• clinical supervision;
  • supervisory interventions;
  • cognitive therapy;
  • collaborative relationship;
  • supervision models;
  • nursing;
  • health care;
  • management

Cognitive therapy supervision as a framework for clinical supervision in nursing: using structure to guide discovery

Cognitive therapy has an undisputed evidence base upon which its clinical application flourishes. This approach is now a well-recognized and widely adopted method used in the treatment of a diversity of psychological problems. More recently, prominent innovators of this psychotherapy have devised a framework to guide the clinical supervision of cognitive therapists. In keeping with its therapeutic application, the cognitive therapy framework for supervision is focused, structured, educational and collaborative. It serves to enhance the therapeutic proficiency of the cognitive therapist. In contrast, the supervision models reported in the recent nursing literature are less precise in their mission and when evaluated their contribution to nursing is shown to be dubious. Following an overview of the supervision models commonly cited in the nursing literature, a more focused comment on the evaluative research concerning Proctor's three-function interactive model will be offered. It is suggested that the unconvincing research findings may be related to the conceptual muddle surrounding clinical supervision, and the expectation for clinical supervision to deliver more than an opportunity for the progression of our therapeutic integrity. From this, a cognitive therapy supervision framework is described and suggested by the authors as a structure from which supervisors can guide discovery.