Types of Coaching Feedback Sessions

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Observed coaching session:

Sessions in which a participant is coaching any client, fellow participant or another person as a method for practicing their coaching skills. These observations could be of an entire coaching session or only a part of a coaching session where the focus is on practicing one competency.

ICF does not have a minimum length requirement for observed coaching sessions. Sessions should be long enough for a coaching conversation.

Example: Jungmin is a participant in your accredited coaching education program. As part of her program curriculum, she is required to participate in observed coaching. She and another program participant practice coaching each other, and a faculty member observes them and provides written and/or verbal feedback to Jungmin on her coaching skills.

Mentor Coaching:

A participant being coached on their coaching skills rather than on practice building, life balance or other topics unrelated to the development of a participant’s coaching skill. Mentoring is intended to serve as a developmental process for the participant that takes place in a repetitive cycle of receiving feedback regarding participant coaching, reflecting on this feedback and practicing new skills. The focus must be on the development of skills using the ICF Core Competencies, and typically focuses on use of all the core competencies rather than just one of the competencies in the session(s). Mentor coaching is intended to be a formative appraisal of skill for continued development.

*** Please note - Only the time spent in interactive dialogue and delivery of feedback with the Mentor Coaching client may count toward the 10 hours of Mentor Coaching required for a credential. Time spent listening to a recording and preparing for a Mentor Coaching session may not be counted toward the 10-hour requirement.

Example: John is a participant in your accredited coaching education program. He is required to complete 10 mentor coaching hours as part of his ACC credentialing requirements. As part of the program completion requirements, John records a coaching session (with permission), which is then reviewed in a mentor coaching group of 5 course participants. The mentor coach, a faculty member who holds a PCC credential, plays the recording for the group, and coaches John to identify how he is using the core competencies, and improve his coaching skills. The other group participants observe and provide additional observations of coaching skills they see in John’s recording. ***

Example: Elizabeth is a participant in your education program. She has completed the required education/training hours and observed coaching sessions. Your organization does not have a faculty member who serves as a mentor coach (PCC level or higher), so Elizabeth works to find a mentor coach through ICF. Elizabeth notifies you that she has completed 10 mentor coach hours, which you have verified with her mentor coach, and you then provide her a Level 1 certificate for completing the Level 1 program once all Level 1 requirements are successfully completed.

Performance Evaluation:

Level 1 and 2 accredited providers must administer a final performance evaluation either live or as a recording. The final performance evaluation must, at a minimum, contain an actual observation of coaching at least one half-hour (30 minutes) to one hour in length which is graded as a final performance evaluation. The performance evaluation is intended to be a summative assessment of coaching skills to determine readiness for credential application.

Example: Judy is a student who has completed the required training hours as part of your accredited coaching education program. She records a coaching session with a client (with permission) and sends it to you for evaluation. A faculty member from her training program who has completed the PCC Marker Training reviews her recording and provides both written and oral feedback to Judy. If Judy receives a passing score, she receives a certificate of completion that she can use to apply for her credential.

Coaching supervision:

Coaching supervision is a collaborative learning practice to continually build the capacity of the coach through reflective dialogue for the benefit of both coaches and clients. Supervision conversations may focus on core competencies, but may also focus on coaching approaches, blind spots, ethical questions, and additional skill development.

Example: Hector is an ACC certified coach who has been practicing for one year. He works with his coaching supervisor to discuss challenges he has encountered with his clients and questions he has about how to improve his coaching practice. He works with his supervisor to better understand who he is as a coach, and how he can use that to reflect on his coaching practice to better his coaching skills. His coaching supervisor helps him identify coaching blind spots and set ethical boundaries with his clients.