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The Use of Data in School Counseling

The Use of Data in School Counseling
Hatching Results for Students, Programs, and the Profession

  • Trish Hatch - CEO and President, Hatching Results; San Diego State University, USA
Additional resources:

November 2013 | 416 pages | Corwin

Reach ALL students and prove how critical your counseling program is!

For school counselors, using data effectively doesn’t have to be a burden. Data can make the difference for today’s embattled school counseling programs, and this insightful book shows how to collect and manage it.

School counseling scholar and advocate Dr. Trish Hatch describes how K–12 counselors can replace “random acts of guidance” with intentional, well-timed interventions, based on student data. Aligned with current research and the American School Counselor Association (ASCA) standards, this essential resource includes a complete set of tools and templates for data collection, action-planning and reporting. Readers will learn how to

  • Develop a robust counseling curriculum that supports the Common Core Standards and drop-out prevention
  • Measure progress through pre- and post-assessments
  • Deliver compelling reports that demonstrate your program’s impact

This well-timed book is designed to help school counseling programs make the most of limited resources and measurably demonstrate how their work improves school performance.

“Trish Hatch provides extensive examples of how school counselors can enhance student achievement and well-being through the use of data.  Not only does she provide useful examples and a framework from which counselors can explore data, she helps counselors understand some of the very common barriers to change within school systems.”
—Jennifer Betters-Bubon, Assistant Professor
UW Whitewater, WI

“As practicing school counselors, we rarely find a text that tells us what to do, why we should do it, and how to do it. Priceless!”
—Franciene Sabens, School Counselor
Chester High School, IL

Looking for more resources on data in school counseling? Check out the online course Data! Data! Data!

Learning Targets
About the Author
1. Implementing School Counselor Common Core Standards: “Every Student Gets Every THING”
Standards-Based Education

Implementing the Common Core: The Role of the School Counselor

ASCA and Standards-Based Education

School Counselor Core [*Guidance] Curriculum

Schoolwide Core Curriculum Action Plans

2. Intentional Guidance: “Some Kids need MORE”
What is Intentional Guidance?

Intentional Guidance and:

ASCA National Model

ASCA Professional Competencies

Evidence-Based Practices

Response to Intervention (RTI) and Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS)

Dropout Prevention Education

Intentional Guidance? Or Intentional School Counseling?

3. The Use of Data to Drive Interventions
School Counselor Data Proficiency

Data Pre- Test

Types of Data

Disaggregation of Data

Setting Reasonable Measureable Outcome Goals

Federal Grants Call for More Data-Driven Decision-Making

4. Program Evaluation : Using Data to Evaluate Interventions
Process Data: “What You Did For Whom”

Perception Data: “Did You ASK?”

Results Data “So What?”

Hatching Results Conceptual Diagrams

Intentional Guidance for Systems Change

Data Over Time

Where Do I Start? What Data Should We Look at Every Year?

A Word About Data Addiction

5. Action Plans: A Two-Pronged Approach
School Counseling Core Curriculum: “Every Student Get Every Thing”

Guidelines for Using Curriculum Action Plans

Sample Curriculum Action Plans

Intentional Guidance: “Some Kids Need More”

Guidelines for Using Intentional Guidance Action Plans

Sample Intentional Guidance Action Plans

6. Determining Curriculum and Interventions
Data-Driven Curriculum Decisions

Rethinking the Purpose of Faculty Needs Assessments

Curriculum Needs Assessment Surveys

Intentional Guidance Intervention Decisions

The Fishnet Approach

Student At-Risk Surveys

School Counselor Referral Forms

Menu of Services

Evidence-Based Approach to Curriculum

7. Creating Pre-Post Tests
Why Assessment? “We are Teachers Too”

A-S-K (ASK Them What They Learned)

Attitude: How is an Attitude Question Created?

Knowledge: How is a Knowledge Question Created?

Skills: What Types of Questions Should the School Counselor Ask to Assess Skills?

Get Real About Violence Pre-Post Test (Sample)

Common Questions About Pre-Post Tests

Hints for Creating and Administering Pre-Post Tests

You Don’t Know What They Know Until You Know What They Know

Online Products

Silva’s Story

Analyzing and Improving Pre-Post Tests

8. Intentional Guidance for Systems Change
School Counselors as Social Justice Advocates

Programs and Activities

Policies and Practices

Access and Opportunity

Taking Action

Data Teams

Activity: Who Falls Through the Cracks?

Using Data to Tell Your Story

Advocacy Thoughts from Reese House

Intentional Guidance Action Plans for Systems Change

9. Finding (Making) Time - Setting Priorities
Time and Choice

Busy Professionals? Or Always Available?

Are School Counselors Starters or Utility Players

Is This a Good Use of A Master’s Degree?

The Annual Agreement

Ratios and Time

Making Choices on Spending Time

Time Trackers

“Plates are Full” Activity

FAQ and Time Suckers

School Counseling Program Organizational Evaluation

10. Reporting Results
Program Evaluation vs. Research

Results Reports

Program / Activity Evaluation

Program Improvement

Student Advocacy

Systemic Change

Program Advocacy ~ Multiple Tools for Sharing Results

Filling out the Results Report

Impact Over Time

Calculating Percentages Using “The David Effect”

Creating Graphic Representations of Data

Common Mistakes and Pitfalls

11. Reporting Results via the Flashlight Approach
The Flashlight Approach (Measuring ONE Thing – Well)

Flashlight Rating Scale Rubric

Flashlight Instructions: Curriculum Lesson Detailed Walkthrough

Flashlight Instructions: Intentional Guidance Detailed Walkthrough

12. Flashlight Packages – “Putting it all Together”
Flashlight Packages Introduction

Program Evaluation Reflection (Barbara Smith)

Guidance Curriculum Flashlight Package

Intentional Guidance Flashlight Package


CESCaL Flashlights Online


13. Today’s Professional School Counselor Does Make a Difference
Logic Model for Success

Preparing the Soil

Realistic Evaluation Activity Questions

Owners or Renters?

Professional School Counselors

Pilots, Passengers, Prisoners, and Hijackers (P3H)

Thoughts on Complex Resistance

Seeing Obstacles as Opportunities

Resolving (Avoiding) the Bermuda Triangle of Counseling

Data Does Work!

Final Thoughts

Flashlight Package Exemplars

Action Plans Examples

Research Quotes for Flashlight Presentations

Curriculum Resources


"Trish Hatch is a rock star and a living legend! As a Counselor Educator and passionate advocate for our profession, I believe strongly that her ground-breaking text, The Use of Data in School Counseling: Hatching Results for Students, Programs, and the Profession, should be required for all in-service and pre-service school counselors. Her cutting-edge, hard-hitting work demands that we stand up and make positive and systemic changes for the betterment of our students. Don't miss this opportunity to find out how."

Melissa Ockerman, Associate Professor, Counseling PhD
DePaul University, College of Education

The Use of Data in School Counseling is an excellent and accessible book focused on best practices in school counselor use of data.  Trish Hatch provides extensive examples of how school counselors can enhance student achievement and well being through the use of data.  Not only does she provide useful examples and a framework from which counselors can explore data, she helps counselors understand some of the very common barriers to change within school systems. Further, she emphasizes the school counselor’s role in using data to create social and systemic change through intentional counseling activities.”

Jennifer Betters-Bubon, Assistant Professor
UW Whitewater, WI

“Dr. Hatch uses her wealth of experience training school districts in the ASCA National Model (3rd ed.) to provide practitioners and educators with a practical, thorough, review of how to organize, implement, and evaluate comprehensive school counseling programs.  Readers will appreciate the step-by-step instructions, forms, and other resources with which to evolve their services and advocate for their program.  A valuable addition to the professional school counseling literature.”

Brett Zyromski, Assistant Professor
Northern Kentucky University, KY

“Every person who works at a school is an educator.  Teachers educate about subject material.  Administrators educate about a vision and a mission.  A campus supervisor educates about school safety.  Counselors educate about access and equity.

“I believe counselors play a vibrant role in the overall health of a school.  Dr. Trish Hatch has organized a tremendous resource in The Use of Data in School Counseling. With years of experience in counseling leadership, Dr. Hatch offers a sound and practical approach to transforming a school counseling program from a static, interactive support system to a dynamic, pro-active, data-driven student support team.    All schools can benefit when counselors take an instructional leadership approach to help students realize their potential and use intentional guidance to promote student resiliency.  Whether you are new to counseling, work with counseling or are an administrator, this book will give you a unique perspective on the role of counseling and how it can support not only students, but the whole school community. 

Ricardo Cooke, Assistant Principal
Steele Canyon High School, CA

“This text more than meets its goal of helping the reader understand how to use data to affect change for students, programs, and the profession. This book will become a bible for professional school counselors who are striving to be distinguished. As practitioners, rarely do we find a resource that tells us what to do, why we should do it, how to do it, and gives us the tools to be successful. This makes The Use of Data in School Counseling priceless!”

Franciene Sabens, School Counselor
Chester High School, IL
Key features
  • Provides clear and straightforward explanations of challenging topics such as data analysis, planning, and evaluation
  • Discusses how to use data to drive interventions, create action plans, determine curriculum and interventions, create pre- and post-tests, initiate systems changes, and report results
  • Aligns with the most recent edition of the ASCA National Model, ASCA Professional Competencies, Evidence-Based Practice, Response to Intervention (RTI), and current dropout prevention research
  • Provides an overview of how to report and highlight results using a "flashlight approach" and create comprehensive packages that put all of the findings together
  • Includes practitioner examples, artifacts, and dozens of samples of pre- and post-tests, surveys, action plans, and management forms


Sample Materials & Chapters

Learning Targets

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