Clinical Mental Health Counseling Supervision

Why is Supervision Important?

“Competent supervision requires a fine balance on the supervisor’s part between providing professional development opportunities for supervisees and protecting clients’ welfare. While assisting supervisees to learn the art and craft of therapeutic practice, supervisors also are expected to monitor the quality of care clients are receiving as well as serving as a gatekeeper for the profession. A primary aim of supervision is to create a context in which the supervisee can acquire the experience needed to become an independent professional.”
Corey, G., Haynes, R., Moulton, P., & Muratori, M.  (2010). Clinical supervision in the helping professions: A practical guide. Alexandria VA: American Counseling Association, p. 3.

Supervisor Qualifications
Site supervisors must have the following qualifications:
(1) a minimum of a master’s degree, preferably in counseling, or a related profession;
(2) relevant certifications and/or licenses;
(3) a minimum of two years of pertinent professional experience in the specialty area in which the student is enrolled;
(4) knowledge of the program’s expectations, requirements, and evaluation procedures for students; and
(5) relevant training in counseling supervision.
(CACREP, 2016, Section 3.P).

Clinical and administrative supervision
Clinical supervision focuses on the work of the supervisee in providing services to clients. In our view, clinical supervision is best defined as a process whereby consistent observation and evaluation of the counseling process is provided by a trained and experienced professional who recognizes and is competent in the unique body of knowledge and skill required for professional development. Supervision also is defined by many external forces, including governing bodies, licensing agencies, and the settings in which we work.

Administrative supervision focuses on the issues surrounding the supervisee’s role and responsibilities in the organization as an employee: personnel matters, timekeeping, documentation, and so forth (Bradley & Kottler, 2001). The line between these kinds of supervision is not distinct; thus, not surprisingly, there continues to be ‚extensive misunderstanding‘ of the activities that constitute clinical supervision (Schultz, Ososkie, Fried, Nelson, & Bardos, 2002, p. 219). All too often clinical supervision is confused with staff meetings and administrative oversight … It is not unusual for counselors to be supervised by someone who is required to function in both clinical and administrative roles, a situation that can lead to some common challenges“

Corey, G., Haynes, R., Moulton, P., & Muratori, M.  (2010). Clinical supervision in the helping professions: A practical guide. (American Counseling Association, Ed.). Alexandria VA: American Counseling Association, p. 3.