EXPERIENCES OF SPANISH/ENGLISH BILINGUAL SUPERVISEES

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Abstract

Supervising mental health services conducted in a language that the supervisor does not speak can present a conundrum for both supervisors and supervisees, especially when the supervisee is the only person in the clinic who speaks the language of the client. This qualitative study explored Spanish-language services supervision experiences of bilingual graduate students and professionals during their graduate training. The participants reported feeling burdened and stressed by additional responsibilities. They had little training or supervision to help them develop the language skills necessary to provide competent services in Spanish, so they relied on peer support and networking to cope with the many challenges they faced. The participants appreciated having supervisors who were culturally competent and open to the clients' cultural values. Training programs and supervisors need to be aware of the factors contributing to this stress and examine procedures and practices that may exacerbate or minimize the burdens.

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