Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Counselor Education

Major Professor

Herbert A. Exum, Ph.D.


Qualitative, Supervisor, Supervisees, Supervision delivery, Supervisory relationship, Developmental supervision


A collective case study is the study of more than one case (Stake, 1995). One therapist supervisor and three therapist supervisees from a child and adolescent residential foster care facility were observed during their individual clinical supervision and interviewed post-supervision. Currently, the literature on clinical supervision seldom addresses the supervision of working professional counselors; particularly those who are child and adolescent counselors (CACs).

Using a qualitative approach, two fundamental questions guided this inquiry: (a) what is the nature of clinical supervision involving a supervisor who provides clinical supervision to counselors in a child and adolescent residential foster care center that provides mental health treatment? and (b) within the clinical supervision experience, what issues involving children and adolescents does the supervisor explore?Participants provided detailed demographic information about their work and educational experience. During the post-supervision interviews participants recalled the content of the clinical supervision, discussed their thoughts and feelings about the supervision experience, explored how the supervision met their supervisory needs and expanded on their beliefs about the process of supervision in general. Constant comparative analyses, both within-case and cross-case, were conducted and themes emerged from the interviews.

Various themes emerged that were associated with: administrative supervision, best practices, case specific discussion, developmental understanding, ethical dilemmas, the personal issues of the supervisor and supervisees, supervision practices, treatment modalities, treatment planning, and working with various systems. Within the clinical supervision of CACs in residential foster care the nature of supervision is related to discussing specific cases in the facility, the supervision practice as it is experienced within each supervisor supervisee relationship, and a general desire to explore the best approaches when working with the children and adolescents at the facility. Collectively the supervisor and supervisees explored issues related to children and adolescents specific to individual cases consistent with generic supervision. Implications for practice and research are also discussed.