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Title: Fluctuation in the Assimilation of Problematic Experiences: A Case Study of Dynamic Systems Analysis
Authors: Basto, Isabel 
Stiles, William B. 
Bento, Tiago
Pinheiro, Patrícia 
Mendes, Inês
Rijo, Daniel 
Salgado, João 
Keywords: dynamic systems theory; assimilation model; instability; psychotherapeutic change process; depression; fluctuation; dynamic factor model
Issue Date: 2018
Publisher: Frontiers Media S.A.
Project: PTDC/PSI-PCL/103432/2008 
Serial title, monograph or event: Frontiers in Psychology
Volume: 9
Issue: AUG
Abstract: Dynamic systems theory suggests that instability can be a key element in the promotion of human change processes. Several studies have confirmed an association between unstable patterns and successful psychotherapeutic outcome. Somewhat similarly, the assimilation model of psychotherapeutic change argues that clinical change occurs through the integration of problematic experiences that initially threaten the stability of the self. This study examined how instability in assimilation levels was related to assimilation progress and change in symptom intensity, within and across sessions, in a good-outcome case of Emotion Focused Therapy. We used the assimilation of problematic experiences scales (APES) to measure assimilation and the outcome-questionnaire (OQ-10) to measure clinical symptom intensity. To assess assimilation instability, we used a fluctuation measure that calculated the amplitude and the frequency of changes in assimilation levels. To analyze the structural relationships between variables we used a dynamic factor model. The results showed that APES level and APES fluctuation tended to increase across treatment, while OQ-10 scores tended to decrease. However, contrary to expectations, the dynamic factor model showed no significant associations between APES fluctuation and OQ-10 scores either within sessions or between adjacent sessions.
ISSN: 1664-1078
DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2018.01119
Rights: openAccess
Appears in Collections:FPCEUC - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais
I&D CINEICC - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais

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