Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research
Analyzing the use of function words such as pronouns in conversation is an increasingly popular approach in social psychology, but has not yet been applied to the study of school-based consultation. The two central purposes of this study were to: (1) examine how language is used by consultants-in-training (CITs) and consultees within a collaborative model of consultation, and (2) to explore the relation between language use and the collaborative relationship, consultee outcomes, and client outcomes. Analyses focused on CITs’ (n = 18) and consultees’ (n = 18) use of pronouns in a problem identification and analysis (PID/PA) session of problem solving. Data indicated CITs and consultees used pronouns differently during PID/PA, particularly first-person plural words (e.g., we, us, our), and some of these differences were related to consultation outcomes. Implications of this research for school consultation practice and potential avenues for future research are explored.
Newman, Daniel S.; Guiney, Meaghan C.; Barrett, Courtenay A. Language use in consultation: Can "we" help teachers and students? Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research, Vol 67(1), Mar 2015, 48-64. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/cpb0000028