07 4813 9051

Professional Supervision

Clinical supervision is a collaborative process that is integral to our training and professional development and identity as competent psychologists, whatever our stage of career. All training pathways involve intensive individual (and often group) supervision, which is now mandated as part of our ongoing learning and professional development, once we become registered psychologists.

The Benefits of Regular Supervision

Whether psychologists or other mental health professionals have an extensive or a small amount of clinical experience, they will always benefit from collaborative supervision in order to: enhance their clinical skills and practice (e.g., formulation skills), keep up to date with best evidence-based practice, identify blind spots in their skills, countertransference reactions and individual tendencies (e.g., avoiding raising difficult issues; going over time). Supervision is critical in helping practitioners manage ethical issues (e.g., maintaining appropriate boundaries), and in enhancing our reflective practice to better understand the client-therapist dynamic.

Regular ongoing supervision throughout mental health service provision careers not only enhances our work as professionals but helps us provide a better service to our clients, helps protect us from the pitfalls of poor practice and burnout and helps to protect the public. Best practice clinical supervision provides us with clarity and direction as well as professional connection in the increasing context of isolation for many practitioners in regional, rural and remote locations.

It is no accident that regulatory bodies and institutions that oversee the development of core competencies and standards include clinical supervision as an essential core component of all training and registration programs. In this respect, clinical supervision provides both a key training function and an ongoing assessment function in achieving set goals at every career stage to achieve best professional practice. Clinical supervision also acts to ensure quality of care, performing quality assurance and public protection functions.

The Supervisory Relationship

A caring, supportive, instructive, and reflective supervisory relationship based on the attainment of core competencies forms the framework for supervision. While it might be tempting to show our supervisor our ‘best’ ongoing work, it is critical that we place the more challenging cases, issues, and aspects of our practice on the agenda. This includes presentations and cases we are struggling with in process or outcomes, discussing any strong countertransference responses (positive or negative) or ways in which we start to respond differently to individual clients. We may be faced with difficult ethical issues like maintaining professional boundaries or dual relationships or working with clients with complex presentations or who are at significant risk. We may be dealing with a range of life stressors and want to make sure these don’t impact our practice. All of these issues are best discussed, understood and actioned with clear guidance from supervisors to avoid negative outcomes for both clients and practitioners.

Dr CJ is highly experienced STAP-accredited Psychology Board of Australia and Clinical Registrar Program supervisor.  If you are a provisional psychologist, psychologist, clinical registrar, or another mental health professional seeking supervision, please do not hesitate to phone our reception on 07 4813 9051 or send an inquiry to us through this website.