When reading the code of ethics for both the ACA (American Counseling Association) and the AACC (American Association of Christian Counselors), one can immediately notice several differences in how both associations make sense of ethics in their own professions. There are very general differences in the two codes of ethics and there are vast differences in the codes. Also discussed in this research are three specific topics chosen in order to compare and contrast the similarities and differences of each specific area. The areas discussed are: Conflict of Interest (Dual Roles), Sexual Intimacies, and Relationship to Society.
Keywords: similarities, differences, ethics, codes
First of all, the most general difference in the codes are that the AACC is built on Christian principles and values, while the ACA is built on the values of those counselors who wrote the ethics code. There are Biblical-Ethical foundations for the AACC while there are none for the ACA. ACA members are “dedicated to the enhancement of human development throughout the life span” (2005) while the goal of the AACC members is “to bring honor to Jesus Christ and his church, promote excellence in Christian counseling, and bring unity to Christian counselors” (2004). These statements show that the mission alone of each of these associations is quite different from one another. One would also find when comparing the two codes that the ethics code for the AACC appears to cover a broader area than the ACA. What is meant by this is that the AACC appears to cover each and every topic in a more thorough manner than the ACA. The AACC is a bit more comprehensive and detailed versus the ACA.
As much as there are differences in between the two codes, there are similarities as well. Each code of ethics was written in order to strive for excellence in its own
References: American Counseling Association. (2005). American Counseling Association Code of Ethics. American Association of Christian Counselors. (2004). American Association of Christian Counselors Code of Ethics.