SAGE Journal Articles

Click on the following links. Please note these will open in a new window.

Article 1: Lilienfeld, S. O., Ritschel, L. A., Lynn, S. J., Cautin, R. L., & Latzman, R. D. (2014). Why ineffective psychotherapies appear to work: A taxonomy of causes of spurious therapeutic effectiveness. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 9, 355–387. doi:10.1177/1745691614535216

Learning Objective: 4.3 Be familiar with the research literature on the efficacy and effectiveness of psychotherapy for children.

Summary: In chapter 1 of the text, Weis introduced the concept of evidence-based practice. This is vitally important, yet we know that many children do not receive evidence-based treatment. Lilienfeld and colleagues consider why the gap between science and practice exists, focusing on why individuals may conclude that therapy is effective when it is not.

Questions to Consider:

  1. Lilienfeld and colleagues note that evidence-based practice is controversial. Why is this so? What should be the role of clinical observation in therapy?
  2. The authors offer 26 possible errors that may occur. Identify those you had not considered in the past. Why do you think that some of these are unrecognized?
  3. What are the implications of these errors for you as a student of this field?

Article 2: Raghavan, R., Lama, G., Kohl, P., & Hamilton, B. (2010). Interstate variations in psychotropic medication use among a national sample of children in the child welfare system. Child Maltreatment, 15, 121–131. doi:10.1177/1077559509360916

Learning Objective: 4.1 Identify some common medications used to treat childhood disorders and the neurotransmitters they affect.

Summary: Children in the child welfare system have high rates of psychotropic medication prescription compared to other children; however, not all children in the system are equally likely to receive prescriptions. This article compares prescription rates for over 3,000 children over the age of 2 using national data. Results indicate medication use varied significantly by state, due to factors other than mental health need.

Questions to Consider:

  1. What factors were associated with increased risk of medication use? Some of these factors (such as the presence of clinically elevated symptoms) are logical. Others are less so. Why do you think these groups are more likely to receive prescriptions?
  2. Why do the authors speculate that there is a difference between prescription rates in California and Texas?
  3. What are the implications of this research for those who work with children?