Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy

Living Edition
| Editors: Jay Lebow, Anthony Chambers, Douglas C. Breunlin

Alexander, James

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-15877-8_714-1


James F. Alexander.


Alexander is the developer of Functional Family Therapy (FFT), one of the most widely disseminated family therapy approaches for young persons with disruptive behavior problems. His contributions to the field span more than four decades with over 100 publications demonstrating the impact of family therapy for one of the most recalcitrant clinical populations. His work has been recognized by the Centers for Disease Control, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, and the Surgeon General as one of the most effective treatments for youth with behavior problems.


Alexander received his Bachelor of Arts from Duke University before attending graduate school at the California State University and Michigan State University, where he received his Ph.D. For more than 40 years, Alexander was a Professor at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City where he developed FFT. During this time, he served as principal or coprincipal investigator...

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Key Citations

  1. Alexander, J. F., Barton, C., Schiavo, R. S., & Parsons, B. V. (1976). Systems-behavioral intervention with families of delinquents: Therapist characteristics, family behavior, and outcome. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 44(4), 656–664.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-006X.44.4.656.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Alexander, J., & Parsons, B. V. (1982). Functional family therapy (pp. 109–112). Monterey, CA: Brooks/Cole Publishing Company.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Alexander, J. F., Waldron, H. B., Robbins, M. S., & Neeb, A. A. (2013). Functional family therapy for adolescent behavior problems (p. 261). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Functional Family Therapy LLCSeattleUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Corinne Datchi
    • 1
  • Ryan M. Earl
    • 2
  1. 1.Seton Hall UniversitySouth OrangeUSA
  2. 2.The Family Institute at Northwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA