Time-Series Panel Analysis (TSPA): Multivariate Modeling of Temporal Associations in Psychotherapy Process.

Ramseyer, Fabian; Kupper, Zeno; Caspar, Franz; Znoj, Hansjörg; Tschacher, Wolfgang (2014). Time-Series Panel Analysis (TSPA): Multivariate Modeling of Temporal Associations in Psychotherapy Process. Journal of consulting and clinical psychology, 82(5), pp. 828-838. American Psychological Association 10.1037/a0037168

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Objective: Processes occurring in the course of psychotherapy are characterized by the simple fact that they unfold in time and that the multiple factors engaged in change processes vary highly between individuals (idiographic phenomena). Previous research, however, has neglected the temporal perspective by its traditional focus on static phenomena, which were mainly assessed at the group level (nomothetic phenomena). To support a temporal approach, the authors introduce time-series panel analysis (TSPA), a statistical methodology explicitly focusing on the quantification of temporal, session-to-session aspects of change in psychotherapy. TSPA-models are initially built at the level of individuals and are subsequently aggregated at the group level, thus allowing the exploration of prototypical models. Method: TSPA is based on vector auto-regression (VAR), an extension of univariate auto-regression models to multivariate time-series data. The application of TSPA is demonstrated in a sample of 87 outpatient psychotherapy patients who were monitored by postsession questionnaires. Prototypical mechanisms of change were derived from the aggregation of individual multivariate models of psychotherapy process. In a 2nd step, the associations between mechanisms of change (TSPA) and pre- to postsymptom change were explored. Results: TSPA allowed a prototypical process pattern to be identified, where patient's alliance and self-efficacy were linked by a temporal feedback-loop. Furthermore, therapist's stability over time in both mastery and clarification interventions was positively associated with better outcomes. Conclusions: TSPA is a statistical tool that sheds new light on temporal mechanisms of change. Through this approach, clinicians may gain insight into prototypical patterns of change in psychotherapy.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > University Psychiatric Services > University Hospital of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy > Psychotherapy
07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy

UniBE Contributor:

Ramseyer, Fabian, Kupper, Zeno, Caspar, Franz, Znoj, Hans Jörg, Tschacher, Wolfgang


100 Philosophy > 150 Psychology
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




American Psychological Association




Adriana Biaggi

Date Deposited:

17 Dec 2014 09:54

Last Modified:

02 Mar 2023 23:25

Publisher DOI:






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