Background: Psychotherapy and counseling traditionally relies on a
conversational mode involving processing of information that requires attention,
concentration, and working memory, all of which may often be somewhat impaired in may
people with psychiatric symptoms, thus limiting the optimal effect of “conversational based
therapy.” In routine classroom learning situations and in professional presentations for
seminars, workshops, and meetings, some forms of visual modality (e.g., blackboard, easel, or
PowerPoint slides, printed handouts, etc.) are often used to enhance communication and to
limit interference of any “intrusive associations” that many people in general may experience.
With the availability of computer technology, the possibility of accompanying oral
communication supplanted with visual representation of conversational dialogues in
psychotherapy has not yet been recognized or appreciated.
Method: There have been some publications on the computer-facilitated therapy by the author
and his colleagues primarily based on author’s work with persons with schizophrenia, and one
with behavior disordered adolescents, but this article presents specific case samples detailing
more extensively on the use of computer facilitated dialogue techniques from author’s
personal experience in working with adolescents.
Discussion: The article highlights how personal goals, problem issues, and steps that one
needs to take to reach goals, which can be developed with computer word processor with
active client participations. Clinicians can also use the technique to capture the main themes
of any counseling or assessment sessions. This technique can be adopted by mental health
clinicians from different disciplines, including by the medication practicing clinicians in
working with adolescent or adult psychiatric patients.