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Goal attainment scaling: A method for facilitating supervision for clinical psychologists

26 July 1999


In this era of managed care the field of clinical psychology continues to undergo many changes including trends toward increased accountability and demonstration of competency within and by the organizations they serve. It is becoming increasingly important for clinical psychologists to demonstrate competency and accountability in their professional work as many mental health services organizations are placing an emphasis on controlling costs and maximizing human resources. A structured, goal oriented approach to performance evaluation and feedback in clinical supervision is proposed to enable clinicians to demonstrate the value of their work and advanced skills and abilities. A supervision model incorporating the Goal Attainment Scaling (GAS) method is presented as a means of facilitating the discussion of concrete and measurable supervisee goals, organizing supervision time, and clarifying supervisee strengths, weaknesses, and training needs. The purpose of this dissertation is to explore theoretical and practical considerations regarding the implementation of GAS as a performance appraisal method to be used for the clinical supervision of advanced clinical psychologists. The premise is that goal attainment scaling, which was developed as a method for clinical program evaluation, can be readily adapted for the determination and effective monitoring of supervisee goals in the supervision of clinical psychologists. A model is presented which demonstrates how to adapt the GAS method as a performance evaluation and feedback technique for use in goal oriented supervision. The model is proposed as way to meet the current and future needs in the field of psychology for a structured, organized, theoretically driven, and empirically-based evaluative method with which clinicians may demonstrate their strengths and efforts toward professional accountability.


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