Effective therapy requires more than expertly applying an evidence-based treatment.
A treatment model is essential but research shows it is NOT the most powerful change factor.
What it Means for Therapists
Using a bona fide psychotherapy treatment model is correlated with improved outcomes (Lambert, 2013). Research has not found one model that is superior to others in treating mental health disorders. Research has shown that it is best to match a model and techniques to the needs of each individual client rather than asking clients to adapt to a single model preferred by the therapist (Norcross & Wampold, 2018; Owen & Hilsenroth, 2014; Stiles, 2009).
No one psychotherapy model has proven more effective than the others in treating the major psychological disorders.
However, a model is necessary for effective treatment. It provides structure and focus to the therapy.
The model provides a shared conceptual map for the client and therapist for why the problem exists and what will be done about it within therapy.
- Therapists should be flexible and choose a model based on the client's characteristics and preferences.