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REG. $42

Ethical Decision Making for Counselors: A Practical Model

Christopher J. Quarto, PhD

CE Credit: 3 Hours

Target Audience: Counseling CE | Marriage & Family Therapy CE

Learning Level: Intermediate

Course Type: Online

Course Abstract

Ethical Decision Making for Counselors: A Practical Model is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE) course that provides counselors with an intuitive method of resolving ethical dilemmas.

From time to time, counselors are confronted with ethical dilemmas that are difficult to resolve. Although ethical decision-making models provide guidelines as to how counselors should proceed in such matters, they do not always do so in a pragmatic manner. The purpose of this course is to provide counselors with an intuitive method of resolving ethical dilemmas that is grounded in best practices as outlined in the professional literature as well as the American Counseling Association Code of Ethics (2005). Topics include the differences between ethics and the law, identifying moral principles which underlie the ethical practice of counseling, and how to apply a practical approach to ethical decision-making. This course is written in a conversational style and includes mnemonics to assist in learning the material and drawing upon this knowledge as necessary when ethical dilemmas arise throughout one’s career.

Closeout Course #30-44 | 2009 | 32 pages | 23 posttest questions

Learning Objectives

1. Identify differences between ethics and the law
2. List the purposes of an ethics code
3. Name moral principles that underlie the ethical practice of counseling
4. Identify ways of recognizing and resolving ethical dilemmas
5. Utilize a practical approach to ethical decision-making in counseling and other roles enacted by counselors
6. Identify moral principles associated with select portions of the ACA Code of Ethics (2005)

NBCC ACEP Approved Provider

Professional Development Resources (PDR) has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 5590. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. PDR is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs. Professional Development Resources is also approved as a provider of online (home study) continuing education by the Florida Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage & Family Therapy, and Mental Health Counseling (#50-1635); the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors (#MHC-0135); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage & Family Therapist Board (#RCST100501); and the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors and Marriage & Family Therapists (#193).


This online course provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. The course is text-based (reading) and the CE test is open-book (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document).

Successful completion of this course involves passing an online test (80% required, 3 chances to take) and we ask that you also complete a brief course evaluation. Click here to learn more.

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About the Author(s)

Christopher J. Quarto, PhD, is a licensed psychologist who is a professor of psychology at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU). He has taught courses in ethics, practicum/internship, mental health counseling, diagnosis and treatment planning, and psychological testing. Prior to his appointment at MTSU, Dr. Quarto was the co-owner of a private practice where he specialized in providing diagnostic and treatment services to children, adolescents and adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD). He maintains involvement in professional organizations and is interested in enhancing online continuing education in the counseling and psychology professions.

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