Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Dr. Richard Spates

Second Advisor

Dr. Malcolm Robertson

Third Advisor

Dr. Patricia Meinhold

Fourth Advisor

Dr. William Brooks


A pre-test, post-test comparison group design was utilized to assess the effectiveness of two interventions on symptoms associated with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Subjects were randomly assigned to one of two treatments: Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) or structured writing sessions. A standardized diagnostic interview was used to screen subjects and provide diagnosis and symptom profile at intake and one-month follow-up. Standardized self-report measures were used to assess treatment outcomes. Repeated measures ANOVA revealed no significant differences between the two treatments. Both treatments were effective in significantly reducing post-traumatic symptoms at post-test and follow-up, although slightly different patterns were evident. EMDR subjects tended to evidence a larger reduction in symptoms immediately after treatment, while subjects assigned to the writing condition evidenced more gradual improvement, which continued between post-test and follow-up periods. Measures of subject expectations regarding treatment effectiveness revealed no statistical correlation to treatment outcome. Similarly, hypnotic susceptibility was found to be unrelated to the effectiveness of either treatment.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access