Altruism, Counselor and client, Counselor trainees, Ego (Psychology)
Research suggests that counselor educators continue to debate whether general personality characteristics, relationship building skills, or other knowledge or skills are important in selecting the most effective counselors (Crews et al., 2005). Further, counselor educators continue to rely on measures that have limited ability to predict counseling competence or success in graduate programs. Such measures include GRE and GPA scores along with heavy reliance on the personal interview that is well-known for bias. Moreover, research supports that there is a need for assessments that will assist in determining the most effective counselors and emphasize the importance of measuring those characteristics that have a solid empirical link to client outcomes. The purpose of this study was to bridge the gap in the literature and to measure counselor characteristics that have are grounded in current outcome literature. Outcome research has suggested that counselor empathy is one of the strongest predictors of client outcome. Therefore, two constructs were explored in this study that are linked to empathy: Loevinger‘s (1976) Theory of Ego Development and Altruistic Caring as measured by the Heintzelman Inventory (Robinson, Kuch, & Swank, 2010). The sample consisted of 81 graduate-level counselor trainees in their first or second semester of practicum at a large South Eastern university. Results revealed no statistically significant relationship between variables. However, further exploratory analysis yielded a statistically significant relationship between a component of altruistic caring, specifically early career choice in the counseling field (4.1% of the variance explained), and client outcome. Implications for counselor educators are presented along with areas for future research.
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Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
College of Education
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)
Dissertations, Academic -- Education, Education -- Dissertations, Academic
Hutchinson, Tracy S., "Predicting Client Outcomes Using Counselor Trainee Levels Of Ego Development And Altruistic Caring" (2011). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 2054.