CPY 701

Science and Practice of Counseling Psychology: Intro to Counseling Research

Spring 2009


Terence Tracey

(480) 965-6159




1.          To familiarize the student with core methodological issues in counseling psychology research

2.          To familiarize student with major quantitative methods.

3.          To enable student to critique research in the field.

4.          To enable student to independently design and evaluate a research study.

5.          To enable students to read, understand and critically evaluate research literature in the field.


Course Requirements:


Students are expected to have read all material for the course and engage in class discussion on the readings. There will be two exams, a midterm and final. Written assignments will consist of a manuscript review, and a research proposal. In addition students will be expected to present their research proposal to the class.


Grading will be based on midterm exam (20%), final exam (20%), research review (10%), research presentation (15%), research proposal (25%), and class participation (10%).


The exams will consist of short answer (e.g., definition of terms) questions as well as an essay or two geared at integration and application of concepts.


Students will hand in a brief research review on a manuscript provided. This task is intended to help them hone their critical skills as well as learn the process of manucript submittal and review. The students are to act as if they were editorial consulstants and submit a brief 1-3 page, single spaced review of the manuscript. The specific article to review is posted on blackboard.


Research presentation will consist of the student presenting a research proposal to the class. This should include a brief summary of the research questions and its justification. Most of the presentation should focus on issues of method and analysis. What data will be collected and how? How will the data be analyzed? How will these data and analyses answer the research question? Strength and weaknesses? To assist with the, the class as a whole (and in smaller groups) will engage in designing several studies.


Research proposal will probably consist of the same content as the research proposal (although this is not necessary). The student will write a research proposal in a manner similar to a journal article (in APA style). This will consist of 3-6 pages of introduction (introduce and justify the research question and review appropriate literature), method (sample, measures, treatments, procedures, analysis), discussion of hypothetical results and what they will state, and finally limitations of the study. This should be no longer than 20 pages of text (excluding references). It would help to read Heppner et al. Chapter 19 with regard to writing this up.


Course Structure:


The course is structured so that major analytic tools can be grasped by the student and thus read and evaluate the professional literature. The goal is not for the student to be able to apply these analytical tools but to understand the basic ideas involved in each and to be able to choose appropriate analyses. Of course added training will be needed but the focus is to help the student read current literature and choose analytic strategies.


Each week will consist of some lecture on the readings aswell as questions and discussion. Students are expected to come prepared, having read the material and having questions for discussion.


Also, each week a different article, serving as an example, will be assigned to be read by all. A specific student (or students) will present a preassigned article to the class. The student should summarize the article, locate it in a larger landscape of the field, and describe it in sufficient detail that an audience can understand it without being overly burdened with detail. The presentation should also cover why the article is (un)important and offer a critique. The student should then lead calss discussion focusing on the assets and liabilities of the article and its potential impact on the field.



All readings are available on line under MyASU




Course Content


Class Content Assignment


January 26 Introduction to course

February 2 Basic research design Heppner et al. Ch 3-4

Tracey, 1991a

Article 1 Kim (2007)


February 9 Significance testing Tracey & Glidden-Tracey, 1999

Tracey, 2000

Hyman, 1995



Article 2 Goldman & Anderson (2007)


February 16 Measurement: Classical, Dawis, 1987

Item response theory Harvey & Hammer, 1999

Article 3 Tylkla & Wilcox (2006)

February 23 Factor Analysis Fabrigar et al. (1999)

Article 4 Neville et al., 2000

Article Review due



March 2 Cluster/MDS Borgen & Barnett (1987)

Fitzgerald & Hubert (1987)

Article 5 Tracey, (1991b)


March 9 Spring-break


March 16 Mid term exam


March 23 General Linear Model Wampold & Freund (1987)

Regression/ Betz (1987)


Article 6 Elliott, et al., (2000) example


March 30 Mediation/Moderation Frazier et al., 2004

Multilevel models Reise & Duan, 1999

Francis et al, 1991

Article 7 Tracey, et al., (1999) example


April 6 Structural Equation Modeling Quintana & Maxwell, 1999

Article 8 Dunckley et al., 2000


April 13 Graphics Wilkinson, 1999


April 20 Presentations


April 27 Presentations

May 4 Presentations Proposals due (except those presenting today)


May 11 Final Exam (date and time to be announced)






Betz, N. E. (1987). Use of discriminant analysis in counseling psychology research. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 34, 393-403.


Borgen, F. H., & Barnett, D. C. (1987). Applying cluster analysis in counseling psychology research. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 34, 456-468.


Dawis, R. V. (1987). Scale construction. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 34, 481-489.


Elliott, T. R., Uswatte, G., Lewis, L., Palmatier, A. (2000). Goal instability and adjustment to physical disability. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 47, 251-265.


Fabrigar, L. R., Wegener, D. T., MacCullum, R. C., & Strahan, E. J. (1999). Evaluating the use of exploratory factor analysis in psychological research. Psychological Methods, 4, 272-299.


Fitzgerald, L. F., & Hubert, L. J. (1987). Multidimensional scaling: Some possibioities for counseling psychology. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 34, 469-480.


Francis, D. J., Fletcher, J. M., Steubing, K. K., Davidson, K. C., & Thompson, N. M. (1991). Analysis of change: Modeling individual growth. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 59, 27-37.


Frazier, P. A., Tix, A. P., & Barron, K. E. (2004). Testing moderation and mediation effects in counseling psychology research. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 51, 115-134.


Goldman, G. A., & Anderson, T. (2007). Quality of object relations and security of attachment as predictors of early therapeutic alliance. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 54, 111117.


Harvey, R. J., & Hammer, A. L. (1999). Item Response Theory. The Counseling Psychologist, 27, 353-407.


Heppner, P. P., Kivlighan, D. M., Jr., & Wampold, B. E. (1999). Research design in counseling. Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole.


Holmbeck, G. N. (1997). Toward terminological, conceptual and statistical clarity in the study of mediators and moderators: Examples from the child-clinical and pediatric psychology literatures. Journal of Clinical and Consulting Psychology, 65, 599-610.


Hoyt, W. T., & Melby, J. N. (1999). Dependability of measurement in counseling psychology: An introduction to generalizability theory. The Counseling Psychologist, 27, 325-352.


Hyman, R. (1995). How to critique a published article. Psychological Bulletin, 118, 178-182.


Kim, B. S. K. (2007). Adherence to Asian and European American cultural values and attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help among Asian American college students. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 54, 474480.


Neville, H. A., Lilly, R. L., Duran, G., Lee, R. M., Browne, L. (2000). Construction and initial validation of the color-blind racial attitudes scale (CoBRAS). Journal of Counseling Psychology, 47, 59-70.


Quintana, S. M., & Maxwell, S. E. (1999). Implications of recent developments in structural equation modeling for counseling psychology. The Counsleing Psychologist, 27, 485-527.


Reise, S. P., & Duan, N. (1999). Multilevel modeling and its applicability in counseling psychology research. The Counseling Psychologist, 27, 528-551.


Tracey, T. J. (1991a). Counseling research as an applied science. In C. E. Watkins and L. S. Schneider (Eds.), Research in Counseling (pp. 1-31). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.


Tracey, T. J. (1991b). The structure of control and influence in counseling and psychotherapy: A comparison of several definitions and measures. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 38, 265-278.


Tracey, T. J. G. (2000). Issues in the analysis and interpretation of quantitative data: Deinstitutionalization of the null hypothesis test. In S. D. Brown & R. Lent (Eds.), Handbook of Counseling Psychology (3rd ed.) (pp. 177-198). New York: Wiley.


Tracey, T. J. G., & Glidden-Tracey, C. E. (1999). Integratoin of theory, research design, measurement, and analysis: Toward a reasoned argument. The Counseling Psychologist, 27, 299-324.


Tracey, T. J. G., Sherry, P., & Albright, J. M. (1999). The interpersonal process of cognitive-behavioral therapy: An examination of complementarity over the course of treatment. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 46, 80-91.


Tylka, T. L., & Wilcox, J. A. (2006). Are intuitive eating and eating disorder symptomatology opposite poles of the same construct? Journal of Counseling Psychology, 53, 474485


Wampold, B. E., & Freund, R. D. (1987). Use of multiple regression in counseling psychology research: A flexible data-analytic strategy. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 34, 372-382.


Wilkinson, L. (1999). Graphs for research in counseling psychology. The Counseling Psychologist, 27, 384-407..