Jessica Van Vliet, PhD

Professor, Faculty of Education - Educational Psychology Dept


Professor, Faculty of Education - Educational Psychology Dept
(780) 492-5894
6-129 Education Centre - North
8730 - 112 St NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2G5


Area of Study / Keywords

Counselling Psychology Compassion Self-Compassion Mindfulness Trauma


Theoretical Orientation

My theoretical approach to counselling psychology can best be described as integrative. I lean toward approaches that emphasize awareness and compassionate acceptance of personal experience, as a foundation for choosing new behaviours and courses of action. In working with clients, I draw largely from Compassion-Focused Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, and mindfulness interventions (e.g., Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy), as well as Emotion Focused Therapy. Throughout my practice, I attempt to tailor counselling to the unique needs, strengths, and cultural background of each client.

Professional Affiliations

Current professional affiliations include: Canadian Psychological Association (CPA), Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association (CCPA), American Psychological Association (APA), Association for Contextual Behavioral Science (ACBS), and Psychologists’ Association of Alberta (PAA). I am also a Registered Psychologist through the College of Alberta Psychologists (CAP).


Research Interests

My research is grounded in counselling psychology’s traditional emphasis on strengths, resilience, and diverse ways of human knowing and being. As one of the greatest of human strengths, compassion has been the focus of much research in my lab. Together, my students and I have been studying compassion, self-compassion, and mindfulness as they relate to emotion regulation and the alleviation of emotional distress. Our research spans a range of contexts and populations, from the study of self-compassion among women who have experienced sexual assault and other forms of trauma, to a nuanced exploration of young men’s experiences of receiving compassion from others. We have also conducted research on compassion-based interventions for working with shame and shame-related issues and behaviours. Most recently, we have extended our research on compassion to the areas of career development and work/life well-being.

Please note that I will not be accepting new students into my lab in Fall 2025.


Courses Taught

EDPY 442: Introduction to Counselling

EDPY 503: Qualitative Methods of Education Research

EDPY 534: Basic Skills, Issues, and Attitudes in Counselling II

EDPY 633: Advanced Counselling Practicum I

Featured Publications

Hamilton, L. H. A., Van Vliet, K. J., Lasiuk, G., & Varnhagen, C. K.

Journal of Child Sexual Abuse. 2022 January; Advance online publication 10.1080/10538712.2022.2112350

Budzan, B. N., & Van Vliet, K. J.

Canadian Journal of Counselling and Psychotherapy. 2021 January; 55 (3):315-333 10.47634/cjcp.v55i3.71052

Foskett, A. J., & Van Vliet, K. J.

Counselling and Psychotherapy Research. 2020 January; Advance online publication

Moore, C. L., & Van Vliet, K. J.

Journal of Humanistic Psychology. 2019 January; Advance online publication

Vohra, S., Punja, S., Sibinga, E., Baydala, L., Wikman, E., Singhal, A., Dolcos, F., & Van Vliet, K. J.

Child and Adolescent Mental Health. 2019 January; 24 (1):29-35

Van Vliet, K. J., Murdoch, K. C., & Budzan, B. N.

Canadian Journal of Counselling & Psychotherapy. 2018 January; 52 (4):299-318

Van Vliet, K. J., Foskett, A. J., Williams, J. L., Singhal, A., Dolcos, F., & Vohra, S.

Child and Adolescent Mental Health. 2017 January; 22 (1):16-22

Klingle, K. E., & Van Vliet, K. J.

Journal of Adolescent Research. 2017 January; 34 (3):323-346

Van Vliet, K. J., Klingle, K. E., & Hiseler, L. E.

Counselling Psychology Quarterly. 2013 January; 26

Van Vliet, K. J., & Kalnins, G. R. C.

Journal of Mental Health Counseling. 2011 January; 33 (4):295-311

Van Vliet, K. J.

Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice. 2009 January; 82

Van Vliet, K. J.

Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice. 2009 January; 82

Van Vliet, K. J.

Journal of Counseling Psychology. 2008 January; 55