The Behavior Analyst

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 317–330 | Cite as

Persuasion Criteria in Research and Practice: Gathering More Meaningful Psychotherapy Data

  • James V. Cordova
  • Kelly Koerner


Psychotherapy research should ultimately benefit the psychotherapy client. Unfortunately, traditional psychotherapy research continues to have little influence on practicing clinicians and, therefore, does not benefit psychotherapy clients. As behavior analysts begin to show interest in this area of research, they may be in a position to improve its quality. We argue that traditional psychotherapy researchers have become prematurely wedded to a methodology that does not address the concerns of clinical audiences. Furthermore, we make a case for defining and evaluating psychotherapy data in terms of its capacity to influence both researchers and clinicians. We also suggest several alternative methods for gathering psychotherapy data based on the case formulation approach. We argue that this approach may be one of the most promising methods for gathering useful psychotherapy data.


psychotherapy research persuasion criteria psychotherapy practice case formulation audience variables clinical behavior analysis 


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Copyright information

© Association for Behavior Analysis International 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • James V. Cordova
    • 1
  • Kelly Koerner
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA

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