A More Individual Approach – Single Case Experimental Design

Much of the more recent research into CAT has been on a smaller scale and has used a more individualised approach. A particular research method that suits CAT well is Single Case Experimental Design (SCED). This treats each individual person having therapy as an individual experiment.

The researcher uses a number of measures which are tailored to the person’s target problems and their own particular goals for change. The person completes these measures at the start of therapy and at several points over the rest of the therapy. This might be at every session.

This sort of approach gives very rich information that can help us understand how effective CAT may have been for that one person. Where possible, they also complete measures over a follow up period after therapy ends. This helps to show how long-lasting the effects of therapy are.

A SCED approach helps to create a detailed understanding of change for one person. However the findings don’t mean that the impact of therapy will be the same for somebody else having CAT.

You can read about an example of how single case design was used in a study of three people whose patterns of obsessive morbid jealousy changed as a result of CAT.  Click on the link below to read more:

Research Update: Obsessive Morbid Jealousy

Thanks are extended to Samantha Hartley, Steve Kellett and Peter taylor, for helpful contributions to this page.

To read more about Randomised Controlled Trials in CAT, click on this link

To return to  main Research in CAT page, click here

A More Individual Approach – Single Case Experimental Design by ACAT Public Engagement Team
CC BY-SA 4.0 

Information for you about Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT)