Structure and Facilitation in Clinical Supervision when Clients Present with Varying Levels of Suicidal Risk
In this study, I investigated supervisory practices (i.e., structure and facilitation) when training therapists of differing levels of experience and self-efficacy are working with clients presenting with varying levels of suicidal risk (i.e., low or high). While previous research has supported that trainees need and want less structure and direction from their supervisors and become more self-efficacious as they gain more experience, this same assumption may not hold for crisis situations, such as when clients present with suicidal risk. To examine how trainees rate the quality of clinical supervision when working with clients presented with varying levels of suicidal risk, and how this may vary according to trainee experience level and trainee self-efficacy, an experimental design was used in which trainees read vignettes of pretend clients and supervisory sessions. It was hypothesized that quality ratings of supervision and client risk level, trainee experience level, and trainee self-efficacy would be moderated by the type of supervisory practice received. Results found significant main effects for trainee experience level, client risk level, and type of supervision received on supervision quality ratings, but no significant moderations. Clinical implications for supervisory practices and future directions for research are discussed.