Oh G-d, A Borderline: Clinical Diagnostics As Fundamental Attribution Error Page: 37
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history, client's aspirations, etc.) than what was presented to participants of this study. Diagnosis
was also, for practical reasons, limited specifically to borderline personality disorder.
Here again, the boundaries of the clinical utility of the FAE may have been pressed too
far. The FAE, in particular, looks at how people overlook the power of situations over behavior in
the favor of dispositional attributions. In the attribution literature the conceptualization of
situational is generally limited to specific observable constraints on behavior that are physically
present in the moment. Even had a significant effect been observed it would have been
questionable whether context, as provided, was significantly present enough to be truly
overlooked by participants.
Considering again the difference observed between psychodynamic and third wave
behavioral student clinicians and recalling that these two modalities are empirically sound in
terms of client outcomes, the present findings are intriguing, but not necessarily fruitful. Until
the conceptual relationships among dispositional inference, stigma, and therapeutic relationship
and outcomes are more clearly delineated, we have only found that psychodynamic and third
wave behavioral clinicians have different working models for conceptualizing client behavior.
One of these models emphasizes internal characteristics and the other contextual ones. In both
instances, successful change can be expected.
Future experimental formulations that utilize the attribution theory paradigm to
investigate clinical outcomes, including stigma, should consider several factors relevant to
independent and dependent variables as well as sample population. To ameliorate questions
about the extremity of the Client's behavior and its impact on the current findings, it would be
beneficial to utilize multiple video stimuli with behavior that ranges from mundane to highly
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Schmalz, Jonathan. Oh G-d, A Borderline: Clinical Diagnostics As Fundamental Attribution Error, thesis, December 2011; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103389/m1/43/: accessed December 17, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .