Family Therapy Retention: An Observation of First Session Communications
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Series/Report no.:2010 Edward F. Hayes Graduate Research Forum. 24th
This study focused on the relationship between communication patterns and dropout rates among families (n = 12) receiving family systems therapy. Families were considered treatment completers if they attended 12 sessions (n = 6) and dropouts if they attended 1-3 sessions (n = 6). Audiotape recordings of the first therapy session were transcribed and coded. The total percentage of communications by the parent, adolescent, and therapist was measured and the content of each communication was coded (positive, negative or neutral). Parents (but not adolescents) within families that completed therapy showed higher talk time proportions than parents in families that dropped out of therapy. In addition, completer families had higher percentages of therapist-to-parent communications while dropout families had higher percentages of therapist-to-adolescent communications. These findings demonstrate the potential utility of examining within session communication patterns and suggest that certain processes, especially parental communication involvement, may determine whether or not a family returns for treatment.
Education and Human Ecology: 1st Place (The Ohio State University Edward F. Hayes Graduate Research Forum)
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