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A Yeoman's Job in Developing, Refining, Revising, and Executing a Manualized Group Version of the Clark and Wells (1995) Model, Although More Remains To Be Done

Steven T. Fishman


Edwards and Kannan (2006) have done an excellent job in conceiving, conducting, and incorporating findings from follow-up studies to the original Clark and Wells treatment paradigm for social phobia, upon which their therapy group was based. For example, in carrying out their case study, the authors have incorporated many quality control procedures associated with the American Psychological Association's Evidence-Based Practice in Psychology model, such as continuously monitoring each group participant's progress via narratives and normative questionnaires; building in the capability to alter treatment directions when indicated and to individualize the cognitive approach for each participant; and designing relapse prevention mechanisms into the treatment. On the other hand, as I view the study, there are limitations and issues about how it was conducted and interpreted. These questions include whether the most validated assessment measures were employed; whether in fact social skills training took place but was not conceptualized as such; and whether there is an alternative explanation of the outcome results with the client Vumile that was not explored. Still overall, Edwards and Kannan'€™s study of Vumile and the other members in their group makes a very valuable contribution in carefully and systematically documenting how individuals presenting with topographically equivalent problems can progress for varied reasons that can be measured and treated differently within a manualized therapy. This Commentary ends with my reflections about different knowledge benefits the PCSP journal can offer, particularly for the clinical practitioner.

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