The first myth about "evidence-based" therapy
Published on October 31, 2013 by Jonathan Shedler, PhD in Psychologically Minded
Media coverage of psychotherapy often advises people to seek "evidence-based therapy."
Few outside the mental health professions realize the term “evidence-based therapy” is a form of branding. It refers to therapies conducted by following instruction manuals, originally developed to create standardized treatments for research trials. These "manualized" therapies are typically brief, highly structured, and almost exclusively identified with cognitive behavioral therapy or CBT.
Academic researchers routinely extoll the “evidence-based” therapies studied in research laboratories and denigrate psychotherapy as it is actually practiced by most clinicians in the real world. Their comments range from the hysteric (“The disconnect between what clinicians do and what science has discovered is an unconscionable embarrassment.”–Professor Walter Mischel, quoted in Newsweek) to the seemingly cautious and sober (“Evidence-based therapies work a little faster, a little better, and for more problematic situations, more powerfully.”–Professor Steven Hollon, quoted in the Los Angeles Times).
The entire blog post is here.