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A Descriptive Analysis of the Tasks and Focus of Individual Supervision in an Agency Setting
  • Lisa Aasheim, Portland State University
Individual supervision is a widely accepted practice in the counseling profession, yet the tasks and focus of individual supervision in an agency setting remain largely uninvestigated. The tasks and focus areas inherent to agency supervision are especially important to counselors, counselor educators, agency administrators, and licensing boards, all of whom are involved in shaping the practices of such supervision. The quality and focus of agency supervision may have a direct impact on counselor development, service delivery, and, most important, client care. The purpose of this quantitative descriptive analysis was to determine which tasks of clinical and administrative supervision are occurring during a typical individual supervision session and the proportion of supervision time spent on administrative versus clinical tasks. The Agency Supervision Questionnaire (ASQ), a paper-and-pencil survey designed for this study, consisted of eleven questions which gathered demographic data about the participants, data about their individual supervision and work experience, and data about the tasks and focus of their individual supervision. The 321 respondents who provided usable data (74.5% response rate) indicated that their supervision tasks are widely varied. Clinical tasks most often included Client Treatment Planning, Clinical Problem Solving, and Therapeutic Interventions. Administrative tasks indicated most frequently included Employee Performance Evaluation, Caseload Management, and Workload. Participants also indicated a wide variance in responses about the proportion of supervision time spent focused on clinical tasks. Over 31% of respondents indicated that 90% or more of their typical supervision session focused on clinical tasks, while 26.5% indicated that 10% or less of their session was spent focused on clinical tasks. The mean response was 55%. Implications for the counseling profession and suggestions for future research are presented.
  • Counselor Education
Publication Date
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph. D.) in Counseling
School of Education
Deborah Rubel
Citation Information
Lisa Aasheim. "A Descriptive Analysis of the Tasks and Focus of Individual Supervision in an Agency Setting" (2007)
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