Towards motivational counseling: Self-evaluated counseling competences of health and social care professionals
In health and social services, there is an acknowledged need for client-centred counseling competences. The aim of this study was to examine how health and social care professionals self-evaluate their competences in motivational interviewing and solution-focused counseling. The sample comprised 75 professionals who self-evaluated their counseling competences through a questionnaire and a written assignment (n = 30) at the beginning of the UAS master’s degree program. Data were analyzed using factor analysis and content analysis. The results showed that participants’ counseling skills included skills of client-centered counseling, mobilizing resources and clarification. Competence in mobilizing resources was self-evaluated by the participants as their best skill and client-centered counseling as their poorest skill. Besides skills, strategic thinking was seen as a central competence providing value and theoretical bases for counseling methods. Participants felt that they have internalized client-centered values as a starting point of their work.