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Standards of Professional & Ethical Conduct

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The Board sets standards for the professional practice of psychodrama, sociometry and group psychotherapy and certifies individuals on the basis of these standards. The Board promotes the quality and efficacy of psychodrama practice in the United States of America. This mission encompasses the maintenance of ethical conduct and fair client, trainee and trainer practices without discrimination in regard to age, race, color, religion, national origin, handicapping conditions, gender, and sexual orientation. To fulfill this obligation, the Board has the responsibility to study and adjudicate complaints of practices allegedly detrimental to this mission. The adjudication process seeks to uphold standards of practice by psychodramatists and to secure a means of redress for aggrieved parties.

The fundamental objective of a Code of Ethics shall be to maintain ethical conduct by certified psychodramatists at the highest professional level, to educate certified psychodramatists considering ethical standards, to endeavor to protect the public against harmful conduct by certified psychodramatists, and to aid the Board in achieving its objectives through the continuous quality improvement and development of a Code of Ethics and Procedures for the Adjudication of Ethics Complaints. Of course, in no circumstance can or does the Board guarantee that unethical behavior will not occur or that members of the public will never by harmed by the action of individual certified psychodramatists.

Each individual certified psychodramatist is expected to view ethical responsibility and conduct as an integral and essential component in the professional delivery of services to others. The Code does not represent a set of rules or conserves which will prescribe behavior in complex professional situations, but rather represents general principles to guide professional conduct. The Code does offer specific prohibitions regarding situations and relationships that have proven to be detrimental to the psychodramatist and others. In the final analysis, the ethical behavior of psychodramatists results from a personal and professional commitment to excellence, integrity and competency.

The Board has adopted the Code of Ethics of the American Psychological Association and has developed its own Procedures for the Adjudication of Ethics Complaints.

Filing a Formal Ethics Complaint

The Board is authorized to investigate complaints against only those persons who are either certified or in the process of being certified by the Board. The Board is not legally empowered to seek monetary compensation or impose civil or criminal penalties upon individuals. The Board may initiate procedures to reprimand, censure or expel persons who are either certified or in the process of being certified by the Board.

Individuals who have reason to question the ethical conduct of certified psychodramatists or applicants for certification are invited to review the Procedures for Adjudication of Ethics Complaints. If the individual wishes to file a Complaint, please contact the Executive Director or the President of the Board to complete an Administrative Screening form.

For more information about the ethics complaint process, please see the Frequently Asked Questions and review the Ethics Administrative Screening Form.

Privacy and Release of Information

The Board routinely issues a listing of all certified psychodramatists. The Board provides information to the general public as to whether or not a specific person is certified, and the level of certification for that person. At times the Board receives a request for more detailed information on a specific person such as the date the individual was certified, the individual’s certification renewal date, and certification number. It is at the discretion of the central office whether to release this limited information or to require that the agency submit a written release for the information.

While the Board routinely releases a list of all certified psychodramatists, the Board does not routinely release the names of all individuals who have applied for or who are candidates for certification but may respond to requests for whether an individual is an applicant or candidate for certification. On an annual basis, the Board may publish a list of all individuals who were certified during the year and those individuals who retired or are no longer certified.

Status of IndividualExample of Information Released to Third Parties
Certified_____________ is a Certified Practitioner
Formerly certified but are no longer certified_____________ is no longer certified
Admitted to certification process _____________ is a candidate for certification
Applicant for certification _____________ has applied for certification
Not enrolled with ABE but known to the Board_____________ is not formally affiliated with our Board, but you may be able to locate him by contacting the American Society of Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama or the University of _____________.
Unknown We have no information about _____________ .

Updated 6/2021