Measures and Problems
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 lable their problems in their own language and offer a more detaield 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 one problem area that concerns them, during treatment more problems come to light that they wish to work on.
Pragmatic Tracker facilitates the capture of problems as labeled and explained by the client, allows capture of the length of time the problems have been an issue for and how severly they are impacting on the clients life.
By, in effect, creating a new measurement tool bespoke to the client, progress can then be tracked session by session. New problems can be added to the mix as treatment progresses. Change on individual problems can be monitored and change on the aggregate of all the problems can be viewed alongside change in the validated measure scores.
A 'problem' of language
'Problems', 'issues', 'goals', 'solutions'...these are all terms we could have chosen to use here. Practitioners may vary in their theoretical orientation as to which terminology they may prefer to use. In the end we made a decision to offer both 'problems' and 'goals' so the practitioner may choose.
The really important thing is to be able to monitor change in the key areas that the client sought treatment for.