The Impact of Professional Counselor Competency and Ethical Complaints on Job Satisfaction in Court Testimony

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Summer 2018

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Professional counselors who provide expert opinions in divorce/child custody cases are expected to have unique professional competencies and often experience high levels of ethical complaints that have the potential to affect job satisfaction. The purpose of this study was to examine if professional competency and a history of ethical complaints has an impact on job satisfaction for mental health professionals. Licensed professional counselors and psychologists (n=343) were surveyed using the Professional Competence Standards Instrument (PCSI). Results demonstrated a positive relationship between competence and job satisfaction and four predictors of job satisfaction were identified: bias awareness, ability, experience, and licensure. Recommendations for future research include expanding this research to diverse forensic professionals, expert testimony cases, and evidence-based strategies for improving job satisfaction. These findings may assist counselor educators with improving job satisfaction of future practitioners through better preparation.

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