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Ethics in Groups

Abstract In todays society more and more people are starting to seek guidance and/or assistance with personal matters or issues from counselors. This essay will not only state the benefits of counseling to a group or to an individual but it will also discuss and state the many challenges that counselors/associates may encounter during their sessions and elaborate on the hot topics of ethics in the field of counseling.

It will provide the effectiveness and ineffectiveness of group counseling as well as that f individual counseling. It is very important for counselors and associates of all professional levels to implement ethical values in their everyday practice so that they may familiarize their self with the dos and don’ts they could make or break their career. Research from various scholarly Journals, articles and textbook readings will be used as factors for this essay paper.

The implementations of ethics in counseling is not to micromanage and/or try to inform someone of how to do their Job, it is provided in order to help counselors and other professionals maintain standards within the profession one is in and it is the tandard of behavior or action in relation to others. “A code of ethics for most professional organizations or associations is designed to articulate the standards of practice for a group of people. ” (Kocet, 2006). Although ethics have many definitions, they are all intertwined to state the same meaning.

According to Jacobs (2012), “Most ethical problems and situations deal with therapy and growth groups, although ethical standards apply to leaders of all kinds of groups. ” (p. 27) These types of problems or unethical behavior usually occurs when a leader is not knowledgeable nough to lead a group or the leader shows or have a lack of care for their members. “All professional associations, such as the American Counseling Association, the National Association for Social Workers, and the Psychological Association, have ethical standards regarding working with clients in groups. Oacobs, 2012, p. 27) Apart from the fore mentioned organizations, there are other distinctive organizations that consist of professionals that do group work such as the American Group Psychotherapy Association (AGPA) and the Association for Specialists in Group Work (ASGW). When it comes to ethics, these associations have their own code of ethics. In order to be an effective counselor or leader one must be able to include their knowledge of and the ability to integrate the code of ethics into their professional day-to-day practice.

In the field of counseling there are two central components of a code of ethics. The first component is “a code outlines the prescribed or mandatory professional behaviors by which counselors are expected to govern their conduct” and the second component is “a code that contains aspirational components, which encourage active thical reflection that fosters clarification of fundamental ethical beliefs of the profession”. Kocet, 2006) Due to the many errors that counselors or any other associate may encounter in their career not every code of ethics can encompass every potential ethical dilemma faced by a professional. To help professionals in this area, the code of ethics can serve as a regulatory guide for laying the foundation necessary to promote the competency and value of counselors. It is up to that person to abide and follow and/or do what is morally right. However, not everyone is perfect. Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the Glory of God.

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