Title

Qualitative psychotherapy research: The journey so far and future directions

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

3-1-2015

Abstract

This article documents the evolution of qualitative psychotherapy research over the past 3 decades. Clients’ and therapists’ accounts of their experiences in psychotherapy provide a window into the psychotherapy relationship and its mechanisms of change. A sizable body of literature has been generated that uses qualitative methods to collect and analyze these accounts and to shed light on the psychotherapy process. It notes changes in the field such as growing numbers of dissertations and publications using qualitative methods as well as a strengthening emphasis on qualitative research within graduate education and research funding bodies. Future recommendations include developing principles for practice from qualitative methods and conducting qualitative meta-analyses. Other recommendations include forming journal review policies that support the publication of qualitative research and that focus on coherence in adapting methods to meet research goals, in light of a study’s characteristics and epistemological framework, rather than focusing on sets of procedures.

Publisher

American Psychological Association