Ethical Decision Making in Graduate-Level Counselor Education: Teaching Strategies and the Use of Professional Counselor Panels.

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Ethics education is an important area for counselors-in-training as well as practicing counselors. Particularly difficult for counselor trainees are the gray areas of ethics where the relationships between ethics, the law, and the counseling process are not clear. Practicing counselors may feel isolated when they need a reality check or immediate feedback regarding an ethics issue. Some ethics violations are easily recognizable whereas others are more subtle or may be clouded by the emotions of the counselor or client. Ongoing training in ethics is required in some locations for recertification. A panel format is described with the sharing of professional attitudes at its center. The use of ethics panels with experienced counselors who work in various settings provides new and experienced counselors with an opportunity to examine ethical decision-making processes of other practitioners. Gray areas of ethical concern are more evident in interactive panel formats. Addressing ethical issues from the multi-disciplinary perspectives of several practitioners provides counselors with a rich training experience.