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Systems of Psychotherapy

A Transtheoretical Analysis

Ninth edition

James O. Prochaska and John C. Norcross

Publication Date - 09 March 2018

ISBN: 9780190880415

560 pages
7 x 10 inches

In Stock

Uses a wealth of clinical case illustrations to help readers understand a wide variety of psychotherapies


Comprehensive, systematic, and balanced, Systems of Psychotherapy uses a wealth of clinical cases to help readers understand a wide variety of psychotherapies - including psychodynamic, existential, experiential, interpersonal, exposure, behavioral, cognitive, third wave, systemic, multicultural, and integrative. The ninth edition of this landmark text thoroughly analyzes 15 leading systems of psychotherapy and briefly surveys another 32, providing students and practitioners with a broad overview of the discipline.

The book explores each system's theory of personality, theory of psychopathology, and resulting therapeutic process and therapy relationship. Through these explorations the authors clearly demonstrate how psychotherapy systems agree on the processes producing change while diverging on the elements in need of change. Additionally, the authors present cogent criticisms of each approach from cognitive-behavioral, psychoanalytic, humanistic, cultural, and integrative perspectives. This ninth edition features updated meta-analytic reviews of the effectiveness of each system, new sections on Lacanian analysis, mentalization therapy, and psychotherapy with gender nonconforming people, as well as new sections and updates throughout the text.

New to this Edition

  • Includes a section on psychotherapy with gender nonconforming people
  • Offers contemporary perspectives of Lacanian analysis and mentalization therapy
  • Incorporates updates of meta-analytic reviews conducted on the effectiveness of each psychotherapy system


  • Presents numerous case studies within each psychotherapy system
  • Provides unique perspectives on the limitations of each system of psychotherapy
  • Explores the complexity and diversity of the leading theories of psychotherapy
  • Summarizes the outcome research on each psychotherapy approach
  • Formulates and treats the same patient (Mrs. C) through each psychotherapy system
  • Adopts an integrative perspective and concludes with a chapter on psychotherapy's future

About the Author(s)

James O. Prochaska, PhD, is Professor of Psychology and Director of the Cancer Prevention Research Consortium at the University of Rhode Island, where he co-developed the transtheoretical /stages of change model. Dr. Prochaska has over 50 years of psychotherapy experience in a variety of settings and is the first psychologist to win a Medal of Honor for Clinical Research from the American Cancer Society. His books include Changing for Good and Changing to Thrive.

John C. Norcross, PhD, ABPP, is Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of Scranton, Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry at SUNY Upstate Medical University, and a clinical psychologist in independent practice. Among his books are Psychotherapy Relationships That Work, Handbook of Psychotherapy Integration, and Insider's Guide to Graduate School in Clinical and Counseling Psychology.


"Systems of Psychotherapy is a brilliant book and indispensable guide for both experienced and new clinicians. Each edition gets better at capturing fundamental principles of change at the interface of individual experience and its social contexts, including the therapeutic relationship." --Ester R. Shapiro, Ph.D., University of Massachusetts

"Systems of Psychotherapy is a special book that has a special place among theory books in psychotherapy. Most such books are duly informative, but the Prochaska and Norcross text is in a league of its own in terms of its ability to both inform and engage the reader in the material." --Charles J. Gelso, Ph.D., University of Maryland

"In the confusing multiplicity of psychotherapeutic orientations, there is nothing better, more revealing, or more entertaining than letting orientations point out their differences with each other. That is the strategy that Prochaska and Norcross perfectand that is why I use their book in my psychotherapy courses with psychiatrists and psychologists throughout Europe." --Ferdinand Knobloch, M.D., University of British Columbia

"Systems of Psychotherapy provides state of the art information about counseling/therapy theories in a highly engaging manner. It is not just a superb text; it is the standard to which other texts should aspire." --Glenn E. Good, Ph.D., University of Missouri-Columbia

"In my many years of clinical training, Systems of Psychotherapy is the only text I have known to reach such singular comprehensiveness and usefulness in helping students learn the theoretical foundations of psychotherapy. Norcross and Prochaska go beyond conventional descriptions of theories to present integrative perspectives, therapeutic commonalities, outcome research, and future directions. A superb and practical text!" --Linda F. Campbell, Ph.D., University of Georgia

"Simply the best book on approaches to psychotherapy. An excellent overview of all of the major approaches with objective presentation of each theory." --Mark Aoyagi, Ph.D., University of Denver

Table of Contents

    Chapter 1 Defining and Comparing the Psychotherapies
    Chapter 2 Psychoanalytic Therapies
    Chapter 3 Psychodynamic Therapies
    Chapter 4 Existential Therapies
    Chapter 5 Person-Centered Therapies
    Chapter 6 Experiential Therapies
    Chapter 7 Interpersonal Therapies
    Chapter 8 Exposure Therapies
    Chapter 9 Behavior Therapies
    Chapter 10 Cognitive Therapies
    Chapter 11 Third-Wave Therapies
    Chapter 12 Systemic Therapies
    Chapter 13 Gender-Sensitive Therapies
    Chapter 14 Multicultural Therapies
    Chapter 15 Constructivist Therapies
    Chapter 16 Integrative Therapies
    Chapter 17 Comparative Therapies
    Chapter 18 The Future of Psychotherapy
    Appendix A: Meta-Analysis
    Appendix B: An Alternative Table of Contents
    Name Index
    Subject Index