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Principles in Counseling, Assessment Example

Pages: 4

Words: 1092

Assessment

Introduction

Assessment in the counseling context refers to the collection of information in order to identify, analyze, evaluate, and address the problems, issues, and circumstances of clients in the counseling relationship (Ereford, 2013). Counselors should be able to conduct assessments to make sure that client’s problems are well-handled and without raising further questions. There are certain reasons that make assessments necessary for counselors, especially in their lives within the profession.

Some of these reasons are illustrated in the following section. In addition to the importance of counseling, this reflective study also tackles the various considerations that must be put in place while implementing different forms and techniques of assessment. Not all the assessment techniques can be fully applicable under all the given circumstances. It is, therefore, crucial to take into account the different factors that must be put in place while coming up with the best assessment types and techniques out of those available. In its summary, the reflection analyzes some of the ethical standards that are applicable to clinical assessment.

Role of Assessment in the lives of Counselors

As mentioned earlier, assessment is fundamental to the professional lives of counselors in various perspectives. These benefits could be from various dimensions, some of which will target the clients and others to the counselors themselves. Firstly, assessment helps the counselors to identify the specific clients’ requirements and come up with suggestible plans and views about the problem at hand. It is through the assessments that the counseling programs can be initiated. The counselor, through identification of the client’s needs, will become more conversant with the various needs or problems that the clients might be experiencing.

Upon conceptualization of the client’s needs, the counselor will be able to conduct relevant empirical studies to find out past similar cases and do more relevant research related to clients’ needs. Hypothetical suggestions may be derived at this level,. Making informed decision through the relevant studies conducted will automatically guide the counselor in assisting the client in making well-informed decisions relating to the client’s needs.

Assessment, whether formal or informal, provides essential tools and data upon which accurate decisions can be derived. According to Wall (2004), formal assessment provides information for initial and on-going “evaluation with minimal personal bias as well as the data necessary for effective interventions”. The data collected during the assessment process is free from biases and can be depended on by the various clients. Proper judgments can then be derived from the bias-free information. Clients feel more relieved when they are provided with genuine solutions to their problems, rather than judgments based on personal interests of the counselors.

In addition, assessment is important to counselors in that it enables the counselors to judge their own effectiveness and be able to determine how the solutions developed affect the clients. Complete assessment can be easily evaluated from the client’s reaction and mood towards the final solution made by the counselor towards a given issue at hand. When the client is not fully convinced with the suggested solution, the counsellor can employ more flexible techniques and approaches to solving the same problem. It is not always based upon rigidities and stern solutions.

A counselor who assesses the needs and solutions to all the issues handled gains the confidence of the clients. Proper solutions that can be referred to by other clients makes the counselor be considered a professional in the field. It is through the assessments that wise and correct judgments can be derived for particular contextual issues. The final solution is always based on thorough research and evaluation practices to make sure it is free from doubt and bias and does not interfere with the welfare of the client.

Assessment also benefits the counselor in the dimension of being able to come up with self-made discoveries and solutions. Proper analysis of the divergent issues that are handled with different clients makes the counselor more proficient even in handling his or her own problems, or issues pertaining to societal interests. This gained insight into solving different problems is valuable for sustaining psychological health. Whiston (2008) further asserts that counselors may limit the quality of care they provide for the clients if they do not make appropriate assessments.

Considerations for Various Counseling Assessments

Not all the assessment methods would be applied in any counseling session or practice. It is important to distinguish between what techniques to apply to a particular context, based on the prevailing situations. The considerations may be multiracial, statistical, or viewed from other perspectives. The employment of any given assessment technique would revolve around these considerations, to ensure high levels of significance in the ultimate solutions that are developed.

Multicultural considerations to counseling assessments are based on understanding more about the clients before administering counseling programs. It is procedural and may include issues such as assessment of ethnicity, which can be done through conducting a brief study about the life of the client, in terms of family structure and recent developments in the client’s social set-up. It would also be important to look into the needs and goals of the client in terms of ease of affiliation with other people, levels on interactions and other basic family issues. Other multicultural considerations may come in the form of language factors, migration history, acculturation extents and other culturally-related issues. The counselor must be fully aware of all these factors to administer relevant and effective services.

There are statistical issues that must be considered in administration of counseling assessments. Some of these factors may be closely related to the client’s information based on age, educational levels, gender-based issues, and other factors that relate to the client’s needs. These considerations are important since they will be able to dictate the language levels of the clients. Proper look into these issues will eliminate elements of inaccuracy or inconsistency in giving out the counseling services. Having collected enough information about the clients, it is possible to provide accurate and efficient services.

Ethical Issues in Clinical Assessments

These are the norms that guide the course of operations in clinical assessment. They are moral principles that must be adhered to in order to ensure maximum utilization of the counseling sessions. Some of these issues include maintaining professional competence, promoting integrity within discipline, ensuring respect for human rights, contributing to the society, and upholding professional standards.

References

Erford, B. T. (2013). Assessment for counselors. Belmont, Calif: Brooks/Cole Cengage Learning.

Wall, J. E. (2004). Why counselors shouldn’t let testing leave them behind. In Vistas: Perspectives on counseling, 2004 (pp. 69-77). Alexandria, VA: American Counseling Association.

Whiston, S. C. (2009). Principles and applications of assessment in counseling (4th Ed.). Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole, Cengage Learning

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