Journal of Counselor Preparation and Supervision

Document Type



trauma-informed supervision, trauma work, vicarious trauma

Subject Area

Clinical Supervision, Counselor Education, Mental Health Counseling


We present the need for therapists who engage in trauma-specific work to receive trauma-informed supervision or consultation. This is based on the findings that the emotional labor required of trauma-specific work is high and increases a therapist’s risk for experiencing negative impacts from their work such as vicarious trauma, compassion fatigue, unhelpful transference/countertransference, reminders of their own trauma, and burnout. Further, clients incur risks of receiving iatrogenic care when therapists engaged in trauma-related work are not given appropriate job related resources and/or receive ineffective supervision. We discuss a model for trauma-informed supervision, including supporting theory and initial guidelines for supervisors’ competence and activities. Specifically, we outline the knowledge and activities necessary for trauma supervisors to engage effectively in the clinical supervision of trauma sensitive cases and as advocates for therapists who engage in trauma sensitive work. We provide specific suggestions for supervisory intervention to reduce therapists’ negative experiences with trauma work and increase positive ones. Areas for future exploration conclude this initial dialogue, which is intended to be a catalyst for crafting an evolving framework for trauma-informed supervision.

TIS REVISED JUN 2022 BLIND.docx (77 kB)
TIS main ms Revised Jun 2022

TIS tables+figures_2023.docx (156 kB)
Trauma-Informed Supervision Tables and Figures



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