In this article we start with the effectiveness paradox between different psychotherapeutic modalities, considering common factors, before moving on to give a brief overview of the three main psychotherapeutic approaches – psychoanalytic, cognitive–behavioural and humanistic – and their developments. We conclude that it is the therapeutic relationship – considered in the context of the above – that is core to all therapeutic engagement, medical or otherwise.
•Refresh knowledge of three main psychotherapies
•Understand the equivalence paradox: common and specific factors
•Understand the development of contemporary psychotherapeutic approaches
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