Chasing change talk: the clinician's role in evoking client language about change.

University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131, USA.
Journal of substance abuse treatment (Impact Factor: 2.9). 04/2010; 39(1):65-70. DOI: 10.1016/j.jsat.2010.03.012
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Client "change talk," or language in favor of changing a target behavior, is a hypothesized active ingredient of motivational interviewing that can predict actual behavioral change. This study isolated and manipulated change talk in a context resembling a psychotherapeutic encounter, comparing its prevalence in two conditions: change talk evocation (CT) and functional analysis (FA). Using a single-baseline (ABAB) design, clinicians alternated between CT and FA, consequating change talk only in the CT condition. Clinicians were 9 clinical psychology graduate students, and clients were 47 undergraduates with concerns about drinking. The hypothesis that greater Percentage Change Talk would be observed in CT than in FA was supported, t(46) = 6.561, p < .001, d = 1.19. A rationale for the development of a behavioral rating system to evaluate clinicians' proficiency in recognizing, responding to, and evoking client change talk is presented.

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