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Title: Analysis of counselling psychologists' self-reported experiences of drawing upon two or more theoretical orientations to inform their practice
Author: Hapney, P. R.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5917 4638
Awarding Body: University of the West of England
Current Institution: University of the West of England, Bristol
Date of Award: 2016
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Recent commentators have considered how the institutional changes that have taken place within the context of clinical practice in the UK over the past ten years exert pressures upon counselling psychologists to practice in particular ways. The aim of this investigation was to explore how counselling psychologists’ experience and draw upon the theories that are available to them to inform their clinical practice, and how the pressures generated by changes to context may be impacting upon this. Fifteen accredited practitioners were interviewed on a one to one basis. The interview data was transcribed and the 15 transcripts were analysed using thematic analysis. The results of this investigation support previous findings that suggest counselling and psychotherapy practitioners’ tend to nurture a theoretically integrated, idiosyncratic approach to practice. The results go beyond those of prior studies due to their ability to trace the interaction existing between practitioners’ use of theory and the broader contexts of practice. The results suggest that counselling psychologists are putting the relationship with the client at the heart of their work and that they draw upon a subjectively meaningful integration of theories to formulate their client’s difficulties. Furthermore, where practitioners are required to use CBT, this is done in a way that prioritises the relational core of practice as well as incorporates the insights to be gained from other theories. The ability of pressures stemming from the priorities of contemporary institutional contexts to modify participants’ relationships with theory is illustrated. Given the significant pressures being generated by evolving contexts of practice, conclusions centre upon the importance of maintaining the disciplinary articulation of the principles of a counselling psychology approach to practice in order to fully support practitioners in their clinical endeavours.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Couns.Psych.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available