and 2. It’s aims and activities of the project itself. The objectives of orientation seminar is in line with the mission of helping school and implement the guidance program as requested by the Bureau of the Private Schools. The Objectives are; 1. To increase awareness of all school personnel’s of the tremendous potentialities in the Education of the Filipino Youth through Guidance and Counseling; 2. To help schools plan for effective participation in meeting the socio-economic goals of the new society through youth value formation, attitude change and flexibility to adjust to a rapidly changing society. 

The Guidance Office during the year; 1974-1975 was located to room A-206, launches a remedial program to assist students with difficulties in their academic load. The remedial program started during the second semester to help students who are failing to their midterm grades. In this respect, students having failing grades are requested to report in the Guidance Office for remedial work. Failing students of English1a and English1b who wants to avail themselves to this opportunity were given individual exercises depending on their needs. Covering grammar, reading skills, and composition. 

Under the SMC Guidance Program for 1974-1975, the guidance office aims ;1. To provide leadership in the orientation program.;2. To administer, correct and interpret standardized test when needed; 3. To gather and keep personal data records of all students enrolled; 4. To extend assistance to individual students experiencing difficulties and problems in their academic work, personal adjustment, health matters, financial matters, and other related matters;5. To help students discover and develop their talents and interest;6. To revive the homeroom guidance program; and 7. To cooperate with the Administration in maintaining discipline in the classroom and in the campus.

During the late years of 1970’s to the early part of 1980’s, the Guidance Office was located at Gym lobby, 2nd floor. In the early 1980’s the SMC-GTO was transferred to a new location at the 3rd floor of Library Building. Mrs. Paz Gamma (+) as the Head, Miss Maria Theresa Bautista and Miss Nena Padilla. After 2 years, Mrs. Gajes (+) took over for one semester with Mrs. Tessy Jandoc as the Office Secretary. Mrs. Bautista and Mrs. Padilla were the Guidance Counselors together with Mrs. Leonora Damaso. 

In the school year 1981-1982, the two young lady counselors were sent for seminar classes (trainings and workshops) related to Guidance and Counseling in Manila to enhance and update the guidance office regarding the improvement of the guidance program. As an offshoot of these trainings and workshops the SMC-GTO is now offering for Peer Counselor training to interested students who were recommended by the teacher-adviser in the college level. 

It was in 1983 when Dr. Leonora L. Damaso took over as the Head of the SMC-GTO when Mrs. Gamma left for another country, her staff were Miss Maria Theresa Bautista, Miss Nena Padilla, Mr. John Tayaban, Mrs. Aurora Saquing, and Miss Zenaida Academia as the office secretary. There was six Guidance Services namely: Information Service, Counseling Service, Individual Analysis/Testing Service, Research and Evaluation, Placement and Follow-up Service and Extension Service. 

During the 2nd semester of School Year 1984-1985, Mrs. Lorvin Adducul was transferred to the SMC-GTO as the office secretary. The head during the time was Dr. Leonora Damaso with the mentioned staff in previous paragraph. It was observed that during this year till the year Mrs. Adducul finished her Baccalaureate of BSED-Guidance and Counseling, Peer Counselors Training is yearly conducted to interested students across all level and departments. The counselor in charge was Miss Bautista with Miss Nena Padilla. The trained PCs served as Peer tutors in academic endeavor (assisting in Math subject); adjustment to new school environment. 

In the early years of 1990s, additional guidance counselor were hired:  Miss Grace Tindaan and Mrs. Alona Costales respectively. Two years prior to the 1990s, Drop- In Center’ located at the third floor of the Library Building (adjacent to the GTO) was created for active and dedicated Peer Counselors. PC free time was rendered for accommodating their schoolmates and friends of academic tutoring particularly in Math. Communication skills and College Life survival were introduced in order to help students find some coping techniques of adjusting to new environment in their “new home, away from home”.

When Mrs. Adducul finished her Guidance degree in 1999, she was assigned as the adviser for Peer Counselors until 2000. The years when the GTO was transferred to CL Building, first floor. PCs during these years composed of Guidance majors and non-guidance majors. These were the students who are trained as PC and willingly helped in the implementation of the different guidance services which are within their capabilities.

In the year 2001-2002, the SMU- GTO was again transferred to another building A-101 with Mrs. Ester Cantong as the Head. Mrs. Ruby Lyn Nuestro took over the advisorship of the PC which was named as “Marian Peer Counselor”. PAASCU accreditors found out that SMU-PCs has given commendable points for the implementation of SMU- Guidance Program. From their efforts, Peer Counselor’s Office was created which adjacent to the Guidance and Testing Office. Since this organization is helping the counselors not only in implementing the guidance services, they also served as model and facilitators of the MHYLDP (a program of the Dean of Student Affairs’ Office). The PC Office was also assigned as the Teen Center in 2003 with Miss Rachel Lapitan as the PC adviser. Currently, this small office served as two offices for (PC Office and Teen Center).

The SMU-GTO is continuously active in the implementation of the different guidance services with the help of the MPCs. And in so doing, when in the year 2008, Mrs. Adducul was assigned as the personnel in-charge of the office, she made her best of crafting an outline program to MPC. Mr. Bon Homme Richard Torres as the adviser up to the present. Trained MPCs do not only served as tutors but also served as co-facilitators and trainers of Leadership, Team Building and Peer Counseling Seminars and Workshops. The name of the organization was also changed as MPCO (Marian Peer Counselors Organization) since S. Y. 2010-2011 when the “Shepherding Way in Spirit” was introduced as the way the Guidance Program be implemented. How is “Shepherding Way and Spirit” differ in tutoring program of MPC? Shepherding is journeying with peers from the time they enter college up to the to the time they graduate. Tutoring is staying or being together to finish a certain topic of academic difficulty until the subject area is understood by the client/student. 

The Guidance Program was intensified from 2009 to the present with the six guidance services (SMU-GTO Guidance Program, 2009). An inclusion of additional services under the Counselling Service were introduced like consultation, referrals and the program for OFW children. With these reasons and intensive PC and leadership training for Marina students was also intensified having a focus on Marian volunteerism. Leadership, immersion, support group and empowerment.


  1. Counseling and Referral Service: A goal-oriented relationship between a professionally trained, competent counselor and an individual seeking help for the purpose of bringing about a meaningful awareness and understanding of the self and environment, improving, planning and decision-making, and formulating new ways in behaving, feeling and thinking for problem resolution and/or development growth, Hence, all Marian students are encouraged to see their counselor regularly. 
  2.  Individual Counseling. A form of counseling which involves an interaction between two people-the client and counselor. 

Group Counseling. A counseling session extended to several people with similar concerns and desired common goals. 

Process: Individuals are encouraged for counseling through:

a. Intake Interview- in this process, the counselor-Shepherd allows the client to talk freely about him/herself using the PDI as basis for understanding strengths and weaknesses         in order to become productive Marian. Students are invited to avail of this service through bulletin board announcement, sending of call slips and electronic device. 

b. Referral- through the use of the Institutional referral form, faculty members, administrators, employees as well as students and other significant others can forward cases of             students for the purpose of helping them in finding appropriate solution/s to their problem and allowing them to make wise and sound decision. The feedback mechanism is           directed by the institutional referral form, which is confidentially given to the referring person.
     Note: Problems which are beyond the expertise of a guidance counselor are recommended to see a psychiatrist, neurologist, medical doctor, other offices concerned. 

c. Walk-in-students who are coming for counselling voluntarily seek affirmation and/or confirmation of their plans, decision toward a goal. Sometimes, some students        come voluntarily when they have something to share such as personal, academic and career problems. 

d. Exit Interview- school leavers such as graduating students are given exit interview after taking the exit examination and exit seminar for the purpose of sending out from their         Alma Matter as committed Marian future employees in the world of work as manifested in the 10 Marian Virtues. Same interview is extended to transferring students so that           the  Marian image must be carried out as they go to another environment.

3. Information Service: This service provides students with:

Personal-Social Information that will help them develop their personality and social life;

Educational-Academic Information that would help them select the proper academic setting and program, knowing the     requirements and then opportunities available;

Vocational-Occupation Information that would help them learn about the world of work and careers so they can make appropriate decisions that will prepare them for the future. 

Process: This service is implemented in the following manner:

a. Announcement through bulletin board display;
b. General Orientation to new students and transferees;
c. SMU-GTO website
d. Printed materials
e. Parent’s orientation

4. Testing Service

Throughout the use of the different kinds of psychological tests, survey questionnaires and personal interviews, this service provides students with more information about themselves which they can utilize for their own personal growth. 

Individual Testing: Administering a psychological test for special cases and referral.

Group Testing: Administering psychological test/s for a group of examinees for classification and/ or sectioning and other purposes of same group of students or per year level.

Process: This service is administered to the following:

a. Incoming Kinder and Grade 1 pupils in the Basic Ed
b. Incoming Grade 7 in the Junior High School
c. Incoming Grade 11 in the Senior High School
d. Incoming Freshmen and transfer students in the College Level
e. Incoming new student in the Graduate School and Law School

     Extension Testing:  The requesting party must follow the school policy on extension testing service such as:

a. Filing a request letter to the President for approval.
b. Pay the desired amount of psychological test at the Accounting Office of SMU
c. Comply with other requirements indicated in the policy extension testing

       Note: Only a qualified test examiner is allowed to administer, score, interpret and disseminate test result to the requesting party. 

5. Individual Analysis Service

Pertain to the collection, evaluation and interpretation of data gathered to identify the characteristics and potential of every students that can be used in proper diagnoses, predicting progress and behaviors, accurate placement and programs evaluation.

The inventories, questionnaires and/or surveys answered by the students are stored in cumulative folder and kept while students are still in the school up the a few years. The data gathered from the instruments will be used to identify problems an determine the necessary inventories or alternative programs to address the pressing problems. 

Process: Every new student is required to:

a. Fill-up the Personal Data Inventory (PDI) during the orientation to freshmen and transferees
b. Undergo Individual Intake Interview at eh Guidance Office by a Guidance Counselor.

-Analyzed data is a source of GTO research output
-Sensitive and/or delicate issues during the interview will be the basis for recommendation to other professionals especially mental health professionals.
-All data collected are kept confidentially in an individual folder inside a filing cabinet.

6. Placement and Follow-up service

Ensure the people are in the right place at the right time. It has to do with helping people find a place that will contribute to         their physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health and well-being so that they can be happy contributing members of the society.
Process: Incoming new students of SMU must take the Entrance exam as basis for the Career Counselor to assist them in strand (Grade 11) in line with their Aptitude, interest, passion and personality type; and for Freshmen is a basis for enrolling in course which in line with their ability whether board or non-board course. 

a. Grade 11 must take the OASIS-3 Aptitude Survey and MBTI
b. Freshmen and transferees -SMU College Entrance Test.

7. Research and Evaluation Service

Research is a service-oriented activity conducted to discover new knowledge, to advance current knowledge, and to substantial theory.

Evaluation is a program-oriented activity that seeks to collect relevant information to determine whether program goals are met in terms of outcomes as basis for the modification and delivery of service.

8. Shepherding Service

Provide students with full time permanent counselors from the moment they enter the university until their graduation.

The Guidance Counselors take the role of a Shepherd who attend to the welfare of SMU students by watching over, nurturing, and guiding them. Like Shepherds, they know the background and environment of their flock and will do what is needful to lead and mold them according to the vision-mission of the University.

The Shepherding (Psycho-educational development) program specifically caters to all students per year level:

With Self-integration to achieve freedom (Freshmen/Transferees)

It aims to develop and implement personal “self-discovery” intervention scheme to allow new student to know and understand   themselves and integrate their intellectual and psycho-spiritual development through the life span. 

From Freedom to relationship (Sophomore)

To enhance, develop and implement a follow through to the “self-integration program”, using developmental psychological assessment and anecdotal reports and evaluations, that will actualize students’ abilities to trustingly relate to his/her environment at SMU.

From Relationship to commitment (Juniors)

To develop a deeper sense of commitment among 3rd year students to relate and immerse appropriately with their peers, friend and authority.
To assist students of their legal, personal, as well as social responsibilities as mature Marians.
Commitment to service (Seniors)
To provide opportunities for graduating students to assess, strengthen, and test their Marian core values necessary for their commitment to serve their fellowmen.

Marian Peer Counselor’s Organization

A group of trained students-counselors whom you can turn to when you feel you need a “buddy” or simply when you need someone of your age to listen to you. They also make referrals to the Shepherd-Counselors in handling problems beyond their competence. They also assist the Shepherd-Counselors in conduction seminars and workshops, and facilitate in different trainings, not only to the Marian students but also to other interested educational institutions and organizations. Furthermore, the MPCs also provide invaluable assistance in the implementation of the office’s programs.

Marian Coalition of Sons and Daughters of OFWs

A family-oriented youth organization that fosters the Marian virtues among the Sons and Daughter of the OFW. Its programs and activities are founded on the Ten Marian Virtues to promote and realize the SMU core values of Excellence, Innovation, Communion and Christ’s Mission. Members learn significant and appropriate like skills to have a successful academic and career path.