Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Measuring outcomes in counseling

The Schwartz Outcome Scale (SOS) has the potential to be a useful measure of counseling outcomes.

I and my colleagues used the 10-item version in two recent studies about Christians attending Christian counseling.

The scale measures several aspects of well-being: physical, relational, and psychological functioning and the person’s capacity to be peaceful, interested, excited, and satisfied with life.

In previous research, the SOS was linked to hope, self-esteem, affect, mental health, and life satisfaction  (Young, Waehler, Laux, McDaniel, & Hilsenroth, 2003).

In our two studies, coefficient alpha reliability values were .93 and .96.

Some validity findings based on positive correlations with other measures may be of interest to clinicans and researchers.

Satisfaction with counseling .63

Likely to return to counseling .56

Spiritual well-being .84

Big 5 measures of Extraversion (.47) and Neuroticism (emotional stability) .40.

Read more about validity of surveys and tests in CREATING SURVEYS- Chapter 18.

Counselors, read more about validity of test scores in APPLIED STATISTICS: CONCEPTS FOR COUNSELORS- Chapter 20.


Sutton, G. W., Kelly, H., Worthington, E. L. Jr., Griffin, B. J., & Dinwiddie, C. (in press) Satisfaction with Christian Psychotherapy and Well-being: Contributions of Hope, Personality, and Spirituality. Spirituality in Clinical Practice.

Young, J.L., Waehler, C. A., Laux, J. M., McDaniel, P.S., & Hilsenroth, M. J. (2003). Four studies extending the utility of the Schwartz Outcome Scale (SOS-10). Journal of Personality Assessment, 80, 130-138. doi:10.1207/s15327752jpa8002-02

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