Derek Truscott, PhD, RPsych

Professor, Faculty of Education - Educational Psychology Dept

Contact

Professor, Faculty of Education - Educational Psychology Dept
Email
derek.truscott@ualberta.ca
Phone
(780) 492-1161
Address
6-119A Education Centre - North
8730 - 112 St NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2G5

Overview

About

I earned my doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Windsor in 1989, and practiced in hospital, community, group home, rehabilitation, and private settings prior to joining the University of Alberta in 1997. I am a Registered Psychologist with the College of Alberta Psychologists and member of the Canadian Psychological Association.

Theoretical Orientation to Practice

Because all orientations to psychotherapy are equally effective, interventions are helpful only if client and therapist believe them to be so, and the client’s experience of therapy is paramount, I practice from a theoretically pluralistic, technically collaborative, feedback-informed orientation. I first draw from all psychotherapeutic approaches to find a shared understanding of each client’s problem that offers hope. I then propose promising solutions consistent with our shared understanding. At every stage of therapy I seek client feedback on their experience of factors empirically proven to be associated with treatment effectiveness and make adjustments accordingly.

Because no theoretical orientation deserves to be privileged over any other and the therapist’s belief in an approach to psychotherapy is central to being effective, I strive to help students find their own orientation to practice and learn how to adapt it in the service of their clients.


Research

I am interested in answering the question of what it takes to be a good psychologist. By “good” I mean one who is effective, helpful, influential, and impactful – who is sought out by people suffering from personal problems and to whom other psychologists refer or seek out themselves. I also mean “good” in the sense of one who is ethical, principled, virtuous, and moral – who knows how to do and does the right thing and is sought out by others wanting to do likewise.

It often seems to me that the secret to becoming a good psychologist lays buried under mounds of facts and opinions. No wonder most of us pursue either research or practice and pay scant attention to the other. Producing more research findings or proposing more practice approaches isn’t going to remedy this situation, and might be making it worse. Having grown up on the Alberta prairies, my response has been to think of myself as a refinery rather than as a pump-jack, synthesizing knowledge from existing research to fuel professional practice.

I am currently working on two books, The Effective Psychotherapist: On being more helpful more often, and The Talking Cure: A history of psychotherapy.

Announcements

Effective the 2020-2021 academic year, I will not be supervising new graduate students.


Courses

EDPY 536 - Ethical and Professional Issues in Psychological Practice

This course is designed to increase knowledge of ethical, legal, and professional standards of psychological practice. Priority given to students enrolled in the School and Clinical Child Psychology or Counselling Psychology programs or consent of Department.

Fall Term 2021
EDPY 903 - Directed Research Project

Fall Term 2021

Browse more courses taught by Derek Truscott

Publications

Ethics for the Practice of Psychology in Canada, Third Edition
Author(s): Truscott, D., & Crook, K.
Publication Date: 8/16/2021
Publication: University of Alberta Press
External Link: https://www.uap.ualberta.ca/titles/987-9781772125429-ethics-for-the-practice-of-psychology-in-canada-third-edition
Ethical responsibilities when working with clients who are suicidal
Author(s): Truscott, D.
Publication Date: 4/1/2021
Volume: 64
Issue: Spring
Page Numbers: 14-16
External Link: https://www.cap.ab.ca/regulatory-information/cap-monitor?PID=934&mcat=937&acat=2&ev=1&ArtDateMonth=4-2021
Every breath you take: Ethical considerations regarding health care metrics
Author(s): Truscott, D.
Publication Date: 2019
Publication: Health Ethics Today
Volume: 27
Issue: 1
Page Numbers: 14-19
External Link: https://cloudfront.ualberta.ca/-/media/dossetor/health-ethics-today/healthethicstodayvolume27number1october-2019.pdf
Ethics on the edge: Working with clients who repeatedly threaten suicide
Author(s): Truscott, D.
Publication Date: 2018
Publication: In M. M. Leach & E. R. Welfel (Eds.), The Cambridge handbook of applied psychological ethics
Page Numbers: 134-153
External Link: http://www.cambridge.org/gb/academic/subjects/psychology/applied-psychology/cambridge-handbook-applied-psychological-ethics?format=HB#e1CscbhPQj1vZ3gw.97
How do Canadians rank the Canadian Code of Ethics for Psychologists’ principles?
Author(s): Gothjelpsen, S., & Truscott, D.
Publication Date: 2018
Publication: Canadian Psychology/Psychologie canadienne
Volume: 59
Issue: 1
Page Numbers: 31-37
External Link: https://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/cap/
Improving psychotherapy outcomes: The power and promise of feedback
Author(s): Truscott, D.
Publication Date: 2018
Publication: College of Alberta Psychologists Monitor
Volume: 56
Issue: Fall
Page Numbers: 10-11, 23
External Link: https://issuu.com/collegeofabpsych/docs/cap_monitor_56_final
Teaching professional ethics and law: Blending the professional expectations and reflective practice approaches
Author(s): Truscott, D., & Rourke, L.
Publication Date: 2018
Publication: In B. Maxwell, N. Tanchuk, & C. Scramstad (Eds.), Professional ethics education and law for Canadian teachers
Page Numbers: 1-14
External Link: http://cate-acfe.ca/polygraph-book-series/
Gestalt therapy
Author(s): Truscott, D.
Publication Date: 2017
Publication: In A. Wenzel (Ed.), The Sage encyclopedia of abnormal and clinical psychology
Page Numbers: 1569-1572
External Link: https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/the-sage-encyclopedia-of-abnormal-and-clinical-psychology/book243472
Seven habits of highly ethical psychologists
Author(s): Truscott, D.
Publication Date: 2017
Publication: College of Alberta Psychologists Monitor
Volume: 53
Issue: Winter
Page Numbers: 21-22
External Link: https://issuu.com/collegeofabpsych/docs/the_cap_monitor_issue_53
Ethics & law for teachers, second edition
Author(s): Truscott, D., & Crook, K. H.
Publication Date: 2016
External Link: https://shar.es/1hp6wk
Psychologists’ legal responsibilities when a client is suicidal
Author(s): Truscott, D.
Publication Date: 2015
Publication: Psychologists’ Association of Alberta Psymposium
Volume: 25
Issue: 3
Page Numbers: 18-19

Becoming an effective psychotherapist: Adopting a theory of psychotherapy that’s right for you and your client
Author(s): Truscott, D.
Publication Date: 2010
External Link: http://www.apa.org/pubs/books/4313025.aspx