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Title:An examination of positive and negative complementarity across the stages of successful counseling
Author(s):Hays, Kimberly A.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Tracey, Terence J.
Department / Program:Educational Psychology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Clinical Psychology
Guidance and Counseling
Abstract:The purpose of this study was to determine whether positive and negative complementarity patterns that emerge across the stages of counseling were related to therapy outcome. A replicated N of I design was employed in which three therapists each contributed tapes from one successful and one less successful case. Outcome was determined by ratings obtained from both clients and counselors using the Follow-up Questionnaire on Individual Counseling and the Counseling Outcome Measure (Gelso & Johnson, 1983). Speaking turns from clients and counselors were rated using the Interpersonal Communications Rating Scale (ICRS) (Strong, Hills, & Nelson, 1988) to identify complementarity patterns. Positive (i.e., friendly) and negative (i.e., hostile) antecedents on the ICRS were used to differentiate positive from negative complementarity. A log-linear analysis (including the following variables: type of complementarity (complementary, acomplementary, or anticomplementary), antecedent (positive vs. negative), role of first speaker (client or therapist), stage of counseling, outcome, and counselor) was used to identify which combinations of variables provided the best explanation of the data. A pattern of high-low-high positive complementarity across the stages of counseling was hypothesized for successful dyads. A pattern of low-moderate-low was hypothesized for negative complementarity. Results failed to support the hypothesized patterns of complementarity, however, several significant differences were related to outcome. Successful dyads were characterized by significantly higher levels of positive complementarity and negative anticomplementarity. In general, the beginning stage of successful counseling was characterized by more acomplementary responding more positive (i.e., friendly) interactions. The middle stage of therapy was characterized by a significant increase in complementary responding and a trend toward increased levels of highly challenging anticomplementary responding that suggested a working through period. Findings revealed higher levels of negative responses and negative complementarity than expected. Implications of these findings and ideas about future research are presented.
Issue Date:1991
Rights Information:Copyright 1991 Hays, Kimberly A.
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog:AAI9136613
OCLC Identifier:(UMI)AAI9136613

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