The Impact of Counsellor Training on Students Essay

3565 Words Apr 15th, 2012 15 Pages
The Impact of Counsellor Training on Student Counsellors’ Significant Relationships Research Proposal

The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) define counselling, along with psychotherapy, as being “umbrella terms that cover a range of talking therapies” (BACP, 2012: 1). In addition, counselling is provided by practitioners who “work with people over a short or long term to help them bring about effective change or enhance their wellbeing” (BACP, 2012: 1). Those who practice counselling in a professional manner undergo intensive training and personal development, the latter of which has been “defined in terms of self-awareness and change” (Wheeler, 1996: 75). These changes, according to Johns, “influence the
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There is, however, a paucity of research examining the impact of counselor training on student counsellors’ significant relationships (Macran and Shapiro, 1998). In 2012, the paucity of research in this area is as surprising as reported by Flynn-Piercy (2002) 10-years previously. It has long been established that personal development is a core aspect of counselor training (Wheeler, 2000), and yet the topic remains relatively under-researched, especially in terms of the impact this personal development has on trainees significant relationships.

The changes that occur to student counsellors as a result of personal development can be likened to the same changes that occur in counseling clients. Indeed, Flynn-Piercy (2002) state that it is very similar to the therapeutic process, which is supported by observations from trainers (Mearns, 1997) and feedback from students (Harding Davies et al., 2004). Such changes are likely to impact significant relationships, as is also the case with clients who receive counselling (Fear, 2004). This was first highlighted by Mearns (1997), with there being a specific emphasis on the problems that might arise between student counsellors and their partners as a result of their training and subsequent personal development. Although this can introduce crisis, it can also, according to Mearns

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