Factors influencing counseling center staff’s perceptions of treatment difficulty in relation to student childhood sexual abuse

Amy S. Badura Brack, Gerald L. Stone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Influence of the client variables of frequency and memory of sexual abuse, as well as the therapist variables of gender, relevant professional experience, and personal history of sexual abuse, on treatment perceptions was examined. A random, national sample of university counseling center staff participated and responded to a repeated set of five questions after reading each of four different client vignettes. Client variables of frequency of abuse and memory for the abuse, as well as therapist variables of gender and related professional experience, significantly influenced treatment perceptions, while therapist history of sexual abuse did not. Additionally, the influence of externally imposed session limits was examined, and those therapists operating under brief therapy session limits were more likely to refer all sexually abused clients, especially those clients perceived to be more severe, than they would if they operated with no session limits. Implications for assessment, training, and brief therapy were explored.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15-38
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of College Student Psychotherapy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Oct 14 1998
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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