The effects of solution-focused supervision on the perceived self-efficacy of developing therapists

Jeffrey James Koob, Marquette University


Therapist burnout, and career changes--even after several years of being a therapist--can be traced back to ineffective supervision. Traditional models of supervision have been ineffective in promoting positive perceived self-efficacy in therapists in training. Therefore the lack of self-efficacy impacts on the profession and the need for a better supervisory model is evident. It was the purpose of this study to examine one alternative to traditional supervision, namely Solution-Focused Supervision. It was anticipated that this study would demonstrate that supervisors implementing the components of a Solution-Focused model would effectively contribute to the development of the therapist's positive perceived self-efficacy. A Solution-Focused model was hypothesized as having 3 major assumptions: (1) Focus on solutions, not problems; (2) Focus on Therapist's strengths, not weaknesses, and; (3) Focus on multiple answers to client's issues, not single answers. A sample of 55 Supervisor-Therapist dyads participated in the study. Supervisors responded to a Supervisor Opinion Scale which was subjected to an Exploratory Factor Analysis with the factor scores serving as the predictor variables. Therapists responded to a Therapist Self-Efficacy Scale with their scores serving as the criterion variable. It was hypothesized that Therapists who demonstrated more perceived self-efficacy, would be associated with Supervisors who adhered to Solution-Focused beliefs. A Stepwise Multiple Regression was performed, entering the age of the therapist and the years they have practiced therapy as covariates, the factor scores from the Supervisor Opinion Scale as predictors, and the scores on the Therapist Self-Efficacy Scale as the criterion. Results demonstrated that Solution-Focused assumptions contribute to positive perceived self-efficacy in therapists in training. Limitations of the study included the correlational design, convenience sampling, and sample size. These limitations resulted in the inability to standardize the measures, and to generalize the results of the study. Suggestions were made for a clearer understanding of the components of Solution-Focused Supervision, an educational program to disseminate the model, and further research to evaluate its effectiveness. It was concluded that this model of supervision will only be useful if and when a benefit to the client is supported through further research.

Recommended Citation

Jeffrey James Koob, "The effects of solution-focused supervision on the perceived self-efficacy of developing therapists" (January 1, 1998). Dissertations (1962 - 2010) Access via Proquest Digital Dissertations. Paper AAI9901731.