Clinical processes in behavioral couples therapy. Academic Article Case Study uri icon


  • Behavioral couples therapy is a broad term for couples therapies that use behavioral techniques based on principles of operant conditioning, such as reinforcement. Behavioral shaping and rehearsal and acceptance are clinical processes found across contemporary behavioral couples therapies. These clinical processes are useful for assessment and case formulation, as well as teaching couples new methods of conflict resolution. Although these clinical processes assist therapists in achieving efficient and effective therapeutic change with distressed couples by rapidly stemming couples' corrosive affective exchanges, they also address the thoughts, emotions, and issues of trust and intimacy that are important aspects of the human experience in the context of a couple. Vignettes are provided to illustrate the clinical processes described. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved).

publication date

  • March 2014