Technological Deployment Decisions: An Exploration of Ethical Decision Making in Technology Implementation.
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As the use of technology has become integrated into more aspects of human existence, the field of counselor education has continued to ponder the impact of technology on the therapeutic process and business of counseling. With the fast pace of development and increasing sophistication of equipment and programming, careful observation is challenging. Non-technology professionals make decisions with incomplete data regarding whether to purchase and implement various devices, software, or procedures. This study focuses on this process of technology adoption by exploring the decision-making process involved in technology adoption. What does the process look like? What values are important in the decision making process? How do counselors assess and mitigate risks inherent with certain technologies? Seven licensed professional counselors from West Texas were asked to participate in interviews to inquire about adoption practices and general attitudes toward technology. Counselors utilize a number of sources including professional consultation, social connections, and experience to establish the value of a technology. As a co-occurring process counselors evaluate risk and gain confidence in the decision to adopt and implement a technology.