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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.


Special Issue: October 2016, Vol. 25, No. 4

Using Bookmarks: An Approach to Support Ethical Decision Making in Play Therapy                                                                                                                                      (Holt, Maddox, Warren, Morgan, & Zakaria, 2016)

In this article, the authors examine seven ethical issues, relevant to play therapy, found in the mental health field. They describe creating a bookmark as a way to identify a decision-making model, slow down irrational, biased, and automatic reactions that lead to poor judgments, and as a proactive coping tool. The authors demonstrate the use of the bookmark with a hypothetical case study.

Sandtray Supervision: An Integrated Model for Play Therapy Supervision                           (Perryman, Moss, & Anderson, 2016)

For this article, the authors propose the use of sandtray as a play therapy supervision technique. Theories (viz., Person-Centered and Gestalt) are discussed in the context of play therapy supervision, and a 3-phase model for utilizing sandtray techniques in the play therapy supervision process is described. Suggestions are included for pairing the technique with specific aspects of supervision as well as a case example to illustrate the model when utilized with a beginning, practicum supervisee.

Towards Semantic Clarity in Play Therapy
(Peabody & Schaefer, 2016)

In this conceptual article, the authors explore the need for semantic clarity in the field of play therapy and suggest steps to improve semantic clarity. They present clearer definitions of some clinical terms and emerging theories, and with a focus on practice, legal, and training implications, describe the implications of semantic clarity. Prescriptive and integrative play therapies are presented to illustrate clarity across two theories.

Psychodynamic Play Therapy: A Case of Selective Mutism
(Fernandez & Sugay, 2016)

Within this qualitative study, the authors illustrate the use of psychodynamic play therapy, as a medium for expressing themes related to an issue, in the case of a 9-year-old female who had been diagnosed with Selective Mutism. The authors posit that the theoretical underpinnings of this approach allowed the child to communicate underlying situations, conflicts, and feelings through symbolic form, which psychodynamic theorists suggest hindered her from speaking. The child is given the opportunity to master fears and learn skills that later on become a resource to from which to draw.

Utilizing Filial Therapy With Deployed Military Families
(Hicks, Lenard, & Brendle, 2016)

The authors of this conceptual article discuss problems experienced by families and their children, 2 to 10 years of age, when experiencing military deployment, describe filial therapy as a strategy, and offer a case study to aid play therapists in the implementation of strategies. They note that current research focuses primarily on the impact of military deployment on soldiers without taking into account the soldier’s family and that filial therapy offers a unique strategy for assisting the entire family system.

The Child Attachment and Play Assessment (CAPA): Validation of a New Approach to Coding Narrative Stems With Children Ages 3–11 Years
(Farnfield, 2016)

Within this assessment-related article, the author describes the Child Attachment and Play Assessment (CAPA) a new system for analyzing story stems with preschool (age 3–6 years) and school-age children (7–11 years). The CAPA provides a reliable means of assessing children’s attachment strategies. The study established concurrent validity with the DMM-CARE-Index and a Child Attachment Interview for preschool and school-age children. The discrimination between risk and community children proved to be strong and there was good inter-rater reliability.


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.