Take the 2-minute tour ×
Cognitive Sciences Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for practitioners, researchers, and students in cognitive science, psychology, neuroscience, and psychiatry. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Is there a difference between free association speaking vs free association writing? Is psychotherapy more effective when examining free association speech?

share|improve this question
    
By more effective what do you mean? In modern psychotherapy free association is used little outside of encouraging recall. You might want to look up 'Cognitive Interview' for that purpose. –  John Aug 20 '13 at 22:00
add comment

1 Answer 1

Free association is an integral part of depth psychological therapy (such as psychoanalysis), which is still prevalent around the world (e.g. in Germany depth psychological therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy are the only two therapies paid for by health insurance).

The problem with writing would be that it slows down the interactive process between therapist and client. It has been suggested and there is anecdotal evidence that outside of a therapy, free association writing can be a useful tool for self-knowledge. Within a therapy free association is only one part of the methods and its usefulness is dependent on other processes such as transference and countertransference, which need the presence of a therapist.

To my knowledge, there have been no attempts at purely written (e.g. online) depth psychological psychotherapy. I believe such an impersonal setting and slowed down communication would hinder the interpersonal processes and actually the spontaneous workings of the subconscious needed for depth psychological psychotherapy to work.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.