Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine

2013 Edition
| Editors: Marc D. Gellman, J. Rick Turner

Outcome for the Single Case: Random Control Index, Single Subject Experimental Design, and Goal Attainment Scale

  • Kenneth J. Ottenbacher
  • Margaret E. Ottenbacher
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-1005-9_906



Traditional research and evaluation methods, including randomized clinical trials, are powerful techniques for determining the efficacy of health and behavioral interventions. Randomized clinical trials, however, have practical and ethical limitations when applied to many research questions important to the field of behavioral medicine (Concato, Shah, & Horwitz, 2000). Alternative methods are needed to fully examine the effectiveness of treatment techniques for individual patients and to document clinical accountability. This entry examines outcomes for the individual or single case.


In this entry, three approaches are discussed that focus on evaluating outcome at the level of the individual person or patient: the Reliability Change Index, Single-subject designs, and Goal Attainment Scaling. These approaches are consistent with the client-/patient-centered focus in...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kenneth J. Ottenbacher
    • 1
  • Margaret E. Ottenbacher
    • 2
  1. 1.Division of Rehabilitation SciencesUniversity of Texas Medical BranchGalvestonUSA
  2. 2.Institute for Translational SciencesUniversity of Texas Medical BranchGalvestonUSA