Title

SEX OF THE THERAPIST: AN EXPLORATION OF COMPETENCE ATTRIBUTIONS AS A FUNCTION OF THERAPIST'S GENDER.

Date of Award

1981

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Department

Psychology

Keywords

Psychology, Clinical.

Rights

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Abstract

The present study was undertaken to explore the impact of therapist's gender upon competence attributions made by clients regarding the therapist. No predictions were made. Subjects were actual psychotherapy clients at one Windsor and one Detroit out-patient clinic, who were presented with a psychotherapy transcript labeled as conducted by a male or a female therapist, and then requested to fill out a short questionnaire rating the transcript therapist along a range of competency characteristics. Besides the label of the transcript, three other classification variables were employed: subject's sex, sex of the subject's actual therapist at the clinic, and whether or not the sexual labeling of the transcript was authentic (accurate). Dependent measures were the subject's ratings of the transcript therapist on the questionnaire items and item clusters derived from the questionnaire. Separate analyses were done for pooled and individual city samples. The primary findings were as follows. Regarding effects of client's sex, female (as opposed to male) subjects were more glowing in the attributions they made regarding the transcript therapist among certain dimensions. Most notably, women rated transcript therapists as better able to handle their own problems than did men. The sex of the actual therapist had a significant impact in that subjects who had real male therapists (as opposed to female therapists) rated the transcript therapist as more likely to like them, while subjects with real female therapists (as opposed to male therapists) rated transcript therapists as more likely to morally evaluate their behavior. The authenticity of transcript label variable was highly significant and interacted in a complex fashion with both real therapist's sex and city. Despite what one would expect, based on previous research findings, the effect of transcript label was largely negligible.Dept. of Psychology. Paper copy at Leddy Library: Theses & Major Papers - Basement, West Bldg. / Call Number: Thesis1981 .L694. Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 42-03, Section: B, page: 1181. Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 1981.