Development and validation of the dynamic leadership in counseling scale – self report

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
William Bradley McKibben (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
L. DiAnne Borders

Abstract: Leadership is an important factor in the ongoing success of the profession of counseling. Current issues such as professional identity, counselor education standards, licensure portability, international expansion of the profession, and advocacy initiatives highlight the need for counseling leaders, and the time-limited, voluntary, relationally focused, and positionally diverse leadership roles in counseling distinguish the profession from other disciplines in which leadership has been studied. Further, the lack of a valid and reliable measure limits rigorous understanding and investigation of leadership dynamics within the profession. To begin addressing this gap, McKibben, Umstead, and Borders (2014) conducted a content analysis of counseling leadership literature that yielded three categories of 24 emergent themes of counseling leadership. These themes were identified and organized using the Interpersonal Process Model of Leadership (Eberly, Johnson, Hernandez, & Avolio, 2013), a meta-model of leadership based in developmental notions of dynamic systems. The Dynamic Model of Counseling Leadership (DMCL; McKibben et al., 2014) provided an emergent model in which to ground a measure of counseling leadership, thus paving the way for future leadership research. Based on the DMCL, the author created the Dynamic Leadership in Counseling Scale - Self Report (DLCS-SR), a preliminary self-report measure of counseling leadership, and tested for evidence of reliability and construct, convergent, and discriminant validity. The author developed the items through a sequence of steps (DeVellis, 2003), submitted the initial items to two rounds of review, tested in a small pilot study, and revised items and instructions. In a larger sample of 218 participants (85 counseling students, 69 counselor educators, 57 counseling practitioners, and seven others), tests for reliability (Cronbach's α = .942), convergent validity, and discriminant validity on the DLCS-SR were strong. Based on results from confirmatory and exploratory factor analysis, a hypothesized three factor model of leadership as measured by the DLCS-SR was rejected with this sample, but a single factor model yielded acceptable fit to the data. The author also controlled for socially desirable and inattentive responding patterns throughout the survey. The author also pilot tested the utility of built-in validity scales embedded in the DLCS-SR. A built-in four item social desirability scale did not predict socially desirable responding to the extent of the included Balanced Inventory of Desirable Responding - Short Form. Similarly, participant scoring patterns on a built-in two item attentiveness scale were independent of scoring patterns on the included Attentive Responding Scale - 18 inconsistency subscale. In both cases, incidences of social desirability and inattentiveness were infrequent throughout participant responses. The development and initial validation tests for the DLCS-SR provided an empirical basis for research in and training of counseling leadership. Further research is needed with larger and diverse samples within the counseling profession in order to replicate and extend the findings in this study.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2015
Counseling, Dynamic systems, Leadership, Measurement

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