Journal of Counselor Preparation and Supervision

Document Type

Empirical Research Article


suicide, counselors-in-training, suicide prevention, self-efficacy, suicide assessment

Subject Area

Clinical Supervision, Counseling, Counselor Education


Suicide rates continue to rise in the United States, especially within our youth population. Preparing counselors to confidently address suicide risk with their clients is crucial in suicide prevention. The authors conducted a phenomenological investigation of a youth suicide prevention course with 10 counseling students. The course included both a didactic component and an experiential component. We extracted four themes suggesting students believe a) suicide assessment is integral to the counselor role b) suicide is a complex phenomenon; c) the course enhanced self-efficacy; and d) interactive activities supported learning. Implications focusing on the importance of building self-efficacy in risk assessments, incorporating role-plays, and acknowledging the emotions that surround the topic of suicide are provided.



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