As discussed in your Ethical, Legal, and Professional Issues in Counseling text, clients and students have the right to know about the counseling process and relationship prior to engaging in a counseling relationship with you. We call this process informed consent.
In this process, we give the client or student information, ensure that they understand this information, and obtain verbal and written consent for services.
For this discussion, write a summary of how you might actually discuss this with a client or student. Your summary will be different depending upon the age of the person or the setting, so start by letting us know about the age of the client or student. What are the words you would use to convey the following information?
- How you will use the personal information.
- How you will keep the personal information private (think case notes).
- When you might need to disclose the personal information.
- How you will inform the client of his or her rights (that is, the client's right to revoke consent).
Your informed consent summary should be at least 250 words, provide specific examples to illustrate your ideas, and should be supported with references to the professional literature.