Online psychotherapy practice in public teachers training colleges in the lake region, Kenya
Ocholla, Janipher Amani
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Introduction of Information Communication and technology in particular internet aimed at widening access to flexible distance education in institutions of learning. This included the practice of online psychotherapy in learning institutions. In developed countries online psychotherapy has been practiced for many years. However there is less information on whether it has taken root in public teacher training colleges in Kenya. The purpose of this study was to examine Online Psychotherapy practice in Public Teacher Training Colleges in the Lake Region, Kenya. The Objectives of this study were to establish the attitude of tutors and trainees towards online psychotherapy practice, identify resources available for online psychotherapy practice, determine the trainees’ level of usage of online services, to find out advantages and disadvantages of online psychotherapy practice and to find out the factors that contribute to online psychotherapeutic relationship in teacher training colleges in the Lake Region, Kenya. The study utilized the Person Centered Theory and Technology Acceptance model for conceptual framework. Questionnaire for the tutors and trainees and in depth interview for lead counselors based on the objectives were used to collect data. The study population comprised 2200 and a sample size of 327 from the five teachers training colleges. The study adopted purposive sampling procedure to select 40 tutor counselors from the five teacher training colleges. Sampling techniques used to select trainees were stratified and simple random sampling procedures. Streams were identified as strata and 287 trainees were selected from the eight streams from each of the five colleges. The streams were further sub divided according to gender then followed by simple random sampling procedure for each gender to obtain averagely 7 cases from each second year class totaling to 57 trainees from each college and 287 from the five teachers training colleges. The research supervisors of Rongo University viewed the instruments of research to ascertain their validity. Reliability of the instrument was established by test retest procedure and a reliability co-efficient of +0.6 was reported. The study utilized descriptive survey design and data was analyzed using descriptive statistics with the aid of computer program that is Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 20. The findings of the study revealed that the respondents had a positive attitude towards online psychotherapy practice. The study also established that online resources are available and this provides a platform for online psychotherapy practice in teachers training colleges. The results further found that there was high level of usage of online services among tutors and trainees. The study findings challenged trainees and tutor counselors to embrace technology integration policy in teachers training colleges. Therefore, the Ministry of Education should allocate more resources for the development of online psychotherapy practice in Teachers Training Colleges. There is also need for the Ministry of Education to ensure that similar future research is carried out in all the teachers training colleges in Kenya.