Evaluation of Critical Competencies

The Messiah College Counseling Program is committed to ensuring that students from our program are well-suited for the professional demands, roles, and responsibilities of the counseling profession.  In order to help assess the students’ preparation we have developed four critical competencies that all students must achieve throughout the program.

The four critical competencies are
  1. Quality of work including:
    1. the student’s timely completion of all work
    2. the student completes the course at a satisfactory level (B or better)
    3. the student’s ability to work collaboratively and cooperatively with others
    4. the student’s active participation in discussion boards, synchronous experiences, and other class-related activities
    5. the student consistently demonstrates an understanding of the content of the course through completion of the course assignments at a satisfactory level (B or better)
    6. the student demonstrates the ability to apply the skills taught in the course (including counseling skills, research skills, diagnosis skills or others as relevant to the course)
  2. Interpersonal and professional competence  including:
    1. the student demonstrates respect for others' opinions
    2. the student demonstrates a willingness to understand and respect diversity (including but not limited to race, gender, age, religion, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation or any other area of diversity)
    3. the student demonstrates interpersonal and professional competence (e.g. the ways in which the student relates to peers, faculty, professionals, the public, and individuals from diverse backgrounds or histories)
    4. the student resolves problems or issues that interfere with professional development or functioning in a satisfactory manner by responding constructively to feedback from supervisors or program faculty
  3. Self-awareness, self-reflection, and self-evaluation including:
    1. the student demonstrates the use of critical thinking skills in the areas of self-awareness, self-reflection, and self-evaluation
    2. the student demonstrates personal and professional discretion in disclosing information about herself or himself
    3. the student demonstrates self-awareness, self-reflection, and self-evaluation (e.g. knowledge of the content and potential impact of one's own beliefs and values on peers, faculty, professionals, the public, and individuals from diverse backgrounds or histories)
    4. the student demonstrates an openness to and application of feedback from the course instructor during the course
    5. the student demonstrates appropriate interaction with others in the course (e.g. no inappropriate conflicts, confrontations, or disagreements)
  4. Written and oral communication including:
    1. the student demonstrates professional level standards for written communication
    2. the student demonstrates professional level standards for oral communication
    3. the student clearly articulates ideas, thoughts, and concepts effectively through written communication
    4. the student clearly articulates ideas, thoughts, and concepts effectively through oral communication

Students will self-reflect upon these competencies from their application for admission to their application for graduation and at various points throughout their program.  Instructors will assess each student on these competencies in every class the student completes.  The Program Director and Advisor will review the evaluations individually as they are distributed, and twice a year, the graduate program in counseling will review them as a whole.  Finally, the students will reflect on their growth in these areas as part of their final reflection paper.