Bruce J. Spencer – 6 Critical Areas of Ethical Awareness and Practice

Bruce J. Spencer – 6 Critical Areas of Ethical Awareness and Practice

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Bruce J. Spencer, Phd
2 Hours 36 Minutes
Audio and Video
Feb 10, 2020



The relationship between the therapist and client.

  • Ethics and Standards Overview
  • Objectivity and your clients
  • Clinical presence and professional influence
  • Rationalizations that can harm the client
  • Opinions and values the therapist needs to manage


  • Ethical disclosures and confidentiality limits
  • Informed consent and education of client about mandated disclosures
  • Your obligation when imminent risk of danger is present for the client or others
  • Decisions to inform third parties and documentation

There are multiple relationships.

  • Interpreting the ethical language regarding relationships
  • What constitutes a boundary crossing vs. an ethical violation?
  • Is a client necessarily always “off bounds” with regard to future social interaction?
  • What exceptions exist and are they legitimate?

There is ethical practice in a techno world.

  • Risks of using email, texting, “tweeting” and other electronic messaging
  • Risks of social networking with clients
  • Internet and Skype counseling risks

Socio-Cultural Competency

  • Can a clinician be 100% socially and culturally competent?
  • If the clinician does not feel competent with a specific socio-cultural issue, does referring the client to another make a negative statement to the client?
  • Does a clinician need to be an “expert” to counsel persons of diversity?

There are treatment plans and documentation.

  • Over-emphasis on a diagnostic labels vs treating the client
  • Establish a true conjoint treatment plan that addresses the client’s needs and abilities
  • Attention to appropriate documentation and avoiding “omission or exaggeration” of client issues
  • Informing the client of the treatment focus and ultimate goal of successful termination
  • Maintaining focus of the treatment on the original goals


Bruce J. Spencer Phd Related seminars and products: 1

Bruce J. Spencer is a doctor. I have 44 years of experience as a clinician and administrator of mental health and chemical dependency programs. He has 10 years of experience as an adjunct professor of psychology and holds a doctorate in clinical psychology. He has published many articles about ethics. He has more than 1,000 hours of advanced education in ethics, a certification in Advanced Ethical Studies, and has presented ethics seminars for 40 years. He is licensed in Washington, Michigan, and the National Board of Counselors Association.

Speaker disclosures.

Bruce Spencer gets a speaking honorarium.

Bruce Spencer does not have a relevant non-financial relationship.


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