Degree Name

Doctor of Psycology


Department of Psychology


Through the investigation of two related Core Conflictual Relationship Theme (CCRT) methodologies, this study continued to contest the notion the field of psychoanalysis is bereft of empirical ventures. The Quantitative Assessment of Interpersonal Themes (QUAINT) and Core Conflictual Relationship Theme - Leipzig/Ulm (CCRT-LU) systems were applied to psychotherapy transcripts from the treatment of seventeen patients who had attended multiple sessions per week of longterm psychoanalysis. The thematic profiles of each method were modified to facilitate a direct comparison of the methodological structures, including the coding system. The investigation reported on the strengths and weaknesses of each system. The QUAINT and CCRT-LU methods were fair-to-moderately related (overall kappa: .34). The CCRT-LU system showed greater concordance to the tailor-made method, which marks the 'gold standard' of the CCRT methodologies. Therefore, the CCRT-LU system was then selected to illustrate the interpersonal relationship pattern changes of the patients engaged in long-term psychoanalytic psychotherapy. These relational patterns were related to several outcome measures such as the Mastery Scale, the Global Assessment of Functioning and the Health Sickness Rating Scale. Patients' relational patterns evidenced significant changes over therapy, particularly on the Response of Self component, and the valence of their interpersonal conflicts shifted significantly to more positive and harmonious outcomes. As predicted, these effects were most noticeable for those patients who had been assessed as 'most-improved' by their Mastery Scale scores. Both CCRT methods were demonstrated as valid and reliable research tools capable of appraising the maladaptive relational patterns of patients engaged in long-term psychoanalysis.