The paper, published Thursday, was led by UVic’s social psychologist John Sakaluk (pictured) and University of Kansas clinical psychologist Alexander Williams and questions the ‘gold standard’ of treatments. (Provided by UVic)

UVic researcher questions effectiveness of ‘gold standard’ psychotherapies

Paper published Aug. 1 looked at treatments for conditions such as depression, insomnia and PTSD

A new paper out of the University of Victoria is calling into question some of the statistics that support psychotherapies that treat a wide range of conditions such as depression, insomnia, PTSD and borderline personality disorder.

The paper, published Aug. 1, was led by UVic’s social psychologist John Sakaluk and University of Kansas clinical psychologist Alexander Williams and questions the ‘gold standard’ of treatments.

A master list of 78 empirically supported treatments (ESTs) — maintained by the American Psychological Association’s Division 12, the arm of the association that develops guidelines — shows that all 78 ESTs have been clinically tested and are used by psychologists in Canada and the U.S. based on empirical measures of scientific success which inform everything from clinical training to research funding.

READ ALSO: UVic Properties charts ambitious course for off-campus holdings

According to Sakaluk, more than half of the ESTs fared poorly across their metrics.

“Increasing peer-reviewer attention to the metrics we evaluated would therefore complement the ongoing efforts of Division 12 to increase the quality of EST research and evaluation,” he stated in a press release.

Concerns are growing that many research findings in psychology cannot be replicated by independent research teams using the same or similar scientific procedures, which Sakaluk and Williams have dubbed the ‘replication crisis.’ They say there’s a need to re-evaluate existing systems that rely on the empirical measures examined in their study.

READ ALSO: Evicted UVic student questions Saanich’s housing bylaw

Over the last year, Sakaluk, Williams and their coauthors conducted a meta-scientific review of approximately 450 articles and re-analyzed more than 3,000 tests of the effectiveness of all 78 ESTs.

In the first study of its kind to encompass such a large sample, the researchers found that many of the earlier studies claiming the efficacy of ESTs contained ‘statistical typos,’ imprecise research designs and weak evidence that the therapies worked.

The paper, “Evaluating the evidential value of empirically supported psychological treatments (ESTs),” was published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology.



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Inquest into Nanaimo fatal police shooting postponed due to pandemic

Testimony into Craig Andrew Ford’s 2016 death was to be heard starting July 27

Heartfelt memories of Derek Descoteau four years later

Victim of Chemainus murder and his brother leave a huge impact on a large group of friends

Case of missing Nanaimo woman inspires new true crime podcast

‘Island Crime’ Season 1 covers 2002 disappearance of 21-year-old Lisa Marie Young

Vancouver Island woman frustrated over visitor restrictions to see 96-year-old mother

Island Health to introduce virtual visits at long-term care facilities

Chemainus family pledges $50,000 to Chemainus Theatre Crisis Relief Fund

Hilton family’s gift if fully matched will raise $100,000

Dr. Bonnie Henry given new name in B.C. First Nation ceremony: ‘one who is calm among us’

The provincial health officer was honoured in a May 22 ceremony at elementary school in Hazelton

28 soldiers test positive for COVID-19 after working in Ontario care homes

Nearly 1,700 military members are working in long-term care homes overwhelmed by COVID-19

B.C. poison control sees spike in adults, children accidentally ingesting hand sanitizer

Hand sanitizer sales and usage have gone up sharply amid COVID-19 pandemic

B.C. man with Alberta plates gets car keyed and aggressive note

Some out-of-province people are finding hostile reception due to COVID-19 worries

North Island First Nations ‘take matters into their own hands’ with environmental clean-up

Mamalilikulla guardians step up to clear abandoned boats after no response from natural resource officers

RDN Transit will start collecting bus fare again next week

Passenger limits will remain in effect on buses

Port Renfrew reopening June 1

Community opens door to visitors after provincial health restrictions loosen

COVID-19: B.C. grants aim to stabilize sexual assault recovery programs

$10 million fund not yet ready to take applications

Most Read