VISTAS Online is an innovative publication produced for ACA by Dr. Garry R. Walz and Dr. Jeanne C. Bleuer of Counseling Outfitters, LLC. Its purpose is to provide a means of capturing the ideas, information and experiences generated by the annual ACA Conference and selected ACA Division Conferences. Papers on a program or practice that has been validated through research or experience may also be submitted. This digital collection of peer-reviewed articles is authored by counselors, for counselors. VISTAS Online contains the full text of over 900 proprietary counseling articles published from 2004 to 2017.
A Qualitative Analysis of Counseling Students ’ Thoughts, Attitudes , and Beliefs A bout Addiction Counseling and Treatment
Christine L. Chasek, Douglas R. Tillman, David D. Hof, Julie A. Dinsmore, and Thomas Z. Maxson
An estimated 21.7 million people need treatment for their substance use problem.
As barriers to treatment are removed with health care reform, this number will continue to grow. Simultaneous to this need for treatment, a workforce crisis is occurring in the addiction counseling field due to high turnover rates, an aging workforce, worker shortages, and lingering stigma about substance abuse. Given this climate, counselor education programs are challenged to develop programs that adequately train future counselors to address the unique needs of clients who are struggling with addiction and to better understand how students construct their knowledge regarding addictions and addiction counseling.The purpose of this study was to explore and qualitatively examine the development of counseling students’ thoughts, attitudes, and beliefs about addiction and
treatment that may help educators understand how to better design addiction counseling curriculum to address attitude and self-awareness competencies. Themes identified in the study are explored as well as the implications for counselor educators.
Keywords: addiction counseling, counselor education, attitudes and beliefs