Counselor's Association Code of Ethics
and Standards of Practice - Excerpt
C: Professional Responsibility
Standard of Practice Seventeen (SP-17):
Boundaries of Competence. Counselors must practice only within the boundaries
of their competence. (See C.2.a.)
Section E: Evaluation,
Assesment and Interpretation
Standard of Practice Thirty-One (SP-31):
Limits of Competence. Counselors must perform only testing and assessment services
for which they are competent. Counselors must not allow the use of psychological
assessment techniques by unqualified persons under their supervision. (See E.2.a.)
Standard of Practice Thirty-Two (SP-32): Appropriate
Use of Assessment Instruments. Counselors must use assessment instruments in the
manner for which they were intended. (See E.2.b.)
Standard of Practice
Thirty-Three (SP-33): Assessment Explanations to Clients. Counselors must
provide explanations to clients prior to assessment about the nature and purposes
of assessment and the specific uses of results. (See E.3.a.)
of Practice Thirty-Four (SP-34): Recipients of Test Results. Counselors must
ensure that accurate and appropriate interpretations accompany any release of
testing and assessment information. (See E.3.b.)
Section G: Research
Standard of Practice Forty-Seven (SP-47): Accurate Research
Results. Counselors must not distort or misrepresent research data, nor fabricate
or intentionally bias research results. (See G.3.b.)
Board for Certified Counselors Code of Ethics - Excerpt
Certified counselors offer only professional services for which they are trained
or have supervised experience. No diagnosis, assessment, or treatment should be
performed without prior training or supervision. Certified counselors are responsible
for correcting any misrepresentations of their qualifications by others.
Certified counselors recognize their limitations and provide services or use techniques
for which they are qualified by training and/or supervision. Certified counselors
recognize the need for and seek continuing education to assure competent services.
8. Certified counselors are aware of the intimacy in the counseling relationship
and maintain respect for the client. Counselors must not engage in activities
that seek to meet their personal or professional needs at the expense of the client.
Certified counselors must insure that they do not engage in personal, social,
organizational, financial, or political activities which might lead to a misuse
of their influence.
12. Through an awareness of the impact of stereotyping
and unwarranted discrimination (e.g., biases based on age, disability, ethnicity,
gender, race, religion, or sexual orientation), certified counselors guard the
individual rights and personal dignity of the client in the counseling relationship.
Certified counselors are accountable at all times for their behavior. They must
be aware that all actions and behaviors of the counselor reflect on professional
integrity and, when inappropriate, can damage the public trust in the counseling
profession. To protect public confidence in the counseling profession, certified
counselors avoid behavior that is clearly in violation of accepted moral and legal
Section C: Counselor Supervision
who offer and/or provide supervision must:
a. Ensure that they have the proper
training and supervised experience through contemporary continuing education and/or
d. Ensure that supervisees are informed about the process
of supervision, including supervision goals, paradigms of supervision and the
supervisor's preferred research based supervision paradigm(s)
D: Measurement and Evaluation
1. Because many types of assessment techniques
exist, certified counselors must recognize the limits of their competence and
perform only those assessment functions for which they have received appropriate
training or supervision.
2. Certified counselors who utilize assessment instruments
to assist them with diagnoses must have appropriate training and skills in educational
and psychological measurement, validation criteria, test research, and guidelines
for test development and use.
3. Certified counselors must provide instrument
specific orientation or information to an examinee prior to and following the
administration of assessment instruments or techniques so that the results may
be placed in proper perspective with other relevant factors. The purpose of testing
and the explicit use of the results must be made known to an examinee prior to
4. In selecting assessment instruments or techniques for use in a
given situation or with a particular client, certified counselors must carefully
evaluate the specific theoretical bases and characteristics, validity, reliability
and appropriateness of the instrument.
5. When making statements to the public
about assessment instruments or techniques, certified counselors must provide
accurate information and avoid false claims or misconceptions concerning the meaning
of the instrument's reliability and validity terms.
6 Counselors must follow
all directions and researched procedures for selection, administration and interpretation
of all evaluation instruments and use them only within proper contexts.
Certified counselors must be cautious when interpreting the results of instruments
that possess insufficient technical data, and must explicitly state to examinees
the specific limitations and purposes for the use of such instruments.
counselors must proceed with caution when attempting to evaluate and interpret
performances of any person who cannot be appropriately compared to the norms for
9. Because prior coaching or dissemination of test materials
can invalidate test results, certified counselors are professionally obligated
to maintain test security.
10. Certified counselors must consider psychometric
limitations when selecting and using an instrument, and must be cognizant of the
limitations when interpreting the results. When tests are used to classify clients,
certified counselors must ensure that periodic review and/or retesting are made
to prevent client stereotyping.
11. An examinee's welfare, explicit prior understanding,
and consent are the factors used when determining who receives the test results.
Certified counselors must see that appropriate interpretation accompanies any
release of individual or group test data (e.g., limitations of instrument and
Section E: Research and Publication
counselors who conduct research with human subjects are responsible for the welfare
of the subjects throughout the experiment and must take all reasonable precautions
to avoid causing injurious psychological, physical, or social effects on their
5. Certified counselors who conduct research must abide by the basic
elements of informed consent:
a. fair explanation of the procedures to be followed,
including an identification of those which are
of the attendant discomforts and risks
c. description of the benefits to be
d. disclosure of appropriate alternative procedures that would be
advantageous for subjects with an
offer to answer any inquiries concerning
e. an instruction that subjects are free to withdraw their consent
and to discontinue participation in
the project or activity at any time
When reporting research results, explicit mention must be made of all the variables
and conditions known to the investigator that may have affected the outcome of
the study or the interpretation of the data.
7. Certified counselors who conduct
and report research investigations must do so in a manner that minimizes the possibility
that the results will be misleading.
-Myth of Repressed Memory, University
of Chicago Press: Chicago, 2005.
Association of Marriage and Family
Therapists Code of Ethics - Excerpt
Marriage and family therapists are aware of their influential positions with respect
to clients, and they avoid exploiting the trust and dependency of such persons.
Marriage and family therapists, as presenters, teachers, supervisors, consultants
and researchers, are dedicated to high standards of scholarship, present accurate
information, and disclose potential conflicts of interest.
Marriage and family therapists maintain accurate and adequate clinical and financial
3.7 While developing new skills in specialty areas,
marriage and family therapists take steps to ensure the competence of their work
and to protect clients from possible harm. Marriage and family therapists practice
in specialty areas new to them only after appropriate education, training, or
3.10 Marriage and family therapists
do not give to or receive from clients (b) gifts that impair the integrity or
efficacy of the therapeutic relationship.
3.12 Marriage and
family therapists make efforts to prevent the distortion or misuse of their clinical
and research findings.
3.13 Marriage and family therapists,
because of their ability to influence and alter the lives of others, exercise
special care when making public their professional recommendations and opinions
through testimony or other public statements.
3.14 To avoid
a conflict of interests, marriage and family therapists who treat minors or adults
involved in custody or visitation actions may not also perform forensic evaluations
for custody, residence, or visitation of the minor. The marriage and family therapist
who treats the minor may provide the court or mental health professional performing
the evaluation with information about the minor from the marriage and family therapist's
perspective as a treating marriage and family therapist, so long as the marriage
and family therapist does not violate confidentiality.
The article above contains foundational information. Articles below contain optional updates.
Reflection Exercise #2
The preceding section contained information
about the ACA, NBCC, and AAMFT Codes of Ethics regarding the ethical use of recall.
Write three case study examples regarding how you might use the content of this
section in your practice.
Ethics CEU QUESTION 8
What three functions cannot be performed by the counselor without proper
training or supervision? Record the letter of the correct answer the.