Formalizing Clinical Decisions in Individual Treatments: Some First Steps

Marinus Spreen*, Marieke E. Timmerman, Paul Ter Horst, Erwin Schuringa

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


A fundamental problem in forensic psychology practice is the lack of formal statistical methods to support team decisions about an individual patient's progress during intramural treatment. It is common practice to base decisions about the progress of a treatment on subjective clinical impressions of therapists. In this article, an approach is proposed that can be seen as a contribution to bridge the gap between formal statistical decision making and subjective clinical decision making. To formalize decisions in individual treatments, we have elaborated a statistical decision technique based on degrees of belief. In this article, this so-called N = 1 analysis is explained and illustrated by a hypothetical case.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)285-299
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of forensic psychology practice
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul-2010


  • decision making
  • treatment evaluation
  • formal methods
  • single case

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