Utilizing Supervision for Supporting Home-Based Family Therapy Module

Module Sections:

Using Strategies and Techniques

Introduction of Strategies and Techniques

Several authors (Lawson, 2005; Snyder & McCollum, 1999; Zarski, Greenbank, Sand-Pringle, & Cibik, 1991; Zarski & Zygmond, 1989) offer specific suggestions for maximizing the usefulness and effectiveness of in-home supervision. The following list of strategies and techniques first describes the essential elements of a supervision structure that establishes supervisory expectations, improves therapist's awareness of self, guides therapist's use of supervision, and highlights the guidance that supervision offers. Secondly, the list points out ways to identify, apply, and further develop specific therapeutic skills.

Supervision Structure

Supervision Structure

The development of a supervision structure suggests the importance of establishing and utilizing a supervision contract that encompasses each of the following areas. The contract defines supervision as broader than case consultation, focusing additionally on self-of-the-therapist issues, therapist self-care, and provides for opportunities to reflect on the supervision process.

  • Determine Shared Expectations of Supervision
    • Define rules and boundary-setting of supervision
    • Establish consistent supervision times
  • Awareness of Self
    • Prioritize therapist's experienced autonomy
    • Use of therapist's reflective journal to explore the experiences in session and share observations within supervision
    • Use therapist assessments such as ProQOL to monitor
      • Therapy fatigue, compassion fatigue
      • Compassion satisfaction
      • Burnout
      • Balancing between professional and personal experiences
  • Use of Supervision
    • Supervision preparation
      • Identify criteria used to request live versus taped supervision
      • Identify rules and roles of therapist and supervisor during the home visit
        • Discuss the differences between the therapist's focus on the family and the supervisor's focus on the therapist
      • Request supervisor's alternative perspectives of family issues, treatment progress
      • Discuss appropriate times when the supervisor will intervene
      • Debrief session
        • Transitions of beginning and ending session in the home
        • Examine observations and experiences of joining, conceptualizations, and interventions
    • Review the use of intervention skills
      • Note successes
      • Identify potential alternative approaches
  • Guidance of Supervision
    • Establish guidelines for establishing and terminating home-based work
    • Determine family's readiness to change
    • Identify current safety concerns and discuss safety issues associated with the family issues and community contexts
    • Monitor current therapeutic issues and concerns

Audio Companion: Utilizing Supervision