PSYC 355
Psychotherapy: Theory and Research Spring 2025
Division III

Class Details

Psychotherapy is young. Barely 100 years old, it is a psychological endeavor that attempts to promote change and healing through social interaction. How does talking with a psychotherapist facilitate change — emotionally, cognitively, behaviorally? How exactly does psychotherapy help people achieve relief from psychological disorders and other identified problems? In this course, we will study some of the key modalities of psychotherapy by examining the theories and scientific research that surround them. We will also examine the sociocultural and political contexts in which these approaches evolved. We will engage in 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 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.
The Class: Format: seminar/laboratory
Limit: 16
Expected: 16
Class#: 3747
Grading: no pass/fail option, no fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: attendance and active class participation, daily writing responses of 5-10 sentences related to course readings, 5 thought papers (2-3 pages in length), 2 small group oral presentations, and a 10-15 page final empirical project
Prerequisites: PSYC 201 and PSYC 252
Enrollment Preferences: Psychology majors
Distributions: Division III
Attributes: PSYC Area 5 - Clinical Psychology
PSYC Empirical Lab Course

Class Grid

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