Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa
  • Get access
    Check if you have access via personal or institutional login
  • Cited by 224
  • Cited by
    This article has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Guthrie, Marjorie Zubatsky, Max and Smith, Craig W. 2017. Family Medicine.

    Krigel, Susan W. Grobe, James E. Goggin, Kathy Harris, Kari Jo Moreno, Jose L. and Catley, Delwyn 2017. Motivational interviewing and the decisional balance procedure for cessation induction in smokers not intending to quit. Addictive Behaviors, Vol. 64, p. 171.

    Abrams, Sarah 2016. A Sustainable Smoking Cessation Program for Patients With Lung Cancer. Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing, Vol. 20, Issue. 4, p. E106.

    Abughosh, Susan M. Wang, Xin Serna, Omar Henges, Chris Masilamani, Santhi James Essien, Ekere Chung, Nancy and Fleming, Marc 2016. A Pharmacist Telephone Intervention to Identify Adherence Barriers and Improve Adherence Among Nonadherent Patients with Comorbid Hypertension and Diabetes in a Medicare Advantage Plan. Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy, Vol. 22, Issue. 1, p. 63.

    Carcone, April Idalski Jacques-Tiura, Angela J. Brogan Hartlieb, Kathryn E. Albrecht, Terrance and Martin, Tim 2016. Effective Patient–Provider Communication in Pediatric Obesity. Pediatric Clinics of North America, Vol. 63, Issue. 3, p. 525.

    Chen, Jia Li, Xianhong Xiong, Yang Fennie, Kristopher P. Wang, Honghong and Williams, Ann Bartley 2016. Reducing the risk of HIV transmission among men who have sex with men: A feasibility study of the motivational interviewing counseling method. Nursing & Health Sciences, Vol. 18, Issue. 3, p. 400.

    Cheung, Therma W. C. Clemson, Lindy O'Loughlin, Kate and Shuttleworth, Russell 2016. Understanding decision-making towards housework among women with upper limb repetitive strain injury. Australian Occupational Therapy Journal, Vol. 63, Issue. 1, p. 37.

    de Geus, Eveline Eijzenga, Willem Menko, Fred H. Sijmons, Rolf H. de Haes, Hanneke C. J. M. Aalfs, Cora M. and Smets, Ellen M. A. 2016. Design and Feasibility of an Intervention to Support Cancer Genetic Counselees in Informing their At-Risk Relatives. Journal of Genetic Counseling,

    Docherty, Barbara Sheridan, Nicolette and Kenealy, Timothy 2016. Developing Brief Opportunistic Interactions: practitioners facilitate patients to identify and change health risk behaviours at an early preventive stage. Primary Health Care Research & Development, Vol. 17, Issue. 04, p. 319.

    Evangeli, Michael and Kagee, Ashraf 2016. A model of caregiver paediatric HIV disclosure decision-making. Psychology, Health & Medicine, Vol. 21, Issue. 3, p. 338.

    Feldstein Ewing, S. W. Apodaca, T. R. and Gaume, J. 2016. Ambivalence: Prerequisite for success in motivational interviewing with adolescents?. Addiction, p. n/a.

    Hall, Kate Staiger, Petra K. Simpson, Angela Best, David and Lubman, Dan I. 2016. After 30 years of dissemination, have we achieved sustained practice change in motivational interviewing?. Addiction, Vol. 111, Issue. 7, p. 1144.

    Jacques-Tiura, Angela J. Carcone, April Idalski Naar, Sylvie Brogan Hartlieb, Kathryn Albrecht, Terrance L. and Barton, Ellen 2016. Building Motivation in African American Caregivers of Adolescents With Obesity: Application of Sequential Analysis. Journal of Pediatric Psychology, p. jsw044.

    Jones, Sarah A. Latchford, Gary and Tober, Gillian 2016. Client experiences of motivational interviewing: An interpersonal process recall study. Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice, Vol. 89, Issue. 1, p. 97.

    Lomba, Lurdes Kroll, Thilo Apóstolo, Jorge Gameiro, Manuel and Apóstolo, João 2016. The use of motivational interviews by nurses to promote health behaviors in adolescents. JBI Database of Systematic Reviews and Implementation Reports, Vol. 14, Issue. 5, p. 27.

    Malas, Nasuh Rofey, Dana Kuchera, Anne Marie Pletcher, Jonathan Ortiz-Aguayo, Roberto Douaihy, Antoine and Gold, Melanie 2016. Motivational interviewing in paediatric residency. The Clinical Teacher, p. n/a.

    Mertens, Vera-Christina Forsberg, Lars Verbunt, Jeanine A. Smeets, Rob E. J. M. and Goossens, Mariëlle E. J. B. 2016. Treatment Fidelity of a Nurse-Led Motivational Interviewing-Based Pre-Treatment in Pain Rehabilitation. The Journal of Behavioral Health Services & Research, Vol. 43, Issue. 3, p. 459.

    Prescott, David S. 2016. The Wiley Handbook on the Theories, Assessment and Treatment of Sexual Offending.

    Rochat, Shékina and Rossier, Jérôme 2016. Integrating motivational interviewing in career counseling: A case study. Journal of Vocational Behavior, Vol. 93, p. 150.

    San, Luis and Arranz, Belén 2016. Nalmefeno: ¿Un nuevo enfoque en el manejo del trastorno por uso de alcohol?. Psiquiatría Biológica, Vol. 23, Issue. 1, p. 29.

  • Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy, Volume 37, Issue 2
  • March 2009, pp. 129-140

Ten Things that Motivational Interviewing Is Not

  • William R. Miller (a1) and Stephen Rollnick (a2)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 March 2009

Background: In the 26 years since it was first introduced in this journal, motivational interviewing (MI) has become confused with various other ideas and approaches, owing in part to its rapid international diffusion. Methods: Based on confusions that have arisen in publications and presentations regarding MI, the authors compiled a list of 10 concepts and procedures with which MI should not be addled. Results: This article discusses 10 things that MI is not: (1) the transtheoretical model of change; (2) a way of tricking people into doing what you want them to do; (3) a technique; (4) decisional balance; (5) assessment feedback; (6) cognitive-behavior therapy; (7) client-centered therapy; (8) easy to learn; (9) practice as usual; and (10) a panacea. Conclusion: Clarity about what does (and does not) constitute MI promotes quality assurance in scientific research, clinical practice, and training.

Corresponding author
Reprint requests to William Miller, Department of Psychology, University of New Mexico, Logan Hall, Albuquerque, New Mexico NM 87131-1161, USA. E-mail:
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

G. Agostinelli , J. M. Brown and W. R. Miller (1995). Effects of normative feedback on consumption among heavy drinking college students. Journal of Drug Education, 25, 3140.

P. C. Amrhein , W. R. Miller , C. E. Yahne , M. Palmer and L. Fulcher (2003). Client commitment language during motivational interviewing predicts drug use outcomes. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 71, 862878.

J. Gaume , G. Gmel and J.-B. Daeppen (2008). Brief alcohol interventions: do counsellors' and patients' communication characteristics predict change? Alcohol and Alcoholism, 43, 6269.

J. Hettema , J. Steele and W. R. Miller (2005). Motivational interviewing. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, 1, 91111.

V. Kuchipudi , K. Hobein , A. Fleckinger and F. L. Iber (1990). Failure of a 2-hour motivational intervention to alter recurrent drinking behavior in alcoholics with gastrointestinal disease. Journal of Studies on Alcohol, 51, 356360.

M. B. Madsón and T. C. Campbell (2006). Measures of fidelity in motivational enhancement: a systematic review. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 31, 6773.

W. R. Miller , R. G. Benefield and J. S. Tonigan (1993). Enhancing motivation for change in problem drinking: a controlled comparison of two therapist styles. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 61, 455461.

W. R. Miller and N. Heather (Eds.). (1986). Treating Addictive Behaviors: processes of change. New York: Plenum Press.

W. R. Miller and E. Kurtz (1994). Models of alcoholism used in treatment: contrasting A.A. and other perspectives with which it is often confused. Journal of Studies on Alcohol, 55, 159166.

W. R. Miller and S. Rollnick (2004). Talking oneself into change: motivational interviewing, stages of change, and the therapeutic process. Journal of Cognitive Psychotherapy, 18, 299308.

W. R. Miller , J. L. Sorensen , J. Selzer and G. Brigham (2006). Disseminating evidence-based practices in substance abuse treatment: a review with suggestions. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 31, 2539.

W. R. Miller , M. Villanueva , J. S. Tonigan and I. Cuzmar (2007). Are special treatments needed for special populations? Alcoholism Treatment Quarterly, 25, 6378.

W. R. Miller , C. E. Yahne , T. B. Moyers , J. Martinez and M. Pirritano (2004). A randomized trial of methods to help clinicians learn motivational interviewing. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 72, 10501062.

W. R. Miller , C. E. Yahne and J. S. Tonigan (2003). Motivational interviewing in drug abuse services: a randomized trial. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 71, 754763.

T. B. Moyers , W. R. Miller and S. M. L. Hendrickson (2005). How does motivational interviewing work? Therapist interpersonal skill predicts client involvement within motivational interviewing sessions. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 73, 590598.

Project MATCH Research Group (1993). Project MATCH: rationale and methods for a multisite clinical trial matching patients to alcoholism treatment. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 17, 11301145.

Project MATCH Research Group (1997). Project MATCH secondary a priori hypotheses. Addiction, 92, 16711698.

D. J. Rohsenow , P. M. Monti , R. A. Martin , S. M. Colby , M. G. Myers , S. B. Gulliver , R. A. Brown , T. I. Mueller , A. Gordon and D. B. Abrams (2004). Motivational enhancement and coping skills training for cocaine abusers: effects on substance use outcomes. Addiction, 99, 862874.

A. L. Stotts , J. M. Schmitz , H. M. Rhoades and J. Grabowski (2001). Motivational interviewing with cocaine-dependent patients: a pilot study. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 69, 858862.

C. B. Truax (1966). Reinforcement and non-reinforcement in Rogerian psychotherapy. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 71, 19.

C. C. Wagner and K. S. Ingersoll (2008). Beyond cognition: broadening the emotional base of motivational interviewing. Journal of Psychotherapy Integration, 18, 191206.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy
  • ISSN: 1352-4658
  • EISSN: 1469-1833
  • URL: /core/journals/behavioural-and-cognitive-psychotherapy
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *