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Tip: Understanding Rank

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

When you do a search, you can sort the results bibliographically alphabetical or by “rank”. What is Rank?

Rank refers to the search engine’s “best guess” as to the relevance of the result to the search you specified. The exact method of ranking used varies a bit depending on the search. In its most basic level, when you specify a single search term, rank looks at the density of the matches for the word in the document, and how close to the beginning of the document they appear as a measure of importance to the paper’s topic. The documents with the most matches and where the term is deemed to have the most importance, have the highest “relevance” and are ranked first (presented first).

When you specify more than one term to appear anywhere in the article, the method is similar, but the search engine looks at how many of those terms appear, and how close together they appear, how close to the beginning of the document, and can even take into account the relative rarity of the search terms and their density in the retrieved file, where infrequent terms count more heavily than common terms.

To see a simple example of this, search for the words (not the phrase, so no quotes):

unconscious communications

Look at the density of matches in each document on the first page of the hits. Then go to the last page of matched documents, and observe the density of matches within the documents.

A more complex search illustrates this nicely with a single page and only 15 matches:

counter*tr* w/25 “liv* out” w/25 enact*

There are a lot of word forms and variants of the words (due to the * wildcards) above that can match, but the proximity (w/25) clause limits the potential for matching. What’s interesting here though is how easily you can see the match density decrease as you view down the short list.

The end result of selecting order by rank is that the search engine’s best “guess” as to which articles are more relevant appear higher on the list than less relevant articles.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Fiumara, R. (1976). Therapeutic Group Analysis and Analytical Psychology. J. Anal. Psychol., 21(1):1-24.

(1976). Journal of Analytical Psychology, 21(1):1-24

Therapeutic Group Analysis and Analytical Psychology

R. Fiumara, M.D.

I. Introduction

EXISTING TEXTS regarding possible clinico-theoretical relationships between analytical psychology and group psychotherapy, though few in number, usually begin by underlining the theoretical difficulties which an analytical psychologist encounters when approaching group therapy.

These difficulties appear to descend directly from the theoretical corpus of Jungian psychology, from Jung's own criticisms of group analysis as, for example, in his correspondence with Illing (ILLING 10), and from Meier in a paper presented at the International Conference of Medical Psychotherapy in 1948 (MEIER 18).

Following Hobson (HOBSON 9) reservations about group psychotherapy can be summarized as:

1.   Group situations which are characterized by:

-    a state of collective uniformity with a loss of individual responsibility and of nuclei of unrepeatable uniqueness;

-    the appearance and maintenance of an undesirable, infantile dependence, characterized by a false sense of security;

-    an increase in suggestibility, with the consequent submission to the leader and to the ideas of the group;

-    the loss of ego defences, which can lead to an uncontrollable invasion of unconscious material (N.B. the expression used by Jung in his correspondence with Illing, ‘the group reinforces the ego’, should be considered only in reference to the temporary feeling of greater security which derives from the increased impressionability of the subject in the group).

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

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