Day 1 :
Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia
Dr Melissa Harte is an experienced Psychologist and presenter, passionate about dealing with psychological issues from a whole-of-person perspective. She has a doctorate in Counselling Psychology and is undertaking a Masters in Clinical Psychology at Swinburne University of Technology in Australia. She runs a thriving private practice, and offers training, supervision and professional development within an Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT) framework. She is the only Internationally Accredited Emotion Focused Therapy Trainer in Australia. She established the Harte Felt Centre to ensure a safe environment for client-centred healing practices in Australia that provides a supportive community for both practitioners and clients. She is the Training and Program Director of the newly formed Australian Institute for Emotion Focused Therapy (AIEFT). Her current research using Task Analysis has explored the expansion of the Focusing Task to include assisting people to process unresolved painful past events.
Statement of the problem: The trauma researcher van der Kolk wrote that for some people traumatic experiences are encoded primarily in right-brain experiential (nonverbal) memory, in the form of emotions, images and bodily sensations and are not processed on the symbolic or verbal level thereby leaving the experiences unintegrated. The aim of the current research was to investigate a model of bringing previously suppressed or incomplete memories of painful or traumatic events back into awareness in such a way that they can be processed and integrated. The model to be tested was proposed by the author and expanded the Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT) task of Focusing to include processing painful or traumatic events. Methodology and Theoretical Orientation: Task Analysis a method developed to discover and validate client processes of change was employed. EFT was developed using Task Analysis so it was considered the appropriate methodology for this investigation. Clients who had experienced painful of traumatic events of low level intensity and not at risk of destabilisation were invited by their therapists to be part of the study. Twelve single sessions were visually recorded and transcripts produced. Rigorous observation of the recorded sessions of clients working with their therapists on resolving their painful/traumatic events using the expanded Focusing task were undertaken by the author and a second rater who was familiar to the task and EFT. Findings: A sequential three stage empirical model emerged from the analysis. Conclusion and Significance: The implementation of Task Analysis enabled the researchers to build an empirically derived model of how therapeutic change occurred for clients who present with a felt sense of emotional pain due to an unresolved painful/traumatic event. The resultant empirical model describes a newly named EFT Task for Processing Trauma when the marker is identified as a felt sense of emotional pain.
Clinical Psychologist ,Valiant Clinic , UAE
Keynote: Empowering resilience in young women: a study of risk and protective factors for depressive symptomatology in a Portuguese young women community sample
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Monica de Sousa Mendes coordinated the Psychology and Mental Health Department of the Lisbon University Medical Health Center and was Assistant Professor of Developmental Psychology and Educational Psychology in the Higher Institute of Sciences and Education (ISEC). She coordinated the Psychotherapy and Clinical Psychology Consultation of the College Pedagogical and Counseling Center of the Faculty of Psychology of Lisbon University and Co-Founded the Early Intervention Center for Child Development and Family Support in Portugal.
This study aims to describe the risk factors and protective factors for prevalence of depressive symptomatology among young women in a Portuguese non-clinical representative community sample, with ages between 18 and 29. The center for epidemiologic studies depression scales and a questionnaire including socio-demographic variables, general health variables and women health variables, as well as interpersonal stress factors were mailed to a sample of 1480 subjects. A phone line was available and local papers asked for collaboration. 55 young women aged between 18 and 29 answered the CES-D and the questionnaire and was found an high level in the intensity of depressive symptomatology in this sample (18.56+13.7 CES-D mean score). Logistic regression has shown that young women have a double risk of being depressed in comparison to young men and significant risk increments in depressive symptomatology among rural, non-college and recent unemployed young women. It also has shown an increment risk of depression symptomatology among young women with previous depressive episodes and high concerns about body appearance and weight. Nevertheless, being employed and/or being student and a self-perceived good health state (self-perceived) founded to be high protective factors for depressive symptomatology. The need for prevention-focused programs for that specific gender group (especially recent unemployed young women, with previous depressive episodes and/or high concerns about body appearance and weight) is discussed as well as other programs to empower resilience in young women.