Structured reflecting teams in group supervision: A qualitative study with school counseling interns
As school counseling interns graduate and transition to a professional school counseling work world, there are issues which may affect their personal and professional development, such as ongoing skill acquisition, keeping current in the field, and reflective awareness of professional counselor growth. Counselor educators continually seek approaches and methods of training school counseling interns with potential for transference to the world of practicing school counselors. However, translating ongoing supervision of school counselors to the real world setting can prove problematic. The problem is twofold; there is a lack of clinical supervision after graduation, and school administrators tend to provide only administrative supervision.
This exploratory study sought to explore the potential of one model of group supervision, which could potentially translate into the real work world of practicing school counselors. The purpose of the study was to explore the experiences of school counseling interns’ with a reflecting team model of group supervision, Structured Reflecting Team Supervision (SRTS), during the final internship semester.
A qualitative methodology was used for this exploratory study due to the scant research in the areas of clinical group supervision and the SRTS model with the school counseling intern population. This study was designed to answer the following research question: What are the experiences of school counseling interns exposed to the reflecting team model of group supervision throughout their internship semester? Data consisting of structured open-ended interview guides (SOIG) were gathered three times throughout the semester. Data were also gathered one time through a separate SOIG at the end of the semester from the academic supervisors to ensure consistency of the use of the SRTS model.
Study participants found hearing multiple perspectives on the same case to be the most important aspect of their time together. Several participants suggested an earlier start to the SRTS model might provide an opportunity to follow the cycle of new idea implementation and reporting back progress from those ideas. A number of participants looked forward to trying the model in the field through peer consultations to meet the needs for further clinical supervision.