DCU Home | Our Courses | Loop | Registry | Library | Search DCU

Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Theoretical&Conceptual Approach toSupervision
Module Code NS620
School 38
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Aisling McMahon
Semester 2: Aisling McMahon
Autumn: Aisling McMahon
Module TeachersAisling McMahon
NFQ level 9 Credit Rating 20
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None
Coursework Only

This module focuses on developing theoretical and research knowledge regarding the professional field of clinical supervision, supporting students to develop a personal philosophy of supervision. Students will engage in a robust study and critical discussion of the dominant models and theories of clinical supervision, including the application of adult learning theory to supervisory work. The findings from supervision research will be critically analysed in order to develop an evidence-based approach to supervision practice, with awareness and sensitivity to diversity and power in supervision relationships.

Learning Outcomes

1. Understand and articulate the strengths, limitations and usefulness of dominant models of clinical supervision.
2. Understand the relevance and application of adult learning principles in supervisory practice
3. Critically consider the current research evidence on supervision practice and its applied implications
4. Engage with awareness and sensitivity to issues of culture, diversity and power in clinical supervision practice
5. Provide a clear rationale for approaches to clinical supervision practice, developing a personal philosophy of practice.
6. Develop theoretical understanding and skills in relation to specific aspects of supervisory practice, including working with the supervisory relationship, with groups and with endings

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Lecture50Didactic Teaching; Seminar Groups
Professional Practice20Supervision Practice Development; Group Supervision
Tutorial1Personal Tutor and Module Coordinator
Independent Study429Pre and post-session reading, independent reading and literature searching, assignment preparation, draft publications
Total Workload: 500

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Clinical supervision modes
Individual, shared and group modes of supervision.

Supervision models and theories
Developing knowledge of dominant models of clinical supervision and of adult learning theory as applied to supervisory work

Personal and professional development
Reflective practice and personal and professional development awareness activities

Critical analysis of supervision research to inform evidence-based practice

Module activities
Didactic teaching, seminar groups, individual tutorials, observation of supervisory practice, application of theory to practice and on-line resources.

Independent study
Reviewing literature and research, including resources provided and directed to, and further, wider independent study

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
PresentationIn-class presentation of student's philosophy of supervision30%Sem 2 End
EssayCritical review of a supervision model, or an integration of two or more models, including illustration and critical analysis of its application in a real world supervisory context (3,500 words)70%Sem 2 End
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 1
Indicative Reading List

  • Balint, M: 1957, The doctor, his patient and the illness, International universities press inc., New York,
  • Bernard, J.M. & Goodyear, R.K.: 2019, Fundamentals of clinical supervision, 6th, Pearson, New Jersey,
  • Carroll,M: 2014, Effective supervision for the helping professions, 2nd, Sage, Los Angeles,
  • Carroll, M., & Tholstrup, M. (eds): 2001, Integrative Approaches to Supervision, Jessica Kingsley Publishers., London,
  • Creaner, M: 2014, Getting the Best Out of Supervision in Counselling and Psychotherapy- A Guide for the Supervisee, Sage, London,
  • Dallos,R., & Steadman, J: 2009, Reflective practice in psychotherapy and counselling, McGraw-Hill/ Open University, Maidenhead,
  • Estadt, B., Compton, J and Blanchette M. (eds): 2005, The Art of Clinical Supervision, Wipf & Stock Publishers, Oregon, USA,
  • Frawley-O’Dea, M.G. and Sarnat, J.E.: 2001, The Supervisory Relationship – A Contemporary Psychodynamic Approach., Guilford, New York,
  • Gilbert, M. and Evans, K.: 2000, Psychotherapy Supervision- An Integrative Relational Approach to Psychotherapy Supervision., Open University Press, Maidenhead,
  • Guiffrida, D. A.: 2015, Constructive clinical supervision in counseling and psychotherapy., Routledge., New York,
  • Holloway, E.: 1995, Clinical Supervision: A Systems Approach, Sage, London,
  • Lawton, B., Feltham, C. (eds): 1999, Taking Supervision Forward, All, Sage, London,
  • Mattinson, J.: 1977, The Reflection Process in Casework Supervision, Institute of Marital Studies, Tavistock Institute of Human Relations., London,
  • Norcross , J.C., Popple, P.M.: 2016, Supervision Essentials for Integrative Psychotherapy, American Psychological Association, Washington,
  • Page, S., Wosket, V.: 2015, Supervising the Counsellor, 3rd, Routledge, London,
  • Proctor, B: 2009, Group supervision: A guide to creative practice, Sage, London,
  • Scaife, J.M.: 2019, Supervision in the mental health professions, 3rd, All, Brunner-Routledge, London,
  • Stoltenberg, C.D., McNeill, B.W.: 2010, An integrated developmental model for supervising counselors and therapists, 3rd, Routledge, New York,
  • Thomas, J.: 2010, The Ethics of Supervision and Consultation: Practical Guidance for Mental Health Professionals, APA, Washington, DC,
  • Tudor, K. and Worrall, M.: 2004, Freedom to Practise: Person-centred Approaches to Supervision., PCCS Books., Herefordshire,
  • Van Deurzen, E. and Young, S: 2009, Existential Perspectives on Supervision, Palgrave Macmillan., England,
  • Vetere, A., Sheehan, J. (eds): 2017, Supervision of Family Therapy and Systemic Practice, Springer International Publishing AG, Switzerland,
  • Watkins, C., Milne, D.: 2014, The Wiley international handbook of clinical supervision, Wiley, Oxford,
  • Wosket, V.: 2016, The therapeutic use of self: Counselling, practice, research and supervision, 2nd, All, Routledge, London,
  • Dochy, F.: 2012, Theories of learning for the workplace: Building blocks for training and professional development programmes, Routledge, London,
  • Knowles, Holton, E., & Swanson, R.: 2015, The adult learner: The definitive classic in adult education and human resource development, 8th ed., Elsevier, Burlington MA,
Other Resources

59440, Specialist Journals, 0, The Clinical Supervisor, 59441, Specialist Journals, 0, Counselor Education and Supervision, American Counseling Association,
Programme or List of Programmes
DPSYDoctor of Psychotherapy

My DCU | Loop | Disclaimer | Privacy Statement