Title of Project

Public Views of Clients, Therapists, and the Therapy Process

Researcher Information

Risel Borrego
Julio Gurrea

Project Type


Start Date

7-4-2006 12:00 AM

End Date

7-4-2006 12:00 AM

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Apr 7th, 12:00 AM Apr 7th, 12:00 AM

Public Views of Clients, Therapists, and the Therapy Process

Therapists and clients have primarily been portrayed negatively in the media, where clients are viewed as being “crazy” and therapists as unethical. Past research has mainly focused on the perceptions of current therapy clients or the feedback of clients to the therapeutic relationship. However, there has been a comparative lack of research measuring the opinions of the general public concerning therapy and the therapeutic relationship. This study will explore the public’s attitudes towards professionals in the mental health field as well as those who attend therapy. Participants will be chosen on the bases that they have not attended therapy in the past and that they are at least 18 years of age. They will be asked five open-ended questions, with potential follow-up questions, regarding their opinions towards therapists, clients, the therapy process and where they got their opinions from. All participant data will be tape-recorded and the responses will be transcribed. Data will be qualitatively analyzed to explore key themes. Potential usefulness of this research is that mental health practitioners can use the findings to understand and discuss with new clients the actual process of therapy to counteract any misconceptions that clients might hold.