A meta-analysis of the relation between patient adult attachment style and the working alliance

Samantha L. Bernecker, Kenneth N. Levy, William D. Ellison

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations

Abstract

This meta-analysis synthesizes research on the relation between patient adult attachment style and patient-rated working alliance. A random-effects model was used to calculate the mean weighted product-moment correlation (r) for 24 studies (12 published in peer-reviewed journals and 12 unpublished doctoral dissertations) of individual outpatient therapy with adults. The mean weighted r for attachment avoidance and alliance was -.137, p<.001, and the mean weighted r for attachment anxiety and alliance was -.121, p<.001. These findings suggest that therapists should attend to attachment in order to foster alliance and have additional implications for theory and future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12-24
Number of pages13
JournalPsychotherapy Research
Volume24
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology

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