Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



College of Education and Human Services


Counseling, Rehabilitation Counseling & Counseling Psychology

Committee Chair

James Bartee.


Self-injurious behavior prevalence continues to rise in both adolescent and adult non-clinical populations and within adolescent and adult clinical populations. Despite a large volume of literature regarding the antecedents and functions of self-injury, exploration of clinician factors in regard to these clients is sparse. This study examined the associations among 346 doctoral level clinicians' theoretical orientations, preferred terminology to describe self-injurious behaviors, and preferred diagnoses for clients who engage in self-injury. Therapist variables such as age, years in practice, and gender were examined for their association with terminology and diagnostic preferences. Chi-square analyses were conducted for the two-way interactions and a multi-way frequency analysis using loglinear modeling was used to examine the possible interaction of three categorical variables. Significant associations were found between theoretical orientation and preferred diagnosis, preferred terminology and preferred diagnosis, and theoretical orientation, preferred terminology, and preferred diagnosis together. Additionally, age, years in practice, and gender were significantly associated with preferred terminology, but not with preferred diagnosis. Clinical implications and limitations are discussed as well as suggestions for future research.