Positive Regard and Affirmation
This chapter reviews the research on the association between therapists’ provision of positive regard and treatment outcome. Rogers’ attempts to define the concept of positive regard are noted, and two examples of positive regard are presented. We conducted a new meta-analysis, focusing on eighteen studies, that yielded an aggregate effect of r = .27, indicating that positive regard has a moderate association with psychotherapy outcomes. Like many other relational factors, it is a significant but not exhaustive part of the process–outcome equation. Notably, the effects of positive regard increased as a function of the racial-ethnic composition in a study. Therapists’ provision of positive regard is strongly indicated in practice; at a minimum, it provides the basis for other mutative interventions.
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