Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


School of Education


Counseling Psychology, Ph.D.

First Advisor

Frederick A. Kosinski, Jr.

Second Advisor

Jimmy Kijai

Third Advisor

Nancy J. Carbonell


Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study was to examine codependency in master’s-level counseling students, to determine if there was a significant difference between incoming and exiting students, and to investigate codependency as related to age, gender, and religious preference.


The Codependency Assessment Tool was administered to 275 Spring Arbor University master’s-level counseling students to measure codependency in five core areas: Other Focus/Self-Neglect, Low Self-Worth, Hiding Self, Medical Problems, and Family of Origin Issues.


Respondents’ CODAT mean score showed a minimal level of codependency. There were no significant differences between incoming and exiting students on the CODAT composite scores or on each of the core areas. Scores were not significantly different for the composite or the core areas among different age groups. A significant interaction effect existed between student status and age on the composite score. Incoming students ages 22 to 27 scored significantly higher on the composite score than exiting students of the same age. In the core area Low Self-Worth, exiting students ages 22 to 27 reported significantly more positive self-worth than students ages 28 to 34. Among students ages 22 to 27, exiting students reported higher self-worth than incoming students. There were no significant interaction effects between student status and age on the other core areas. There was no significant difference between males and females on the composite score. On the core area Hiding Self, males were significantly more likely to hide their true selves than females. There were no significant interaction effects between student status and gender on the core areas. There were no significant differences among the religious preferences with regard to the composite or the core area scores. There were no significant interaction effects between religious preference and student status on the core areas.


The self-report of respondents did not indicate that there were high levels of codependency present. However, students’ composite scores did suggest that some codependent tendencies were present in a majority of the students. In considering codependency, counselor education programs can assist students to identify and manage any limiting codependent tendencies.

Subject Area

Codependency, Graduate students in counseling, Spring Arbor University--Graduate students.

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