A study designed to assess the usefulness of a single session of motivational interviewing in drug abuse treatment showed that the single session of the psychotherapy technique had no effect on drug use outcomes. However, results of a subsequent analysis suggest that the therapist may have pressed for change before the individual was ready.
Motivational interviewing is designed to strengthen a persons commitment to changing their behavior by focusing on such factors as desire, self-efficacy, need, readiness, and reasons. In the original study, University of New Mexico researchers randomly assigned 152 outpatients and 56 inpatients to receive or not receive a single session of motivational interviewing as part of their drug abuse therapy. The researchers assessed drug use at the pretreatment baseline and at 3, 6, 9, and 12 months following study entry. They found that adding a single session of motivational interviewing failed to have a positive effect on abstinence.
In a follow-up study, a psycholinguist watched videotapes of 84 persons undergoing motivational interviewing--representing a subset of individuals from the earlier study--and their therapists to analyze the language they used.
Blair Gately | EurekAlert!
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