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PERSONALITY CHARACTERISTICS OF COUNSELING STUDENTS AT A - page 86 / 135

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programs in the selection of students is essential (Bradey & Post, 1991) and there is a

growing recognition that this process should also include assessing personality

characteristics to help in the selection of students from a pool of applicants (Pope &

Kline, 1999).

Bernard and Goodyear (1998) have argued that personality characteristics should be

included in the profile of a counselor education student both at the onset of training and

throughout the training experience. But the link between a person’s career decidedness,

vocational satisfaction and personality characteristics has also emerged (DeFruyt, 2002;

Lounsbury et al.,1999; Reed, Bruch, & Haase, 2004; Tokar, Fischer, & Subich, 1998) and

this may have significant implications for the selection of students for counselor

education programs.

Various methods have been employed by counselor education programs to screen

and select students, but these methods have been ineffective and have evoked criticism

for their shortcomings (Markert & Monke, 1990). These methods include the Graduate

Record Exam (House, 1989; Leverett-Main, 2004; Morrison & Morrison, 1995; Smaby,

Maddux, Richmond, Lepkowski, & Packman, 2005) and the interview (Bradey & Post,

1991; Nagpal & Ritchie, 2002). Numerous researchers have noted that integral elements

of the profession include the counseling relationship and the personality of the counselor

(Grencavage & Norcross, 1990; Jennings & Skovholt, 1999; Lambert, 1992). Providing

human services, such as counseling can also be emotionally demanding, leaving a

provider at high risk for burnout (Bakker, Van Der Zee, Lewig, & Dollard, (2006).

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