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How Do the Features of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy Contribute to Positive Therapeutic Change? A Meta-Synthesis of Qualitative Studies

  • Victoria Cairns (a1) and Craig Murray (a1)


Background: The exploration of Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy through qualitative investigation is a growing area of interest within current literature, providing valuable understanding of the process of change experienced by those engaging in this therapeutic approach. Aims: This meta-synthesis aims to gain a deeper understanding of how the features of Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy contribute to positive therapeutic change. Method: Noblit and Hare's (1988) 7-step meta-ethnography method was conducted in order to synthesize the findings of seven qualitative studies. Results: The process of reciprocal translation identified the following five major themes: i) Taking control through understanding, awareness and acceptance; ii) The impact of the group; (iii) Taking skills into everyday life; (iv) Feelings towards the self; (v) The role of expectations. Conclusion: The synthesis of translation identified the higher order concept of “The Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy Journey to Change”, which depicts the complex interaction between the five themes in relation to how they contribute to positive therapeutic change. The findings are discussed in relation to previous research, theory and their implications for clinical practice.


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Reprint requests to Victoria Cairns, Faculty of Health and Medicine, Division of Health Research, Furness College, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YG, UK. E-mail:


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How Do the Features of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy Contribute to Positive Therapeutic Change? A Meta-Synthesis of Qualitative Studies

  • Victoria Cairns (a1) and Craig Murray (a1)
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