Explain and Evaluate the Methodology Used by the Psychodynamic Approach

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Explain and evaluate the methodology used by the psychodynamic approach. [12] Is the psychodynamic approach idiographic or nomothetic? Link this to the key methods used. The psychodynamic approach is idiographic and studies individuals focusing on what makes us unique. This links to the key methods of the approach with regard to case studies and clinical interviews. | Describe case studies and give an example of the use of case studies within the approach e.g. Anna O. Case studies use a range of sources such as diary entries & interviews with family & friends to gain a large amount of data regarding a particular topic/person. A clinical case study is an in-depth study of a person in therapy and tends to include the age, sex and background of the client, symptoms and the circumstances in which they appear, treatment and an assessment of the client’s state following therapy. The psychodynamic approach uses retrospective case studies such as Anna O’s where the client is required to recall information from the past. A well-known case study is that of Little Hans whose phobia of horses was caused by repressed memories, therefore fitting in with the assumptions of the psychodynamic approach. | Evaluate the use of case studies within the psychodynamic approach (strengths and weaknesses) However retrospective case studies are often open to distortion as the client may have forgotten important details. Also case studies are time consuming and difficult to analyse due to the vast amount of data. Although on a positive note due to the range of sources used, case studies provide rich qualitative data leading to a greater understanding of an individual’s behaviour, therefore increasing validity. In addition to this case studies may be the only way to gain information on a condition if it is uncommon. However many of Freud’s case studies are based
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