This paper is a comparison between the codes of ethics of the American Counseling Association (ACA) and the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC). This paper aims to present the similarities and differences between the two codes of ethics. There are two main sections on this paper. The first section presents the general similarities and differences of the two codes of ethics. The second section presents the similarities and differences of the two codes of ethics on three specific areas: Confidentiality, Sexual Intimacies and Informed Consent. The author used the codes of ethics of both organizations in the process of comparing and contrasting. The general comparison reveals that the codes of ethics of the two organizations apply to the same profession but they differ in the foundation upon which their codes of ethics were crafted. The comparison on three specific areas reveals similarities in contents but differ in depth and details.
The code of ethics is the heart and soul of any business or professional organization. This code of ethics sets the standard to which all business or professional activities of all of its members are measured. This code is the ultimate guide on how members of the organization should act in connection with the performance of their duties and obligations. Likewise, it is the basis upon which disputes can be settled or decisions are to be made. This is the protection of each member of the organization against unlawful accusations or it can also serve as a basis for disciplinary actions for erring members. This is the code that each member will have to understand and adhere to in order to function effectively within that particular organization.
A code of ethics should be clear and leaves no doubt for any other interpretation as to its meaning and intent. It should also be wide in scope as to cover every necessary area or aspect of the organization under which it serves. Furthermore, this code of ethics should be updated so as to address new situations that may arise in these fast changing times. Thus, the code of ethics of a business or professional organization reveals the true nature of the organization.
The American Counseling Association and the American Association of Christian Counselors are two professional organizations that have codes of ethics. Perhaps a family member or a friend may have availed the services offered by any of these two organizations. The professional who rendered this service is governed by the code of ethics of the organization. Thus, it will be of no harm if a closer scrutiny of the codes of ethics of these two professional organizations be undertaken. This paper compares and contrasts the codes of ethics of these two organizations in several levels or areas of the two organizations.
Section I- General comparison of the two codes
In general, the codes of ethics of both the American Counseling Association and the American Association of Christian Counselors have several similarities. One of these similarities is the purpose of these codes of ethics. According to the American Counseling Association, the code of ethics is designed to serve as a guide in the counseling services of its members (American Counseling Association, 2005, p 3). Similarly, the American Association of Christian Counselors states that the code is designed to assist its members and to improve Christian counseling around the world (AACC Law and Ethics Committee, 2004, p 3). Both codes of ethics then apply to counselors and the counseling profession.
Another similarity between these two codes of ethics is the prominent role these codes of ethics play in the organization. The code of ethics of the American Counseling Association will be used to clarify the ethical responsibilities held in common by its members and will also serve as a basis for complaints filed against its members (American...