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Methods of Psychotherapy [PSYC 258]

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This course is intended to provide you with an overview of the theories and methods of psychotherapy. Specifically, our goal is to develop case conceptualization skills from within a variety of paradigms that allow for assessment and treatment planning for different client problems and populations. The course will focus on several distinct topics, but the goal will be to continue to see these as interrelated. We will discuss the role of philosophy in theory building and how a therapist's own personal views dictate the theory and style to which they adhere. We will discuss the method of service delivery with respect to a common framework of interventions, the style the therapist engages with clients, and the different treatment modalities used. We will look in-depth into several different theoretical orientations of the field, surveying the major four approaches to psychotherapy.

Specifically, our course objectives are as follows:
1. to develop an understanding of the role of philosophy in psychological theory
2. to critically analyze the components of a sound psychological theory
3. to understand the role of personal therapist characteristics that impact the delivery of a psychological intervention
4. to understand the basic components of case conceptualization and relate those to treatment planning
5. to develop a distinction between nosological systems of classification and idiographic assessment and treatment planning
6. to learn the basic underpinnings of the major paradigms of psychotherapy with an emphasis on proposed mechanisms of both etiology and curative or change factors
7. to develop critical thinking skills in the area of clinical and counseling methods
8. to develop and strengthen writing in this area through multiple writing assignments

Course Documents