The unique nature of correctional settings presents mental health professionals working in these settings with various ethical and practical challenges. In light of these issues facing the field of correctional psychology, the present study is focused on examining the real-life experiences of correctional psychologists. Potential participants were identified based on their experiences within their mental health careers, specifically those who work, or have worked in the past, within a correctional facility as a mental health professional. Following this, a standardized interview was conducted focusing on the professional and educational background of the participants along with their perspectives about their work and the overall field of correctional mental health. The results of the study indicated a multitude of themes consistent across the interviews including training, the day-to-day, psychological and emotional issues, discomfort, dual role conflicts, limits of confidentiality, and if this is a rewarding career field. This study provides important information relating to the ethical and practical challenges of correctional mental health and why they experience these difficulties.
Semester/Year of Award
Dustin B. Wygant
Mentor Department Affiliation
Open Access Thesis
IRB Approval Number (if applicable)
Bailey, Claire E., "Patting Down Your Patient: Ethical and Practical Challenges of Correctional Mental Health" (2023). Honors Theses. 1005.