J Korean Neuropsychiatr Assoc.  2002 Mar;41(2):189-200.

Group Psychotherapy: Theory and Practice

  • 1Lee Hoo-Kyeong's Psychiatric Clinic, Hanam, Korea.


The aim of this article is to understand group psychotherapy. In group psychotherapy, psychoanalytic theory and cognitive-behavioral theory have been accepted as perennial effective therapeutic modalities. But nowadays, all theories give the group psychotherapy vitality and liveness as a therapeutic modality in practical setting. The orders of the group psychotherapy that current therapists prefer according to their theoretical background are as follows: psychodynamic/psychoanalytic, group as a whole/systems, transactional analysis/gestalt/redecision, interpersonal/interactional, cognitive/behavioral, object relations, group analysis, psychodrama, existential/humanistic, and self psychology. The practice of group psychotherapy includes four therapy group, encounter group, training group, and education group or self-help group. Therapy group has the goal of symptom relief and personality reconstruction for patients. Encounter group has the goal of self growth and self realization for non-patients. Training group has the goal of training in human relationship and self maturation for mental health personnels. Self help group has the goal of education and support for patient families and patients. Group psychotherapy has been accepted as a therapeutic modality that are equally effective as individual psychotherapy although group psychotherapy has been derived from individual psychotherapy. Recently, individual psychotherapy has been less practiced yearly because of the pressure of economic difficulties of medical insurance in developed countries. Therefore, the importance of group psychotherapy with its therapeutic effectiveness and cost-efficiency is uprising.


Group psychotherapy; Theory; Practice
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