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Psychother Res. 2012;22(6):621-37. doi: 10.1080/10503307.2012.693772. Epub 2012 Jun 18.

Quantitative naturalistic methods for detecting change points in psychotherapy research: an illustration with alliance ruptures.

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Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology, Yeshiva University, Bronx, NY 10461, USA.


Analysis of change points in psychotherapy process could increase our understanding of mechanisms of change. In particular, naturalistic change point detection methods that identify turning points or breakpoints in time series data could enhance our ability to identify and study alliance ruptures and resolutions. This paper presents four categories of statistical methods for detecting change points in psychotherapy process: criterion-based methods, control chart methods, partitioning methods, and regression methods. Each method's utility for identifying shifts in the alliance is illustrated using a case example from the Beth Israel Psychotherapy Research program. Advantages and disadvantages of the various methods are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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