Case Conceptualization in ACT: A Practical Introduction to Formulating, Planning, and Explaining Succesful Treatments

Kelly Wilson, Ph.D.University of Mississippi
Troy DuFrene, M.A.California School of Professional Psychology

Components: Case presentation, Conceptual analysis, Didactic presentation, Experiential exercises, Literature review, Role play

Categories: Clinical Interventions and Interests, Professional Development, Case conceptualization

Target Audience: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced

From intake to discharge, the process of case conceptualization is important to every psychotherapist. This activity includes gathering and arranging meaningful information about clients; understanding presenting problems and explaining them usefully to supervisors and clients; planning and evaluating treatment; anticipating problems; and developing discharge criteria. This workshop asks participants, “How do you conceptualize cases in ACT, do you do it consistently from case to case, and can you explain it to someone in three minutes or less?” Participants will leave with a practical, start-to-finish model for case conceptualization in ACT, drawing on a system first introduced in the presenters’ book Mindfulness for Two, updated to reflect development in the. field during the ten years since the book’s publication. The workshop includes practice examples, checklists and worksheets to assist in the process, and opportunities to formulate current cases using this method. At the end of the workshop, participants will conceptualize and explain cases from an ACT point of view in a consistent, structured, and useful way.

Educational Objectives:
1. Demonstrate ability to use the process-based conceptualization model to formulate cases from an ACT point of view quickly and consistently.
2. Describe case formulations in succinct and effective ways in language useful to both clients and supervisors.
3. Identify challenges to consistent and accurate case conceptualizations in a variety of clinical settings (private practice, community mental health, hospitals, and so forth).