Alternative Methodologies in Research Literature Review: Links Between Clinical Work and MFT Effectiveness


clinical work, MFT effectiveness


Traditionally, "good outcome research" has referred to laboratory-based, controlled studies that report the efficacy of a given treatment on a specific population. Although useful and needed in the struggle to establish MFTs as accepted mental health service providers, this type of research does not address whether MFT is effective in "real world" settings. In order to highlight the clinical and professional relevance of existing effectiveness research, this article reviews 15 years of clinical research in three major family therapy journals. The results suggest that 1) MFT effectiveness is under-represented in major review articles, 2) clinicians can use a variety of methodologies to establish the effectiveness of their work, and 3) more research is needed that investigates how and why MFT works in "real world" settings. Implications for practice and future research are discussed.

Original Publication Citation

Addison, S. M., Sandberg, J. G., Corby, J., Robila, M., & Platt, J. (2002). Alternative methodologies in research literature review: Links between clinical work and MFT effectiveness. American Journal of Family Therapy, 30, 339-371.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date


Permanent URL


The American Journal of Family Therapy




Family, Home, and Social Sciences


Family Life

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor