What the Therapist Brings Into the Room: The Relationship Between Therapist Personality Traits and Therapist and Patient Rated Working Alliance

Lindsay Nahum, Pace University

Abstract

This study explored the relationship between therapist personality traits, as measured by the NEO-PI-3, and therapist and patient ratings of the working alliance. Participants included 64 patient-therapist dyads at an outpatient clinic in an urban university. Previous research suggested that therapist scores on the NEO-PI-3 domains of neuroticism, extraversion, openness, agreeableness and conscientiousness would correlate with patient and therapist ratings of the working alliance as measured by the Working Alliance Inventory. It was hypothesized that therapist scores on the domains of the NEO-PI-3 would have a positive correlation with patient ratings of the working alliance. It was also predicted that therapist scores in the domains of extraversion, openness, agreeableness and conscientiousness would have a positive relationship with therapist ratings of the alliance but that therapist scores in the domain of neuroticism would have a negative correlation with therapist rated alliance scores. Results revealed that there was no relationship between the therapist personality traits on the domains of the NEO-PI-3 and the patient ratings of the working alliance. There was also no relationship evidenced between the therapist scores on the NEO-PI-3 domains of neuroticism, openness, agreeableness and conscientiousness and the therapist's ratings of the relationship with the patient according to the Working Alliance Inventory. The domain of extraversion had a weak, positive correlation with the therapist's rating of the task in the task on the WAI. Additional analyses revealed that therapist personality traits as measured by the NEO-PI-3 were correlated with the level of agreement between therapist and patient regarding ratings of the working alliance. ^

Subject Area

Psychology, Counseling

Recommended Citation

Lindsay Nahum, "What the Therapist Brings Into the Room: The Relationship Between Therapist Personality Traits and Therapist and Patient Rated Working Alliance" (January 1, 2012). ETD Collection for Pace University. Paper AAI3528755.
http://digitalcommons.pace.edu/dissertations/AAI3528755

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