Skin Dryness and Itching

The sweat glands of the feet produce moisture, fats, and oils which moisten and lubricate the skin, making it soft and supple. With age, and especially with the onset of vascular and neurologic problems such as those that accompany diabetes mellitus, the number of sweat glands and the amount of secretions decline. The skin tends to become dryer and thinner, lose some of its hair and elasticity, and itch.

Itching induces scratching, and scratching the feet may break the skin, permitting bacteria commonly found on the feet to cause infection. Also, dry skin is brittle and cracks easily. The cracking of chapped skin also opens a path for bacterial infection. Heel fissures are a common problem among the elderly, especially when the blood supply is inadequate. Deepening of the normal skin creases can lead to cracking and the likelihood of both pain and infection.

Treatment of dry skin aims to replace lost moisture, fats, and oils by application of an emollient skin cream. The cream should be rubbed in well over all parts of the feet except between the toes. In severe cases, the feet should be soaked for five or ten minutes in lukewarm water, then patted almost dry before cream is applied. The remaining dampness will help to moisten the skin and allow the cream to penetrate faster.

Although many good creams are available, it should be kept in mind that price is not a reliable index of quality. Also, because of the variability of the human skin, a product that works well for one person may not be satisfactory for another. Thus, several trials with different brands of cream may be necessary before one is found that is adequate. Use of petrolatum (petroleum jelly) and lanolin should be avoided as these are basically greases. When applied, they coat the skin but do not replenish moisture or oil. While greasy skin appears to be soft and supple, removal of the coating will reveal skin as dry as it was before the grease was applied.

The heels should be generously covered with skin cream because of their tendency to crack easily as a result of persistent dryness. Occasionally, heel fissures may require additional therapy, including bath oil soaks, protective petrolatum gauze dressings, and heel cups.

If, after several weeks of regular applications of cream, the foot has failed to respond satisfactorily, a professional examination is in order. Many skin conditions such as dryness, scaling, and peeling may be more than just dry skin. A break in the skin in particular is a sign to consult a podiatrist or physician without delay, because it may be associated with circulation changes which reduce the amount of blood reaching the foot and render it more vulnerable to infection. Such infection is much more easily prevented than treated.

The skin between the toes -- toe webs -- is usually moist, no matter how dry the rest of the foot may appear. It is important to keep the toe webs as dry as possible at all times, and this is most easily done by daily use of foot powder. Ordinary cornstarch is best because it absorbs more moisture than the talcum powder used in commercial preparations. It is also much less expensive.

Business schools, the capacity of students, business situations

How can business schools strengthen the capacity of students for precise but imaginative reasoning about business situations? The answer, briefly put, would seem to be to give them certain essential tools and knowledge of subject matter which can then be applied to a variety of business issues and problems. Both these aspects of the students' development need to be carried forward together, but preparation in the foundation subjects should be emphasized in the undergraduate years while application of such knowledge to specific business problems should be emphasized at the graduate level. The special province of business schools at both levels of study, however, is to serve as a bridge between these two phases of the students' growth.

The need for persons in business with technical competence in at least one significant area plus a capacity for grasping the broader implications of problems poses a difficult issue for business schools, especially at the undergraduate level. If the schools stress the kind of general preparation associated with executive responsibility, they are accused of preparing students for positions their students will never attain; if they stress specific job preparation, they are accused of providing narrow vocational training.

The view suggested here is that there is a wide range of jobs, both in and out of the managerial ranks, for which a broad type of education with very limited specialized training seems altogether appropriate. Simply because a school adopts this approach does not mean that it aims to prepare large numbers of students for top executive positions. Rather it means that essentially the same kind of education appears to be appropriate for a wide range of jobs and careers. This conception of the role of business schools has come to be associated with a management or managerial decision-making emphasis, and this terminology is accordingly used in the present study. This way of characterizing the work of business schools, however, should not be interpreted as meaning that all programs should be aimed exclusively at top-management or even uppermanagement positions.

Elements in Business Career - Business Schools

Any discussions of the elements which go into different careers in business must start with the admission that there is very little known about this complicated and elusive subject. While the effort to piece together some kind of a general picture seems worth attempting--and from the point of view of the business schools, inescapable--there is no use pretending that the results will be anything but first approximations, subject to numerous qualifications and questions.

Broadly speaking, careers in business which call for special college preparation can be said to consist of three main components: technical skills, general background qualities, and what might be termed "strategic capacities." The first refer to the particular techniques which have to be mastered to achieve competence in any line of work, whether as a stenographer or secretary, bookkeeper or comptroller, foreman or company executive; while there are certain general groupings of such skills. they obviously cover a wide range of positions, and any one school cannot hope to include more than a few. The second component refers to background preparation necessary to carry out job responsibilities, such as knowledge of language and literature, ability to handle numerical relations, observance of accepted standards of behavior, and the like. While an essential element in all lines of work, this phase of career preparation does not point to any special role for business schools since it can be satisfied by studies of a rather general nature. The third component refers to the capacity for grasping relationships between jobs, activities, physical magnitudes, and/or human beings in a business environment, and developing out of them a pattern of analysis and a specific course of action. This capacity for creative synthesis, though hard to define and harder still to prepare for in an academic program, can be brought to a wide variety of jobs in business and, by the same token, to every stage in a business career.

Put somewhat more specifically, this last-named capacity has to do with reasoning about business-operating questions with both precision and imagination, seeing the immediate and further removed possibilities in situations, using general principles to illuminate concrete problems, and working through the complexities of specific cases to workable solutions. Put more broadly, this quality has to do with the growth-potential which an employer or administrator always looks for in a subordinate. The capacity for seeing beyond the immediate and routine is, of course, much more important in some positions than in others, and different aspects of this capacity are emphasized in different branches of a business (production, finance, etc.); accordingly, such differences have to be taken into account in developing suitable programs of academic work. The underlying capacity required, however, is potentially useful in all jobs and careers in business, and the prime task of business schools is to foster it in every possible way.

Qualities of character and personality are still of great, even of paramount, importance in management. They can be learned only through practical experience. And such practical experience is still the most vital element in the development of any executive, provided it is practical experience of the right kind. But unless it is accompanied by mental capacity of a high order, the fruit of continuous intellectual development, it will be sterile. Everyone knows men of unimpeachable integrity and sterling worth who have remained janitors or mechanics. The difference, the new factor, in the total situation is the recognition of the importance of the intellectual factor in the complete picture and of the fact that intellectual growth can occur only as the result of continuous education.

Business schools on preparing students for work

The fact that even the most promising students cannot hope to assume highly responsible jobs in business for a number of years after graduation raises an issue of critical importance for this branch of higher education. If business schools concentrate on preparing students for work they will be doing twenty or thirty years after graduation, the value of their education will largely be limited to later stages in their careers. On the other hand, to concentrate on the initial stage of the students' working lives by only helping them secure their first jobs would lead to an even more restricted educational result.

Neither of these conceptions of the role of business schools appears wholly satisfactory since the full value of the college-going experience can only be realized if it contributes to every stage in a person's development. Knowledge tends to be quickly forgotten unless it is used regularly. If the work which students take at business schools is aimed either at beginning jobs or at some point late in their careers, its chances of achieving meaning for the individual are greatly reduced. In a changing world where many business school students will go to work in jobs and companies not known at the start, knowledge must be generally applicable across jobs and companies in order to have any value outside of pedagogy. The need is for knowledge and understanding which will transfer to new situations and for the kinds of abilities which will be useful at all stages of a person's career. A lifelong view of learning would thus appear to be quite as applicable to the work of business schools as to any other branch of higher education.

The foregoing raises the question whether there are elements which are common to a wide range of jobs and careers in business and if so, whether business schools are especially well qualified to prepare for them. If the answer to either part of this question is in the negative, the need for offering special preparation for careers in business as an aspect of a general college or university program largely disappears. Since the greater part of the rationale of the business school movement as it has developed in this country rests on the answer to this question.

Business careers involve many elements - Colleges and universities

Business careers involve many elements which lie outside the purview of higher education. The principal contribution which business schools can make is to help students apply general knowledge and special abilities to significant business problems. A variety of educational backgrounds is needed at all levels of company organizations but especially at upper management levels. Colleges and universities should concentrate on strengthening the students' powers of imaginative thinking. Business schools should concentrate on helping students apply background knowledge and general-purpose tools to significant business problems.

The problems encountered in running a business organization define the special province of business education while the staffing needs of these organizations determine how graduates of business schools will be employed. Any appraisal of academic work in this area must therefore consider the question of employer requirements for qualified personnel. In turning to the "market" for guidance, however, the business schools confront a welter of opinion.

Even with respect to the corporate sector, which includes the most influential companies, extreme care has to be exercised in interpreting employer thinking and practice because of the diversity of their needs, experience, and backgrounds. Few employers and company officers have had the opportunity to give these matters much systematic thought and quite naturally they are inclined to approach such questions in rather personal terms. It is therefore important to relate the discussion of employer viewpoints and experience to the particular industries or groups involved and wherever possible to check their opinions against observed behavior. The various soundings among employers which are attempted in this and the next chapter should be thought of, not as providing any precise guideposts, but as suggesting some general approaches to the field of business education.

In the face of the many diverse purposes which they might serve, a number of business schools have endeavored to center their programs around upper-staff and line positions in industry. Even under the most favorable circumstances there is real question how far students can go in this direction; no ready-made formula exists whereby a school's program can be given a top-management emphasis and thereby achieve solid content. Nevertheless, if this conception of business education were really held to, there is little doubt but what the work in this area would be greatly clarified--study designed to prepare for less complex and less important jobs would be left to other institutions, to on-the-job training, or to the individual studying on his own. The basic difficulty is that, if taken at all seriously, this conception of academic preparation for business would close out most programs now in existence, since there obviously are not enough openings in upper management to satisfy more than a minute fraction of the thousands of students enrolled in these courses. As a consequence, it leads to confusion and even misrepresentation for the great majority of business schools to assert, or imply, that they are preparing students for jobs at this level of responsibility. This applies with particular force to undergraduate business schools, but it bears on many offering graduate work as well.

The natural trend among undergraduate business students

The natural trend among undergraduate business students appears to be in the direction of greater demand for strictly business subjects and, within the latter, for major specialties of a quite practical, first-job value. This poses the following question: If specific job training is what most of the students want and perhaps are best suited for, what would be gained, other than a certain amount of frustration and lowered morale, from tightening admissions policies, increasing the analytical content of the work, and generally raising standards?

The answer to this query, which is obviously crucial to any assessment of business school programs, turns on five principal considerations. First, it begs the question posed at the outset of this chapter whether there are certain areas of study which constitute the distinctive subject matter of this field. If not, then one program of work is quite as good as any other, and perhaps student appeal is as proper a criterion to apply as any; but from the viewpoint of an educational enterprise, this is certainly an argument of last resort. Student preferences and interests will naturally be reflected in the emphasis given certain parts of a school's program, but responsibility for its general direction and character must rest with the faculty and administrative leaders. After the basic elements have been worked out and the essential subjects agreed upon, rather than before, is the time to consider student motivation, morale, preferences, and the like. This in turn underscores the importance of looking at the programs of business schools in terms of the total career needs of the students, an aspect of the problem which is considered at some length in the next two chapters. Presumably, student demands for certain types of courses reflect their ideas as to what employers want and what successful careers in business require; a careful review of the problem from the latter point of view is accordingly very much in order.

Second, the prevailing pattern of student interests and motives is a product of the quality, previous training, and thinking habits of existing student groups at business schools. It would be hazardous to assume that this pattern is fixed and immutable for all time--it is not unheard of for people, even students, to change habitual ways of thinking. If the business schools, either singly or together, concluded that a certain level and type of work had to be mastered, the chances seem reasonably good that many students would respond. Furthermore, at any one institution there is the distinct possibility that higher standards would gradually attract a student body capable of handling the work at a more demanding level, while students who could not hold the pace would look elsewhere. Even before enrollment pressures have become great enough to exert much effect along these lines, a few business schools have already taken a number of steps to tighten admission policies and raise standards generally, a pattern which is increasingly characteristic of such areas as engineering, law, and medicine as well as of a number of other branches of higher education.

Third, it is easy to exaggerate the attitudinal-motivational differences between business students and other undergraduates. Mention has already been made of the strong career emphasis which apparently permeates the thinking of all campus groups, especially those in undergraduate professional schools.

College programs such as those offered by large public institutions

College programs such as those offered by large public institutions in business play a very important part in promoting social mobility for students "from lower positions in the social heap." They also help explain why business schools are tempted to offer a variety of courses of an immediate job-getting value and why it is so difficult to induce students to take work outside the business area. For many students attending these institutions, the pull to keep within the business curriculum, and even within a major subject within this curriculum, seems wellnigh irresistible. The tenor of the interview reports at almost every institution was strikingly uniform on this score--again and again those interviewed said that students were inclined to choose as many courses as possible in the business area, with a heavy emphasis on a given major. Students headed for jobs in accounting were reported as wanting all the accounting work they could get, the future marketing specialists as wanting course after course in marketing, the insurance majors as much insurance as possible, the more specific and practical the better-such was the gist of interviews conducted with deans and course advisers in business schools in all parts of the country. As the assistant dean in a large business school with a four-year program put the issue: "Our students don't see anything to be gained by taking advanced courses in liberal arts. If we didn't lay down the law, I think they'd take almost all their Junior and Senior year in their major."Another dean at an institution with a 2-2-year program stated:

We urge our students to take their "swing" electives outside the business school but it's an uphill fight. In spite of everything we do, I'll bet almost all of their work during the last two years is taken in business subjects and a good deal of that, in one area.

A review of the programs of undergraduate business students at the latter institution, one of the most highly regarded in the country, shows that nearly three-fourths of all the junior and senior students took their entire last two years in business subjects, whereas only a minimum of 42 of the 60 hours was actually required. A review of a large sampling of student transcripts at comparable institutions in other parts of the country modifies these results somewhat. For example, a random sampling of the course programs of fifty-five students majoring in accounting and marketing in six large business schools in the Middle West and South revealed that the great majority of accounting students took five or less courses outside business and economics during their last two years, while most of the marketing students took between six and nine such courses.

It seems doubtful that much of the latter work played a very vital part in the total educational development of these students. Within the business field, the accounting students tended to concentrate in their field of specialization beyond the minimum required by their departmental major (two-thirds took between ten and twelve courses in accounting whereas only seven to nine were actually required); most of the marketing students, on the other hand, kept fairly close to the minimum five to seven courses required by their departmental regulations.

Influence on a business school's program is the background

Ano important influence on a business school's program is the background, interests, and motivations of its students. A widely held view is that most students studying business subjects have a rather strong vocational orientation and that to a greater or lesser extent business programs will inevitably be shaped by this fact. According to this view, to force such students to spend any considerable amount of time studying subjects far removed from their main interest is felt to be largely a waste of time if not actually stultifying; rather, it is said, their college work should be geared closely to their career interests without permitting the latter to become completely dominant.

In assessing this point of view, it should be recognized at the outset that there is comparatively little known about the interests, motivations, and learning capacities or processes of college students, particularly when grouped by programs of major study, so these are not matters which can be discussed with much assurance. This comment may apply somewhat less strongly to students in a well-defined specialty like forestry or accounting and to students concentrating on a specific career objective at the graduate level, but it holds with special force for undergraduates, and even general graduate students, in broad, vaguely defined areas like business administration and the liberal arts. In both cases it seems only plausible to assume, a priori, that the interests and attitudes of the students would be spread out over a rather wide spectrum, with some (presumably a relatively small number) interested in the broader reaches of knowledge, others (presumably a somewhat larger number) interested almost exclusively in some specific vocational objective, and still others (presumably the largest group of all) lacking any clear educational or career purpose.

It is evident from the investigations that a substantial portion of college students, including those in liberal arts programs, think of their college experience primarily in terms of finding a good job and advancing their subsequent careers. This is hardly a surprising result and, particularly for men students, a thoroughly understandable one. The issue is not so much whether undergraduates (business students included) approach their college work in career terms but rather in what sense and to what extent this attitude is dominant during their college going years. The type of career interest, and the approach which students and schools take to it, is really the important issue, since some career interests can be most broadening and others may be very narrowing. The available evidence, while for the most part indirect and sketchy, is reviewed from this point of view.

Undergraduate and graduate - levels reputation hard

In general, and at both undergraduate and graduate levels, fields which have the reputation of being "hard" get somewhat brighter groups of students than do fields which have the reputation of being easy. This is true whether one thinks of broad areas--for example, science ranks above education and commerce--or of individual fields--chemistry, mathematics, and physics average higher than do biology and geology. Thus the physical sciences, languages, engineering, and law are all fairly close to the top of the lists, while education, business, some of the social sciences, home economics, and physical education are close to the lower end.

Reports based on interviews with faculty members of about seventy undergraduate schools lend general support to these findings. On the other hand, the opinion was expressed by both the business and nonbusiness faculty at some schools that the intellectual quality and academic seriousness of the business students were improving, and at a few institutions it was agreed that they were "catching up" or had even gone ahead of some groups in the liberal arts schools.

In assessing the steps which undergraduate and graduate business schools might take to draw more highly qualified students, it is worth asking whether careers in business have as much attraction for the most capable students, academically speaking, as careers in science, medicine, engineering, and law. The difference cannot be measured at all precisely since careers in business are so diverse; to make the comparisons accurate, business would have to be broken down into a number of categories and levels--accountants, brokerage account executives, purchasing officers, office managers, sales directors, and the like. Moreover, business is entered by so many different educational routes--high school, night school, junior college, liberal arts, engineering and business schools, among others--that the sampling problem becomes most difficult.

Moreover, even under the most favorable circumstances, the study of business is a relatively undemanding subject or can easily be made so. The upshot is that, barring unusual factors, the pressures to dilute content, reduce standards, and concentrate on practical skills win out. It takes a most exceptional school, possessing bold, imaginative leadership, plus a venturesome, dedicated faculty and strong backing from the parent university to break out of this circle of unfavorable circumstances.

These facts may be interpreted as indicating that the situation is hopeless or, alternatively, that efforts should be redoubled to reverse the natural course of events and raise standards all along the line. The latter seems the only defensible course of action. The fact that serious difficulties stand in the way of raising academic standards at many business schools should not be allowed to determine university policies. Rather, the difficulties should be faced and dealt with as effectively as possible.

Undergraduate and graduate business schools admissions standards

The direction which undergraduate and graduate business schools take with respect to their admissions policies is closely related to the issues just noted. If business administration becomes an increasingly distinct area of study with certain required subjects or skills to be mastered and certain standards of performance to be fulfilled, admissions policies would have to be modified accordingly. If, above a minimum level of quality, provision is made among schools for variation in an upward direction, it is obvious that the admission policies and/or graduation requirements of some schools would necessarily be a good deal more restrictive than others. As any field of learning develops, these two issues of minimum admission or performance standards, and variations above the minimum, become crucial.

For undergraduate business schools which admit students as freshmen, admissions standards are now largely decided on a university-wide basis. Looking ahead, there seems no reason why this should be universally true. Schools of architecture or engineering which admit freshmen are generally not bound by the admissions standards applicable to other students. If business schools continue to accept students in their first year, they should be permitted to establish standards equivalent to the stronger branches of instruction, though perhaps little progress can be made in this direction until this field of study becomes more clearly defined. As matters now stand, the admission policies of four-year undergraduate business schools are largely a result of the fact that these schools are concentrated at institutions which admit all graduates of accredited high schools.

There is only a bare handful of four-year schools located at universities which carefully screen beginning students. If many students and employers look to schools which maintain high admission standards, this small group of institutions will not begin to meet the demand. As long as present admission practices persist, any school seeking to raise its standards of academic performance is subject to the very serious handicap that there is a hard core of beginning students who do not have the minimum mental equipment to handle more demanding work. In the interests of diversity and greater variety of choice alone, there is pressing need for a good many more schools with high standards of admissions; schools which are obliged to accept all high school graduates have no alternative but to screen students at the end of their sophomore or junior years more carefully.

Most of the four-year business schools are located at universities which legally or in fact are committed to accepting any graduate from an accredited high school within a given state or locality. In these schools and universities the only effective way of improving the quality of students is to screen them more intensively at the end of the freshman or sophomore year. On the contrary, in many instances the business schools were found to be a good deal more lax than most other branches of the universities visited in setting promotion standards beyond the freshman year, with the consequence that they are serving as a dumping ground for students who cannot make the grade in engineering or some branch of the liberal arts. This need not be the case, as the example of a few of the four-year schools testifies, and the time seems well past when this condition should be allowed to continue.

Schools which admit students as juniors (a few admit them as sophomores) are in a rather different position with respect to admissions promotion standards, so comparisons are hard to draw. The great majority of the schools in this category, for which admissions information could be secured, required students to have maintained a C average during their first two years of college, typically a universitywide requirement. While this requirement may or may not be very exacting in a given case, at least these schools are not in the position of the four-year schools which have to cope with huge numbers of inferior beginning students. More important still, business schools which admit students as juniors and even sophomores (the so-called "2-2-" and "1-3year" schools) have somewhat more leeway in setting entrance requirements at higher levels. Admissions standards under these programs are definitely above those for the student body as a whole; this is true at California (both Berkeley and UCLA), Emory, North Carolina, and Wisconsin among others; at four-year schools for which information could be secured, Rutgers was the only example of a business school which requires its students to maintain a somewhat higher grade average after admission than is demanded by the parent university. Other considerations aside, this means that the 2-2- and 1-3year schools are in a considerably better position to raise standards than the 4-year schools.

The diversity of student interests

As a practical matter, probably the most that can be expected is that the schools would tend to move up all along the line; the top-level schools would go still higher; those in the middle tier of academic quality would edge up more closely to the top schools; those in the lower tier would move into what is now the middle category; while at the bottom, a sharper line would be drawn between the work of the lowest-level fouryear institutions and the work of high schools, evening schools, and the like. The great majority of students would still find programs of study suitable to their abilities, though admittedly some of the least academically gifted would be excluded from regular collegiate business programs. The issue, then, is whether the interests of these latter students should be allowed to outweigh the needs of those who are not now being pushed to the limits of their abilities.

The press of enrollments and the diversity of student interests with which business schools must cope pose issues more akin to those faced by higher education as a whole than by particular branches of professional education, and in neither case is any simple solution likely. The most apparent danger is that in striving to meet the needs of the many, the needs of the better students will tend to be neglected. But there is the further question whether programs pitched to the abilities and interests of the less qualified students will even bring out their best efforts or serve their special interests. There is some tendency in the academic world to write off large groups of students, whether in engineering, liberal arts, or business, as forever childish, incapable, and unimaginative. "Average" and "below average" students need to be treated like adults quite as much as their more favored peers.

The problem of motivating such students is admittedly complex but, speaking of college and university work only, should the actual subject matter they study be materially different from what is given superior students? The pace perhaps should be slower and the level of difficulty of the work reduced for such students, but it is doubtful whether the essential content of the programs should be made very different. This raises questions about the motivations and interests of business students and about the content of the business curriculum which are discussed at some length later. However these issues are resolved, it must be agreed that while business schools bear a heavy responsibility for providing more equal economic opportunity, they also carry an obligation to challenge all students at different levels of ability to their fullest capacities; to do otherwise would be a move away from, rather than toward, the kind of diversity which recognizes variations in student abilities and would in fact tend to establish a uniformity of mediocrity.

As enrollment pressures mount, the difficulties in giving full scope to students of varying academic promise will rise commensurately, making the need for safeguarding measures all the more necessary. The undergraduate business schools would accordingly concentrate on underlying principles and basic tools needed by students in their later work, with only limited attention either to first-job skills or to the more advanced aspects of business preparation. This pattern would not only accord with developments which have already occurred in such other fields as engineering, law, and medicine, but it would be a logical outcome of long term trends in business education as well. In fact, as noted in the preceding chapter, some important beginnings among business schools have already occurred along these lines, and further developments may well be in the making which will put the whole matter of student needs and preferences in a substantially different light.

University-College Programs in Business Administration: Student Characteristics and Interests

Hardly any undergraduate business schools, especially those with four-year programs, follow selective admissions policies. Judged on intelligence-test scores, undergraduate business students do not compare favorably with other important student groups. These findings are modified, but only in part, at the graduate level. Both undergraduate and graduate business students regard education primarily in career-value terms, but whether business schools should alter their programs accordingly seems doubtful.

Some of the principal issues confronting business schools are brought into focus when the activities of these institutions are studied from the viewpoint of the students who attend them. The pattern of education for business as distinguished from such highly developed professions as engineering, law, and medicine. One of the distinctive features of business schools is that they have been in the forefront of the movement to carry higher education to a wide cross section of the population. Put in concrete terms this has meant that most business schools have had to adapt their programs to the abilities and interests of extremely large and diversified student groups. A natural inference to draw from this fact is that the majority of these schools cannot expect to establish high academic standards comparable to those found in the advanced professions. This is the issue with which this and subsequent chapters are concerned.

The general thesis developed here is that business schools could raise the content and quality of their programs materially and still meet the needs of the bulk of their students. Two quite different questions of educational policy are involved--first, whether academic standards in the lowest-ranking schools should be raised and second, whether the same should occur among schools which are already above the minimum. Most students now attending business schools would derive great benefit from broad, demanding programs of study, that such programs would tend to attract a type of student who would profit even more from such work, and that from the viewpoint of student abilities and interests there is nothing to prevent business schools from raising standards considerably. This finding holds for the lowest-level schools as well as for those of higher ranking, and it applies to many institutions offering graduate as well as undergraduate work.

Few presumably would quarrel with the proposition that students should be pushed as closely as possible to the limits of their intellectual abilities. This highly laudable objective, however, immediately raises a host of difficult questions about the kind of students business schools should admit, what standards of academic performance should be established, what are the backgrounds and interests of their students, and how should such considerations affect the work of these schools. These are baffling problems, and the discussion which follows does no more than suggest some tentative answers.

It can be assumed further that as this branch of academic work develops, it will acquire more analytical content and become more difficult. But again, the outcome in terms of individual schools will depend on the specific meaning which comes to be attached to these words. If, for example, this area were to move ahead very rapidly, there is no question that many students would have to drop out or switch to less demanding programs. On the other hand, if the subject were to develop slowly--and this seems more likely--the repercussions among students would be far less. In the first case, it would be as though all the lower-ranking schools suddenly raised their standards (in terms of admission policies, grade average for graduation, course requirements, etc.) to the highest found anywhere in the country; in the second, it would be as though schools only raised their standards piecemeal and gradually. In both instances, some students would have to go elsewhere but the difference in impact would of course be enormous.

Education for Family Life

Among the proposals for strengthening family life recommended in the memorandum, in addition to the availability of counseling, social, and medical services at all stages of family need, major emphasis was placed on family life education as one means of prevention of difficulty and promotion of competence. Such education, the report continues, should be given to those about to be married and to those already married and should include adequate factual information, as well as an appreciation of the values of good interpersonal relationships and of the skills needed in maintaining such relations.

Education for marriage should begin in the home because children develop their attitudes toward marriage and family living in the early years of life and it should continue as a part of the total education of the individual in school, church, and community. Specific information should be given expectant parents about infant and child care; to parents of preschoolers about dealing with questions children ask; to parents of teen-agers about adolescence and the physical and interpersonal problems that arise in this period; and to parents of young adults and young adults themselves concerning facilities for meeting suitable persons of the opposite sex and methods of evaluating their potentialities as marriage partners. Such education should, of course, involve preparing engaged couples to deal with the natural adjustments of early marriage.

What of marriage counseling in the future? Who will be the marriage counselor of tomorrow, and what will the major functions of counseling be? The counselor of tomorrow will be well grounded in the psychology and sociology of marriage and human relations, in the anatomy and physiology of sex, as well as in the skills and tools of counseling. He or she hopefully will be mature, well-balanced and well-integrated and prepared to deal with many types of marital disabilities, recognizing, however, his or her own personal and professional limitations.

Eventually some form of certification may be indicated for qualified persons. When a new area is opened, many prospectors exploit its resources for their own benefit with little regard for social values. To prevent such exploitation and to develop marriage counseling on high professional and ethical standards will be the aim of both governmental agencies and professional associations.

Marriage counseling the understanding, the sympathy, the interest

No matter what the process or technique used by a counselor may be, there is an intangible quality in marriage counseling which cannot be described in specific terms of method or process. The personality of the counselor himself, the relationship which he establishes with the counselee, the understanding, the sympathy, the interest, the warmth which he possesses, profoundly affect his counseling and its results.

It takes time to change, to grow, to make adjustments, to develop competence. Therefore patience is necessary and not hastiness, sympathy not indulgence, tolerance not criticism, faith not pessimism. People do not want too much fuss made over them; neither do they want to be pitied. They have to feel their way. Many will find themselves through trial and error. The counselor should not argue, blame, criticize, moralize, or tell the other person that he is wrong. He should not humiliate or tell the counselee to be ashamed of his unusual or erratic behavior. He should express approval for real effort to become more adequate, even though success is not immediately forthcoming, and above all, he should show a warm human responsiveness, a sympathy with human differences and an understanding of them, and an awareness of spiritual values. The goal of counseling is to help people over the spots that seem rough to them and through this process enable them to help themselves and those with whom they are most closely associated.

If the family thus remains the basic unit of our society, any social or professional practice which helps to maintain competent marriages should in itself contribute to the strengthening of family life and indirectly of society. Long ago Confucius pointed out that good families are essential to good communities, and good communities to a good national life. What then constitutes a good family? In the memorandum mentioned above, a Good Family was defined as one which "stresses growth and development of children and parents, has achieved happiness, strong bonds of affection, mutual enjoyment and co-operation, is characterized in practice by democratic give-and-take and high togetherness, is actively contributing to the community and is crisis-proof because rooted in spiritual values." Expectations both in marriage and family life are in the main high in our American culture. They go well beyond economic security and adequate physical care. They stress the importance of affection, of equality within the home, of a mutually supportive emotional and physical relationship, and of wholesome and understanding parenthood.

Marriage Counseling Clarification and Interpretation

Often a discussion with a counselor helps the client to understand more clearly the difference between his own and his partner's needs and the causes of the marital difficulties. In over half the cases in this series, clarification was a part of the counseling technique.

Interpretation goes further and demands considerable psychotherapeutic skill and additional responsibility on the part of the counselor. In this process the counselor attempts to interpret for the counselee some of the motivations for his own and perhaps even for his partner's actions. This procedure too, is used by the counselors in the majority of the cases in this book.

Development of insight as a part of the process of marriage counseling is one of the aims. Many of the counselors in these case records specifically refer to this factor as a part of their procedure. In other cases this process is implicit in the histories. Through interpretation and sometimes suggestion, an attempt is made to enable the client to achieve a deeper insight into the underlying reasons for his own or his partner's behavior. Marriage counseling attempts to aid the counselee to develop a greater understanding of self without necessarily aiming at a reorganization of the individual's personality. "Insight therapy" which includes intensive use of interpretation may belong to the realm of prolonged therapy, and obviously needs to be used with a great deal of caution in marriage counseling unless the counselor has special training in psychotherapy. A specifically trained and well-equipped marriage counselor, however, may utilize this measure as a part of his therapy in marital disturbances.

Part of the marriage counseling process may be the recommendation of books, pamphlets or articles that may be pertinent to the particular case. Books are sometimes recommended for specific purposes as an adjunct to the counseling and are discussed by the counselor and counselee during subsequent interviews. The counselor may wish to illustrate certain areas of information or discussion by enabling the client to see how someone else describes this. Often the written word is reassuring and carries conviction. Some counselors may hesitate to recommend any specific reference, feeling that this may represent their own bias. Under such conditions, the counselor will refer his clients to a college or public library or suggest they obtain references for reading from their teacher or minister or physician.

Marriage Counseling Opening Communication Between Partners

One of the most useful processes in marriage counseling is to encourage, when it is lacking, fuller and freer communication between the partners. As was pointed out in the discussion of the joint interview, this may in itself have great therapeutic value. At the root of many marital difficulties lies the inability of husband and wife to talk about their problems without great tension and hostility. "We never talk," a wife or husband may say, "we always argue." "It is impossible for us to communicate," a husband comments, "we just knife each other." Changing argument to discussion, changing destructive undermining to the beginning of mutual support, may help a couple to new patterns in the resolving of their conflicts.

A consultation with an understanding, sympathetic, nonjudgmental professional person can, in itself, be a constructive therapeutic measure. It gives an opportunity for the troubled and distraught individual to ventilate his grievances, to discharge his emotions, to free himself from accumulated resentments and hostilities. This is the process of ventilation and catharsis which is a basic part of psychotherapy. How often does a counselor hear the statement after the first interview: "You know, I feel so much better for having talked to you." This "feeling better" may not carry over for long, but it is an indication of the value of the release of emotional tension.

In practically every case presented in this series, emotional support and reassurance was an important part of the counseling process. The objective of the counselor throughout was to build up the ego strength of the counselee, by developing his self-confidence, his ability in handling reality, and by giving him reassurance when indicated. Supportive therapy is a well-recognized aspect of psychotherapy generally, and plays an important role in marriage counseling.

Marriage Counseling The Initial Interview

How did the counselors proceed with their cases? What were the techniques employed by them? What general concepts or principles. were utilized in the achievement of the reported results?

Here an attempt will be made to analyze the cases presented from the point of view of the processes and techniques reported in the case presentations as actually employed by the different counselors included in this report. This summary should indicate how closely practice relates to theory in these particular cases and may be considered suggestive in connection with the current practice of marriage counseling.

The Initial Interview: The way in which the client-counselor relationship is established in the first interview is important psychologically as well as practically. Almost every experienced counselor evolves his own procedure on the basis of what seems most. comfortable and efficient for himself and his client. The goals of this first contact are similar for counselor and client in three major respects: each hopes to end the hour with a picture of what the focus of the problem is, to ascertain whether the counselor through his specific agency or private practice is equipped to deal with the situation, and finally to decide whether the client is sufficiently motivated to work out a mutually acceptable plan for counseling.

In this first contact some clients pour out their story with such vehemence that the counselor can do little but interrupt occasionally to keep the flood of words focused on relevant material and finally to allow time for discussing a plan of counseling. Other clients may be so upset it is extremely difficult for them to talk at all, let alone organize their account. In each and every situation it is the counselor's most important job to help the client feel comfortable, to let him know the counselor is interested and wants to be of assistance.

Often some simple question or statement breaks the ice. "How did you hear about marriage counseling?" or "Why don't you just begin to talk about what you most want me to know; we can fill in the details later."

Sometimes, in spite of how it may be suggested, couples come separately for the first interview; sometimes they come together. Some counselors plan, if possible, to see a couple together for ten minutes or so; then to see the man and woman each separately for about thirty minutes, and finally to spend the last fifteen minutes with both again jointly in order to set up a plan. Such a process enables the counselor to get a glimpse of the interaction between the partners, to find out if they are concerned with the same or different problems, and to estimate whether one or both are committed to a plan for participating in the counseling.

Duration and Timing of Marriage Counseling

How long does a marriage counseling case take? This question is of immediate concern to the individual or couple who seeks guidance in this area. Many people are of the opinion that one or two visits to a marriage counselor will resolve their difficulties. Often they are surprised to find that it may require a series of interviews before the problems can be adequately brought to an acceptable solution.

The duration of a marriage counseling case obviously depends on a number of factors -- the nature of the situation, the frequency of the interviews, the willingness of the partners to continue. In some instances a single interview may suffice. The counselor may be able to give needed factual information, initiate new points of view, or effect a referral to another source of aid, at the first contact. Usually, however, a series of discussions with one or both partners, and sometimes joint sessions, may be necessary.

An analysis of this series of selected cases shows that the duration of counseling, not including follow-up contacts, varied from one month in four cases to over three years in two cases. Continuously or intermittently, seven cases had contact with the counselor for two months, twelve for from three to six months, six for from six to twelve months, and eight for from one to three years.

The total number of sessions per case varied from one interview with each partner, in one case, to six hundred with one individual client in another. In the large majority of cases each individual partner had between six and thirty interviews.

In twenty-three instances interviews were held weekly, in seven at more frequent intervals, and in eleven once every two weeks or even less frequently. As the case drew to a close, the interval between visits usually increased. As might be expected, the number of interviews per case was higher in the marital than in the premarital group. In the latter, the average was from two to ten interviews, and no case extended beyond eight months.

Natural interest on the part of both professional and lay persons

There is a natural interest on the part of both professional and lay persons in knowing how those wanting help with a marriage situation get to a marriage counselor. This is of practical importance to the troubled individual as well as to the counselor or marriage counseling service. A review of the sources of referral in these forty-one cases shows a wide dispersion. In some 40 per cent, they came from professional agencies, from physicians, lawyers, teachers, courts, and a county medical society; in another 40 per cent, from educational sources such as college classes, magazine articles, books, and other communication media; and in the remaining 20 per cent, from self-knowledge, former clients, friends, and relatives.

Counseling with One or Both Partners : Should the same counselor see both partners? This was considered dynamically important in the counseling process. It appears that in the practice of marriage counseling, when an individual or a couple comes with a marital problem, the marriage is regarded as the patient, and every effort is made to see both partners. When both are available, it is also apparently deemed best for the same counselor to work with both partners. Although both partners often avail themselves of counseling, every marriage counselor is undoubtedly familiar with situations in which one partner seeks help and the other is not interested or refuses to co-operate. Under such conditions, the counselor can still focus on the marriage and serve the client constructively even though the situation is not ideal.

In certain instances in addition to counseling with both partners, it is necessary and helpful to interview other persons connected with the case in order to obtain adequate information and perspective about the situation.

Joint Interview : Another point is concerned with the value and dangers of joint interviews with both partners. It was pointed out that joint counseling can become a valuable technique but that it should be used with utmost care. There will be times when the counselor will wish to bring two or more individuals in the constellation together for a conference with him. Such a conference usually takes place after the counselor feels that he has a good understanding of the various facts in the marital problem and is in a position to begin to approach it therapeutically.... In a discordant marital relationship there are painful areas which the marital partners either have shied away from entirely or have found impossible to discuss without acrimony. From his neutral vantage point the counselor is able to direct the discussion to those areas.... With his previously gained understanding of the inner state of each partner, the counselor skillfully asks leading questions first of one partner, then of the other, in a way to open up these silent areas and to create a new communication between the two. This may have great therapeutic impact."

Marriage Counseling an Aid to Strengthening Family Life

Marriage counseling is indeed an "expression of our times." More and more individuals and families who might perhaps be able to work out their adjustment to their environment in a less complex society, find the stresses and strains of modern-day living too intense, too complicated, and too demanding for them. They do not know how to use their potential inner strengths and resources to be able to cope adequately with the conflicting and competitive demands for their attention and energies. Nor do they have the knowledge and experience needed for an objective analysis of the disturbing elements, an evaluation of the destructive and constructive factors at work, and a marshaling of the positive forces for solving the problem or problems which face them. The individuals involved feel a deep need, therefore, to seek the aid of professionally skilled outsiders, uninvolved and more "objective" persons for help in their difficulties.

To be sure, marriage counseling has been carried on through the ages, by families and friends, doctors, ministers, teachers -- informally, semiformally, and more recently formally. Yet in one sense it is new -- new in the sense of a developing awareness of its own special area within the whole field of education for marriage and family living. It is new in its insistent emphasis on high professional standards of training, experience, and performance. At this stage of its development it is not a new profession per se, in any technical, academic sense. But it is an emerging area of specialized skill in many professions. And because it is interdisciplinary in character, it offers optimal advantages for research and new learnings in the various fields of medicine, psychiatry, psychology and social work as aids in resolving complex problems of personal relationships.

In this country, the formalization of marriage counseling has developed concurrently with the growth of courses in education for marriage and family living in schools, colleges, and universities. Collaterally, family conferences and councils organized for the general dissemination and exchange of ideas, information, and techniques in the different fields of specialization related to marriage and family living almost universally include special committees or sections devoted to marriage counseling.

Specifically, marriage counseling has developed along a number of lines: as a by-product of the daily practice of professionally trained individuals -- doctors, ministers, social workers, psychologists, and so on; as a development of already established community services, notably the family-service type agencies, child study and parent education groups, Planned Parenthood centers, social hygiene programs, university counseling services; as a service specifically focused on marriage counseling; and more recently full- or part-time private practice of professionally trained persons in a variety of disciplines, who specialize in marriage counseling. Marriage counseling is becoming more clearly defined through examination of the processes involved, and its potentials are becoming more generally recognized.

From the point of view of agencies and organizations, a recent survey of existing services undertaken by the American Association of Marriage Counselors seemed to point to a tendency to what might be termed specialization within specialization.

This tendency to recognize marriage counseling as distinct from other inclusive types of family counseling or family casework services is important to note. (The very process a person goes through in identifying the problem and seeking specialized help is often a first step toward resolution of the problem. Agency structure may thus become a dynamic factor in marriage counseling.) This is perhaps one important factor in the development of marriage councils, unattached to other existing organizations, but supported by a variety of persons, clients, and community organizations and serving as a resource to a total community.

Development of specialized in-service training in marriage counseling, on the postgraduate level is also progressing -- all part of the increased emphasis on higher professional standards. There is wide variation in the selection of candidates for training, in procedures, in scope of training programs and in opportunity for academic credit. But again, the fact that there is no stereotype is undoubtedly healthy at this stage of development, predicated of course on the assumption that there is a deep commitment to the proposition that wherever and by whomever marriage counseling is practiced, it should be done under the highest possible standards of professional and personal ability and integrity.

The Unknown in Marriage Counseling

There are three conditions in particular which go a long way toward ensuring the success of marriage counseling. If they could be guaranteed in all cases, the effectiveness of counselors would be very greatly increased. First, marriage problems should be brought for counseling as early as possible. Second, "both husband and wife should co-operate fully in the counseling process, and third, the couple should be willing to continue with counseling for a reasonable length of time.

Counseling at its best is not merely a matter of solving problems. It is a process in which growth of the personality and of the relationship aims to avoid the recurrence of that type of problem ever again.

We would fail to present an over-all picture if we did not emphasize also the limitation concerning our actual knowledge of the value of these or other elements. What actually happens either during or after the attempt is made to help persons troubled with problems of personal or family adjustment is as yet primarily a matter of hypothesis.

There is little scientific information available concerning what effect a series of interviews with an analyst, a psychiatrist, a clinical psychologist, a social worker or a marriage counselor actually has on the adjustment of a disturbed individual or a distorted situation. A cultish apathy will furnish little eventual protection from the necessity of proving through scientifically acceptable methods that our hypotheses concerning how people are helped can be subjected to verification. National organizations of clinicians from all the professions involved in therapy have a primary responsibility for investigating not only in what proportion of cases the results are helpful but also the how and the why of their procedures.

Joint Conferences with Both Partners Can Be Helpful but Are Difficult

Husband and wife may make the wildest accusations and say the most cutting things to each other without necessarily bearing a permanent grudge. Once these things are said in the presence of a third party, even a professional person, they tend to become fixed and to take on a different significance and value. A joint conference can provide just the opportunity for either or both parties to say things to punish and hurt each other which neither will forget because of the presence of a third party. The joint conference can, therefore, become the means of further separating spouses instead of bringing them together. But it can also serve as a time-saver and as a means of clearing up misunderstandings from lack of communication. It can serve as the place where fantasy and reality may meet for the first time. Hence it becomes an important adjunct to counseling techniques but should be used with the utmost care.

The Counselor Should Approach Every New Problem in a Spirit of Humility and in the Conviction That Regardless of How Similar It May Appear to Others in His Experience, It Must Be Studied and Treated As If It Were Totally New and Unprecedented. This principle is anticipated, in part at least, in some of the others already stated, but it is so important that it merits repetition and emphasis. The uniqueness of personalities and their interrelationships as well as the complexity and unpredictability of human interaction must ever be kept in mind. Besides, professional personnel dealing with people in trouble must exercise the greatest possible caution lest they act on the assumption that they are endowed with special powers of omniscience. It is sometimes difficult for them to keep from believing in their own superior qualities and to refrain from acting accordingly. It would be well for those who feel this way to remember and try to emulate one very good psychotherapist who prayed each morning that he might resist the temptation to play God and prayed each evening for forgiveness for having succumbed to the temptation.

The Counselor Should Ignore or Violate Any of These Principles Mentioned When the Situation Demands It. This brings us back to the point of our beginning -- namely, the need for an open mind and flexibility in point of view, approach, and method on the part of the counselor. This is the only principle that should be held inviolate and is a sine qua non for marriage counseling. Given a counselor with adequate training, an open mind, an appreciation of the value of the human personality, a dedication to do everything possible to be helpful to his client, and a spirit of humility arising from the awareness of the inadequacy of our present knowledge regarding human behavior and its motivations, the counselee is in relatively safe hands.

The Counselor Should See Both Partners, and Others If Necessary

Recognizing the ambiguity and the differences in understanding of the concept of normalcy, it is still safer for the nonmedical counselor to think of his client as temporarily beset by a combination of problems which are beyond him, and as in need of objective exploration, guidance, and kindly assistance, than to assume that his behavior is abnormal and proceed to spin fancy theories about the why's and wherefore's of his deviational behavior or that of the people in his orbit. Where the client's actions do not conform to the concept of normal behavior as commonly held, or where the counselor's knowledge and understanding are inadequate to explain or account for the symptoms, difficulties, and problems he faces, the counselor will do much better to seek psychiatric help than to determine that his client is neurotic or psychotic or to be even more specific in his diagnosis. Seeking medical or psychiatric help will be better for the counselee, too, because if his behavior should be due to some physical, mental, or nervous disorder, he will be put in touch with medical aid without losing what may prove to be precious time.

Psychoanalysts prefer to see only the patient they are working with and, with few exceptions, will not see the other party or parties to the conflict. This pattern has held also for many psychiatrists, although in the last decade there have been more flexibility and experimentation by certain groups who interview the spouse or family members when they deem it constructive. The former procedure is due mainly to two reasons: first, these specialists are primarily concerned with the patient's personal adjustment and they aim to aid him in obtaining his maximum self-realization; second, they believe that the patient will feel threatened and that if he knows his spouse or other family members will be seen, he will fear lest his confidence will thus be violated. The marriage counselor, however, aims at treating the situation as a whole, and the interpersonal relationships of the persons involved. He must, therefore, know the picture as it appears not only to the client who comes to see him, but to the spouse who is intimately involved in the situation. Hence he should endeavor to see the spouse whenever possible. Occasionally it may be necessary to see parents or other family members.

The counselor must be careful, however, to make it absolutely clear that confidences will be respected and under no circumstances should he reveal to one spouse, directly or indirectly, what he has learned from the other unless, as sometimes happens, one spouse requests the counselor to open up a difficult subject which he has found it impossible to do for himself, or unless both spouses give the counselor blanket permission to use any of their material with the spouse as it might seem helpful. The preservation of the client's confidence is at times extremely difficult and requires the utmost caution and self-discipline on the part of the counselor.

Maximum Benefit in the Counseling Process

This requires a recognition on the part of the counselor when a situation is beyond his professional skill and competence. It also requires the possession of a sense of professional security with respect to what the marriage counselor is as well as what he is not equipped to do, so that he will not feel that resorting to other professional skills would be considered an admission of incompetence. Failure to recognize his natural limitations may do incalculable harm to the counselee and may bring discredit upon the counselor. This applies especially to the use of medical, psychiatric, and legal assistance as soon as the need for such assistance becomes evident.

There is probably no single phase of the counseling procedure in which counselors differ as greatly as in the degree of their activity and permissiveness. The counselor must bear in mind that the interview serves several purposes, including that of providing a catharsis for the counselee. This is likely to be nullified if the counselee is not given the opportunity and encouraged to talk freely and fully. Besides, if the counselor does too much talking he may stop the counselee from presenting his story in the most telling way, may give the narrative a different and false direction which in turn may mislead both counselor and client.

Here is another area in which counselors differ greatly. It is impossible to say what the correct procedure would be in a given case because it will depend upon the situation and the personalities involved. This, however, may be said with a fair degree of certainty; those plans are best which emanate from the counselee under helpful guidance and suitable stimulation. Furthermore, the counselee is much more likely to identify himself with and execute a plan which he, himself, has made than to participate in a plan which stems from the counselor, regardless of how intelligent and logical it may be.

Many people who accept the view that compromise is necessary in marriage have a tendency to set rigid and arbitrary standards and limits as to how far they will go in compromising. It is essential to remember that an unyielding attitude or a mechanical and fixed set of rules in what should be a fluid and easy relationship, may lead to disastrous results and that the art of adjustment lies in knowing when to yield and when not to yield. Give-and-take in marriage is a desirable ideal, but it is sometimes better and wiser to give all or take all. The goal should be a flexible arrangement which will take into consideration the values involved in the issue and the personalities, rather than a hard and fast line which is adhered to regardless of the consequence.

Flexibility and an Open Mind for Marriage Counseling

The counselor should hold himself free from preconceptions as to the cause of the difficulty, should not jump to conclusions, should avoid hasty and unwarranted generalizations, and should scrupulously avoid preconceived and ready solutions. He must be prepared to follow the evidence wherever it will lead him.

Many persons doing marriage and family counseling, especially those who come to it with a definite religious perspective, find it extremely difficult to maintain unbiased and openminded attitudes. The problem of right and wrong is almost always present in such counseling, and the counselor is hard put to it to avoid rendering value judgments and taking sides, particularly where extramarital sex relations are involved or where other ethical and religious values enter into the conflict between husband and wife. Nevertheless, the counselor should eschew such judgments and hold himself free from prejudice, if he desires to win and hold the confidence of his clients and to be of help to them. The counselor should be careful, however, not to give the impression to his counselee that he, the counselor, is lacking in such values for himself. He should be aware of his own cultural and emotional biases and the emotional blocks they may produce.

This may be due to ignorance, reticence, shyness, or initial lack of confidence in the counselor. Or it may be due to a lack of insight and understanding, or to a lack of courage or emotional inability in facing the facts on the part of the counselee. Occasionally, it may be due to an unconscious or even deliberate attempt to mislead the counselor and get him to take sides or identify himself with the counselee. It is important for the counselor to bear this in mind, or he may be misled by the surface situation, making the problem much more difficult of ultimate solution.

Some Suggested Principles and Guides for Marriage Counseling

At this point it seems desirable, even if repetitious to the seasoned practitioner, to consider some of the important principles, techniques, and processes of marriage counseling. In such a young field of specialization there is little likelihood that any set of guides could meet with general acceptance.

The methods of different counselors vary a good deal of course, but there are basic principles which most accept. One of these is that the counselor's job is not to tell John and Mary Smith what to do, but to help them to find their own solution to their problem. Only a solution that comes from them, out of their own thinking and feeling, is of any use. If the counselor dictated a policy to them, he would be taking over the job of running their lives, imposing his will upon theirs. This he must not do, because the work of the counselor is based upon his respect for the freedom of the individual to manage his own life in his own way, in so far as this is in accord with the welfare of others.

The counselor therefore accepts John and Mary Smith as they are. He makes no attempt to put them under pressure to do what he thinks they ought. Whatever they say, and whatever they do, he continues to respect their individuality. He knows that if he fails to do this he has forfeited the power to help them.

The aim of the counselor is to create an atmosphere in which John and Mary are free to talk of themselves, to bring out their hurt feelings, to unburden their disappointments. He may on occasion see them together, but usually he sees them separately, because if there is conflict between them they will feel freer and more relaxed out of one another's presence.

Some marriage problems can be cleared up in one interview. But that is very unusual. As a rule a series of separate interviews will be necessary with each of the marriage partners. It takes time for John and Mary to gain complete confidence in the counselor; and it takes time for the counselor to get to know John and Mary well enough to give them all the help they need.

Some Important Aims and Steps in the Counseling Process

Marriage counseling consists of three major divisions: (1) premarital counseling, in preparation for marriage; (2) marital counseling on problems and difficulties arising within the interpersonal relations of marriage; and (3) counseling with the unmarried, the divorced, and single persons who as yet are unmarried. Counseling of any one of these types may be carried out individually or in groups.

Given the necessary preparation on the part of the counselor which will enable him to differentiate between normal and abnormal behavior in terms of the client's cultural background, there emerges a set of procedures in the counseling process which serve as basic steps. Although these may be considered elementary by the experienced counselor, they are mentioned here for those readers who are not yet sophisticated in counseling, and who hope to prepare themselves to understand marriage counseling. In addition, for beginning professional workers and for those more experienced who wish to take stock of their work, the following aims and procedures may serve as helpful guides to marriage counseling. It should be emphasized, however, that although these steps are used with each partner in the marriage, in marriage counseling the focus of the counseling is on the interpersonal relationship between the marital partners.

Establishment of Rapport: Webster's New International Dictionary defines rapport as "harmony, conformity, accord or affinity, intimate or harmonious relations." Establishment of rapport means, therefore, the development of a close understanding; the development of confidence on the part of the counselee in the counselor. The need for rapport is, of course, obvious if the counselee is to be willing to confide in the counselor and share with him the thoughts, problems, and experiences which have arisen in the marriage relation -- the most intimate relationship known to men.

2. Reduction of Hostility: The counselee is frequently oppressed by the feeling of hostility to the person or persons or situation which he believes to be responsible for his problem. It is important for the counselor to provide the opportunity for and to encourage the fullest possible expression of this hostility because little constructive work can be done until the client frees himself from the weight of this load. This is sometimes referred to as ventilation of feeling or catharsis. This process can be begun by the counselor's making the client feel comfortable in verbally expressing his negative feelings toward his spouse or others involved, whether his feelings are based on fact or fantasy.

3. Development of Insight and Objectivity: The third aim in the counseling process is to develop insight and objectivity in the counselee. This is perhaps the most difficult goal to achieve because emotional disturbance, which is almost always present, hinders insight and objectivity. It certainly cannot be accomplished without good rapport between counselor and counselee. Hence it must follow after or at times be developed simultaneously with the establishment of rapport.

4. Reorientation: Once insight and objectivity are obtained, it is not difficult to lead the counselee to a reorientation toward his problem or problems and the situation. This may mean the development of a new or different relationship to the person or persons involved; or it may mean the avoidance or a more courageous facing or transcending of conflictual situations, as the case may require; or it may necessitate changing his role or behavior; or it may require reorganizing existing relationships. In a sense this means aiding the counselee in re-educating himself so that he may be equal to the new conditions of life which he will have to face, and the requirements they will make on his resources.

5. Development of New Objectives and Perspective: As a result of the reorientation, new goals will have to be envisaged in terms of the new relationship to be established. These must be related to the counselee's needs, his abilities, and his resources, both personal and environmental; to those of his spouse and to the marriage itself. Here it may be well to call attention again to the problem-solving capacity of the individual if properly stimulated by a good relationship with the counselor and a modified relationship to the marriage partner.

6. Implementation: The new objectives and relationship will require ways and means of achieving them. These, in turn, will necessitate carefully considered plans which will be based on all the foregoing considerations. It may be well to emphasize that the planning should be done by the client instead of the counselor. The client should experience the thrill of making and executing these first plans and discuss the results with the counselor as a means of gaining self-confidence in his newly acquired strengths and awareness of inner resources.

The foregoing six elements in the counseling process are not independent of each other. They are, in fact, interdependent in time and psychological development and they may be worked on, to a greater or lesser degree, depending upon the situation, almost from the first interview.

Marriage Counseling Differentiated

We have thus far treated counseling and marriage counseling as closely related to psychotherapy. Indeed, there are those who hold that counseling in general, and marriage counseling in particular, is a type of psychotherapy, or at least short-term, conscious, face-to-face psychotherapy. Others seek to differentiate the one from the other.

We can express the difference in emphasis then, by saying that counseling looks more often toward the interpretation and development of the personality in the relations characteristic of specific role-problems while psychotherapy looks more often toward the reinterpretation and reorganization of malignant conflictual elements within the personality through the relation with the therapist.

It may also be pointed out that unlike psychiatrists, psychoanalysts, and some clinical psychologists, the marriage counselor deals more often with so-called normal, average people, who, on the whole, manage their affairs quite adequately but occasionally find themselves confronted by a set of circumstances or a constellation of problems which are too much for them, either because of their own emotional involvement, or because they do not possess the necessary information or perspective to handle the situation, or both.

This view of marriage counseling problems leads to several rather important considerations. First, that the marriage counselor who is not a psychiatrist and who has no special training, though holding himself alert to evidence of abnormalities and of hidden motivations, need not always, in fact is not necessarily equipped to, probe too deeply, and should not indulge in extended analyses or attempt fundamental personality changes. In many situations requiring his professional services, he can safely deal with the problems as they present themselves on a reality or conscious level after making certain that he is not dealing with a displacement; that is, that the client is not withholding the real problem from him by substituting a different problem, perhaps one of lesser significance and importance. Second, that the marriage counselor must make certain, so far as possible, that he is not dealing with a deep-seated psychotic or neurotic behavior manifestation with which it is beyond his ability to cope. This implies that the marriage counselor should be sufficiently well trained to recognize a neurosis or psychosis when he is confronted with it. This is admittedly not always easy or certain, for there are situations which will puzzle or escape even the better-trained psychotherapist who is not especially versed or experienced in differential diagnosis. It means also that although the nonmedical marriage counselor need not be prepared to handle the deep-seated neuroses or psychoses, he should be prepared to interpret psychiatric service to his client and, where needed, to spend sufficient time to lay the groundwork for a constructive psychiatric referral. In addition, in cases where it becomes evident that the marriage produces, in Karen Horney's term, a real "enslavement for one or both partners," the counselor may have to aid the family members to as nondestructive as possible a severing of their relationship, and to a positive attitude toward the future.

The wise marriage counselor, will, of course, call a competent psychiatrist into consultation whenever it is possible if he is uncertain about the nature of the problem with which he is dealing. Similarly, the conscientious marriage counselor will take proper precautions that he does not overlook or ignore somatic factors and will refer to the medical profession whenever the situation seems to require it.

It follows that the marriage counselor can best make his important contribution by equipping himself to function not as a pseudo-psychiatrist or analyst, but as one who has made a special study of the problems and interpersonal relationships of family life: the bonds, loyalties, and conflicts; the loves, rivalries, and hostilities; the need for identification and independence, on the one hand, and the conflicting desire for independence, on the other; the wish for security and the urge for adventure; in brief, the stresses and strains involved in membership in a marriage and a family and the psychosocial factors and influences of such membership on the personality.

By way of summarizing our discussion of the differentiation of marriage counseling up to this point, it may be said that the marriage counselor should have, in addition to the necessary knowledge and understanding of the positive and negative influences on the family, special training to be able to differentiate normal from abnormal or deviant behavior mechanisms and to understand the dynamics of human motivation as manifested in the interpersonal relationships in the marriage. This requires as a minimum about the same type of psychiatric knowledge as is included in a standard curriculum for a master's degree in social work. Such knowledge, however, will no more equip the marriage counselor for involved psychiatric analyses and therapy than it does the social worker except where there has been additional and special training. And, like the social worker, the marriage counselor can handle most situations on a conscious level, being ever watchful for indications of more profound disturbances and calling upon the appropriate specialist when necessary.

The foregoing comparison of marriage counseling with social work in terms of the type and amount of psychological and psychiatric knowledge required as a minimum for marriage counseling and the level on which they can function, raises further questions about the other professions engaging in marriage counseling. This is especially true of the professions of medicine, psychology, the ministry, and social work. Some members of these professions carry their marriage counseling load as part of their daily work within their own professional activity. Others, apparently a relatively small minority of the members of these professions, recognize that marriage counseling requires specialized knowledge and skill and therefore believe that marriage counseling can be most effective and will make its best contribution to those who need what it has to offer by developing a new and distinct professional discipline. (There is a relatively large group of people doing marriage counseling without any kind of training for the work who are not members of any professional group. These people would, in all probability, deny any need for specialized training. However, since they are not members of any recognized profession we cannot be concerned with them here.)

A recent survey by Kerckhoff outlines the views of some of these professional groups. Rutledge and Bridgman, in independent studies, present the viewpoint for marriage counseling as a distinct professional discipline. These divergent points of view are being subjected to thoughtful examination and evaluation by committees of the American Association of Marriage Counselors and by individual members of the Association. The issue as to whether marriage counseling is or will become a separate professional entity or will remain a specialized aspect of various disciplines is not yet resolved and may be confidently expected to come up again and again. Whatever the merits of the varying views and however the issues involved may be determined, adequate preparation for marriage counseling, regardless of by whom it is done, is an obvious necessity.

Types of Counseling Procedures

As in psychotherapy, there are different schools and types of counseling, and the type used depends upon the orientation of the counselor and the institutions with which he is connected. For our purpose it will suffice to mention briefly only two wellknown schools: directive counseling and nondirective counseling, representing the two extremes. Most counseling falls somewhere in between these two extremes. The thoughtful reader of the cases in this volume will have little difficulty in identifying these types as represented by the case material, although it should be borne in mind that very few counselors, except those who are devotees and dedicates, adhere strictly without deviation to either approach.

Few counselors will classify themselves as consistently "directive." Those who disagree with this form of counseling claim that it is authoritarian, that its results, although quick, are often transitory, that it does not seem to build up the counselee's inner strength and resources, that it may call forth the resentment, opposition, and hostility of the client. Some also feel that although directive counseling may occasionally be justified in cases of emergency to gain time or to give specific information, it should be resorted to only under circumstances demanding such procedure.

Similarly, comparatively few counselors will identify themselves as entirely "nondirective." This approach, mainly associated with Carl Rogers, actually had its origin in psychoanalysis, Rankian psychology, passivity, and so on. Rogers now prefers to call his procedure "client-centered" counseling or therapy, having more or less abandoned the earlier designation of "nondirective" as inadequate for describing his processes and aims. This does not mean that he rejects the "nondirective" approach. It means, rather, that as he sees it, directive counseling is interested in problem solving, problems of the client, to be sure, but as discovered, defined, diagnosed, and prescribed for by the counselor with the client having little or no initiative or part beyond coming to the counselor. The counselor directs all activity, and the counselee is the passive recipient of the benefits of the counselor's wisdom and experience.

In "nondirective" counseling, the client becomes the active agent; it is he who endeavors to discover, define, and diagnose the problem and who even prescribes the solution. The counselor serves as a catalyst, occasionally reinterprets what the counselee brings forth, and enables him to draw upon his own resources for the solution of his problem.

Client-centered or "nondirective" counseling also has its critics. They recognize its value because it avoids the weaknesses and dangers of the directive procedure. They admit that it tends to utilize the inner resources of the client and provides more ready acceptance of the client on a nonjudgmental basis than the directive approach. However, they maintain that "nondirective" counseling has the weaknesses of its strengths; for example, that to depend solely upon the inner resources of the counselee is to waste a great deal of time, and that the client usually has neither the time nor the finances nor the patience required in this procedure.

As in psychotherapy, so also in counseling, there are those who would call themselves eclectics; and, as in psychotherapy, unless such eclecticism is based on comprehensive knowledge and discriminating choice, it may be little more than a patchwork of expedients and opportunism. However, when it is based on knowledge, discipline, training, and requisite skill, as well as experience, it can be a broad, flexible, and constructive approach to counseling.

Personality an Important Concept for the Counselor

The counselor's concept of personality is no less important. The term "personality" and its meaning have been the subject of intense controversy in the socio-psychological literature in the last three decades. It would take us too far afield to sketch even briefly the main considerations and directions of this theoretical ferment. 8 But we cannot fail to indicate here that the counselor's view of personality is of the utmost importance in determining his approach to his client as well as the type of therapy he will utilize. If he looks upon personality as essentially static, biologically fixed and determined by early conditioning, as unchanging and unyielding, he will necessarily be limited in his expectations and goals; and he will assume, consciously or unconsciously, an attitude which will restrict him as well as his client in the solution of the problem under consideration. If, however, the counselor views personality as an unfolding, evolving, ever-growing, and developing expression of almost limitless potentialities and inner strengths which only need assistance to achieve fruition, he himself, as well as his client, will envision broad goals and will marshal the inner resources of the client toward their realization.

This view of personality is, by and large, familiar to counselors and more particularly marriage counselors, coming as they do from the fields of education, social and clinical psychology, social case work, the ministry, and psychiatry. In addition, certain new concepts of personality as nonstatic and dependent upon the frame of reference of the person judging it, have been substantiated by actual research on material collected during marriage counseling with spouses. These findings indicate that the impressions which husband and wife have of each other's personality characteristics, vary as the spouse is influenced by feelings of love and accord (oneness) or of dislike, discord, or separateness. In other words, partners who feel love for each other tend to see each other's personality characteristics as more similar to their own than partners who are in conflict or feel strong dislike for each other. This holds for couples even though the husband's impressions of himself may not resemble the wife's impressions of herself. In fact, this holds when there are considerable differences in how each partner sees himself. Implications of these findings in terms of concepts of reality and projection are obvious. They have an important bearing on the question of the advisability, and even urgency, of working with both partners in a marriage in order to understand the actual relationship between husband and wife. In the viewpoint of the Committee who prepared this manuscript, dynamic concepts of personality have important creative possibilities for the counselor and make counseling an art replete with potentialities for constructive stimulation and guidance.

The cultural environment, Heredity, The physical environment

Heredity refers to the biological process of transmitting traits from parents to offspring. It comes about through the union of male and female cells, and it manifests itself in such things as eye color, body shape, mental capacity, and numerous other physical and psychological tendencies which characterize the newborn child. Heredity sets the stage, so to speak; provides the "stuff " out of which human behavior emerges; establishes the potentials. Heredity plays its last hand at the time of conception, and though the product may be modified after that, environment can never completely change what nature has done.

The physical environment consists of various material elements and energies that at all times surround the human organism, influencing both development and behavior. Before birth it is made up of chemicals, temperatures, and other conditions within the mother. It is affected by such things as diet and exercise; and it, in turn, affects the growth rates, survival chances, and general health conditions of the child not yet born. After birth it consists of the many geographic factors--temperature, rainfall, sunshine, wind, soil, mineral resources, elevation, topography, and the like. During the prenatal stage this physical environment is the only one operating. In the postnatal, however, there are competitive influences along with it --the social and the cultural. Culture, particularly in the Western world, has developed nearly far enough to supersede geography in influence. To some extent man has learned how to control temperature, remove mountains, and in other ways harness the forces of nature to his advantage. Modern man is not nearly so dependent upon the elements as were his ancestors. Yet, neither is he independent of them. Though the physical is perhaps the least important of man's postnatal environments today, it is nevertheless there and it has influence. To give but one example, soil compositions in the Great Basin area of the West result in iodine deficiencies in diets built from foods grown there. This condition, in turn, produces a higher rate of goiter in that area, with some ill health and personality tensions as end results.

The social environment comes from the presence of other human beings and one's interaction with them. This is sometimes referred to as the "group situation." It starts with birth and continues normally throughout the lifetime of the individual. "Man is a social animal" said Aristotle many years ago. By this he meant that society, or the interaction of peoples in groups, has a great deal to do with man's behavior. There have been rare instances of men's being deprived of this social or group environment and/or remaining undeveloped or "wild" because of it. Such individuals, those growing up or living for long periods of time without or with little human association, are called feral men. 2 They are odd because they have not had an opportunity to become socialized through normal contact with others. No personality can develop normally and completely in isolation. Everyone is influenced by, and also influences, those around him.

The cultural environment is made up of the multitude of man-made objects, customs, understandings, and skills that one is born to accept. Culture is sometimes defined as man's "social inheritance," for just as individuals are different, depending upon the kind of biological inheritance that is theirs, so they are also different, depending upon the kind of society into which they are born.

Someone born to live in the heart of New York City, for example, would have a far different social heritage, and therefore a different personality, from another on the upper reaches of the Amazon. Culture, though not the same as society, is one of society's products. It consists of all that is created by man in interaction, deposited or retained by society, and passed down from generation to generation.

Thus it is that man is the product of a number of forces, all interrelated. Biology starts him off, lays down the raw materials out of which he can grow, establishes tendencies, sets limits. The physical environment, operating both before and after birth, influences his general health and, in some cases, also sets limits upon his development and activity. Starting soon after birth, both the social and the cultural environments come into strong play, the first by an interstimulation and interresponse of persons in contact with one another, and the second through an exposure to the traditional ways of thinking and acting that the group has built up. Personality is the outgrowth of them all.

It isn't really a question of nature versus nurture, as some would have it, but nature and nurture, operating jointly and with interactional effects. Heredity makes the start by providing materials out of which personality is to be built. But it is to the environments, mainly those social and cultural, that we must turn if we would understand the dynamics of personal action and the variability in directions of development. The age-old argument on the relative importance of heredity versus environment is fruitless, for both are absolutely essential and it is only through the interaction of one with the other that personality comes about. Science has not progressed far enough to give exact proportions for the various components of human behavior, nor is it likely that it will ever be able to do this. The important thing is to know what these components are, how they operate, and that they function in unison.