Does progress feedback enhance the outcome of group psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy (Chic). 2018 Jun;55(2):151-163. doi: 10.1037/pst0000164.


There is evidence that progress feedback combined with a clinical support tool (CST) improves treatment outcome in individual psychotherapy. This study examined the effect of feedback in combination with a CST in outpatient group psychotherapy. A prospective cohort study was performed with patients meeting diagnostic criteria for a major depressive disorder or an anxiety disorder. Patients received cognitive-behavioral group therapy or interpersonal group therapy and completed the Outcome Questionnaire-45 on a session by session basis. In the control cohort (N = 132), no feedback was provided. In the feedback cohort (N = 137), patients and clinicians received feedback on the treatment progress based on the Outcome Questionnaire-45. If a patient was deteriorating as compared with the start of treatment or the previous session, the CST was offered. Both cohorts showed a significant decrease in symptoms during therapy, but no significant differences existed on treatment outcome. The number of sessions was significantly lower in the feedback cohort. The results suggest that feedback in outpatient group psychotherapy does not improve outcomes but that fewer sessions may be sufficient to obtain outcomes similar to treatment as usual. More research with the use of progress feedback in outpatient group therapy is needed, especially with CSTs. (PsycINFO Database Record

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anxiety Disorders / therapy*
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy / methods*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Depressive Disorder, Major / therapy*
  • Feedback, Psychological
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies
  • Psychotherapy, Group / methods*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*
  • Treatment Outcome