Title page for ETD etd-11172012-040105
|Type of Document
||Lemon, Stephen C.
||Developing a school-based referral system :comparison of factors cited by school counselors and therapists
||Master of Science
||Marriage and Family Therapy
|Little, Linda F.
|Scheirer, C. James
|Stith, Sandra M.
|Date of Defense
When school-based behavior problems are not solvable in short-term school
counseling, referrals are often made to community therapists. The school-based
referral process is described in the literature as an informal process aimed at
matching clients’ needs with therapist skills but the literature also suggests that
the referral process is based even more so on the relationship of the school
counselor to the therapist. A survey of 19 school counselors was conducted to
measure the importance of six factors identified in a pilot study that are used in
selecting a referral source; Therapist Accessibility, Therapist Commitment to
School, Therapist Philosophy and Belief System, Therapist Reputation, and
Therapist Credentials. In addition, 19 community-based therapists were
surveyed to measure their ranking of these same factors. When the scores were
analyzed it was found that school counselors rated two scales, Therapist
Accessibility and Therapist Reputation, significantly higher than did therapists.
Surprisingly, Therapist Reputation was rated least important by both groups.
This research has the potential to help strengthen the engagement between the
school system and the mental health system by first identifying the factors used
for school-based referrals and then identifying the differences in how the two
systems perceive the importance of these factors.
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