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Therapeutic Relationship

Description of the Strategy

Psychodynamic and client-centered psychotherapies have a long history of recognizing the importance of the therapeutic relationship. However, this is not the case for behavior therapy. Behaviorism emerged in the 1950s from dissatisfaction with traditional approaches to psychotherapy. Behavior therapists sought to apply techniques derived directly from learning theory and from learning laboratories. It was widely accepted by behaviorists that the application of the established principles of learning was all that was necessary to facilitate change. A number of factors are likely responsible for this omission: (1) In the laboratory, the relationship between scientist and experimental subject was not relevant, so the translation from lab to clinic did not focus on relationship; (2) specifying the therapeutic relationship objectively is ...

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