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Evidence-Based Training for Clinical Supervisors: A Systematic Review of 11 Controlled Studies

Lookup NU author(s): David Milne, Dr Alia Sheikh, Dr Sue Pattison


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Clinical supervision training is now considered essential for mental health professionals. However, such training has not been given systematic attention, partly as there are concerns that the evidence-base is weak, with few controlled studies. In order to address this concern we undertook a systematic review of the best available research literature on clinical supervision training. The 11 controlled studies located were assessed using a methodological evaluation tool, which formed the basis for a best evidence synthesis (BES). The aim of this BES review was to identify evidence-based practices in supervisor training, ones that were not confounded by sample heterogeneity or variable research rigor. Addressing the two questions posed by Whitman, Ryan, and Rubinstein (2001), we found that these 11 studies did provide empirical support for supervisor training (e.g., they had sound methodological validity and an average 67% impact on the 145 supervisors’ learning), and that 15 elements of training had empirical support (primarily corrective feedback, educational role-play & observational learning). Recommendations for evidence-based training for supervisors are outlined, based on these 11 studies, combined with prior narrative reviews, surveys, and expert consensus. Key words: Supervisor training, field instructor education, systematic review, meta-analytic review.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Milne D, Sheikh A, Pattison S, Wilkinson A

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Clinical Supervisor

Year: 2011

Volume: 30

Issue: 1

Pages: 53-71

ISSN (print): 0732-5223

ISSN (electronic): 1545-231X

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1080/07325223.2011.564955


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