69992 - Psychological Therapy.

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Good health and well-being

Academic Year 2021/2022

Learning outcomes

Students will learn basic ingredients and indications of psychotherapeutic approaches based on scientific evidence.

Course contents

The course consists of teaching modules and will take place during the first semester (from September to Dicember 2021) at the Cesena Campus, Department of Psychology.

Module Prof. Guidi (6 CFU):

1. Scientific evaluation of psychotherapy effectiveness. Main aspects of control and randomization.

2. Methodology and study design in psychotherapy research. How to critically understand psychotherapy studies. How to apply a psychotherapy protocol in clinical settings.

3. Process and outcome assessment. Variables linked to patient, therapist and setting.

4. Evidence-based treatments of mood disorders and bipolar spectrum disorders.

Module Prof. Tomba (2 CFU):

1. Theoretical Models of evidence-based psychological treatment for anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder

2. Evidence-based data for psychological therapies for phobias, panic attacks, panic disorder, agoraphobia

3. Evidence-based data for psychological therapies for generalized anxiety disorder and social anxiety

4. Evidence-based data for psychological therapies for obsessive-compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder

Module Prof. Baldoni (2 CFU):

1. Contemporary Dynamic Psychotherapy

• The concepts of transference and counter-transference
• The analysis of dreams
• Interpretation as a therapeutic technique
• Main models of short- and long-term Dynamic Psychotherapy
• Attachment-informed and attachment-based psychotherapies

2. Relational aspects in Clinical Psychology and in Psychotherapy
• The clinical relationship as a field of knowledge.
• The interventions of the clinical psychologist: the therapeutic continuum from interpretation to psychological support.
• Therapeutic alliance and therapeutic presence.
• The common factors of psychotherapies.
• Effectiveness of psychotherapies and the importance of relational aspects (concepts of Efficacy, Effectiveness and Efficiency).
• The humanistic and existential perspective in Clinical Psychology (Carl Rogers, Irving Yalom)



Prof. Guidi:

Fava GA, Grandi S, Rafanelli C (a cura di): Terapia psicologica. Centro Scientifico Editore, 2010 (Chapters 1,2,3,4)

Fava GA: Psicoterapia breve per il benessere psicologico. Milano, Raffaello Cortina, 2017.

Additional publications will be provided by Prof. Guidi.

Suggested readings Prof. Guidi:

S. Stuart, M. Robertson: Interpersonal psychotherapy. London, Arnold, 2003.

A. Roth, P. Fonagy: What works for whom? 2nd Edition. New York, Guildford, 2005.

M. Williams, J. Teasdale, Z.V. Segal, J. Kabat-Zinn, M. Linehan: The Mindful Way through Depression: Freeing Yourself from Chronic Unhappiness. New York, Guilford Press, 2007.

Prof. Tomba:

Systematic reviews updated at 2021 about evidence-based data for psychological therapies for specific disorders. Systematic reviews will be uploaded by Prof Tomba on Virtuale web page, Psychological Therapy course page. The systematic reviews are retrieved from Uptodate database (available for free for UNIBO students in the Library Sources, AlmaRe, UNIBO).

Fava GA, Grandi S, Rafanelli C (editors): Terapia psicologica. Centro Scientifico Editore, 2010 (chapters 5,6,7,8,9)

Fava GA: Psicoterapia breve per il benessere psicologico. Milano, Raffaello Cortina, 2017.

Suggested readings Prof. Tomba:

Fava Giovanni Andrea, Elena Tomba. Il panico. Nella trappola della paura. Il Mulino Collana: Farsi un'idea , 2013 ISBN-10: 8815244786 ISBN-13: 9788815244789

David, D., Lynn, S. J., & Montgomery, G. H. (Eds.). (2018). Evidence-based psychotherapy: The state of the science and practice. Wiley-Blackwell.

Prof. Baldoni (articles will be available online):

Baldoni, F. (2010). La prospettiva psicosomatica. Dalla teoria alla pratica clinica. Bologna: Il Mulino, (Capp. 6, 7 e 10).
Baldoni, F. (2013). Psicoterapia e attaccamento. Il paradigma dell'attaccamento nella pratica clinica. In: Lazzari D. (a cura di). Psicoterapia: effetti integrati, efficacia e costi-benefici. Milano: Tecniche Nuove, pp. 106-140.
Baldoni, F. (2019). L’utilizzo terapeutico dei sogni tra interpretazione, narrazione e relazione clinica - The therapeutic use of dreams, between interpretation, narration and clinical relationship. Giornale Italiano di Psicologia, XLVI(3), 463-468.
Baldoni, F., & Campailla, A. (2017). Attaccamento, Working Alliance e relazione terapeutica: cosa rende efficace una psicoterapia? Giornale Italiano di Psicologia, XLIV (4), 823-846.

Suggested readings Prof. Baldoni:

Baldoni, F. (2015). L'efficacia della psicoterapia nel trattamento dei disturbi psichici. La mente che cura, 1, pp. 17-20.
Caretti, V., Craparo, G., & Schimmenti A. (a cura di) (2013). Memorie traumatiche e mentalizzazione. Teoria, ricerca e clinica. Roma: Astrolabio.
Gabbard, G.O. (2017). Introduzione alla psicoterapia psicodinamica (Terza edizione). Milano: Raffaello Cortina, 2018.
Holmes, J., & Slade, A. (2018). Attachment in therapeutic practice. London: Sage.
Rogers, C.R. (1961). La terapia centrata-sul-cliente. Firenze: Giunti, 2019.
Wallin, D.J. (2007). Psicoterapia e teoria dell'attaccamento. Bologna: Il Mulino, 2009.
Wampold, B.E., & Imel Z.E. (2015). Il grande dibattito in psicoterapia. Roma: Sovera, 2017.
Yalom, I.D. (1980). Psicoterapia esistenziale. Vicenza: Neri Pozza, 2019.
Yalom, I.D. (2002). Il dono della terapia. Vicenza: Neri Pozza, 2014.

Yalom, I.D. (2015). Creature di un giorno. Vicenza: Neri Pozza, 2015.

Teaching methods

Prof. Guidi and Prof. Tomba:

Lectures with case exemplifications, discussions and practical exercises. Course attendance plays a crucial role in the learning and assessing process.


Prof. Baldoni:

The notions will be presented in a historical perspective with references to daily life and clinical practice. The teaching material (slides, figures, articles and bibliographies) will be available on the internet at the end of the course. Access to teaching material is reserved for students enrolled at the University of Bologna.

Assessment methods

The final evaluation will consist in an ORAL exam and will be held based on current containment measures.

There are no mid-term evaluations.

The ORAL exam is aimed to assess the student's knowledge regarding the topics included in the textbook and discussed in classes (specific and non-specific psychotherapeutic factors, principles of the main evidence-based psychotherapeutic approaches, evidence-based indications for the treatment of mental disorders, elements of dynamic psychotherapy and relational aspects in clinical psychology and psychotherapy).

The highest final mark (30/30), eventually cum laude, will reflect the comprehensiveness, adequacy and full articulation of the report. The following criteria will be considered in making corrections to the exam: relevant studies cited and described appropriately (0-16 points); clinical reasoning applied to the case presented (0-7 points); full articulation of possible therapeutic indications (0-7 points). Marks will progressively decrease based on lack of information (i.e., lack of clinical reasoning, relevant studies neither cited nor described) and/or in case of inaccurate or off-topic answers. It is mandatory to achieve a mark as high as 18/30 in every partial examination led by the professors. The final grade will represent the average of the marks of the three oral tests.

Students may register for the exam by using Almaesami. Each student will be notified by e-mail with regard to the link and specific time of the exam.

Student's identification through ID document is mandatory.
The final mark will be published on ALMAESAMI.

Teaching tools

Slides, PC, slide projector, overhead projector and research scientific articles

Office hours

See the website of Jenny Guidi

See the website of Elena Tomba

See the website of Franco Baldoni