Research Design in Counseling, 3rd Edition

  • P. Paul Heppner University of Missouri, Columbia
  • Bruce E. Wampold University of Wisconsin, Madison
  • Dennis M. Kivlighan, Jr. University of Missouri, Columbia
  • ISBN-10: 053452348X  |  ISBN-13: 9780534523480
  • 672 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 1999, 1992
  • © 2008 | Published
  • List Price = $ 300.95
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  • Newer Edition Available



Quell any fears you may have about science and research design with this clear introduction to the basics! With enlightening examples and illustrations drawn from the counseling literature, RESEARCH DESIGN IN COUNSELING fully addresses the most common issues that counseling researchers encounter. The authors' accessible approach provides you with an understanding of the various types of research, including both quantitative and qualitative approaches. Filled with helpful examples that draw from a broad variety of research designs, this book provides the fundamentals of conducting research while providing clear instruction on writing and publishing the research report.

Features and Benefits

  • The book covers basic methodological issues in research design and writing a research report as well as methodological issues pertaining to both quantitative and qualitative research.
  • This text's comprehensive coverage of research includes single-subject and survey research.
  • Chapter 6, "Ethical Issues in Counseling Research," includes examples of actual forms (e.g., forms used for disclosure and release).
  • Sections on statistical methods, integrated throughout the text, center on the ways in which counselors can use statistical methods across different research designs.
  • The chapter on evaluation introduces students to employing research design in program evaluation�both formative and summative.
  • Chapter 18 on "Outcome Research" includes information on clinical trials, control groups, manualization of treatments, adherence, competence, psychopharmacological groups, and more.
  • This text provides beginning graduate students an overview of several studies conducted by many of the foremost researchers in the profession.test

Table of Contents

1. Science and Counseling.
2. Research Training.
3. Identifying and Operationalizing Research Topics.
4. Choosing Research Designs.
5. Validity Issues in Research Design.
6. Ethical Issues in Counseling Research.
7. Between-Groups and Within-Subjects Designs.
8. Quasi-Experimental and Time Series Designs.
9. Single-Subject Designs.
10. Quantitative Descriptive Designs.
11. Qualitative Research.
12. Designing and Evaluating the Independent Variable.
13. Designing and Choosing the Dependent Variable.
14. Population Issues.
15. Conceptual and Methodological Issues Related to Multicultural Research.
16. Investigator, Experimenter, and Participant Bias.
17. Analogue Research.
18. Outcome Research: Methodological Issues.
19. Design Issues Related to Counseling Process Research.
20. Scale Construction.
21. Program Evaluation.
22. Professional Writing.
Appendix A: Ethical Standards of the American Counseling Association.
Appendix B: Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct.

What's New

  • A new chapter on "Conceptual and Methodological Issues Related to Multicultural Research" (Chapter 15) raises many critical questions for researchers to consider in the field of multicultural research and brings together the latest thinking on these issues.
  • Chapter 20, "Scale Construction," provides easy-to-follow guidelines and practical examples that guide the researcher toward the demystification of scale development processes; a critical chapter for researchers who are conducting scale construction projects, as well as those who want to understand more about the psychometric properties of existing inventories and promote multicultural understanding in the processes.
  • Chapter 2, "Research Training", is totally devoted to graduate research training. The authors highlight the current research on this topic and discuss implications for students' development in acquiring research competencies. The chapter includes quotes from seasoned researchers from around the country who share critical aspects of their research journey. With openness and candor they share some of their own fears as well as joys along their path of becoming experts in their own research areas.
  • The Ethics chapter (Chapter 6) has been updated to include a number of changes in the ethical code as well as the fifth edition of the APA Publication Manual (2001).
  • Chapter 18, "Outcome Research: Methodological Issues," has been revised to include the most recent information on clinical trials, control groups, manualization of treatments, adherence, competence, psychopharmacological groups, as well as discusses issues related to evidence based practice.
  • Chapter 10, "Quantitative Descriptive Designs," now includes some of the latest thinking and writing about the importance of examining mediating and moderating variables in research. These updated designs address the latest issues in all of these "regression family" kind of designs.
  • This new edition reflects the authors' goal of facilitating a conceptual understanding of research design, with an emphasis on acknowledging the strengths and weaknesses of all the designs including quantitative and qualitative.
  • Updated references in each chapter�as well as more diversity and cross-cultural related examples�provide students with current and relevant information they can use in practice.
  • The addition of stimulus questions or exercises at the end of each chapter furthers students' thinking about the material presented in the chapter.

Learning Resource Bundles

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ISBN-10: 049520031X | ISBN-13: 9780495200314

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Efficacy and Outcomes


"RESEARCH DESIGN IN COUNSELING represents the best text available for research training in the counseling and mental health professions. This Third Edition capitalizes on the strengths of the previous edition while broadening its focus with new chapters on multicultural research and scale development. The co-authors of the text are world-renowned scholars who practice what they preach; they are exemplary research role models for both students and seasoned scholars. Writing within the text is lucid, clear, interesting, and accessible to varied audiences. Coverage of critical design and ethical issues within the text is both expansive and in-depth. There is little doubt that this Third Edition of a classic text will be widely adopted and often cited."

— Joe Ponterotto, Fordham University

"RESEARCH DESIGN IN COUNSELING is a unique text in that it provides discussion of experimental design specific to the counseling profession. It is extremely thorough in its presentation of experimental design and research methodology."

— Rich Balkin, Texas A & M University at Commerce

". . . invites readers to lay aside personal fears and self-doubt and experience the joys of research."

— Ed Mauzey, Southeastern Oklahoma State University


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Meet the Author

Author Bio

P. Paul Heppner

Dr. P. Paul Heppner (Ph.D., University of Nebraska–Lincoln) holds a Curators Distinguished Professorship -- the highest distinction -- at the University of Missouri and is Director of the Coalition for Cultural Competencies, an organization he co-founded in 1998. He has published over 200 articles/book chapters as well as nine books, made hundreds of presentations at national conferences, and delivered over 100 invited keynotes/presentations in 14 countries. His primary area of research focuses around the role of coping with stressful life events across different cultural contexts. Dr. Heppner is the recipient of three Fulbright awards (Sweden, Ireland, and Taiwan), a Fellow in the American Psychological Association (Divisions 17, 45, and 52), and a Fellow in the American Psychological Society. He has served on several national and international editorial boards, including serving as Editor of The Counseling Psychologist. In 2005–2006 he served as President of the Society of Counseling Psychology; in 2009 he received the Leona Tyler Award, the Society's highest award. He is also the recipient of numerous other awards for his leadership, research, teaching, mentoring, international work, and promotion of diversity and social justice issues.

Bruce E. Wampold

Dr. Bruce E. Wampold (Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, University of California, Santa Barbara) joined the University of Wisconsin, Madison faculty in 1991. He has been a faculty member and Director of Training in the counseling programs at the University of California, Santa Barbara, the University of Utah, and the University of Oregon. Dr. Wampold's primary interest centers on understanding psychotherapy from empirical, historical, and anthropological perspectives. He has published methodological and substantive articles on how the research on counseling and psychotherapy converges on a contextual model of psychotherapy. He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and a Diplomate in Counseling Psychology of the American Board of Professional Psychology.

Dennis M. Kivlighan, Jr.

Dennis M. Kivlighan, Jr., is the Chair of the Department of Counseling and Personnel Services at the University of Maryland College of Education. He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (Society of Counseling Psychology, Division of Group Psychology and Group Psychotherapy), a two-time recipient of the Research Award from the Association for Specialist in Group Work, and the current editor of GROUP DYNAMICS: THEORY, RESEARCH, AND PRACTIVE. His research interests include examining the process and outcome of group and individual counseling and psychotherapy and using counseling interventions to influence achievement goals and academic achievement. He received his Ph.D. from Virginia Commonwealth University.