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Psychotherapy research 

Psychotherapy research
Chapter:
Psychotherapy research
DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199608386.003.0011
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date: 12 December 2017

Chapter 11 comprehensively reviews the field of psychotherapy research, including exploration of the neuroscientific basis of psychotherapeutic concepts, techniques, and mechanisms of change. The first section discusses the methodology of psychotherapy research, including the advantages and disadvantages of using quantitative and qualitative methods, outcome and process research, and different psychotherapy study designs. It then reviews the main findings from both outcome and process studies of psychotherapy, including evidence of effectiveness, the dodo paradox, and whether common factors, such as the therapeutic relationship, or modality-specific therapeutic techniques are more likely to contribute to therapeutic change for particular patients and/or conditions. The second section explores the growing collaboration between the fields of psychotherapy and neuroscience research. It discusses how the latest findings from research into the structure and function of the brain, including the development of memory and learning and the impact of trauma, may enhance both the psychotherapeutic understanding of the mind and the practice of psychotherapy.

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