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Clinical supervision : an exploration of its origins and definitions
journal contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by L Lynch, Brenda HappellBrenda Happell, J Sharrock
An extensive review of the literature from 1925 until 2006 highlights a diverse range of definitions, theories and beliefs in relation to clinical supervision. Few authors agree on even the fundamental basics such as the history, definition and suggestions for implementation of clinical supervision. Ryan (1998, p.3) suggests that “it is perhaps intrinsic to the nature of clinical supervision that no single definition or theory exists”. However other authors highlight that the absence of a universal understanding and lack of clarity in clinical and academic discourse have directly contributed to the creation of the myth of clinical supervision (Farkas-Cameron, 1995; Faugier, 1994; Friedman & Marr, 1995; Minot, 1989; Paunonen, 1991; Riordan, 2002; Ryan, 1998; Sloan, 1996). These authors argue that defining and understanding clinical supervision is pivotal to it being accepted, supported and subsequently implemented.In order to clarify understanding of the topic, this paper will examine these disparate views and consolidate the existing body of knowledge on clinical supervision by exploring its origins and defining characteristics.