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Theories COMP William James College Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by

comprehensive assessment william james college theories of counseling

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.

Behavior Therapy

Classical Condit­ioning (focus on antecedent of behavior) Pavlov UCS (food), UCR (saliv­ation), CS (sound­/li­ght), CR (saliv­ation) -A CS is presented just before the USC to obtain an UCR similar to the CR
Operant Condit­ioning Theory Thorndike and Skinner Focus on antece­dents and conseq­uences of overt behavior, reinforce correct responses, ignore incorrect responses, shape behavior by contro­lling amount, frequency, and conditions under which reinfo­rcement occurs
Concepts from operant condit­ioning: Positive reinfo­rcement Increasing behaviors by presenting positive stimuli, Negative reinfo­rcement the reinfo­rcement of a response by the removal, escape from, or avoidance of an unpleasant stimulus, Extinction decreases in the frequency of a behavior when the behavior is no longer reinfo­rced, Genera­liz­ation transf­erring response from one type of stimuli to similar stimuli, Discri­min­ation responding differ­ently to stimuli based on cues or antecedent events, Shaping gradually reinfo­rcing parts of a behavior to more closely approx­imate desired behavior
Social Learning Theory (Bandura) Triadic Reciprocal Intera­ction System: Behavi­ors­>en­vir­onm­ent­<pe­rsonal traits. doll experiment the theory that we learn social behavior by observing and imitating and by being rewarded or punished
Concepts from Observ­ational learning: Bandura determined that four elements needed to be present for observ­ational learning to occur: attention paying attention to a model, memory retaining info about a model, imitation motor reprod­uction, and motivation repeat reinforced behavior, vicarious, self-r­ein­for­cement. Self-e­fficacy percep­tions of one's ability to perform in different situations
Goals of Behavior Therapy: Changing target behaviors: preferably arrived at in collab­oration
Behavioral assessment (assessing discrete behaviors and their antece­dents and conseq­uences through use of: Behavioral interv­iews, Behavioral reports and ratings (BDI), Behavioral observ­ations, Physio­logical measur­ements
Techniques Systematic Desens­iti­zation: Relaxation and Anxiety hierar­chies working through a list of anxiet­y-p­rov­oking situationsImaginal (in vivo) Flooding exposure to actual anxiet­y-e­voking events
Behavior modeling types: Live watching a model, symbolic watching a model through media, role playing acting the part of a model partic­ipant therapist models and guides client in replic­ating, covert the client imagines a model that the therapist describes
Current Trends in Behavioral: EMDR Eye-mo­vement Desens­iti­zation & Reproc­essing. New treatment for PTSD, client imagines the traumatic event and processes it in a non-th­rea­tening manner, DBT a form of therapy used to treat borderline person­ality disorder that combines elements of the behavioral and cognitive treatments with a mindfu­lness approach based on Eastern meditative practices
ABC model: Antece­dents, Behavior, Conseq­uence
BT is Derived From: Functional analysis of behavior, Empiri­cally supported treatm­ents, A compre­hensive assessment process

Soluti­on-­Focused [Const­ruc­tivist Theory]

Insoo Kim Berg, Steve de Shazer
Basic Concepts: Assessment not focused on diagnosis, Assessment of openness to change, Focus on solutions rather than develo­pment of problem
Techniques: Compli­men­ting, Scaling questions, Exception questions, Miracle question, Coping questions, Formula first session task, "The messag­e," Assessing motivation
Goals: Clear, Specific, Small, Feedback on progress towards goals

Postmo­dernism [Social Constr­uct­ionism]

Dialogue is used to elicit perspe­ctive, resources, and unique client experi­ences. Questions empower clients to speak and to express their diverse positions.
Goals: Generate new meaning in the lives of clients, Co-dev­elop, with clients, solutions that are unique to the situation, Enhance awareness of the impact of various aspects of the dominant culture on the indivi­dual, Help people develop altern­ative ways of being, acting, knowing, and living
Key Concepts: There are multiple truths, Reality is subjective and is based on the use of language, Postmodern thought has an impact on the develo­pment of many theories
Modernists believe in the ability to describe objective reality accurately and assume that in can be observed and known through the scientific method, People seek therapy for a problem when it has caused them to stray too far from some objective norm, Postmo­dernism says that truth is a social constr­uction

Adlerian Therapy

Emphasized social nature and believe that psycho­logical health could be measure by contri­butions to commun­ities and society
Indivi­duals are creative, goal directed, and respon­sible for own fate
Enviro­nment: parents’ relati­onship as models for cooper­ation, Mother­-child relati­onship, father­-child, relati­onship with siblings, relati­onships with peers at home/at school
Goals: changes within a lifestyle; improved proble­m-s­olving, develop social interests, fewer self-d­efe­ating behaviors
Four Processes: 1. Therap­eutic Relati­onship [similar goals, empathic, confront resist­anc­e/s­abo­taging, not impose], 2. Assessment and Analysis, 3. Insight and Interp­ret­ation, 4. Reorie­ntation (changes in beliefs and behaviors)
Assess­men­t/A­nalysis: family dynami­cs-­birth order, early recoll­ect­ions, dreams, basic mistakes, assets
Techni­que­s/R­eor­ien­tation: acting as if, catching oneself, creating images, spitting in the client's soup, avoiding the tar baby (sticky issues), push-b­utton technique, parado­xical intention, task setting and commitment to change, life tasks
We Must Succes­sfully Master Three Universal Life Tasks: Contri­buting to society, Establ­ishing intimacy, Building Friend­ships
The Process of Encour­agement in Adlerian Counseling Includes: Helping the client recognize or accept their positive qualities, focus on their resources and strengths, and helping clients become aware of their assets and strengths rather than dealing contin­ually with their deficits and liabil­ities.

Narrative Therapy [Const­ruc­tivist Theory]

Epston and White
Basic Concepts: Stories of peoples' lives: represent influences (cultural, economic, political, social), Narrative empathy: unders­tanding themes and meanings in stories
Goals: Positive vs. proble­m-s­atu­rated stories, Positive altern­atives
Techniques: Extern­ali­zing, Unique outcomes, Altern­ative narrat­ives, Positive narrat­ives, Questions about the future, Support for client's stories

Jung: Jungian Therapy

Interested in spiritual side, Emphasis on helping patients bring uncons­cious into conscious awareness and realize uniqueness of their psycho­logical being, Utilizing dreams and fantasy material
Levels of consci­ousness: Conscious (ego, known directly), Personal uncons­cious (exper­iences, thoughts, feelings, percep­tions NOT admitted to ego), Collective uncons­cious (material common to all human beings, inherited ability to see the world)
Archetypes: (most important 4) the Persona, Self, the Shadow, the Anima/­Animus.
Others include: Birth, Death, Mother, Father, Power, The hero, Unity
Goals: Indivi­dua­tion, Integr­ation of conscious and uncons­cious
4 Methods of Assessment: Word Associ­ation, Hypnos­is/­symptom analysis, Case history, Analysis of the uncons­cious
4 Stages­/Co­mpo­nents: Catharsis, Elucid­ation or interp­ret­ation, Social focus, Transf­orm­ation or indivi­duation
Techniques: Dream analysis, Dream interp­ret­ation, Active imagin­ation, Analysis of transf­ere­nce­/co­unt­ert­ran­sfe­rence, Dance and movement, Art

Freud: Psycho­ana­lysis

Levels of Consci­ousness: Uncons­cious, Precon­scious, Conscious
Basic Aim: Make the uncons­cious motives conscious
View of Person­ality: Id: pleasure princi­ple­/Dr­iving force, Ego: reality principle, Superego: moral/­ide­al/­con­sci­enc­e/R­est­raining force
Defense Mechanisms: Repres­sion, Denial, Reaction Formation, Projec­tion, Displa­cement, Sublim­ation, Ration­ali­zation, Regres­sion, Identi­fic­ation, Intell­ect­ual­ization
Develo­pmental Stages: Oral (0-18 mo) Trust vs. Mistrust, Anal (18 mo-3 yr) Autonomy vs. Shame/­Doubt, Phallic (3-5/6) Initiative vs. Guilt, Latency (6-12) Industry vs. Inferi­ority, Genital (12+) Identity vs. role confusion/ Intimacy vs. isolation/ Genera­tivity vs. Stagna­tion/ Integrity vs. Despair/ Disgust vs. Wisdom
Goals: Drive theory (Freud) increase awareness of id and control ego, Ego psychology (Anna Freud & Erikson) understand ego defense mechanisms and adapt to external world, Object relations (Winnicott and Kernberg) explore indivi­dualism and separation issues, Self psychology (Kohut) explore impact of self-a­bso­rption and idealized view of parents on later relati­ons­hips, Relational analysis (Mitchell) using patien­t-t­her­apust intera­ction to explore relati­onships and improve them
Techniques: Free associ­ation, Neutra­lity, Empathy, Interp­ret­ation of resistance or dreams, Transf­erence, Counte­rtr­ans­fer­ence, Relati­onship responses
Charac­ter­istics of the therapist: A sense of being anonymous

Perls: Gestalt Therapy

An existe­ntial and phenom­eno­logical approach, Initial goal is for clients to expand their awareness of what they are experi­encing in the present moment, Increased awareness is curative
Focuses on: Nonverbal commun­ica­tion, The here and now, The what and how of experi­encing, The authen­ticity of the therapist, Active dialogic inquiry and explor­ation, The I/Thou of relating
Principles: Holism, Field theory, Figure formation process, Organismic self-r­egu­lation
Holism: The full range of human functi­oning includes thoughts, feelings, behaviors, body, language, and dreams
Field theory: The field is the client’s enviro­nment which consists of therapist and client and all that goes on between them
Figure Formation Process: How an individual organizes experi­ences from moment to moment. Foreground: figure Background: ground
Organismic self-r­egu­lation: Emergence of need sensations and interest disturb an indivi­dual’s equili­brium
Therapists focus on where energy is located, how it is used, and how it can be blocked. Blocked energy is a form of defensive behavior that may result in unfinished business
Clients are encouraged to recognize how their resistance is being expressed in their body and transform their blocked energy into more adaptive behaviors
Five different kinds of contact boundary distur­bances: 1. Introj­ection taking in views of others uncrit­ically, 2. Projection pushing out or dismissing aspects of ourselves by assigning them to others, 3. Retrof­lection bending back on ourselves, doing to ourselves what we want to do to someone else or have done to us, 4. Deflection indirect or minimal contact, avoiding the issue, 5. Confluence lessening the boundary between ourselves and others
6 Components of Gestalt: Continuum of experi­ence, The here and now, Parado­xical theory of change, The experi­ment, The authentic encounter, Proces­s-o­riented diagnosis
A Focus on Language: “It” talk, “You” talk, Questions, Language that denies power, Listening to clients’ metaphors, Listening for language that uncovers a story
Techniques: The experi­ment, Exagge­ration exercise, Internal dialogue, Staying with the feeling, Rehearsal exercise, Reversal technique, Making the rounds, Dream work
Limita­tions: Emotio­nally reserved clients may find the emphasis on feelings to be off putting, The emphasis on therapist authen­ticity and self-d­isc­losure may be overpo­wering for some

Greenberg: Emotio­n-F­ocused Therapy

Rooted in a person­-ce­ntered philos­ophy, but synthe­sizes aspects of Gestalt and existe­ntial therapies
Emphasizes awareness, accept­ance, and unders­tanding of emotion and the visceral experience of emotion o Emotional change can be a primary pathway to cognitive and behavioral change
A range of experi­ential techniques are used to strengthen the self, regulate affect, and create new meaning
EFT strategies help clients with too little emotion access their emotions, and help clients who experience too much emotion contain their emotions o It is effective in treating anxiety, intimate partner violence, eating disorders, and trauma

Rogers: Person Centered Therapy

This approach emphasizes: Personal charac­ter­istics of the therapist, Quality of the therap­eutic relati­onship, Counse­lor’s creation of a “growth­-pr­omo­ting” climate: 3 therapist attributes to foster this: Congruence: Genuin­eness or realness, Uncond­itional positive regard: Acceptance and caring, Accurate empathic unders­tanding: The ability to deeply grasp the subjective world of another person, Person’s capacity for self-d­irected growth if involved in a therap­eutic relati­onship
Six conditions that are necessary and sufficient for person­ality changes to occur: 1. Two persons are in psycho­logical contact 2. The client is experi­encing incong­ruence 3. The therapist is congruent or integrated in the relati­onship 4. The therapist has uncond­itional positive regard for the client 5. The therapist experi­ences empathy for the client’s internal frame of reference and endeavors to commun­icate this to the client 6. The commun­ication to the client is, to a minimal degree, achieved
The therapist engages in co-ass­essment with the client and does not value tradit­ional assessment and diagnosis and Serves as a model of a human being struggling toward greater realness. The therapist is viewed as a “fellow explorer” who attempts to understand the client’s phenom­eno­logical world in an intere­sted, accepting, and open way
PCT does not focus on the use of specific techni­ques, making this treatment difficult to standa­rdize and Beginning therapists may find it difficult to provide both support and challenges to clients

Existe­ntial Therapy

No one founder; Rollo May considered as father of existe­ntial therapy; Irving Yalom also well-k­nown. Asks deep questions about the nature of the human being and of anxiety, despair, grief, loneli­ness, isolation, and anomie. Deals centrally with the questions of meaning, creati­vity, and love. Not technique driven. Good multic­ult­urally, but sometimes fails to account for social justice barriers for client; may not work for collec­tivist cultures.
Basic Dimensions of Human Condition 1. Capacity for self-a­war­eness 2.The tension between freedom and respon­sib­ility 3. The creation of an identity and establ­ishing meaningful relati­onships 4. Search for meaning 5. Accepting anxiety as a condition for living 6. Awareness of death and nonbeing
Awareness is realizing that: We are finite (time is limited), We have choice to act/not to act, Meaning is not automatic; must seek it, We are subject to loneli­ness, meanin­gle­ssness, emptiness, guilt and isolation
Goals: Assisting clients in moving toward authen­ticity and learning to recognize when they are deceiving themse­lves, Helping clients face anxiety and engage in action that is based on creating a meaningful existence, Helping clients to reclaim and re-own their lives; teaching them to listen to what they already know about themse­lves. The central goal is to increase awareness
Therap­eutic Relati­onship: Therapy is a journey taken by therapist and client, The relati­onship demands that therapists be in contact with their own phenom­eno­logical world,­Respect and faith in the clients’ potential to cope, Sharing reactions with genuine concern and empathy, When the deepest self of the therapist meets the deepest part of the client, the counseling process is at its best
3 Phases: Initial phase: Clients are assisted in identi­fying and clarifying their assump­tions about the world, Middle phase: Clients are assisted in more fully examining the source and authority of their present value system, Final phase: Clients are assisted in action

Albert Ellis’s REBT

actively working to change a client's self-d­efe­ating beliefs and behaviors by demons­trating their irrati­ona­lity, self-d­efe­atism and rigidity; to help the client unders­tan­d—and act on the unders­tan­din­g—that his personal beliefs contri­buted to his emotional pain
highly didactic and directive
ABC Theory of Person­ality: A: Activating Event (something happens to or around someone) B: Belief (the event causes someone to have a belief, either rational or irrati­onal) C: Conseq­uence (the belief leads to a conseq­uence, with rational beliefs leading to healthy conseq­uences and irrational beliefs leading to unhealthy conseq­uences)
REBT interferes after A to implement a disputing interv­ention (D), then resulting in an E: effective philosophy and C new feeling
Therap­eutic Goals: To help clients differ­entiate between realistic and unreal­istic goals and between self-d­efe­ating and life-e­nha­ncing goals. To assist clients in the process of achieving: Uncond­itional self-a­cce­ptance (USA), Uncond­itional other-­acc­eptance (UOA), Uncond­itional life-a­cce­ptance (ULA)
Cognitive techniques: Disputing irrational beliefs, Doing cognitive homework, Biblio­the­rapy, Changing one’s language, Psycho­edu­cation
Emotive techniques: Rational emotive imagery, Humor, Role playing, Shame-­att­acking exercises, Behavior therapy procedures

Aaron Beck’s Cognitive Therapy

Insigh­t-f­ocused therapy with an emphasis on changing negative thoughts and malada­ptive beliefs. Clients’ distorted beliefs are the result of cognitive errors. Through Socratic dialog­ue/­ref­lective questi­oning, clients test the validity of their cognitions (colla­bor­ative empiri­cism).
Theore­tical Assump­tions People’s internal commun­ication is accessible to intros­pec­tion. Clients’ beliefs have highly personal meanings. These meanings can be discovered by the client rather than being taught or interp­reted by the therapist.
Cognitive Distor­tions: Polari­zed­/Di­cho­tomous Thinking all or nothing Arbitrary Inferences forming a conclusion with little/no factual evidence OR when the conclusion is contra­dictory of the evidence, Selective abstra­ction focusing on a detail taken out of context, Overge­ner­ali­zation drawing to conclu­sions that are too broad, Magnif­ication and Minimi­zation the importance of insign­ificant events is exagge­rated and signif­icant events are minimized, Person­ali­zation taking things person­ally, Labeling and Mislab­eling generalize by taking one charac­ter­istic of a person, and applying it to the whole person
Negative Cognitive Triad: triangle repres­enting a negative and irrational view of ourselves, our future and the world around us (cogni­tions) and the effects they have on emotion and behaviors

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Attributes: collab­ora­tive, presen­t-c­ent­ered, time-l­imited focus, active and directive stance by the therapist
Stresses: thinking, assessing, deciding, analyzing, and doing
Therapist takes on teaching role, expert in CT/REBT, focused on present, Warmth is a part of CT but not REBT

Family Therapy: General Systems Theory

Each family is a part of a larger system, which is again a part of a larger system, and so on
Feedback: Commun­ication patterns: Linear or Circular
Equifi­nality: Several paths to one/same destin­ation
Homeos­tasis: Stability and equili­brium in the system
Negative feedback: equili­brium is achieved, Positive feedback: change occurs in the system

Satir: Humanistic Family Therapy

Caring, Commun­ica­tion, Family chrono­logy, Facilitate growth of each family member, Observe balances in family system,
Methods to bring about change: Empathic respon­ding, Family recons­tru­ction (includes fantasy, psycho­drama, role playing), Experi­ential and gestalt techniques

Strategic Family Therapy

Concepts: Relati­onships as power struggles, Commun­ication defines relati­ons­hips, Hierar­chical relati­onship of parents and children, Focus on symptoms (vs. structural therapy), Symptom may be a metaphor for a way of feeling or behaving
Goals and Techniques: Therapist chooses goals (Inter­mediate or final; specific not vague), For each goal, therapist designs plan to accomplish using two basic techniques that may be metaph­orical or pragmatic 1. Straig­htf­orward tasks (to change intera­ctions, simple activi­ties) 2. Parado­xical tasks

Minuchin: Structural Family Therapy

Family structure: rules are rigid or flexible; subsystems
Family subsystems: parental, sibling, mixed (paren­t/c­hild)
Boundary permea­bility: highly permeable (enmes­hed), not permeable (disen­gaged)
Boundary types: alignm­ents, coalit­ions, triang­ulation
Goals of structural therapy: Work in the present, Alter coalitions and alliances to develop functi­oning family, Establish approp­riate boundaries within a family
Techniques: Family mapping Clear boundary, diffuse boundary, rigid, affili­ation, over-i­nvo­lve­ment, Joining interact with family using their style of intera­ction, Enactment to act out a conflict so that therapist can work in the present, Intensity therapist attends to the way a message is given, Changing Boundaries ,rearrange seating or change distance between family members, Reframing different ways of seeing a situation

Bowen Family Therapy

Goals: Help family members: Reduce stress, Become more differ­ent­iated, Meet their needs as well as needs of family members
Techniques: Evaluation Interview, Genogram, Interp­ret­ation, Detria­ngu­lation

Whitaker: Experi­ential Family Therapy

Intuitive approach, Counte­rtr­ans­fer­ence, Listen for symbols of uncons­cious behavior, Focus on entire family
Therapist is: Sponta­neous, creative, energetic, and involved

Realit­y/C­hoice Therapy

Reality therapy is a form of counseling that views behaviors as choices. It states that psycho­logical symptoms occur not because of a mental health condition, but due to people choosing behaviors to fulfill their needs
The reality therapist: assist clients in dealing with the present

Feminist Therapy

The social­ization of women with multiple social identities inevitably affects: self-c­oncept, emotional well being, and goals and aspira­tions
Therapists may explore: identi­fying their intern­alized messages of oppression and replace them with more self-e­nha­ncing beliefs, understand how sexist and oppressive societal beliefs and practices influence them in negative ways, and recognize the power of relati­onships and connec­tedness
Therapists believe: unders­tanding a client's problem requires adopting a socioc­ultural perspe­ctive and gender is the core of therap­eutic practice
Key Concepts: Collab­ora­tion, authen­ticity, inclusion, personal power, anti-r­acism, and social justice


It is best to require clients to adapt to your approach to counseling and the interv­entions that you are skilled at
When working with culturally diverse clients: be aware of their own cultural heritage, consider the cultural context of their clients in determ­ining what interv­entions are approp­riate, have a broad base of counseling techniques that can be employed with flexib­ility, and examine their own assump­tions about cultural values
Regarding psycho­therapy treatment outcome, research suggests: the therap­eutic relati­onship is essential component of effective treatment, the therapist as a person is an integral part of successful treatment, both the therapy method used and the therapy relati­onship influence the outcomes of treatment B. therapy techniques are the key component of successful treatment
you should develop your own concepts of what person­ality traits you think are essential to strive for to promote you own personal growth