Things we learned to ask up front and why:
- What is your fee structure? Individual session cost? Group session cost?
– Supervision can get expensive. Know what they charge for individual sessions vs. group sessions and what combination of them your supervisor offers. There are a lot of benefits to an occasional group supervision session but not all supervisors offer it.
- How available are you outside supervision sessions? Crisis situations?
– A lot of crisis situations happen on the weekend and at night. Will your potential supervisor answer the phone on the weekends and at night or are they only available 8 to 5 during the week?
- Do you have a theoretical orientation or particular treatment modality you practice
– If you believe strongly in a specific orientation, you might want a supervisor with experience in that orientation or you might want a supervisor with a different orientation to get a new perspective.
- Do you expect your interns to operate from a theoretical orientation? A particular one
– If your potential supervisor wants to mold you into a specific orientation, you should agree to that up front.
- What is your approach to orientation? Client focused? Therapist focused
– It’s important to know whether your potential supervisor will focus on the clients you are seeing or how you are reacting to the clients you are seeing. Focusing on you as a therapist takes a lot of personal work and growth.
- Do you have particular formats/requirements for written documentation…i.e. process notes, hour logs, etc.
–It’s good to know the administrative work required for planning purposes. If your supervisor requires a lot of paperwork, you will accumulate a lot of admin hours per client. If your supervisor doesn’t require a lot of paperwork, you can spend more time with clients.
- Have you had complaints filed against you? Are you in good standing with the licensing board
– An obvious question that we don’t think to ask.
- Where will supervision take place? Office? Home? Other? Where is it located
– How far will you have to drive? Are you comfortable with the location?
- Do you have a particular population or “niche” client that you work with or specialize in
– If you are interested in disordered eating clients, it might be good to find a supervisor that knows something about disordered eating. If you don’t know what type of client you are interested in, having a supervisor that can help you determine your niche would be beneficial.
- What do you expect from those you supervise
– An obvious question that we forget to ask. It’s good to know what everyone’s expectations are so you can set yourself up for success.