ERIC Number: ED240425
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Aug
Reference Count: 0
What Makes Psychotherapy Humanistic?
Tisdale, John R.
Based on an earlier list of characteristics, ten assertions were derived about the nature of psychotherapy upon which it was believed that humanistic therapists would agree. These assertions were then submitted to three groups of therapists (111 returns) listed in the "National Register of Health Service Providers in Psychology": behaviorists, psychoanalysts, and humanists. Each individual was asked to rate that person's agreement with each statement on a five-point scale. It was hypothesized that the humanists would show a recognizably different response pattern. Humanists did agree, differently from the others, that therapy should focus on the client's present subjective experience, new patterns of client acting and thinking are to be encouraged, and the therapist's role is essentially that of a facilitator or catalyst. They were more likely to be uncertain than the other two groups (which disagreed) about the idea that the therapeutic relationship is qualitatively different from other relationships, and fell midway between the other two groups on disagreeing that therapy should focus on feelings instead of thoughts or beliefs. All three groups agreed on the importance of honest communication, client responsibility for client behavior, and paying attention to client bodily expressions of conflict. They also all failed to support the assertion that therapist adjustment level presents an upper limit to client adjustment level. Some reasons were suggested for the lack of differentiating patterns where they existed. (Author)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Psychoanalytic Theory
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (91st, Anaheim, CA, August 26-30, 1983).