Demographic and professional characteristics associated with school psychologists' ethical beliefs
AdvisorMorris, Richard J.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractTo date no systematic empirical study has been published that examines the association between the demographic and professional characteristics of school psychologists and their ethical beliefs concerning school psychology practice. In the present study a representative sample of 345 NASP members rated various behavior descriptions of possible school psychology practices with regard to their ethical beliefs of the appropriateness of such practices and their perceptions as to the frequency of occurrence of such practices. The differences between respondents' gender, age, type of work setting, theoretical orientation, educational level, type of certification, type of ethics training, year highest degree was obtained and years in practice on three dependent measures (i.e., total ethical behavior rating score, dual relationship domain score and competency domain score) were examined. The results showed that there was a high linear association between respondents' ethical ratings of selected behaviors and their respective ratings of the observed frequency of occurrence of such behaviors in practice. In addition, the findings between the demographic and professional characteristics indicated that: (1) female respondents scored significantly higher (i.e., more conservative/less permissive) than male respondents on the three dependent measures, (2) respondents who practiced less than 16 years or graduated after 1981 scored significantly higher (i.e., more conservative/less permissive) on the three dependent measures than those respondents who had worked either more than 16 years or graduated before 1981, (3) Master's and Ed.S. level respondents who had obtained their highest degree after 1981 scored significantly higher (i.e., more conservative/less permissive) than did those Master's and Ed.S. respondents who obtained their degree before 1981, and (4) Doctoral level respondents who received their degree before 1981 scored significantly higher (i.e., more conservative/less permissive) than those Master's degree respondents who received their degree before 1981. The present study's findings were discussed in relation to existing literature on psychology and ethics. In addition, limitations of the present study and suggestions for future research were also addressed.
Degree ProgramGraduate College