The purpose of this research was to explore community college counselors' perception of role strain in their positions. Role strain theory explains the difficulties individuals face as they determine which behavior expectations they fulfill in their relationships. It was determined that counselors have important role relationships with students, college administrators and their peers.
Through qualitative analysis, this study provided knowledge about community college counselor's perceptions about expectations of their role on campus. The study discovered student and administrator expectations of counselors, and beliefs counselors held regarding their roles based on formal educational and on the job trainings.
This research aimed to answer the following questions: (a) How do California community college counselors define their roles in serving their student population? (b) What are California community college counselor's perceptions of student, administrative and professional expectations of the counselor's role? (c) What are the role expectations community college counselors learned from their formal education and on the job training programs? and (d) How do community college counselors perceive any differences in role expectations to affect their ability to provide quality counseling services? To answer these questions, in-depth interviews were utilized to collect qualitative data from community college counselors.
The findings resulted from qualitative data analysis of the interview transcripts from study participants. Using thematic coding and analysis the interview data was grouped by codes into recurring themes. This resulted in the identification of four critical themes: (a) counselor preparation; (b) counselor role expectations; (c) counselor experiences with students; and (d) Counselor perceptions of college administrators.
The results showed to improve counseling practice, counselors must discover ways to effectively deal with student mental health, and teach students how to navigate the higher education system. Counselors must also learn new ways to meet administrative requests for data based on information they already collect from students. This research be further developed by collecting data from a larger more diverse group of counselors. The data can be enriched by analyzing what Master's programs intend to teach future counselors. Last, collecting data from students is always recommended as the goal is always to improve their success.
|Advisor:||Locks, Angela M.|
|Commitee:||Alfred-Gentles, Tangelina, Vega, William|
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||DAI-A 75/02(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Community college education, Educational leadership, School counseling|
|Keywords:||Community college, Counselors, Role conflict|
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