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Jul 2015 by PCI College

Bite-Sized Book Review: Integrative Approaches to Supervision, Edited by Michael Carroll and Margaret Tholstrup

Germaine Morrissey, Programme Leader of the Advanced Diploma in Supervision at PCI College reviews 'Intergrative Approaches to Supervision' edited by Michael Carroll and Margaret Tholstrup

This book consists of seventeen chapters (essays) divided into three parts (or themes) as follows:


Part 1:  Models and Frameworks of Integrative Supervision
Part 2:  Supervision in Clinical Areas
Part 3:  Issues in Integrative Supervision
 
The chapters themselves are each standalone essays by seventeen different authors who are practitioners, writers and/or lecturers in the field of Supervision. The following is a list of some of the authors and their contributions:
 
Michael Carroll (Supervision in and for Organisations), Margaret Tholstrup (Food as a Metaphor or as Nutrition - Supervising in Eating Disorders), Penny Henderson (Supervision and the Mental Health of the Counsellor), Val Wosket (The Cyclical Model of Supervision – A Container for Creativity and Chaos), Charlotte Sills: (Bolts from the Blue – Using Jungian Typology to Enhance Supervision), Jane Roscoman (Supervision in Primary Care) and Gary Leonard and Joanna Beazley Richards (How Supervisors can Protect Themselves from Complaints and Ligation).
 
Though there is throughout the book an assumption that the language and milieu of supervision is somewhat familiar to the reader, the clear writing styles of the authors gives easy access to those not so familiar.  Also, authors often mention other writers and clinical settings which they assume the reader is familiar with, but while this may reassure the experienced it may also serve to whet the appetites of those less experienced to read about other practitioner’s approaches.
 
One caveat strikes me though -  Val Wosket in her essay describing her own model states: ‘Over-reliance on a supervision model may diminish or even obliterate much of what the supervisor has already available within his or her natural helping repertoire.  Supervisors should therefore be prepared to abandon their supervision models when original and creative responses are called for’.  In such a responsible and specialist practice as supervision I believe that some sound models need to be learned thoroughly, practiced over a period of time, and thoroughly integrated before any ‘abandoning’ is tried.
 
Apart from that, as an overview to a broad range of supervision topics and a taster of the writing style of each author and their approach to the topic described, this book provides a very useful introduction  for the beginning supervisor and a solid reference for experienced supervisors.
 

Germaine Morrissey (July 2015)

Programme Leader of the Advanced Diploma in Supervision

PCI College
 

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