This course covers the legal and ethical responsibilities of the counseling professional. Students learn to interpret and act upon situations appropriately and effectively. Content includes issues such as client rights, confidentiality, duty to warn and protect, dual relationships, supervision and consulting, ethics with special populations, and ethical decision-making models.
This graduate-level course is 8 weeks. This course is available to take individually or as part of a degree or certificate program. To enroll, speak with an Enrollment Advisor.
Identify professional counseling organizations and related benefits, activities, services to members, along with current issues affecting the counseling profession.
Articulate elements of professional identity, including professional associations such as ACA and NBCC.
Examine and interpret the main content areas of the ACA Code of Ethics, AMHHCA, and NBCC.
Code of Ethics: Principles and Practices
Examine the professional and regulatory bases for the enforcement of ethical codes.
Identify elements of the relationship between the level of professional training and scope of practice.
Accurately articulate the process of professional credentialing, including state licensure, NBCC certification, and the effects of public policy on these issues.
Summarize the various elements of professional identity, behavior, and development including the ethical decision-making processes.
Explain the concepts of confidentiality, privileged communication, and privacy and their ethical and legal implications in counseling.
Identify the elements and the role of informed consent in counseling and develop and use informed consent procedures.
Analyze the application of HIPAA in relationship to client rights and counseling practice.
Apply ethical principles involved with privileged communication in groups, couples, and family situations.
Unprofessional Conduct, Negligence, and Malpractice
Identify the key legal elements of negligence and malpractice.
Distinguish the elements of unprofessional conduct or practices, including state practice law.
Explain the duty to report unprofessional conduct by colleagues and articulate the pros and cons of this duty.
Explain the requirements of the duty to warn, protect, and report in cases of danger to self and others.
Identify federal and state-specific laws relevant to your geographic location regarding duty to warn and protect in cases of danger to self and others.
Examine strategies for risk management related to counseling practices and documentation.
Multiple Relationships and Boundary Issues
Assess ethical and legal dilemmas in multiple relationships in counseling.
Identify key state-specific laws governing counseling, especially concerning multiple relationships.
Discuss the various professional roles that may legitimately exist as multiple relationships.
Differentiate between personal and professional relationships and examine the elements of conflict that are represented in multiple and mixed professional and personal roles.
Professional Relationships, Private Practices, and Health Care Plans
Describe ethical principles and practices in relationship to interactions counselors undertake with other professionals in the community setting.
Critically evaluate the impact of managed care on counseling practices.
Develop an understanding of community mental health systems as it relates to relevant counselor roles, practices, and collaboration within the system.
Examine strategies that enhance equity and promote programs that affect the practice of clinical mental health counseling.
Application of Law and Ethics to Dimensions of Counseling Practice and Research
Distinguish the special ethical concerns that pertain to counseling individuals who are of a different sexual orientation, cultural identity, or ethnic origin and apply the multicultural competencies.
Analyze and explain the ethical and legal issues in the areas of diagnosis, testing, and treatment planning.
Articulate the need for ethical principles to protect research subjects and relate those principles to research conducted by counselors and counselor educators.
Identify unique ethical challenges in web-based counseling.
Articulate the ethical responsibilities of counselor self-care.
Identify the ethical and legal obligations in a counselor education program.
Explain the ethical responsibility for client advocacy.
Examine public policies that affect the quality and accessibility of mental health services.