Measures and Goals
Progress and outcome measures provide a validated way of assessing the client. Some measures are what might be considered 'disorder-specific', measuring anxiety, depression or trauma. Other measures are more generic, attempting to measure overall distress. Emphasis may also be placed on attempting to measure emotional wellbeing.
However, they don't necessarily accurately capture the issues that are of importance to the client. Labeling the client as suffering from depression or trauma may not be the most use. Being able to measure the starting point for the client from their own perspective, where they label their goals in their own language and offer a more detailed explanation can prove to be a very useful way of measuring change.
Additionally, it may often be the case that, while a client attends at first with some initial goals that they want to make progress on, during treatment more goals come to light that they wish to work on.
Pragmatic Tracker facilitates the capture of goals as labeled and explained by the client and tracks change toward the meeting of those goals as treatment progresses.
By, in effect, creating a new measurement tool bespoke to the client, progress can then be tracked session by session. New goals can be added to the mix as treatment progresses. Change on individual goals can be monitored and change on the aggregate of all the goals can be viewed alongside change in the validated measure scores.
Problems or goals - A language issue
'Problems', 'issues', 'goals', 'solutions', 'direction'...these are all terms we might choose. Practitioners may vary in their theoretical orientation as to which terminology they may prefer to use. In the end, in Pragmatic Tracker we made a decision to offer both problems and goals that can be tracked. This way, we believe people have then got the choice as to what fits best for them.
The really important thing is to be able to monitor change in the key areas that the client sought treatment for.