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A Personal and Professional Journey to Identifying the Role of Counselling Psychology for the Japanese

Kishi, Ryota (2015). A Personal and Professional Journey to Identifying the Role of Counselling Psychology for the Japanese. (Unpublished Doctoral thesis, City University London)


There have been a few quantitative studies examining various people’s attitudes toward seeking psychological help and making comparisons with other nationalities and origins, as they are understood to influence people’s decisions to utilise professional psychological help services (e.g. Masuda, Suzumura, Beauchamp, Howells & Clay, 2005). However, there does not appear to be any similar studies on the subject with Japanese participants based outside the United States or qualitative studies exploring Japanese people’s unique experiences with the notion of seeking psychological help to date. This thesis seeks to explore how Japanese expatriates perceive the notion of seeking psychological help through the experience of living in both Japan and the United Kingdom, where counselling as a form of psychological treatments appear to be perceived differently, and how they feel their perspectives may have been affected by the experience. Six UK-based Japanese female expatriates were interviewed. Participants’ narratives were analysed qualitatively, using thematic analysis within a social constructionist epistemological framework. Four major super-ordinate themes emerged in analysis: “Exposure and consequent reactions”, “Creating personal distance from the notion of seeking psychological help”, “Societies and self” and “Developing current personal perspectives”. The thesis highlights a wide range of cultures participants have been exposed to and have consequently been influenced by. The roles counselling psychology could play amongst Japanese people are demonstrated, whilst other implications for the field of counselling psychology and mental health in general are also underlined. These findings, together with implications, strengths and limitations of the research, are discussed.

Publication Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Departments: School of Arts & Social Sciences > Psychology
Doctoral Theses
Doctoral Theses > School of Arts and Social Sciences
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