Laura Smestad, PhD, is a 2023 graduate of the Counselor Education and Supervision Program at Antioch University, Seattle.

Dissertation Committee

Katherine Fort, PhD, Committee Chair

Shawn Patrick, PhD, Committee Member

Keiko Sano, PhD, Committee Member


obsessive-compulsive disorder, OCD, counselor education, counseling

Document Type


Publication Date



The purpose of this study was to investigate how OCD is taught in graduate counseling programs. A quantitative approach with a qualitative element was used to explore the experiences of master’s-level counseling students learning about OCD as well as to examine specific information taught about OCD in graduate counseling programs. Participants completed the OCD Counselor Education Questionnaire to assess how OCD was taught in their diagnosis coursework. Quantitative survey questions were analyzed using a frequency analysis, and qualitative answers were analyzed using thematic analysis. Findings revealed significant gaps in graduate counseling curriculum related to OCD symptomology, misdiagnosis, and evidence-based treatments, as well as an overall lack of education on OCD. This dissertation is available in open access at AURA ( and OhioLINK ETD Center (


Laura Smestad, PhD, 2023

ORCID Scholar ID# 0009-0006-1682-0515