Date of Award

Spring 5-1-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in School Leadership


Center for Leadership & Learning


College of Education

Committee Chair

Dr. Christopher E. Trombly

Second Committee Member

Dr. Pam Dixon

Third Committee Member

Dr. Barry Owen

Dean of Graduate College

Dr. Mary B. Gunter


Counselors are an important part of our schools and student development. According to the American School Counselor Association (ASCA) there are three domains of development in which school counselors have received specialized training: academic development, career development, and social/emotional development (ASCA, 2012). These domains, along with ASCA’s four themes (leadership, advocacy, collaboration and systemic change) make up the ASCA National Model framework for school counseling programs (ASCA, 2012). However, many counseling programs in the state of Arkansas do not implement this model as part of their program. This study investigated the lack of implementation of the ASCA model in Arkansas counseling programs. The follow research questions guided the study: 1. How well aligned to the ASCA National Model do Arkansas counselors report their school counseling program as being? and 2. What barriers do school counselors in Arkansas face when attempting to align their comprehensive school counseling programs with the ASCA National Model? The survey instrument that was employed in this study was adapted from the American School Counselor Association Readiness Survey from the University of Massachusetts – Amherst College of Education. As a result of the survey and open response question, counselors identified lack of time, advocacy, resources and lack of knowledge as barriers to implementing the ASCA National Model framework in their school counseling programs. The results of the responses received from this study provided implications for counselors and administrators to work together to improve school counseling programs across Arkansas.

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