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Person Centered Therapy - Essay Example

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In the paper “Person Centered Therapy” the author analyzes one of the major orientations of psychotherapy.  Person Centered Therapy represents a unique category of psychological intervention because it derives from person centered and behavioral psychological models…
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Person Centered Therapy
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Download file to see previous pages He presented the theory so it could be tried out by others and so it could be used as a basis for further research on psychotherapy. "Rogers thought his theory was an approximation to the truth about therapy" (Johnson, 1992). But he was, also, committed to protecting and encouraging a spirit of experimentation, discovery and creativity about psychotherapy. Rogers (1957) confessed that he did not want Person-centered therapy to be "frozen" but, rather, to be a working hypothesis, a stimulus to further inquiry about the therapy process. Person Centered Therapy (PCT) is one of the major orientations of psychotherapy and represents a unique category of psychological intervention because it derives from person centered and behavioral psychological models of human behavior that include for instance, theories of normal and abnormal development, and theories of emotion and psychopathology. The person centered psychotherapy, is based on the clinical application of extensively researched theories of behavior, such as learning theory (in which the role of classical and operant conditioning are seen as primary). "Early behavioral approaches did not directly investigate the role of cognition and person centered processes in the development or maintenance of emotional disorders" (Berglund, 1998). Person centered therapy is based on the clinical application of the more recent, but now also extensive research into the prominent role of cognitions in the development of emotional disorders. "The term 'Person Centered Therapy' (PCT) is variously used to refer to therapy based on the pragmatic combination of principles of person centered theories" (Richards, 2000). New PCT interventions are keeping pace with developments in the academic discipline of psychology in areas such as attention, perception, reasoning, decision making etc. Person centered and/or client centered psychotherapists work with individuals, families and groups. The approaches can be used to help anyone irrespective of ability, culture, race, gender or sexual preference. Forrester et al.(1995), shows that "person centered and/or behavioral psychotherapies can be used on their own or in conjunction with medication, depending on the severity or nature of each client's problem". First, Person-centered therapy is distinguishable by its form. The salient form of Person-centered therapy is the empathic understanding response process. The empathic understanding response process involves the therapist maintaining, with consistency and constancy the therapeutic attitudes in his/her experience and expressing him/herself to the Person through empathic understanding responses. Please turn to the appendix of this presentation for four segments of therapy sessions which can serve as illustrations of empathic understanding response process. Empathic understanding responses are the observable responses which communicate empathic understanding to the Person. They are responses intended to express and check the therapist's empathic understanding experience of the Person. "What makes these types of response function as empathic understanding responses is that the therapist expresses them to the Person with the intention to ask the Person - 'is this what you are telling me'. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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