Measuring Change in Counseling and Psychotherapy

Measuring Change in Counseling and Psychotherapy

by Scott T. Meier PhD

Hardcover(New Edition)

View All Available Formats & Editions
Members save with free shipping everyday! 
See details


This book provides researchers, clinicians, and students with a useful overview of measuring client change in clinical practice. It reviews the history, conceptual foundations, and current status of trait- and state-based assessment models and approaches, exploring their strengths and limitations for measuring change across therapy sessions. Meier shows how to effectively interpret and use measurement and assessment data to improve treatment evaluation and clinical care. A series of exercises guides the reader to gather information about particular tests and evaluate their suitability for intended testing purposes.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781593857202
Publisher: Guilford Publications, Inc.
Publication date: 07/30/2008
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 303
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Scott T. Meier is Professor and Chair of the Department of Counseling, School, and Educational Psychology at the University at Buffalo, The State University of New York. His main research and teaching are in the areas of psychological measurement (particularly outcome assessment), research methods (program evaluation), and counseling skills (integration of case conceptualization and assessment with intervention). Dr. Meier is a member of the American Evaluation Association, the Association for Psychological Science, and the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies. He is the author or coauthor of four books (including The Elements of Counseling) and has published in American Psychologist, Journal of Counseling Psychology, Measurement and Evaluation in Counseling and Development, and the American Journal of Evaluation.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction and Rationale

  Contemporary Psychological Testing

  Contemporary Psychotherapy Research and Practice

  The Implications of Research Stuckness for Clinical Practice

  Summary and Conclusions

2. A History of Traits

  The Seeds of Conflict

  The Desire to Be Scientific

  The Model of Physiology

     Biology and Individual Differences

  The Desire to Be Relevant

  The Need for Classification

  The Consequences of the Adoption of a Trait-Based Measurement Paradigm

     Loss of Experimental Methods Inhibits Recognition of Method Variance

     The Gain of Traits and Loss of Situations

     Handling Error with Classical Test Theory

     Statistics Related to Measurement

     Assessment as a Complement to Measurement

     Deemphasizing Measurement Theory

     Loss of Precision

     The Wisdom and Tyranny of Tradition

     The Success and Failure of the Market

  Summary and Implications

3. Reliability, Validity, and Systematic Errors


  Thinking about Reliability and Validity

     Types of Validity

  Constructs, Theories, and Valid Measurement

     Construct Explication

  Multitrait–Multimethod Matrices: Investigating the Effects of Method Variance on Validity

     Campbell and Fiske

     Criteria for Construct Validity

     An MTMM Example

     Problems with Campbell and Fiske's approach

  The Factor Analytic Approach to Construct Validity

  History of Self-Report and Interview Errors


     Interviews and Observational Methods

  Measurement Error

  Systematic Errors Associated with Self-Reports

     Dissimulation and Malingering

     Social Desirability

  Systematic Errors Associated with Ratings by Others

     Halo Errors

     Leniency and Criticalness Errors

  Causes of Inconsistency

  Cognitive Influences

     Item Comprehension Problems

     Test Cues

     Low Cognitive Ability

  Affective and Motivational Influences

     Test Anxiety

     Negative Emotional States

  Environmental and Cultural Influences


     Stereotype Threat

  Summary and Implications

4. States, Traits, and Validity



  The Controversy of Mischel and Peterson: The Benefits of Conflict

     The Rejection of Traits: Behavioral Assessment

     Reinforcing the Trait Argument

     Person–environment Interactions

     Aptitude-by-Treatment Interactions

     Environmental Assessment

     Moderators of Cross-Situational Consistency

  Summary and Integration

5. Context Effects and Validity


  Understanding Inconsistency: Clues from Psychophysics Measurement

     The Limitations of Psychophysical Measurement

     Conclusions and Implications from Psychophysical Research

  Improving the Principles of Construct Explication

     Test Purpose

     Test Content

     Test Context

     Shared Contexts and Method Variance


     Recommendations Related to Test Purpose

     Recommendations Related to Test Content

     Recommendations Related to Test Contexts

  Summary and Implications

6. Nomothetic Approaches to Measuring Change and Influencing Outcomes

  History and Background

  Examples of Nomothetic Measures

     Beck Depression Inventory

     State–Trait Anxiety Inventory

     Global Assessment of Functioning

     Outcome Questionnaire

  Psychometric Principles and Nomothetic Measures

     Reliability of Nomothetic Measures



     Creating Change-Sensitive Measures

     Psychometric Properties of Aggregate Scales

     Using Change-Sensitive Tests in Program Evaluations

  An Evidence-Based Approach to Supervision

  Summary and Integration

7. Idiographic Approaches to Measuring Change and Influencing Outcomes

  History and Background

  Psychometric Principles and Idiographic Measures

     Reliability of Idiographic Measures

     Validity of Idiographic Measures


     Begin with the Case Conceptualization

     Explicate Constructs

     Measure Behaviors

     Collect as Much Data as Possible

     Data Analysis Procedures for Idiographic Data

     Consider Progress Notes for Process and Outcome Data

  Summary and Implications

8. Summary, Integration, and Future Directions

  Major Ideas

  Initial Findings and Future Research

     Nomothetic Outcome Measures

     Idiographic Outcome Measures

     Context Effects

     Innovative Research Methods



Researchers, clinicians, and graduate students in clinical psychology, counseling, educational psychology, and related mental health fields. Will serve as a text in masters'- or doctoral-level courses such as Counseling/Psychotherapy Practicum, Clinical Psychology, School Psychology, Personality Assessment, or Psychodiagnostic Assessment and Measurement.

Customer Reviews