Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Morgridge College of Education, Counseling Psychology

First Advisor

Maria T. Riva, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Jesse Owen

Third Advisor

Andi Pusavat

Fourth Advisor

Jennifer Cornish


Attachment theory, Clinical supervision, Group cohesion, Group supervision of supervision, Supervisors-in-training, Supervisory alliance


This focus of the study is on the training of new clinical supervisors in health service psychology, specifically the relational processes involved in learning and acquiring competence in clinical supervision. An effective learning environment is critical to supervisor training and development (Borders et al., 2014;Watkins, Budge, & Callahan, 2015) and attachment theory provides a framework for understanding the complex relationship domains and group dynamics inherent to group supervision. Given the recognition that the supervisory alliance is central to the process of competent supervision (APA, 2015), the purpose of this study is to explore the relationship between adult attachment style, the supervisory alliance, and group cohesion among intern supervisors in group supervision of supervision. This is particularly important due to limited research and understanding of the development of clinical supervisors and processes and factors that may impact competent training and practice. The current investigation draws on the relevant research on supervision of psychotherapy, small group dynamics, and attachment theory as a scaffold for understanding group supervision of supervision and supervisor training and development.

Participants in the study (n = 45) consisted of pre-doctoral interns in Health Service Psychology throughout North America who are providing supervision to a counselor trainee and are participating in weekly group supervision of supervision to enhance their training and development as a clinical supervisor. Participants were recruited through APPIC, professional organizational mailing lists, training director mailing lists, and other online forums used by clinical supervisors. Participants who respond to the invitation to participate in the study were emailed a direct link that took them to the survey page. Participants were directed to read the informed consent statement and indicate their consent by agreeing to complete the survey. Participants completed a Demographic Questionnaire, Experiences in Close Relationships ScaleRelational Structures (Fraley et al, 2011), Working Alliance Inventory – Short Form (WAI-S; Horvath & Greenberg, 1989) and the Group Climate Questionnaire-Short Form (GCQ-S; MacKenzie, 1983; Tschuschke, 2002). Descriptive statistics, correlations, and multiple regression analyses were used to interpret the data. Results of the study indicated that specific-attachment to supervisor was a significant predictor of the supervisory alliance and group climate.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Alyssa Fredricks


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

114 p.


Educational psychology, Psychology, Counseling psychology

Included in

Psychology Commons