Assessment Ethics

AssessmentEthics

AssessmentEthics

Thefieldof psychology,similarotherfieldsof profession,facesseveralethicsissuesthat influencetheeffectiveness of theassessmentandthecounseling processes.There are three majorethicalissuesthat are morecommonin thefieldof psychology.First,counselorsare facedwith theuniquesituationof regardingprivacyandconfidentiality of thepersonalinformationthat theygetfro their clients(Miller, 2015). Secondly,counselorsare facedwith thechallengeof maintaininga professionalrelationshipwith their clients,whileavoidingunprofessionalrelationships,suchas a romanticassociationwith their clients(Pipes, 2000). Thethirdtypeofthe ethicalissueis theprofessionalresponsibilityof thecounselors,whoare expectedto demonstratepersonalas wellas professionalcompetencein their practices.In addition,ethicalguidelines requirecounselorsto facilitateopen,accurate,andopencommunicationbetween them andtheir clients(American Counseling Association, 2014). Theyshould alsoinitiatethecounseling servicesforpsychologicalproblemsthat are within their academicandprofessionalqualificationsin orderto ensurethatthetherapyis successful.

Thethree ethicalissues(privacyconcerns,counselor-client relationship,andprofessionalresponsibility)havedifferentimplicationsin thefieldof counseling. Theprivacyconcernsimpliesthatthecounselorhas theprimaryresponsibilityforensuringthatthepersonalinformationthat theygetduring thecounseling sessionsdoesnot reachthethirdpartieswithout theconsentof theclient(ACA, 2014).Theissueof thecounselor-client relationshipimpliesthatthetwo partiesshould engageexclusivelyin a professionalassociationwithout divertingto sexualrelationshipsduring thecounseling sessions.Ethicalguidelines (suchas ACA Code)providetheminimumperiodof timethat should lapseafter theendof thecounseling sessionsbefore thecounselorandtheclientcan engagein a romanticrelationship(Elliot, 2013).Theissueof professionalresponsibilityimpliesthatcounselorsshould engagein thecounseling sessionsforproblemsthat theyare morecompetentin andmakereferrals forthechallengesthattheyare beyond their capabilities(Australian Counseling Association, 2012).Thismeansthatitis unethicalforcounselorsto assumethecounseling responsibilitiesthat exceedtheiracademicas wellas their professionalcompetencies,buttheyshould refersuchclientsto morequalifiedcounselors.

SectionE of theACA codeof ethicsprovidessufficientguidelines that can helpcounselorsin addressingavoidingin psychologicalassessment.Forexample,theissueof privacyandconfidentiality of client’sinformationis addressedin Section E.4, which statesthatthecounselorshould onlyreleaseinformationwith theclient’sconsentof theconsentof theclient’slegalrepresentative(ACA, 2014).Forexample,thecounselorrequirestheconsentof theclientora representativebefore submittingclient’sinformationto anotherprofessionalwhocan helpin interpretingsuchinformation.Thisimpliesthattheinformationshould onlybesharedwhendoingsoenhancestheeffectiveness of thecounseling sessions.

Theissueof professionalresponsibilityisaddressedunder sectionE.2.a, which statesthatcounselorsshould useassessmentsandtestingthattheyhavealreadybeentrainedon andhaveacquiredsufficientcompetence(ACA, 2014). Forexample,a counselorwhowishesto applytechnology-assisted interpretationof testsshould firstreceivetrainingon constructs that are beingmeasuredandtheapplicationof suchtechnology. Theissueof harmfulrelationshipshas beenaddressedin Section E.13.d, which statesthatcounselorsshould avoidharmfulpersonalandprofessionalrelationshipswith clientsandtheir familymembers(ACA, 2014). In conclusion,counselorsshould engagetheir clientsin harmlessrelationships,protecttheprivacyof their clients,andassumetheassessmentresponsibilitiesthattheyhavealreadybeentrainedandare competentin.

References

AustralianCounseling Association (2012). Codeof ethics and practice.Queensland: ACA.

AmericanCounseling Association (2014). ACAcode of ethics.Alexandria: ACA.

Elliot,R. (2013). When values and ethics conflict: The counselor’s roleand responsibility. AlabamaCounseling Association Journal,37 (1), 1-7.

Miller,A. (2015). Typesof ethical issues a counselor may face when working with families.Santa Monica: Demand Media.

Pipes,B. (2000). Non-sexual relationships between psychotherapists andtheir former clients: Obligations of psychology. EthicsBehavior,7 (1), 27-41.