A Good Fit. What experienced secondary school-based counsellors require from their clinical supervision: a situational analysis of practitioners’ descriptions of best practice

  • Imogen Harries

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    Aims: The purpose of this study is to investigate the requirements of experienced secondary school-based counsellors of their clinical supervision and gain an understanding of practitioners’ experiences of best practice.

    Method: 17 experienced secondary school-based counsellors and /or supervisors participated in semi-structured interviews. A constructivist Situational Analysis grounded theory methodology was used to analyse and understand data.

    Findings: One core category (‘A good fit’) encapsulates four theoretical categories (‘the supervisory relationship’, ‘understanding the working context’, ‘safeguarding’, and ‘the shared supervisory journey’). Threads that weave these categories together are: the containment and holding nature of supervision, safe ethical working regarding the client/therapist and supervisee/supervisor work , self-awareness on the part of both supervisee and supervisor, and the co-creation of reflective practice in supervision.

    Conclusion: Experienced therapists require a depth of exploration within their supervision which requires a level of self-awareness on the part of both supervisor and supervisee. The collegial, co-created supervisory relationship allows for challenge to occur safely, and there needs to be a shared understanding of the secondary school as a working context for therapeutic practice. The study also indicates implications for supervisor training and professional development.
    Date of Award2024
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorCarmel Conn (Supervisor) & Ruth Northway (Supervisor)

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