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ERIC Number: ED261318
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Apr-20
Pages: 18
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Uncertainty and Clinical Psychology: Therapists' Responses.
Bienenfeld, Sheila
Three sources of professional uncertainty have been described: uncertainty about the practitioner's mastery of knowledge; uncertainty due to gaps in the knowledge base itself; and uncertainty about the source of the uncertainty, i.e., the practitioner does not know whether his uncertainty is due to gaps in the knowledge base or to personal inadequacy. Clinical psychologists (N=35) in private practice were interviewed to determine their views on the degree to which uncertainty is an essential aspect of psychotherapy. Subjects responded to an open-ended structured interview designed to allow expression of their orienting assumptions about the nature and responsible practice of psychotherapy, and to assess their ways of coping with uncertainty. The interviews were taped and transcribed and then rated by independent blind raters using a 100-item Q-sort. Cluster analysis of the ratings yielded six orienting approaches to uncertainty resolution clustered around: (1) reliance upon theory; (2) self-doubt; (3) personal gratification; (4) research-mindedness; (5) patient characteristics; and (6) consultation-intuition. These six strategies were present to some degree in all respondents. These results suggest that trainees in clinical psychology might benefit from active fostering of a consultative attitude toward peers and an investigative attitude toward clinical work, and from the teaching and practice of alternative research methodologies that complement clinical work. (Author/NRB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A