Article

Is Solution-Focused Brief Therapy Evidence-Based? An Update 10 Years Later

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Abstract

Nearly ten years ago, Families in Society published an article (Kim, Smock, Trepper, McCollum, & Franklin, 2010) that discussed the empirical status of solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) and its progress toward being accepted as an evidence-based intervention in the United States. In the last decade, new growth of experimental design studies using SFBT with diverse populations has occurred. The current article provides an update on the evidence-base of SFBT, showing favorable results on emotional, behavioral, and interpersonal issues. Resources for practitioners on SFBT training are also included.

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... Specifically, SFBT uses more positive language to focus on clients' strengths, past successes, and future goals and minimize past failures and problems (Jordan, Froerer, & Bavelas, 2013). Studies have increasingly demonstrated the effectiveness of SFBT in randomized controlled trials (Kim, Jordan, Franklin, & Froerer, 2019;Kim, Smock, Trepper, McCollum, & Franklin, 2010). ...
... While numerous empirical studies have addressed SFBT regarding both process (Franklin et al., 2017) and outcome (Gingerich & Peterson, 2013;Kim & Franklin, 2009;Kim et al., 2010Kim et al., , 2019, empirical evidence concerning the effectiveness of SFC is still limited. ...
... Third, our study adopted only female nurses experiencing burnout as participants; thus, the current findings may not be generalizable to the larger population. Although existing studies have demonstrated the applicability and feasibility of SFBT across different populations and countries (Kim et al., 2019), it could be useful to replicate this study in the general population (e.g., male nurses, students and adults) in China and other countries with different cultures. Even with these limitations, we believe that the present study contributed to the literature by providing objective behavioral indicators of how the SFC process may work and how the effect varies during the course of SFC. ...
... While university counseling center clinicians may be using a variety of approaches and techniques that focus on addressing client concerns, there are a lack of standardized approaches that have proven effective in specifically targeting the wellness needs of the college student population. Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) has demonstrated effectiveness as a brief therapeutic intervention in diverse settings (Kim, Jordan, Franklin, & Froerer, 2019), in groups (Lafountain, Garner, & Eliason, 1996;Zimmerman, Jacobsen, MacIntyre, & Watson, 1996), related to health and wellness (Zhang, Franklin, Currin-McCulloch, Park, & Kim, 2018), and with the college population (Ng et al., 2012;Sari & Yayci, 2013). SFBT was previously found to be effective among college students specifically targeting wellness promotion in a short-term, group format (Beauchemin, 2018). ...
... SFC embraces several basic beliefs that guide practice including: focusing on the person and not the problem, asking questions is more important than providing answers, focusing on the future not the past, and building on the client's strengths and exploring solutions (O' Connell, Palmer, & Williams, 2013). Although SFBT and SFC are well-established modalities with supporting evidence of effectiveness across many presentations (Kim et al., 2019), there is a lack of research related to integrating these techniques into a salutogenic wellness promotion model. This strengths-based, constructionist modality provides an ideal approach to supporting individuals in addressing the subjective and personal nature of wellness and assisting college students in moving toward their optimal wellness. ...
... As hypothesized, using a solution-focused approach focusing on wellness enhancement led to increased wellness and decreased stress across time resulting in measurable support for intervention effectiveness. This is consistent with previous research that indicates the effectiveness of SFBT methods in similar settings (Kim et al., 2019). In addition, upon examination of qualitative findings, emerging themes provide insight into aspects that may be particularly beneficial when implementing wellness group interventions. ...
Article
Research indicates that college students are experiencing mental health challenges of greater severity and frequency. College students present with a variety of wellness-related challenges, resulting in increased demand on campus health resources and service limitations including extended wait lists and increased off-campus referrals. This research study examined the effectiveness of a short-term solution-focused intervention on perceptions of wellness and stress among the college student population. This study utilized a longitudinal, mixed-methods design to assess the impact of a brief (seven-week) intervention on perceived stress and wellness among 52 college students at a large Midwestern University, using the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS) and Five-Factor Wellness Evaluation of Lifestyle (5 F-WEL). Repeated measures analysis of variance (RM-ANOVA) results indicated significant differences across time for perceived stress and wellness (p <.01). To augment quantitative data, a brief, semi-structured interview was completed with 24 study participants post-intervention, and an Applied Thematic Analysis (ATA) was conducted as a means of identifying themes. This study demonstrates the effectiveness of a solution-focused wellness (SFW) approach in changing perceptions of stress and wellness. Findings provide support for a prevention model in which college students are encouraged to proactively engage in lifestyle activities that enhance their wellness.
... 22,36 It is also notable that greater treatment effect sizes of SFBT have been demonstrated among Chinese recipients versus those in North America. 37 Top cited reasons are: 1. SFBT's flexibility in its delivery which destigmatizes mental health; 2. SFBT's cultural compatibility with eastern philosophy; and 3. SFBT's focus on strengths and positive emotions, which is appealing to patients in China. 37 To our knowledge, there exists no study that has directly evaluated SFBT for Chinese AYA cancer patients' psychological distress. ...
... 37 Top cited reasons are: 1. SFBT's flexibility in its delivery which destigmatizes mental health; 2. SFBT's cultural compatibility with eastern philosophy; and 3. SFBT's focus on strengths and positive emotions, which is appealing to patients in China. 37 To our knowledge, there exists no study that has directly evaluated SFBT for Chinese AYA cancer patients' psychological distress. As previously stated, it is reasonable to expect that SFBT is efficacious in reducing psychological distress among AYA patients with cancer in China. ...
Article
Objective: This pilot clinical trial investigated solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) for psychological distress among adolescent and young adult (AYA) patients with cancer in China. Methods: Fifty Chinese AYA patients diagnosed with cancer were randomized into the treatment group (SFBT) and control group (active control). Psychological distress was measured by the brief symptom inventory and hope was measured by the Herth-Hope-Index. Treatment effects were analyzed using analysis-of-covariance and between-group small-sample-size corrected Hedges’ g. Results: The results indicated that SFBT resulted in a significant reduction in the psychological distress and improvement in hope of AYA patients with cancer. Analyses of the 4-week posttreatment score suggest the short-term sustainability of SFBT for psychological distress among AYAs diagnosed with cancer. Conclusions and Implications. This study has demonstrated that SFBT’s impact is statistically significant and clinically meaningful. The inclusion of positive emotions, i.e., hope, as part of the investigation also highlighted the significance of promoting positive emotions among AYA patients with cancer.
... Because the solution-focused approach emphasizes client strengths and resilience (De Shazer in Corey) [12], so that in assuming a solution-focused approach following with the characteristics of humility. Kim et al. [13] stated that a solution-focused approach is an alternative school program providing appropriate and effective services in dealing with adolescent problems. ...
Conference Paper
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Character education is also an important thing to be developed by school counsellors. The humility is one of necessary character that based others virtue. The student's problems who have low humility tend to have difficulty accepting criticism/information from others, arrogance, sadism, selfishness, and bullying behavior. During the Covid-19 pandemic, the learning system used the internet, including counselling services. This study aims to test an effective approach in increasing the character of humility between mindfulness-based cognitive or solution-focused approach. The group counseling design used is the synchronous for the counselling process and asynchronous to complete the worksheet. This experimental study involved 24 students in each group of 8 students aged 14-17 years. This participant of research is limited. The scale used to measure humility is Elliot's theory of adaptation which is designed using a Likert-scale. There are four aspects, namely openness, self-forgetfulness, accurate self-assessment, and focus on other things with a total of 32 items. The reliability humility scale is 0.901, and CAMM α = 0.790. These results indicate no significant difference in MBCT-SFBT in increasing humility, whereas MBCT-control & SFBT-control have a significant difference. That is, the mindfulness group had an increase in the mean between pretest-posttest and follow-up. This study found that character enhancement can use mindfulness-based cognitive and solution-focused approach. Both of them have the characteristics of character strengths and applicable by school counsellors. This study has few subjects so that the research subjects in further research are to increase the number of studies and make online and non-online comparisons.
... Another factor relevant to discuss here concerning the language of the therapeutic discourse is the content. Different from the traditional/medical model of psychotherapy, Solution Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) is an evidence-based practice (Kim, Jordan, Franklin, & Froerer, 2019) in which language is the essential component of the therapy. Solution Focused Question creates a solution-focused therapeutic discourse or, in other words, positive therapeutic language. ...
Chapter
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The article focuses on detailing and explaining three research conducted to study the effect of negative and positive therapeutic language on affective experience, neuro-cognitive components, and psychophysiological state. The article also provides evidence from the literature to explain therapeutic questions and their mechanism of action from a neuroscientific perspective. Positive therapeutic language creates positive emotional states that may trigger beneficial changes in the structure and function of the brain, which promote further adaptive thoughts and enduring desirable behavioral changes.
... SFBT overcomes various gaps in the psychotherapy literature alleviating depression among AYA cancer survivors. First, grounded in social constructivism, SFBT practitioners pay little attention to what have caused the problem (the diagnostic model) but focus on co-constructing solutions with the clients by identifying their previous success and/or inner strengths (the strength-based model) (J. S. Kim, Jordan, Franklin, & Froerer, 2019). As a result, SFBT practitioners do not focus on identifying AYA cancer survivors' "irrational" thoughts and correcting them, such as "I have to be fearful of cancer returning for the rest of my life." ...
Article
Purpose This pilot study evaluates the acceptability and preliminary efficacy of solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) for depression, anxiety, and hope among adolescent and young adult (AYA) diagnosed with cancer. Method: 10 AYAs with a primary sarcoma diagnosis participated in an open pilot of SFBT for their depression between January and June 2019 delivered by trained social work interns. Results All participants completed four planned sessions and reported strong acceptability of SFBT. Statistically significant improvements were observed for pre- and post-treatment scores for depression, anxiety, and levels of hope. These improvements were maintained at 1-month follow up, with significant patterns of difference in study participants’ depression, anxiety, and levels of hope over time. Conclusions SFBT is an acceptable intervention approach for depression (and anxiety) among AYAs diagnosed with cancer. SFBT offers a brief, strength-based, and hope-engendering approach to address mental health concerns among young adult diagnosed with cancer.
... Creativity is the ability to create new products or ideas that are valuable and useful (Woodman et al., 1993;Shalley et al., 2016;Qiang et al., 2020;Hou et al., 2021;Zhang et al., 2021). Generally, this ability is reflected in behaviors such as inventing, designing, inventing, creating, and planning (Guilford, 1950) and is characterized by fluency, flexibility, novelty, and refinement (Kupers et al., 2018;Kim et al., 2019;Rao et al., 2021) and is the result of the interaction between capacity, process and environment results (Gu et al., 2021). ...
Article
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Purpose: This study explored whether instructional characteristics, learner characteristics, family socioeconomic status, and gender influence creativity in the context of programming education in China. Methods: A total of 851 upper-secondary-school students in Beijing, China, were surveyed using the Creativity Scale, Programming Learning Scale, Programming Teaching Scale and Family Socioeconomic Status Questionnair e . SPSS (version 22) was used for correlation analysis, t -test and regression analysis. Results: (1) Teachers’ programming teaching method and management; students’ programming learning approach, attitude, and engagement; gender; and family economic capital were all significantly associated with creativity. (2) There were significant differences between males and females in terms of creativity, programming learning approach and programming learning attitude. (3) Learner attitudes, engagement, and approach, and their family economic capital, were strong predictors of creativity, with the strongest influence of learners’ attitudes to programming learning and weaker influence of family economic capital. Conclusion: The main factors that influence creativity in the context of programming education are programming teaching method, programming teaching management, programming learning approach, programming learning attitude, programming learning engagement and family economic capital. Among these, learner factors (attitude, engagement, and approach) and family economic capital are the key factors influencing creativity. These findings provide a basis for improving the creativity of Chinese programming learners and inspire teachers to consider learner factors and gender differences as they design and manage their instruction. Furthermore, the influence of family economic capital on the creativity of learners cannot be ignored.
... The emphasis on the strengths and resources of clients, and the straightforward nature of the approach, lead to its expansion to a number of intervention contexts beyond psychotherapy and family therapy: social work (Sundman, 1997), child protection (Berg and Kelly, 2000), coaching (Berg and Szabó, 2005), nursing (MCAllister, 2007), organizational consulting (McKergow, 2012), mediation (Bannink, 2007), pastoral work (Kollar, 1997), school counseling (Kelly et al., 2008), or University teaching (Devlin, 2003), among others. Over the last decades, SFBT has amassed considerable evidence of its effectiveness and costefficiency in a variety of contexts (Kim, 2008(Kim, , 2012Bond et al., 2013;Gingerich and Peterson, 2013;Kim et al., , 2019Carr et al., 2016;Gong and Hsu, 2017), demonstrating outcomes equivalent to those of alternative interventions, both at termination (e.g., Creswell et al., 2017) and at follow-up (e.g., Boyer et al., 2015). ...
Article
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Solution Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) developed in parallel to Positive Psychology, as a type of intervention that also emphasizes the strengths and resources of clients. The aim of this study was to examine the development of outcome research on SFBT and to determine whether it is predominantly carried out in Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich and Democratic (WEIRD) countries. A literature review was conducted using a bibliometric methodology, identifying: (a) authors and countries, (b) time trends, (c) language of publications; (d) and journals; (e) samples on which they were tested; (f) characteristics of interventions; and (g) main study designs. A total of 365 original outcome research articles published in scientific journals on solution-focused interventions were extracted. The results show that outcome research on SFBT has grown steadily over the last three decades. Although it started in WEIRD countries, the number of outcome research publications generated in non-WEIRD countries is now higher. There is little international collaboration and, although English is the main language of publication in WEIRD countries, English, Chinese and Parsi predominate in non-WEIRD countries. Productivity is low and most authors have only published one paper. The journals that have published the most papers have a very diverse visibility. The tested interventions are conducted both in clinical and non-clinical samples; mostly in individual and group format; face-to-face; and not only in the form of psychotherapy, but also as coaching and school interventions. Almost half of the publications are randomized controlled trials. The results confirm the wide applicability of SFBT as a single or main component of psychosocial interventions. They support the claim that solution-focused interventions are not a WEIRD practice, but a global practice.
... Because the solution-focused approach emphasizes client strengths and resilience (De Shazer in Corey) [12], so that in assuming a solution-focused approach following with the characteristics of humility. Kim et al. [13] stated that a solution-focused approach is an alternative school program providing appropriate and effective services in dealing with adolescent problems. ...
Article
Character education is also an important thing to be developed by school counsellors. The humility is one of necessary character that based others virtue. The student’s problems who have low humility tend to have difficulty accepting criticism/information from others, arrogance, sadism, selfishness, and bullying behavior. During the Covid-19 pandemic, the learning system used the internet, including counselling services. This study aims to test an effective approach in increasing the character of humility between mindfulness-based cognitive or solution-focused approach. The group counseling design used is the synchronous for the counselling process and asynchronous to complete the worksheet. This experimental study involved 24 students in each group of 8 students aged 14-17 years. This participant of research is limited. The scale used to measure humility is Elliot's theory of adaptation which is designed using a Likert-scale. There are four aspects, namely openness, self-forgetfulness, accurate self-assessment, and focus on other things with a total of 32 items. The reliability humility scale is 0.901, and CAMM α = 0.790. These results indicate no significant difference in MBCT-SFBT in increasing humility, whereas MBCT-control & SFBT-control have a significant difference. That is, the mindfulness group had an increase in the mean between pretest-posttest and follow-up. This study found that character enhancement can use mindfulness-based cognitive and solution-focused approach. Both of them have the characteristics of character strengths and applicable by school counsellors. This study has few subjects so that the research subjects in further research are to increase the number of studies and make online and non-online comparisons.
... Creativity Kim et al. (2019) consider creativity includes basic cognitive abilities of divergent thinking, and that such abilities can be understood through testing tools or observation. ...
Article
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Problem-solving ability is an essential part of daily life. Thus, curiosity and a thirst for knowledge should be cultivated in students to help them develop problem solving and independent thinking skills. Along with positive attitudes and an active disposition, these abilities are needed to solve problems throughout the lifespan and develop -confidence. To achieve educational objectives in the context of globalization, creative ability is necessary for generating competitive advantages. Therefore, creative thinking, critical thinking, and problem-solving ability are important basic competencies needed for future world citizens. Creativity should also be integrated into subject teaching to cultivate students' lifelong learning and a creative attitude toward life. A questionnaire was distributed to 420 students in colleges and universities in Fujian, China. After removing invalid and incomplete responses, 363 copies were found to be valid yielding a response rate of 86%. Findings indicate that the new generation requires high levels of support to develop creativity and integrate diverse subjects such as nature, humanities, and technology. A rich imagination is needed to root creativity in the new generation.
... SFBT therapists help clients achieve change by developing conversations founded on the client's desired outcome and helping the client articulate how life would be different if their desired outcome was present in their life. There is ample evidence to show that focusing on desired outcomes with clients can lead to satisfactory therapeutic results (Kim et al., 2019). ...
Article
A commonly stated critique of Solution Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) is a lack of attention to the client's emotional experience and the use of emotion as a mechanism for producing meaningful change. We review and define the current research regarding emotion, feeling, and affect and its value and relevance to the clinical application of SFBT. We also provide a brief history of the SFBT model and its documented emphasis on cognitive and behavioral change versus emotional change. In embodying the spirit of this approach for examining what works and doing more of it, we propose a next step of SFBT to more overtly attend to the emotional language of clients and to purposefully create emotional experiences with our clients. We demonstrate this by providing clinical examples for how SFBT practitioners can incorporate and build upon clients' emotional language to create emotionally‐changing experiences to more broadly and effectively co‐create long‐lasting change.
... We live in an era where understanding what we do and understanding why it is effective within therapeutic settings is being emphasized, it is essential to be able to articulate in a meaningful way how SFBT is evidence-based. There is significant research that provides empirical support for SFBT (Kim, 2008;Kim et al., 2019) and there is significant process research that increases our understanding of what happens in sessions that might contribute to the abundance of positive outcome data (Franklin et al., 2017). However, understanding the research that supports the common factors and understanding where the common factors align with SFBT will further broaden the evidence-base of SFBT. ...
Article
The common factors and mechanisms of change have been investigated across many disciplines and in many fields. This study applies the common factors to Solution Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) through a modified content analysis of the BRIEFER Practice Manual. Seven common factors themes are identified and applied to SFBT. The study concludes with a consideration of how this common factors approach broadens the evidence-base of SFBT and provides suggestions for implementation and application of this common factors approach.
... Victims of violence in the DRC and Mali received individual psychological support by lay counselors called agents psychosociaux (APS) who were trained and supervised by the ICRC MHPSS team. As described in a previous publication (11), a short-term solution-oriented approach (11,12) was adopted to empower the beneficiary to reflect upon and resolve his or her specific problems. In addition to offering psychological support, referrals to local service providers were made according to needs and availability. ...
Article
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Introduction Community-level mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) was the first type of MHPSS program launched by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) back in 2004. Standardized beneficiary-level monitoring was put in place in late 2018. This is the first study to explore whether this type of program correlates, as intended, with reduced psychological distress and increased daily functioning. Methods Between December 2018 and June 2020, 6,413 victims of violence received MHPSS through 32 community-level projects in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Mali and Nigeria. Symptoms of psychological distress (IES-R or DASS21) and daily functioning (ICRC scale) were assessed before and after the intervention and logistical regression models were used to identify predictors of these symptoms. Findings Victims of the violence committed by weapon bearers were more likely to show high levels of anxiety prior to MHPSS (aOR 3.51; p < 0.0001). Also, victims of physical violence were more likely to show high levels of stress (aOR 1.49; p < 0.0001), whereas victims who had witnessed physical violence were more like to report high levels of depression (aOR 2.54; p < 0.0001). The most common perpetrators were weapon bearers (76%) and the most common type of violence was rape (46%). Lack of social support stood out as a predictor of both high anxiety (aOR 2.10; p < 0.0001) and post-traumatic stress (aOR 2.04; p < 0.0001) prior to MHPSS. Following MHPSS, the vast majority of beneficiaries reported a reduction in distress on the DASS21 (96.58%) and the IES-R scales (92.70%) as well as an increase of functioning (82.26%). Adherence to group therapy (seven sessions on average) was stronger than adherence to individual therapy (four sessions on average). A linear trend was found between length of treatment and likelihood of reporting reduced symptoms of depression. Having suffered destruction or loss of property or income predicted less improvement of functioning following MHPSS (aOR 0.90; p = 0.044). Conclusion Receiving community-level MHPSS is associated with increased wellbeing among the vast majority of beneficiaries. To further enhance the intended health outcomes, it is recommended to increase the length of treatment per beneficiary (30 days minimum) and address, where relevant, the financial consequences of violence. Also, a longitudinal study is recommended to assess longer-term changes in MHPSS symptoms.
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break-up adjustment, solution-focused brief therapy, solution-focused group counseling, group effects
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The solution‐focused approach has much to offer coaching both novice and advanced practitioners. The core solution‐focused principles discussed in this paper can augment and extend all facets of coaching practice. This article outlines the central features of the solution‐focused approach to coaching and extends the utility of those basic features for use and for reflection by novice and more advanced coaching practitioners. Practical models discussed in this article include the ‘solution‐focused cathartic wave’ – a model that tracks the emergence of emotional catharsis during the coaching conversation; the ‘probing for solutions model’ which provides a simple structure for solution‐focused coaching conversations; and also discussion on how a solution‐focused approach can be used in a range of change‐orientated settings.
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A school-based substance abuse prevention program based on the assumptions of the ASCA National Model[R] was designed to change adolescent females' drug-using behaviors. The program was designed to reduce substance abuse, increase negative attitudes toward drug use, and reduce negative behaviors while increasing positive behaviors, knowledge of the physical symptoms of drug use, student achievement, and self-esteem. Group sessions were based on solution-focused brief therapy and action learning theory and were supplemented by mentorship from community members and peers. Positive outcomes were found on five dependent variables. (Contains 1 table.)
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Recent trends in education have drawn attention to students at risk of school failure and dropout in the United States. Alternative schools are one method for preventing the severe and long-lasting consequences of underachievement and dropout. Few research studies have sought the opinions and perceptions of the at-risk students who attend alternative schools through qualitative research methods. This study used qualitative interviews to explore at-risk students’ perspectives about their current alternative school and their former traditional schools. Results indicate that traditional schools are lacking the personal relationships with teachers, schoolwide focus on maturity and responsibility, understanding about social issues, and positive peer relationships that alternative schools often provide. This article offers guidelines to help schools and educators to better support at-risk students.
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Insufficient evidence exists for a viable choice between long- and short-term psychotherapies in the treatment of psychiatric disorders. The present trial compares the effectiveness of one long-term therapy and two short-term therapies in the treatment of mood and anxiety disorders. In the Helsinki Psychotherapy Study, 326 out-patients with mood (84.7%) or anxiety disorder (43.6%) were randomly assigned to three treatment groups (long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy, short-term psychodynamic psychotherapy, and solution-focused therapy) and were followed up for 3 years from start of treatment. Primary outcome measures were depressive symptoms measured by self-report Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and observer-rated Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAMD), and anxiety symptoms measured by self-report Symptom Check List Anxiety Scale (SCL-90-Anx) and observer-rated Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAMA). A statistically significant reduction of symptoms was noted for BDI (51%), HAMD (36%), SCL-90-Anx (41%) and HAMA (38%) during the 3-year follow-up. Short-term psychodynamic psychotherapy was more effective than long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy during the first year, showing 15-27% lower scores for the four outcome measures. During the second year of follow-up no significant differences were found between the short-term and long-term therapies, and after 3 years of follow-up long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy was more effective with 14-37% lower scores for the outcome variables. No statistically significant differences were found in the effectiveness of the short-term therapies. Short-term therapies produce benefits more quickly than long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy but in the long run long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy is superior to short-term therapies. However, more research is needed to determine which patients should be given long-term psychotherapy for the treatment of mood or anxiety disorders.
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The present study compared solution-focused group therapy (SFGT) with a traditional problem-focused treatment for level 1 substance abusers. Outcome research on the effectiveness of solution-focused group therapy is minimal, especially in treating substance abusers. In the present study, clients were measured before and after treatment to determine therapeutic effectiveness. Clients in the solution-focused group significantly improved on both the Beck Depression Inventory and the Outcome Questionnaire. The clients in the comparison group did not improve significantly on either measure. Therapist skill level and adherence to theoretical models were measured in each group to reduce confounding variables.
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This study examined the effectiveness of solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) on child well-being and family functioning outcomes for child welfare involved parents. A randomized controlled trial design was used to evaluate the effectiveness of SFBT as compared to treatment-as-usual in an outpatient substance abuse treatment center. Mixed linear models tested within and between-group changes using intent-to-treat analysis (N = 180). Hedges’s g effect sizes examined the magnitude of treatment effects. Both conditions reported improvements on the child well-being measures (Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function [BRIEF]-Parent Report and Child Behavior Checklist-School Age Form [CBCL-SA]) and family functioning measures (Adult-Adolescent Parenting Inventory [AAPI-2] and Center for Epidemiologic Studies-Depression [CES-D] Short Form) at posttest. While none of the between group analyses were statistically significant on either outcome domains, effect sizes did show improvements in the small to medium range for both groups. SFBT effect sizes for BRIEF subscales ranged from .024 to .267 and for control group ranged from .136 to .363. SFBT effect sizes on CBCL-SA subscales ranged from .059 to .321 and for control group ranged from .101 to .313. SFBT effect sizes on AAPI-2 subscales ranged from .006 to .620 and control group ranged from .023 to .624. SFBT effect sizes on CES-D measure were .428 and for control group were .317. Results show SFBT to be an effective intervention for helping parents around child well-being and family functioning outcomes similar to current empirically-supported therapies. SFBT provides a more strengths-based approach to help families improve family well-being and thus help improve their child’s well-being.
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This chapter describes how SFBT has been used in the treatment of substance use and relies on the clinical literature to illustrate interventions. Specific ways to engage clients with substance use will be covered, including the questions to ask in order to promote change. In addition, this chapter will describe a case where SFBT has been used with a client with alcohol use disorder and explain how SFBT may be used in groups to treat substance use. Finally, this chapter will discuss the emerging outcome literature on SFBT with clients who have substance use including studies that assess substance use and trauma.
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Solution Focused Brief Therapy in Alternative Schools (SFBT) provides a step-by-step guide for how school social workers and counselors can work with other school professionals to create an effective solution focused dropout prevention program. Along with illustrative cases and detailed explanations, the authors detail the curriculum and day-to-day operations of a solution focused dropout prevention program by drawing on the experiences of a school that uses this approach.
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Objective This study examined the effectiveness of solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) intervention on substance abuse and trauma-related problems. Methods A randomized controlled trial design was used to evaluate the effectiveness of SFBT in primary substance use treatment services for child welfare involved parents in outpatient treatment for substance use disorders. Mixed linear models were used to test within- and between-group changes using intent-to-treat analysis ( N = 64). Hedges’s g effect sizes were also calculated to examine magnitude of treatment effects. Results Both groups decreased on the Addiction Severity Index-Self-Report and the Trauma Symptom Checklist-40. The between group effect sizes were not statistically significant on either measures, thus SFBT produced similar results as the research supported treatments the control group received. Conclusion Results support the use of SFBT in treating substance use and trauma and provide an alternative approach that is more strengths based and less problem focused.
Book
Therapy is frequently miscast as requiring an enormous amount of time and financial commitment, but helpful, goal-oriented therapy can produce positive results after only a few sessions. Solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) has been gaining momentum as a powerful therapeutic approach since its inception in the 1980s. By focusing on solutions instead of problems, it asks clients to set concrete goals and to draw upon strengths in their lives that can help bring about the desired change for a preferred future. Chapters review the current state of research on SFBT interventions and illustrate its applications-both proven and promising-with a diverse variety of populations, including domestic violence offenders, troubled and runaway youth, students, adults with substance abuse problems, and clients with schizophrenia. This text also includes a treatment manual, strengths-based and fidelity measures, and detailed descriptions on how to best apply SFBT to underscore the strengths, skills, and resources that clients may unknowingly possess.
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The solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) model evolved out of the brief family therapy (BFT) approach between 1978 and 1984, long before the words evidence-based practice became an integral part of the medical and mental health vocabulary. At the beginning, the team at the Brief Family Therapy Center (BFTC) utilized a research approach that relied on clinical observations and client data to discover which therapeutic techniques would most effectively facilitate behavioral change. Only recently has SFBT been studied through the lens of efficacy research and evidence-based practice. This chapter chronicles how the original team members actually used an evidence-based process to develop the model; how the approach evolved from a brief family therapy model to a therapeutic approach that focuses on future solutions; and the specific theory and interventions that made SFBT both similar to and different from other therapies.
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This study evaluated the effectiveness of solution-focused brief therapy with children who have classroom-related behavior problems within a school setting. Five to seven sessions of solution-focused brief therapy services were provided to 67 children, identified by school faculty and staff as needing assistance in solving behavior problems. Teacher in-service training and three to four consultation meetings were also provided. Externalizing and Internalizing scores from both the Youth Self-Report and Teacher Report Forms of the Child Behavior Checklist were used as outcome measures. Outcomes were evaluated by using a pretest/posttest follow-up design with a comparison group. Effect sizes and improved percentage scores were calculated. Findings provide support that solution-focused brief therapy was effective in improving internalizing and externalizing behavior problems.
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I was interested to read the paper on solution-focused brief therapy by Iveson (2002), and the commentary by Gopfert (2002). Solution-focused brief therapy is a valuable treatment approach within psychiatry, although the outcome research shows that other approaches are needed for some patients. G
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Objective: We review all available controlled outcome studies of solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) to evaluate evidence of its effectiveness. Method: Forty-three studies were located and key data abstracted on problem, setting, SFBT intervention, design characteristics, and outcomes. Results: Thirty-two (74%) of the studies reported significant positive benefit from SFBT; 10 (23%) reported positive trends. The strongest evidence of effectiveness came in the treatment of depression in adults where four separate studies found SFBT to be comparable to well-established alternative treatments. Three studies examined length of treatment and all found SFBT used fewer sessions than alternative therapies. Conclusion: The studies reviewed provide strong evidence that SFBT is an effective treatment for a wide variety of behavioral and psychological outcomes and, in addition, it may be briefer and therefore less costly than alternative approaches.
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Objective: A meta-analysis was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT). Method: Hierarchical linear modeling software was used to synthesize the primary studies to calculate an overall effect size estimate and test for between-study variability. Results: Solution-focused brief therapy demonstrated small but positive treatment effects favoring SFBT group on the outcome measures (d = 0.13 to 0.26). Only the magnitude of the effect for internalizing behavior problems was statistically significant at the p < .05 level, thereby indicating that the treatment effect for SFBT group is different than the control group. Conclusions: This study allows social workers interested in solution-focused brief therapy to examine the empirical evidence quickly and with more definitive information.
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Despite the preliminary studies that support solution-focused brief therapy, limited research has examined the model as a group intervention with students at risk for academic underachievement and school nonattendance. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of the model on school attendance and grade point average. Solution-focused brief therapy was evaluated through a quasi-experimental pretest-posttest comparison group design in which 26 students receiving the intervention were compared to 26 students who did not. Compared to students who did not receive the intervention, students in the treatment group increased their grade point average from pretreatment to posttreatment. Conversely, no differences were found between the two groups on attendance. Solution-focused brief therapy shows promise as a group intervention with at-risk students. Moreover, the findings suggest the continued support of the model during a time in which K-12 education emphasizes accountability, hard data, and the bottom line.
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Behavior problems are the most common reason that children and adolescents are referred to treatment. This study presents a rationale for the application of solution-focused therapy to behavior problems and tests this assumption. Children who were referred from the school setting for behavior problems (N = 239) were treated with either solution-focused therapy or “treatment-as-usual” at a school of social work-sponsored mental health clinic. Hypotheses for this quasi-experimental, pretest/posttest design were that treatment engagement would be higher in the solution-focused therapy group and that the solution-focused therapy group children over the “treatment-as-usual” group would show greater improvement according to both parent and child reports. Logistic regression and MANOVA were the data analysis procedures to test hypotheses. Findings were as follows; the solution-focused therapy group had better treatment engagement, but there were no statistically significant differences between groups on perceptions of child behaviors from either parents (Conners Parent Rating Scale) or child reports (Feelings, Attitudes, and Behaviors Scale for Children). An examination of pre-and posttest differences over time for each group indicated similar improvements in treatment according to parent reports. Implications for practice and research are discussed.
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Examines the social constructionist nature of solution-focused therapy (SFT). SFT's components are illustrated in a first-session conversation between the 1st author as therapist and a 19-yr-old mother who states that she is stressed out and depressed. As the conversation develops, the client's sense of herself changes and the integration of the therapy's components become apparent. A review of outcome research on SFT suggests positive outcomes for diverse clients and presenting problems. Connections between SFT procedures and social constructionist theory are found in (1) the social construction of reality, (2) language as the medium and substance of meaning, (3) client change through construction of new meanings, (4) client as expert, (5) taking a collaborative stance, (6) reflexivity, (7) emphasis on client strengths, and (8) co-construction of solutions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Article
Solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) is a new and increasingly used therapeutic approach that focuses on helping clients construct solutions rather than solve problems. The approach evolved in a clinical context amid many anecdotal reports of success from both therapists and clients, but it has not been subjected to controlled empirical testing until very recently. In this article we critically review all of the controlled outcome studies of SFBT to date (N = 15) to assess the extent to which SFBT has received empirical support. Five studies were well-controlled and all showed positive outcomes—four found SFBT to be better than no treatment or standard institutional services, and one found SFBT to be comparable to a known intervention: Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Depression (IPT). Findings from the remaining 10 studies, which we consider moderately or poorly controlled, were consistent with a hypothesis of SFBT effectiveness. We conclude that the 15 studies provide preliminary support for the efficacy of SFBT but do not permit a definitive conclusion. Our critique highlights areas where methodology in future studies can be strengthened to provide more conclusive evidence of SFBT efficacy.
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Children of incarcerated parents are five to six times more likely to go to prison than their peers (Johnston, 1995). Yet, there is a lacuna in the literature that examines the effectiveness of interventions for children with an incarcerated family member. The purpose of the present study is to describe a solution-focused, mutual aid group intervention and to examine the effects of the group on the self-esteem of elementary-age Hispanic children of incarcerated parents when compared to a no-treatment comparison group. Implications for social work practice and research with this vulnerable population are addressed.
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The application of solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT) with students and in school settings has grown over the past 10years and has been applied to a number of behavioral and academic problems. This review of the research literature examined the most rigorous outcome studies on SFBT conducted in schools, given its promise within this specific setting and population. In addition, effect size estimates were calculated to further examine the effectiveness, thereby providing more quantitative information for each study. This review found mixed results but SFBT did show promise as a useful approach in working with at-risk students in a school setting, specifically helping students reduce the intensity of their negative feelings, manage their conduct problems, and externalizing behavioral problems.
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Session 2: The Evidence Base of Practice. Presenter: Johnny S. Kim, PhD, University of Texas at Austin (2006) - "Examining the Effectiveness of Solution-Focused Brief Therapy: A Meta-Analysis Using Random Effects Modeling"
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Dominant practice models for social work were originally developed and intended for work with voluntary clients. The professional literature indicates that use of these models with involuntary clients often alienates rather than engages. This article describes the use of solution-focused interviewing as a way to engage involuntary and mandated clients. A conversation with a court-ordered client is presented and analyzed to demonstrate how practitioners can begin the co-construction of cooperation with mandated clients through adopting a not-knowing posture, focusing on and amplifying what clients want and client strengths and successes, and asking relationship questions to generate possibilities for change specific to the mandated context. The ethical implications of this noncoercive, nonconfrontational approach are addressed, along with its implications for a view of how clients change.
Article
The history and meaning of evidence-based practice (EBP) in the health disciplines was described to the Council of University Directors of Clinical Psychology (CUDCP) training programs. Evidence-based practice designates a process of clinical decision-making that integrates research evidence, clinical expertise, and patient preferences and characteristics. Evidence-based practice is a transdisciplinary, idiographic approach that promotes lifelong learning. Empirically supported treatments (ESTs) are an important component of EBP, but EBP cannot be reduced to ESTs. Psychologists need additional skills to act as creators, synthesizers, and consumers of research evidence, who act within their scope of clinical expertise and engage patients in shared decision-making. Training needs are identified in the areas of clinical trial methodology and reporting, systematic reviews, search strategies, measuring patient preferences, and acquisition of clinical skills to perform ESTs.
  • Kim J. S.
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A meta-analysis on the effectiveness of solution-focused brief therapy
  • H Gong
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Gong, H., & Xu, W. (2015). A meta-analysis on the effectiveness of solution-focused brief therapy. Studies of Psychology and Behavior, 13, 799-803.
An evaluation of on-time graduation rates and college enrollment in a solution-focused alternative school for at-risk students
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Franklin, C., Streeter, C. L., Belcuig, C., Webb, L., & Szlyk, H. (under review). An evaluation of on-time graduation rates and college enrollment in a solution-focused alternative school for at-risk students. Manuscript submitted for publication.
Barriers to evidencebased counseling practices: A counselor educator training model
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Generali, M. M., Foss-Kelly, L. L., & McNamara, K. (2011, October 27). Barriers to evidencebased counseling practices: A counselor educator training model. Paper based on a poster presented at 2011 American Association of Counselor Education and Supervision Conference, Nashville, TN.
Substance abuse and recovery through SFBT
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Solutionfocused brief therapy: A handbook of evidenced-based practice
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Lipchik, E., Derks, J., LaCourt, M., & Nunnally, E. (2012). The evolution of solution-focused brief therapy. In C. Franklin, T. Trepper, W. Gingerich, & E. McCollum (Eds.), Solutionfocused brief therapy: A handbook of evidenced-based practice (pp. 3-19). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Solution focused brief therapy with client managing trauma
  • S Reddy
  • K Bolton
  • C Franklin
  • K Gonzales
Reddy, S., Bolton, K., Franklin, C., & Gonzales, K. (2018). Substance abuse and recovery through SFBT. In A. Froerer, J. von Cziffra-Bergs, J. S. Kim, & E. Connie (Eds.), Solution focused brief therapy with client managing trauma (pp. 118-134). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Available from http://sfbta.org/our-impact Solution Focused Institute of South Africa
Solution-Focused Brief Therapy Association. (2017). Available from http://sfbta.org Solution-Focused Brief Therapy Research Page. (2017). Available from http://sfbta.org/our-impact Solution Focused Institute of South Africa. (2017). Available from http://www.solutionfocusedsa .com/ Solution Focused University. (2017). Available from https://solutionfocusedbrieftherapy.com/ Spring, B. (2007). Evidence-based practice in clinical psychology: What it is, why it matters; what you need to know. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 63, 611-631.