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date: 09 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

In Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), case conceptualization uses the principles and the protocols of the treatment to assess client goals and behaviours, create a treatment plan, and provide accurate interventions that ultimately bring the client to his/her life worth living goals. It begins with the initial assessment and continues through pre-treatment. Throughout treatment specific behavioural targets are conceptualized using a behavioural formulation, including functions, controlling variables, and the behavioural interventions that treat the behaviours. The case conceptualization is organic and changes as needed. Formal case conceptualizations can be written or therapists can articulate their conceptualization of a case as they conduct the therapy. This chapter describes the purpose of case conceptualization in DBT, describes the various sections of the conceptualization that are used most frequently by DBT therapists, and concludes with a DBT case conceptualization example for a current Stage 1 DBT client.

Keywords: case conceptualization, assessment, biosocial theory, primary targets, stages, secondary targets, controlling variables, respondent, operant, outcomes

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