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Luborsky, L. Crits-Christoph, P. (1988). Measures of Psychoanalytic Concepts—The Last Decade of Research from 'The Penn Studies'. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 69:75-86.

(1988). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 69:75-86

Measures of Psychoanalytic Concepts—The Last Decade of Research from 'The Penn Studies'

Lester Luborsky and Paul Crits-Christoph


This paper describes three types of operational measures developed by the Penn Psychotherapy Research project in the past decade:

1. Measures of the therapeutic alliance: three measures were created based on ratings, counting signs and questionnaire. All three showed significant predictions of the treatment outcomes.

2. The advent of objective measures of transference patterns: a relationship pattern measure called the 'core conflictual relationship theme' was developed, based on finding the recurrent patterns in narratives about people, including those about the therapist, that are told during the treatment. The measure has been shown to be reliable and valid.

3. Accuracy of interpretation: the convergence of the interpretations with the CCRT—the greater the convergence, the more the patient benefits.

In the future, other clinical concepts will be examined to find how reliably the measures can be evaluated and related to benefits from the treatment.

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