Professional Issues in Counseling is an on-line, full-text journal published three times annually for counselors, psychotherapists, mental health practitioners and all others in the helping profession. The purpose of Professional Issues in Counseling is to contribute to the counseling profession by providing readers with research reports and scholarly reviews of current professional issues in counseling.

Professional Issues in Counseling is the vision of Dr. DeTrude, Associate Professor in the counseling program at Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas. Dr. DeTrude teaches in the marriage and family counseling component of the counseling program at SHSU. Dr. DeTrude has served in a variety of positions in the counseling profession with experience as a director of counseling, private practice, and adjunct teaching at universities prior to SHSU.

Dr. Nichter is an Assistant Professor in the counseling program at Sam Houston State University with primary responsibility in the school counseling track of the counselor preparation program. Dr. Nichter has experience in school counseling, family counseling, child/adolescent counseling and has worked as a psychotherapist in mental health inpatient facilities.

Drs. DeTrude and Nichter wish to thank Dr. Genevieve Brown and Dr. Beverly Irby, SHSU colleagues and editors of Advancing Women, for professional role modeling, support, and encouragement and for mentoring our efforts to develop Professional Issues in Counseling. In addition, we wish to thank the members of the Editorial Review and Advisory Board of Professional Issues in Counseling for agreeing to donate their time, effort and knowledge to review manuscripts ensuring scholarly and timely literature contributions to the field of counseling.

We are excited about offering this new professional journal for the mental health field and encourage all colleagues to submit manuscripts for future issues. We would also like to encourage feedback from readers for future topics, areas of interest, etc.


Spring 2001
Conceptualization of Self, Ethnic Identity and the Experience of Acculturation
Mary Nichter
Sam Houston State University
Ethnic identity as part of an individual’s self-concept develops from knowledge of membership in a cultural group and the value or emotional significance attached to that membership.  The value placed on ethnic group membership is influenced by the degree to which an individual has experienced acculturation into the dominant culture.  The relationship between conceptualization of self, ethnic identity and acculturation and how culturally sensitive counselors can utilize this information has been reviewed in current literature.
What Kids Really Need
Jill Riethmayer
How powerful is the impact of unmet emotional needs in the life of a child or teen?  Is it potent enough to drive a child or teen to kill?  Is it truly a life or death issue?

Do Relational Views of Self Support Subordinate Roles?
Stella Beatriz Kerl and Thelma Duffey
Southwest Texas State University

This paper challenges psychology’s individualistic conceptualization of identity for both men and women and argues that this view of self has primarily been of service to people with higher societal “value” or with more societal power.  However, relational theories that were originally designed for women and for people of color to counter this dilemma may actually contribute to it. Two relatively new theoretical frameworks involving a relational self/identity are delineated.  The connection between societal power and relational identity is explored.