Confidential communications, Student counselors, Psychotherapist and patient
Children between the ages of 6 and 15 years were interviewed using a questionnaire designed to assess their conception of confidentiality in the counseling experience. This questionnaire was based upon the stipulates for confidentiality outlined in the 1977 American Psychological Association's Code of Ethics. Children age 6 to 8 years scored significantly lower on the questionnaire than children age 12 to 15 years. Neither of these groups' scores were significantly different from the score of children age 9 to 11 years, yet the total mean scores increased as the age of the children in the groups increased. These results suggest that children gradually evolve a conception of confidentiality consistent with professional guidelines. Four variables were examined which were expected to grossly predict the child's total score on the questionnaire. Chi-square analysis did not reveal significant differences for the variables of perceived adequacy of explanation of confidentiality and attitude toward breaking a secret. For the two variables involving the children's perception of the maintenance/violation of their confidentiality, chi-square analysis did reveal significant differences (which were not, however, found using a one-way analysis of variance procedure). Some demographic variables were found to be significantly related to scores on the questionnaire, yet most of the relationships involved specific area scores rather than total scores.
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McGuire, John M.
Master of Science (M.S.)
College of Social Sciences
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Confidential communications -- Student counselors, Psychotherapist and patient
Burgess, Charlene Marie, "The Child's Conception of Confidentiality in the Psychotherapeutic Relationship" (1978). Retrospective Theses and Dissertations. 277.