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- The relationships between multi-dimensional sociometric status and selected performance variables for counselors in training from 1991-2004.
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The relationships between sociometric status and selected performance variables for counselors in training were investigated. Gender differences in sociometric status were also investigated. Research participants were master's level counseling students. The point-biserial correlation coefficient was used to determine the relationship between sociometric status and grades. The SPSS 13.0 crosstabulation procedure was used to examine gender differences in sociometric status. The results indicated a moderate relationship between sociometric status and grades earned in a group counseling course. A small to negligible relationship between sociometric status and pre-practicum and practicum grades was found. No gender difference in sociometric status was found. The study provides some support for the use of sociometric measurements in predicting group counseling performance, but more research is needed.
- Relationships between selected sociometric variables and academic performance for counselors in training.
- The purpose of this research was to examine what relationships existed between selected sociometric variables and measures of academic performance for students in a counselor training program. The sociometric variables included counseling ability, counseling knowledge, and friendship. Academic performance measures included subject GPAs, group counseling participation and final grades, prepracticum grades, and practicum grades. Data was collected from sociometric questionnaires and academic records from the years 1991 to 2004, for 840 subjects who participated in a group counseling class at the University of North Texas. Counseling knowledge had the highest correlations with all academic measures except group counseling final grades, in which counseling ability had the highest strength. The strongest correlations for all three sociometric variables occurred with group counseling final grades; correlations were r = 0.42 for counseling ability, r = 0.40 for counseling knowledge, and r = 0.30 for friendship. The sociometric variable of friendship had the lowest correlations in all academic measures, but was more significant than expected. The friendship sociometric variable may account for likeability as a factor in making sociometric choices. Combined sociometric scores led to increased correlation strength and explained variances that reached the large level of 30% with group counseling final grades. A statistically significant difference was found between A and B grade students in group counseling, on all three sociometric variables. Effect sizes were generally large. Standard deviations for the A and B grade subjects were also large and could limit predictability of grades, based on sociometric scores alone. Results strongly suggested that all three sociometric variables would be a valuable source of information regarding counselor preparation. Results also validated that individual sociometric perceptions of others tended toward agreement. Significant correlations were found over a variety of academic measures and over a time-span of 14 years, suggesting a degree of consistency and stability in sociometric measures.
- Required Counseling Provided Within a Counselor Training Program: Its Effect on Self-Awareness and the Impact of Ethical Concerns on the Experience
- This study examined the experience of 140 students in a counselor training program that required students to participate in 10 sessions of individual counseling during their training program in order to increase their self-awareness. Students had the option of fulfilling the requirement through being counseled either by more advanced students within the training program or by mental health professionals outside the program. Results indicated that students in both settings reported a significant increase in their self-awareness. Students who fulfilled the requirement in a setting outside of the counseling program clinics reported a significantly higher increase in self-awareness than those who fulfilled the requirement within the counseling program clinics. Students' reports of increased self-awareness did not vary by their stages of progress through the program. Participants reported significant ethical concerns regarding confidentiality and dual relationships that reportedly reduced the beneficial impact of the counseling experience. Students who fulfilled the counseling requirement within the counseling program clinics experienced significantly greater ethical concerns than did those who fulfilled the requirement outside the program clinics. As with effect on self-awareness, stage in the program was not related to impact of ethical concerns on the required counseling experience. The overwhelming majority (91.4%) of participants supported requiring counselors in training to experience their own personal counseling. The majority of the students (58%) recommended that either a counseling program clinic or somewhere outside the program would be equally acceptable settings for future students to obtain the counseling. Of the remaining students, nearly equal numbers recommended a counseling program clinic (18%) as recommended an outside setting (24%). Potential benefits and costs to requiring individual counseling for counselors in training were examined. Advantages and disadvantages to providing the counseling within program clinics were discussed, as were various options for providing the counseling.
- Resilience Among Middle School Students
- Resilience is the ability to survive and persevere during difficult times. Resilient people also thrive after overcoming adversity. Adolescents have many developmental tasks to overcome in their quest to becoming adults. Difficulty with these tasks can lead to academic and personal failures. Adolescents with low resilience often struggle with low self-esteem. If students are identified early as having lower levels of resilience, professional school counselors have an opportunity to provide resilience-enhancing activities. Prior to middle school, students are assigned all of their classes. During middle school, students begin to select their elective courses which may be representative of their interests and current emotional status. By looking at students' elective courses, I looked for patterns of resilience that may help professional school counselors proactively identify students in need of additional guidance in order to be academically successful. This study utilized a convenience sample of middle school students enrolled in the 8th grade (N = 190) of a large suburban school district located in the southwest United States to measure levels of resilience and elective course enrollment. Gender of the participants was 107 females and 83 males. The students reported their ethnicity as 5.8% African American/Black, 11.1% Asian, 12.6% Hispanic, 1.1% Native American, 1.6% Pacific Islander, 59.5% Caucasian/White, and 8.4% multiracial. I measured resilience in this study using the Resilience Scale and comparisons based on elective course. Data analyses include descriptive statistics and ANOVAs. Based on a statistical significance criterion of p < .05, students enrolled in athletics scored significantly higher in resilience than did non-athletics students enrolled in physical education/outdoor education (p = .035). Additionally, Caucasian females were significantly less resilient than Caucasian males (p = .031). Limitations of the study, implications of the results for practice, and recommendations for future research are presented.
- School based child parent relationship therapy (CPRT) with low income Black American parents: Effects on children's behaviors and parent-child relationship stress, a pilot study.
- This study examined the effectiveness of training low income Black American parents in child parent relationship therapy (CPRT). In response to the cultural values and challenges faced by low income Black American parents, the CPRT manual was adapted slightly for use with parents for this study. In this quasi-experimental design, 14 parents were assigned to the experimental group and 13 parents were assigned to the no treatment control group. Six hypotheses were analyzed. Different analyses were conducted based on the hypotheses. A two-factor repeated measures analysis of variance and analysis of covariance were conducted to determine if the CPRT treatment and the no treatment control group performed differently across time according to pretest and posttest results of the Child Behavior Checklist - Parent Version (CBCL) and the Parenting Stress Index (PSI). Additionally, partial η2 was calculated to determine practical significance. Five hypotheses were retained at the .025 level of significance. Findings indicated that parents who participated in the CPRT training reported a statistically significant decrease in parent-child relationship stress. Specifically, parents assigned to the experimental group demonstrated a statistically significant decrease in Child Domain (p < .001), Parent Domain (p < .001), and Total Stress (p < .001) of the PSI when compared to parents assigned to the no treatment control group. Similarly, results indicated that parents assigned to the experimental group reported statistically significant improvements in Total Problems (p < .01) and Externalizing Problems (p = .001) of the CBCL, when compared to parents assigned to the no treatment control group. No statistical significant results were found on Internalizing Problems.
- School-based child parent relationship therapy (CPRT) with low income first generation immigrant Hispanic parents: Effects on child behavior and parent-child relationship stress.
- This quasi-experimental study examined the effects of child-parent relationship therapy (CPRT) with low income first generation immigrant Hispanic parents. Forty-eight parents were randomly assigned by school site to the experimental group (n=24) and to the no treatment control group (n=24). A two factor (Time x Group) repeated measures analysis of variance was performed to examine the effects of group membership (experimental, control) and time (pretest, posttest) on each of the six hypotheses. Dependent variables for the Spanish version of the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) included Externalizing Problems, Internalizing Problems, and Total Problems. Dependent variables for the Spanish version of the Parenting Stress Index (PSI) included Child Domain, Parent Domain, and Total Stress. Results indicated that from pre-test to post-test, parents who participated in the CPRT treatment group reported a statistically significant improvement on their children's behaviors at the alpha .025 level (Internalizing Problems p< .001; Externalizing Problems p< .001; Total Problems p<.001) when compared to children whose parents did not participate in CPRT. Partial eta squared (ηp2) further indicated that the effects of CPRT treatment on the experimental group compared to the control group from pre-test to post-test was large (ηp2 = .56; ηp2 = .59; and ηp2 = .68, respectively). Similarly, results indicated that from pre-test to post-test, parents who participated in the CPRT treatment group reported a statistically significant improvement on parent-child relationship stress at the alpha .025 level (Child Domain p< .001; Parent Domain p< .001; Total Stress p< .001) when compared to parents who did not participate in CPRT. Partial eta squared (ηp2) further indicated that the effects of CPRT treatment on the experimental group compared to the control group from pre-test to post-test was large (ηp2 = .39; ηp2 = .51; and ηp2 = .42, respectively).
- South Asian Women’s Experiences In Counseling: An Exploration Of Working Alliance, Multicultural Competence, Acculturation, And Cultural Value Conflicts
- The purpose of this study was to examine predictors of client-counselor working alliance by understanding the effects of acculturation, perceived multicultural competence in counselors, and cultural value conflicts among South Asian women. The study was based on a nonrandom sample of women ages 18 to 39 years living in the United States who had completed at least three counseling sessions with a mental health professional in the last 5 years. Forty participants completed the online survey. Participants were recruited through personal contacts, social networking Internet websites, businesses, agencies, and places of worship. The majority of participants were highly educated, second-generation women descending from India or Pakistan. The full survey included an eligibility screening questionnaire, demographic questionnaire, the Working Alliance Inventory-Short Revised with an average mean of 4.82, Cross-Cultural Counseling Inventory-Revised with an average mean of 4.17 and reliability of excellent internal consistency reliability at ? = .92, Asian Values Scale-Revised with an average mean score of 2.44, and Cultural Value Conflicts Scale for South Asian Women with a mean score of 3.33. Participants reported experiencing working alliance often within the therapeutic relationship and experienced middle levels of Asian value adherence, falling in the integration level. The results indicated that participants experienced neutral to agreeable cultural value conflicts. Bivariate correlations indicated a statistically significant, moderate relationship between participants’ perceptions of counselors’ multicultural competence and their reports of working alliance in the therapeutic relationship. All other correlations reflected small to moderate effect sizes; however, these correlations were not statistically significant. Similarly, bivariate regression indicated that perceptions of multicultural counselor competence predicted the client-counselor working alliance to a moderate degree. From the results of hierarchical linear regression, acculturation and cultural value conflicts did not predict client-counselor working alliance even after accounting for perceived multicultural competence in counselors. The strongest predictor of client-counselor working alliance was the perceived multicultural competence of counselors. Probable reasons for the results of this study were discussed, limitations were identified, and suggestions for counseling practice were provided. Implications for the profession of counseling were made, and recommendations for future research were provided.
- A Study of Practices and Procedures used to Prepare Competent Group Leaders by Instructors in CACREP-Accredited Master's Level Group Courses
- This study identified the practices and procedures of instruction that is being implemented by group counseling instructors at CACREP-accredited institutions. A survey questionnaire developed by the researcher was used to gather data from 160 CACREP-accredited counseling units across the United States. The survey was designed to collect input from group instructors on how the didactic, practicum, and experiential components of the master's level group course are being implemented. Three assumptions were made in conducting this study: 1.) The majority of master's level group instructors will report that they use a didactic component in preparing students to become effective group leaders, 2.) The majority of master's level group instructors will report that they use an experiential component in preparing students to become effective group leaders, and 3.) The majority of master's level group instructors will report that they use a practicum component in preparing students to become effective group leaders. The survey questionnaire and, consequently, the results were divided into the respective sections of didactic, experiential, and practicum. The results indicated that each of these components were utilized in the instruction of master's level group courses.
- A Systematic Review of Research on After-Death Communication (ADC)
- In this study, after-death communication (ADC) is defined as spontaneously occurring encounters with the deceased. Reported occurrences of ADC phenomena range widely among published ADC research studies, so a systematic review of 35 studies was conducted. A rubric was developed to evaluate the methodological quality; final inter-rater reliability among three raters was r = .90. Results were used to rank the studies; the methodologically strongest studies were used to arrive at best estimate answers to four research questions/subquestions: (1) How common are experiences of ADC? How does occurrence vary by gender, age, marital status, ethnicity, religious practice, religious affiliation, financial status, physical health, educational level, and grief status? (2) To what extent do ADCrs report ADC experiences to be beneficial and/or detrimental? What are the leading benefits and/or detriments? (3) What is the incidence of research studies in which the researchers mentioned that the research participants appeared mentally healthy? (4) What is the incidence of sensory modalities—for example, visual, auditory, and kinesthetic—in which ADCs occur? Best estimate results were compiled into a one-page fact sheet that counselors and others can use to educate people who seek empirically-based information about ADC.
- Trends in admission policy criteria for CACREP approved masters and doctoral counselor education programs.
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Counselor education program faculties evaluate applicants to masters and doctoral level programs using criteria that the faculties hope will predict the applicant's potential for academic success and then effectiveness as a counselor, counselor educator, or researcher. Choosing admission criteria to assess this level of potential in an applicant is quite a task. Those counselor education programs that are accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) have the benefit of the admission guidelines provided by CACREP standards for accreditation. These guidelines give only basic, general direction to programs regarding their admission criteria but each individual program determines their own criteria for admission. The purpose of this study was to discover any recognizable trends in admission policy criteria, in terms of specific criteria used to evaluate and select students from the applicant pool, for CACREP accredited masters and doctoral programs. This study also sought to discover any recognizable trends in admission policy criteria, in terms of a specific number of criteria used to evaluate and select students for CACREP accredited master and doctoral counselor education programs. This qualitative study investigated 178 masters level CACREP accredited counselor education programs and 45 doctoral CACREP accredited counselor education programs. The CACREP Website provided contact names and Web address for each program. Admission criteria were pulled from the program Websites. If no criteria were present on the Website, the program contact person was contacted by phone or by email. A contact form for the masters level programs, and another for the doctoral level programs, was developed to record program criteria. A rate or return of 96% for the masters level programs and 91% for the doctoral programs was achieved. For the purposes of this study, a trend was defined as 1) any measure being required by 50% or more of the responding programs, or 2) the number of measures used by a program being equal to the mean number of measures used by all programs. The masters level program trends were for counselor education programs to use the following criteria to assess applicants: transcripts, grade point average (GPA), letters of reference, applications, Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores, letters of intent, and interviews with faculty members. A trend was also discovered for masters level programs to use between 3 and 12 measures to assess applicants for admission with a mean score of 7.01, a median score of 7, and a mode of 7. The doctoral level program trends were for counselor education programs to use the following criteria to assess applicants: transcripts, letters of reference, letters of intent to address goals, aspirations, experiences, and purpose, GRE scores, applications, and GPA. A trend was also discovered for doctoral level programs to use between 4 and 10 measures to assess applicants for admission with a mean score of 8.097, a median score of 8, and a mode of 9. Given the high rate of return, the trends discovered can be said to reflect the admission criteria used to assess applicants for admission into CACREP accredited masters and doctoral counselor education programs in the United States. A limitation could be that the data was collected using different methods of communication in that some data was collected from Websites, some from email correspondence, and some data from phone conversations. It seemed that the Websites and the emails gave the admission criteria but the phone conversations gave an understanding of not only the criteria used but the process used in selecting students from the applicant pool.
- The WASI as a Screening Tool for Counselors in the Referral Decision for a Neuropsychological Evaluation
- When a client has cognitive impairment resulting from cerebral dysfunction (CD) that goes undiagnosed and, therefore, untreated, psychotherapy and rehabilitation outcome is likely to be impacted negatively. Due primarily to managed care, screening for CD has reduced substantially. Master's level counselors need a cost-efficient way to detect possible CD and, thus, justify referral for neuropsychological evaluation. This study examined the Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence (WASI) instrument's ability to screen for possible CD by examining the relationship between a) WASI Performance IQ (PIQ) and Verbal IQ (VIQ) scores and neuropsychological test scores, and b) the VIQ-PIQ discrepancy and the severity of disability. In this retrospective study, test scores were extrapolated from neuropsychological assessments conducted between 2001 and 2004 on 73 CD-diagnosed adults at a CARF accredited rehabilitation facility. Disability severity ratings of mild, moderate, and severe were assigned based on clinical judgment and interrater agreement. The assessment battery included the WASI and several neuropsychological tests: Halstead-Reitan TPT, TMT-A and B, and FOT; WMS-III VR-I and 2, LM-1 and 2, and MC; McCarron-Dial HVDT; SDMT; and SCT. Based upon a multitrait-multimethod matrix, mild to moderate convergent and discriminant validity was found with the WASI VIQ and PIQ traits among neuropsychological verbal and performance measures. Statistically, the SCT, TMT-A, and HVDT-right shape were most predictive of the PIQ, and the WMS-III LM-2 and MC were most predictive of the VIQ. VIQ-PIQ discrepancy did not predict severity of disability, but IQ means and subtest scores between the mild and severe groups were significantly different. Results indicated that WASI VIQ-PIQ discrepancy did not detect CD. However, WASI subtest scores of 40 or lower may justify further evaluation of potential CD. Contrary to the WASI manual, Similarities and Block Design rather than Vocabulary and Matrix Reasoning subtest scores may be more predictive of CD. This author suggested that counselors administer the WASI, SCT, and TMT-A as a time efficient screening method for CD.