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Watkins, C.E., Jr. (2014). The competent psychoanalytic supervisor: Some thoughts about supervision competences for accountable practice and training. Int. Forum Psychoanal., 23(4):220-228.

(2014). International Forum of Psychoanalysis, 23(4):220-228

The competent psychoanalytic supervisor: Some thoughts about supervision competences for accountable practice and training

C. Edward Watkins, Jr.

What are the competences required to satisfactorily practice effective or “good enough” psychoanalytic supervision? In this paper, I would like to consider that question. Over the past approximate 15-year period, increasing attention has been directed toward more specifically identifying and defining the components of competent psychoanalytic practice. But any parallel attention toward identifying and defining the components of competent psychoanalytic supervision practice has, in comparison, been sorely limited if not virtually absent. If we are to best practice competent psychoanalytic supervision and best train future psychoanalytic supervisors for competent practice, effort needs to be made to concretely delineate the competences that are requisite for such practice. In what follows, I present and adapt six broad-based families of internationally relevant supervision competence areas for use in psychoanalytic supervision: (1) knowledge about/understanding of psychoanalytic supervision models, methods, and intervention; (2) knowledge about/skill in attending to matters of ethical, legal, and professional concern; (3) knowledge about/skill in managing psychoanalytic supervision relationship processes; (4) knowledge about/skill in conducting psychoanalytic supervisory assessment and evaluation; (5) knowledge about/skill in fostering attention to difference and diversity; and (6) openness to/utilization of a self-reflective, self-assessment stance in psychoanalytic supervision. Although by no means an exhaustive list, 30 supervision competences (five per family) are proposed as significant for guiding competent psychoanalytic supervision practice and supervisor training, and a brief explanatory comment is offered in support of each broad-based family of competences.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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