Date of Award

Fall 12-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Counseling & Human Services



Committee Director

Kristy Carlisle

Committee Member

Shana Pribesh

Committee Member

Amber Pope


The field of trauma and crisis is growing and ubiquitous to all counseling specialties. Updates in 2009 and 2016 to the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) counselor preparation standards added mandated teachings on crisis, trauma, and disaster counseling in counselor preparation programs’ (CPPs) curricula. Since then, some CPPs have created stand-alone crisis courses, while the majority have infused various related content and trainings into already established counseling courses. Research does, in fact, support an increased crisis, trauma, and disaster readiness with more hours dedicated to the study and practice of domain specific content, and confirms that self-efficacy is important for facilitating trauma and crisis interventions. Yet many counselors in training (CITs) have reported feeling ill prepared to offer crisis, trauma, and disaster counseling when beginning field placements and later graduating. Consequently, several researchers are calling for an investigation into the course content and CE delivery methods to assess effectiveness and self-efficacy after different delivery methods. This dissertation proposes a non-experimental design using the Crisis Counselors Self-Efficacy Scale (CCSES) to assess counseling students’ self-reported self-efficacy, or perceived capability to work with crisis-impacted clients, post completion of an online trauma and crisis course. The comparative group from the same master’s program did not register for the online trauma and crisis course. The results may help to inform counselor educators (CEs) and other professionals of the importance and effectiveness of including stand-alone crisis, trauma, and disaster courses in CACREP accredited CPPs.


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