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CLG507: Professional Ethics: Due 2/19

Questions to address

As you consider whether to work as a generalist practitioner or to specialize in a particular area of practice, it is crucial to address the following questions. Please provide a written response for each of the following considerations attendant to the specialty vs. generalist decision. [The length of your responses is not an important factor in my grading- simply put, please demonstrate you have carefully considered these questions].

Factors to consider:

  1. Know thyself! What are your skills and interests?
  2. Do you have personal beliefs that would affect specialization/generalist practice?
  3. What are your career goals? For instance, if you want to write a book, specialization is necessary. If you want to open a private practice, you might not want to specialize too narrowly.
  4. Are there financial or geographic considerations that would necessitate professional trade-offs? Is your specialty interest even doable financially and geographically?
  5. What are the needs of the populace in the geographic area in which you plan to settle?
  6. You will undoubtedly start your career in a community agency- will a potential specialty meet the needs of that agency?
  7. Are your clinical skills/theoretical orientation more suited to one area of practice than others?
  8. Specialization requires staying current with cutting-edge treatments and research in that area- are you OK with the demands of continued professional development (costs, travel, would your work allow time out of the office).
  9. If you specialize, will you become "out of touch" with other areas of counseling? What happens if you want to broaden your private practice someday?
  10. Would you get bored with a specialty? Would you find yourself on autopilot with clients? (Note from Elin: I would. I need variety, so there's no judgment here]
  11. Would there be a higher risk of burnout from your specialty of interest? (e.g. trauma, child abuse, etc)
  12. Would generalizing allow you to better explore different techniques and aspects of the field? Would it keep you "fresh" or better allow you to stretch yourself with challenging clients/problem areas?
  13. Are you passionate about a particular specialty? (Passion = a better counselor]