Your task in the interactive exercise is to apply an ethical-decision making model to a scenario that presents a dilemma involving more than one ethical standard.

Directions for applying the Ethical Decision-Making Model.

  1. Read the scenario.
  2. Assess the case details. What are the important factors in the scenario that contribute to the ethical dilemma?
  3. Separate the practical considerations from the ethical considerations. Which factors are practical concerns rather than ethical issues?
  4. Select the relevant ethical standards.
  5. Consider the possible courses of action to resolve the ethical dilemma. We provide two options.
  6. Consider the possible positive and negative outcomes of the course of action.

Enter your answers onto the form and click the "Send" button to compare them to our answers.

Scenario #3:

Chana is a trauma counselor who works with high school teenagers who have been victims of child molestation. Two of her most problematic cases are Tanya and Rosanne, who are best friends and always at risk of suspension from school as chronic troublemakers. Tanya is generally the instigator of the trouble but Rosanne is her loyal follower. Chana feels that her professional relationship with Tanya is ineffective and would like to refer her elsewhere, but she is also aware that she responds negatively to Tanya because of her bad behavior. Rosanne is quite receptive to treatment, however, particularly when she is free of Tanya's negative influences. Yet, Chana fears that she may lose Rosanne's interest and potentially her trust if she terminates the relationship with Tanya. Clearly, the two girls talk about their meetings with Chana and share experiences, which might be the only way Tanya is benefiting, albeit indirectly, from treatment.

Part 1: Assess case details.

What would you identify as the five most significant details of this case?


Part 2: Separate practical considerations from ethical considerations.

What would you identify as the top three practical considerations of this case?


Check the boxes (at least three) next to what you believe are the top ethical considerations of this case.

1.1:    Understand legal responsibilities.

1.2:    Accurate representation of credentials.

1.3:    Professional conduct.

1.4:    Professional competence.

1.5:    Advanced notice of fee for services.

2.1:    Respect for relationships with colleagues and other professionals.

2.2:    Sharing knowledge with colleagues and encouraging proficiency.

2.3:    Contribute to the improvement of systems that impact victims.

3.1:    Protect victim's civil rights.

3.2:    Primary responsibility is the interests of person served.

3.3:    Refrain from victim blaming.

3.4:    Right to self-determination.

3.5:    Confidentiality of information.

3.6:    Avoid conflict of interest.

3.7:    Termination of a professional relationship.

3.8:    Dual relationships and boundary issues.

3.9:    Do not discriminate.

3.10:  Referrals for colleagues in need of assistance to cope with trauma.

4.1:    Report misconduct to the appropriate authorities.

Part 3: What are the potential upsides of the following courses of action? What are the potential downsides?


Chana consults with her supervisor, who agrees to sit in on sessions with both girls for a few weeks, after which time she decides that she will take on Tanya as a client, leaving Rosanne with Chana. They prepare the girls over the next few weeks for the change.

Positive outcome:

Negative outcome:


Chana takes a wait-and-see approach but the next time the girls are up for a suspension for a serious infraction, Tanya is transferred to an alternative school and the provider-victim relationship with her is automatically terminated.

Positive Outcome:

Negative Outcome:

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