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Psychotherapy is a young, barely 100-year old psychological endeavor which attempts to promote change and healing through social interaction. How can it be that talking with a psychotherapist can help people change — emotionally, cognitively, and/or behaviorally — and how exactly does it help people achieve relief from psychological disorders and problems? In this course, we will study some of the key approaches to psychotherapy by examining in juxtaposition the theories and scientific research that surround them, as well as the sociocultural political contexts in which they evolve. This will be accomplished by a close reading and critical analysis of primary source theoretical papers, the “raw data” (videotapes and transcripts) of therapy sessions, case studies, and contemporary empirical research on the outcomes and change processes of psychotherapy. Students will learn how to evaluate the efficacy claims of both standard and new therapies and how to evaluate claims about the mechanisms by which those therapies work. Current controversies in psychotherapy and psychotherapy research will be addressed and debated as well. All students will design and conduct an empirical research project based on the course material.
Format: seminar/laboratory; This course will be taught remotely; seminar discussions will occur synchronously twice/week to maximize the opportunity for active group participation and engagement. Empirical labs will also occur synchronously each week; the lab work has adapted well to remote instruction. Labs will include full group discussions and activities, as well as "breakout" meetings for the research teams to focus on their empirical projects and receive individualized instruction.
Grading: no pass/fail option,
no fifth course option
attendance and active class participation, weekly 2-3 page reading response papers, APA style research report and poster/oral presentation of the research project
PSYC 201 and PSYC 252
PSYC Area 5 - Clinical Psychology
PSYC Empirical Lab Course