Application: Reviewing Integrative Therapy Literature

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Proponents of an integrative approach may use the saying “to someone with a hammer, everything looks like a nail” when referring to a psychologist who espouses and uses only one theoretical orientation and its corresponding therapeutic interventions. Alternately, a strong believer in one particular orientation might criticize an integrative psychologist by using the phrase “jack of all trades, master of none” when describing the choice to integrate parts of multiple theories when working with a client. Where do you stand on this issue of integrative therapy? Remember that psychotherapy is about forming professional opinions based upon the best available research literature. Therefore, for this Application Assignment, you search academic literature for studies that support or refute the effectiveness of an integrative approach. You can choose a particular client population, problem, or simply delve into the efficacy studies in general.

To prepare for this assignment:

  • Review Dr. Norcross’ course media presentation, “Integrative Therapy.” Pay particular attention to why he says there is a “natural affinity” between psychotherapy integration and evidence-based practice.
  • Decide whether you want to research a specific client population; a specific set of client symptoms, problems in living or disorder; or review efficacy research in general.
  • Conduct a literature search using your selected parameter, using integrative therapy as the intervention you are exploring and evaluating.
  • Locate at least three empirical articles from peer-reviewed journals and review these articles with respect to your chosen parameter. Note that results from three articles is not enough data to definitely assert whether integrative therapy is worthwhile, but rather enables you to reinforce your professional thoughts in terms of the support for integrative therapy.

The assignment: (2–3 pages)

  • Describe the three studies that you located.
  • Evaluate the studies with respect to your chosen parameter (client population, problem, or general efficacy of integrative therapy).
  • Form a professional opinion, rooted in these findings, that argues for or against integrative therapy.

Support your Application Assignment with specific references to all resources used in its preparation. You are asked to provide a reference list only for those resources not included in the Learning Resources for this course. Keep in mind the importance of using empirically supported research to support your points of view.

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