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Dimensions of therapist response as causal factors in therapeutic change

Barrett-Lennard, G.T. (1962) Dimensions of therapist response as causal factors in therapeutic change. Psychological Monographs: General and Applied, 76 (43). pp. 1-36.

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This study is a preliminary attempt to connect cause and effect in the therapy process. Its chief stimulus and theoretical base is Rogers' conception of the necessary conditions for therapeutic change. Specifically, it begins with the proposition that therapeutic personality change occurs in proportion to the degree that the client experiences certain qualities in his therapist's response to him. The total sample consisted of 42 clients in the Counseling Center of the University of Chicago, and their 21 separate therapists. Subjects answered the Relationship Inventory after five therapy interviews, and at predetermined later points. The main experimental hypotheses were, in essence: (a) that each relationship factor as measured after five interviews would significantly predict the indices of change, and that these predictions would be stronger when the relationship was measured from client perceptions than when it was measured from therapist perceptions and (b) that results for two matched, "equivalent" groups of clients, with relatively "expert" and "nonexpert" therapists would reveal that cases with experts give higher scores on each relationship measure and show evidence of greater change than the cases with nonexperts. The two principal hypotheses were essentially confirmed throughout, by the results obtained, for four of the measured variables of relationship. Although the findings to date are consistently promising in their support of the theory under investigation, future need for extended development of this theory is envisaged.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publisher: American Psychological Association
Copyright: © 1962 APA
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