Teaching and Supervision in Counseling

Author Biographies

Kristina DePue, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Counseling and Educational Psychology at the University of Nevada, Reno. Kristina’s research goals are motivated by her clinical observations within the addictions counseling field, which has resulted in two research areas: (a) chemical and process addictions, specifically concentrating on the role of negative experiences in behavioral change; and (b) counselor development and supervision, focusing on how both counseling trainees and clients change.

Jacqueline Swank, Ph.D. is an Associate Teaching Professor in the mental health practices in schools and school counseling programs. Jacqueline is a licensed mental health counselor and a licensed clinical social worker in Florida, and is also a registered play therapist-supervisor. Her research interests include play and nature-based interventions with children and adolescents, counselor development and competency, assessment, and international counseling.

Jo Lauren Weaver, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor at the Alabama A&M University in the Department of Social Work, Psychology, and Counseling. Jo Lauren's research interested are mindfulness-based interventions, adolescent and young adult social media use, restorative justice in schools, perinatal mental health, creativity in counseling and counselor education. Ren Liu, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of Quantitative Methods, Measurement, and Statistics at the University of California, Merced. Ren has centered his work on developing advanced statistical and measurement methods in behavioral and social sciences and translating innovative methods for applied researchers to promote best practices.




Counselor educators are expected to engage in research and mentor doctoral students, highlighting the importance of competency in both areas. Grit predicts positive work outcomes, and we found no studies on grit in relation to counselor educator success measures. We wanted to understand the role of grit in counselor education productivity levels and necessary competencies. We recruited counselor educators at CACREP-accredited institutions with doctoral programs. We hypothesized that grit would predict both mentoring competencies and publication rates, mediated by research competencies. We tested a model with counselor educators (N = 110) and found that the relationship between grit, as measured by the Short Grit Scale, and mentoring competency, as measured by the Mentoring Competency Assessment, and the relationship between grit and number of total career publications were both partially mediated by research competencies, as measured by the Research Competencies Scale. Thus, grit is directly and indirectly related to publications and mentoring competency. Implications for counselor educators include maintaining grit and how to use self-assessment of research and mentoring competency to increase productivity.

Public Significance Statement

Our findings demonstrate that research competency partially mediates the relationship between grit and both mentorship competencies and number of publications. As such, this study provides evidence that grit is fundamentally related to factors associated with faculty success directly and indirectly. Counselor educators and doctoral students can use these results to self-examine their grittiness, considering how their long-term goals match productivity measures at their institutions.The results of this study will hopefully empower counselor educators and doctoral students to conduct research that aligns with their interests and continued efforts toward those projects, both aspects of grittiness.