Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine

Living Edition
| Editors: Marc Gellman

Online Therapy and E-Counselling

  • Madalina L. SucalaEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6439-6_101952-1



Building on previous definitions (APA 2013; Manhal-Baugus 2001; Rochlen et al. 2004), online therapy can be defined as the provision of psychological services via Internet, which can include, but is not limited to: interactive video-conferencing, chat, messaging, and email. Regardless of the delivery format, online therapy programs involve guidance provided by qualified mental health clinicians and the materials shared for the purpose of therapy (e.g., video clips, audio files, reading materials, emails, or texts) are developed by or with the advice of trained professionals. It is important to consider that online therapy is not a form of psychotherapy per se but rather a form of therapy delivery (e.g., a form of therapy like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can be delivered either in person or online). Online psychotherapy may be used to augment, or as an adjuvant to traditional...

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References and Further Reading

  1. American Psychological Association. (2013). Guidelines for the practice of telepsychology. Honolulu: American Psychological Association’s (APA) Annual Convention.Google Scholar
  2. Andersson, G., Cuijpers, P., Carlbring, P., Riper, H., & Hedman, E. (2014). Guided Internet-based vs. face-to-face cognitive behavior therapy for psychiatric and somatic disorders: A systematic review and meta-analysis. World Psychiatry, 13(3), 288–295.  https://doi.org/10.1002/wps.20151.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  3. Barak, A., Hen, L., Boniel-Nissim, M., & Shapira, N. (2008). A Comprehensive Review and a Meta-Analysis of the Effectiveness of Internet-Based Psychotherapeutic Interventions, Journal of Technology in Human Services, 26:2-4, 109–160.  https://doi.org/10.1080/15228830802094429.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Clough, B. A., & Casey, L. M. (2015). The smart therapist: A look to the future of smartphones and mHealth technologies in psychotherapy. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 46(3), 147.  https://doi.org/10.1037/pro0000011.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Knaevelsrud, C., & Maercker, A. (2006). Does the quality of the working alliance predict treatment outcome in online psychotherapy for traumatized patients? Journal of Medical Internet Research, 8(4), e31.  https://doi.org/10.2196/jmir.8.4.e31.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  6. Manhal-Baugus, M. (2001). E-therapy: Practical, ethical, and legal issues. Cyberpsychology & Behavior, 4(5), 551–563.  https://doi.org/10.1089/109493101753235142.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Perle, J. G., & Nierenberg, B. (2013). How psychological telehealth can alleviate society’s mental health burden: A literature review. Journal of Technology in Human Services, 31(1), 22–41.  https://doi.org/10.1080/15228835.2012.760332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Rochlen, A. B., Zack, J. S., & Speyer, C. (2004). Online therapy: Review of relevant definitions, debates, and current empirical support. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 60(3), 269–283.  https://doi.org/10.1002/jclp.10263.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. Taylor, C. B., & Luce, K. H. (2003). Computer- and Internet-based psychotherapy interventions. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 12(1), 18–22.  https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-8721.01214.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Johnson & Johnson, Health and Wellness SolutionsNew BrunswickUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Emily Lattie
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Behavioral Intervention TechnologiesNorthwestern UniversityChicagoUSA