Choosing a Good Clinical Supervisor
Choosing a supervisor can be difficult. There are many supervisors available in the
New York/New Jersey area with a wide range of skills and experience.
Here are some questions to ask as you search for a good clinical supervisor:
How many years have you been supervising?
Although you may find a good supervisor who has little experience, a supervisor with a minimum of 4 years supervisory experience will probably be able to serve you better.
How many years have you been practicing psychotherapy since you received your license?
A supervisor with less than 7 years seeing patients/clients will have fewer skills and less experience to draw on in supervision.
What level supervisee do you supervise?
Try to find a supervisor who has supervised more experienced clinicians, not just beginners.
What kind of post-graduate training do you have?
Post graduate training provides additional skills to supervisors. Supervisors who seek out professional training beyond required CEU’s also show a commitment to the field. Find out if the supervisor has post-graduate training working with more than individuals. A well rounded supervisor should have post-graduate training in couples, families, and groups. If they do not, you are selling yourself short!
Do you continue to receive training/supervision?
Supervision/training should be a life-long quest for anyone doing psychotherapy. (I have been practicing psychotherapy for 26 years and supervising for 23 years and continue to receive training on nearly a weekly basis.)
Here are some other issues to address:
Do they have approval from the state board of examiners in your state?
Approved supervisors will be able to provide you a letter stating that they are approved by the state. A “graduate” of SIFI. is not qualified to provide supervision to anyone except graduate school interns.
Just because someone is approved by the state does not mean that they are a competent supervisor. It only means that they have a certain number of years experience and have completed a 30 hour course.
You will need to provide the supervisor with a copy of your license* If you are seeking off-site clinical supervision you must have a letter from your employer giving you permission to have supervision with the off-site supervisor.
Supervisors must provide supervisees with a copy of their license. After supervision begins, supervisors must provide supervisees with a written evaluation every 3 months until the appropriate number of clinical hours have been accrued.
This differs for social workers, counselors, and marriage and family therapists who are not yet LMFT’s.
*If you are an LCSW, LMFT or LPC, supervision is voluntary and you do not have to document anything regarding supervision.