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Date of Award

12-10-2004

Degree Type

Thesis (On-Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Clinical Psychology (MSCP)

Committee Chair

Catherine Miller

Second Advisor

Krista Brookwood

Abstract

Therapists are often faced with the challenge of trying to decide when to break confidentiality if clients pose a serious risk to themselves or others. This decision becomes even more complicated when the client is an adolescent. Although little is known about therapists' attitudes regarding reporting risk-taking behaviors, even less is known about parents' attitudes towards confidentiality. The present study examined responses from 84 parents regarding their attitudes towards confidentiality across six different domains of risk-taking behavior. Parents generally found it more ethical for a therapist to break confidentiality when the intensity, frequency, and duration of risk-taking behavior increased. Patents also rated the importance of other considerations that should be involved in a therapist's decision to break adolescent confidentiality.

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