An investigation into the experiences of school counsellors working with adolescents


Currently, Australia’s school counsellors are increasingly being called upon to respond to adolescent mental health needs. Through semistructured interviews with seven school counsellors working with adolescents, this qualitative study aimed to capture the lived experiences of this group of practitioners. By adopting a phenomenological approach and using thematic analysis, this study provides insight into their profession: the current ambiguity surrounding their role; the opportunities and obstacles they face; as well as the often-present tension between stakeholders including parents, other school staff and external agencies. The findings of this study indicate that school counsellors are challenged by the need to be advocates not only for their students but also for themselves and their roles within the school context.


Mental health, Adolescents, Adolescent mental health, School counsellors, Advocacy

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