The Ecological Model, Holism, and Socially Sensitive Counseling

John W. Murphy, John T. Pardeck, Karen A. Callaghan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The ecological viewpoint represents a great advance over prior models for conceptualizing social institutions, such as the family. Because this approach is holistic and non-reductionistic, socially sensitive counseling and other forms of intervention are possible. Nonetheless, due to the close association between the ecological model and systems theory, structural metaphors are employed to describe social life. As a result, if the ecological model is adopted by an uncritical practitioner, society may be unduly reified. The analysis undertaken in this paper reveals both the benefits and shortcomings of the ecological mode of assessment and intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)173-184
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Adolescence and Youth
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)


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