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International Journal of Play Therapy
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The quarterly International Journal of Play Therapy® is a peer-reviewed journal with  scholarly articles about current play therapy research, case studies, theoretical applications, current practices.

Produced each January, April, July, and October.   

Available on PsycNet, and its articles archived by APA.


April 2017, Vol. 26, No. 2

Effects of Child-Centered Play Therapy for Students with Highly-Disruptive Behavior in High-Poverty Schools                                                                                                    (Cochran & Cochran 2017)

In this article, the authors examined the effects of child-centered play therapy (CCPT) services when provided in high-poverty schools by counseling interns or beginning play therapists in close supervision. The outcome included significant differences after 9-session hours across total problems, externalizing, attention problems, and learning related self-efficacy, with no change in internalizing behaviors. Findings support the importance of CCPT in schools and other real-world settings for high-need children.

The Effects of Child-Centered Play Therapy on the Behavioral Performance of Three First Grade Students with ADHD                                                                                                         (Robinson, Simpson, & Holt, 2017)

The authors of this research study, describe a single case, multiple baseline across participants design was used to investigate the effects of Child-Centered Play Therapy (CCPT) on hyperactivity/impulsivity and inattention in three first grade students. Results indicated there was a small effect size for CCPT on ADHD behaviors. Analysis of individual subscales revealed moderate or large effect sizes increasing time on task and decreasing total problems in the classroom, sluggish cognitive tempo, immature/withdrawn behavior, intrusive behavior, and oppositional behavior in individual participants. The teacher indicated that CCPT was an appropriate intervention for students with ADHD, has utility in the school setting, and would recommend CCPT to other teachers.

Play Therapy with Adolescents in Schools: Counselors' Firsthand Experiences
(Shen, 2017)

In this phenomenological, qualitative study, the author explored issues related to using play therapy with teenagers in schools. The results reveal that despite existing obstacles, two factors facilitated play therapy in secondary schools: (1) taking advantage of the therapeutic value of play and (2) counselor-associated efforts. Starting with counselors' intrinsic motivations, the counselor-associated efforts involved (a) positive core values driving play therapy usage, (b) successful experiences reinforcing play therapy practice with teenagers, (c) adaptations via various methods, (d) flexibility and consultation to overcome resource constraints, and (e) a receptive human environment.

The Effects of Adlerian Play Therapy on Maladaptive Perfectionism and Anxiety in Children: A Single Case Design
(Akay & Bratton, 2017)

In this singlecase design study, the authors investigated the effect of Adlerian Play Therapy (AdPT) on children's maladaptive perfectionism and anxiety. They note that Ashby, Kottman, and Martin (2004) proposed a play-based intervention grounded in Adlerian principles as a developmentally responsive approach that focused on helping children modify maladaptive thoughts and behavior. Results of this study showed AdPT as a promising intervention that needs to be further studied for its effectiveness in treating children's maladaptive perfectionism and related anxiety issues.

A Multidisciplinary Model for Treating Complex Trauma in Early Childhood
(Ryan, Lane, & Powers, 2017)

In this conceptual article, the authors state that to meeting the needs of children who have experienced complex trauma and their caregivers, with a neurobiologically based approach, requires a multidisciplinary team approach. They describe their multidisciplinary practice model and present the case of a graduate of their program. Their model is based on Perry's Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics© (NMT) and incorporates trauma-informed play therapy to support relationship building and self- regulation, strengths-based and trauma informed early childhood education, occupational therapy emphasizing sensory integration for self-regulation, and caregiver therapy.


Clinical Editor
Edward Hudspeth, PhD, LPC, RPT-S
Associate Dean of Counseling Academics, COCE
Southern New Hampshire University, Manchester, NH

    © 2016 Association for Play Therapy, Inc.