he intended readership of this volume is the full range of behavioral scientists, mental health professionals, and students aspiring to such roles who work with children. This book introduces the reader to a variety of ethical and legal dilemmas that may arise for mental health professionals in the course of their everyday work with children, adolescents, and their families. Although we are not always able to offer a definitive action that can be successfully applied in every similar instance, we aspire to give sound general advice, to aid the reader in identifying the key factors to take into account, and to help with the formulation of decision-making strategies. We have attempted to cover a broad spectrum of professional functions and work-setting contexts such as counseling in the schools, psychotherapy in private practice, research in the university laboratory, and serving as an expert witness in court. We have also attempted to cover a wide range of ethical-legal dilemmas reflecting the peculiar twists that unavoidably occur when children are involved. These include special considerations related to confidentiality and record keeping, consent to treatment and research, and psychological assessment of children.
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