November 21, 2016

Supervision: Preparing for Excellence From the Inside Out

Sharon Rice MS CCC-SLP
supervision speechceu.com

The supervisory relationship is essential to the vitality and future of our field.

The interactions between mentor and mentee have a powerful effect on a clinician’s career.  While working and observing a supervisor, clinicians will process information about work priorities, professional conduct, stress management, the role and use of authority, constructive feedback and development.  All of this is in addition to the information exchange that occurs between mentee and mentor regarding evidence-based practice.

Many clinicians find that they have been volunteered by an employer for the role of supervision, while others actively seek it out. Whatever the reason for the relationship, it is one worth preparing for and evaluating along the way.

The American Speech-Language Hearing Association’s (ASHA) Position Statement on Clinical Supervision emphasizes the importance of training for supervisors, as well as the need for additional programs to be developed. Specifically in relationship to counseling and leadership.

ASHA lists the following 12 skills as prerequisites for successful supervision.

While much literature and training exists for the majority of these items, this post will focus primarily on the forces that guide our experiences of these prerequisites.The tasks of supervision as defined by ASHA include:

  1. establishing and maintaining an effective working relationship with the supervisee
  2. assisting the supervisee in developing clinical goals and objectives
  3. assisting the supervisee in developing and refining assessment skills
  4. assisting the supervisee in developing and refining clinical management skills
  5. demonstrating for and participating with the supervisee in the clinical process
  6. assisting the supervisee in observing and analyzing assessment and treatment sessions
  7. assisting the supervisee in the development and maintenance of clinical and supervisory records
  8. interacting with the supervisee in planning, executing, and analyzing supervisory conferences
  9. assisting the supervisee in evaluation of clinical performance
  10. assisting the supervisee in developing skills of verbal reporting, writing, and editing
  11. sharing information regarding ethical, legal, regulatory, and reimbursement aspects of professional practice
  12. modeling and facilitating professional conduct
  13. demonstrating research skills in the clinical or supervisory processes.

Most supervisors have spent years refining their clinical skills. Many are experts in their field, and perhaps are recognized for research in their area. All of this, however, will be filtered through the relational dynamic that lives between the mentor and mentee. 

Click on the link below to download a supervision guidelines activity you can complete today. For the exercises on the first page, reflect on your previous experiences in supervision. Then, use the questions on the second  page in meeting with your mentee. These questions can help you both develop guidelines for a mutually beneficial pairing.



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