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Rogers, Carl Ransom (1902–1987)

  1. Ralph W. Lundin

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0802

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Lundin, R. W. 2010. Rogers, Carl Ransom (1902–1987). Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1.

Author Information

  1. Wheaton, Illinois

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


As Carl Ransom Rogers pointed out, both hard work and a commitment to Protestant Christianity were equally stressed in his youth. Certainly, both are implicit in his theories. He received the B.A. degree from the University of Wisconsin and then attended the Union Theological Seminary in New York City for two years. He decided to switch to psychology, and he received the PhD from Teacher's College of Columbia University in 1931. He began his career at the Institute for Child Guidance there and later accepted a position in the child study department of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children in Rochester, New York, where he soon became the director. In 1939 he accepted a post at the Rochester Guidance Center, and he also lectured at the University of Rochester. The following year he moved to Ohio State University, where he began to develop a new system of psychotherapy known first as nondirective, then client-centered, and more recently, person-centered therapy. It began to gain attention with the publication of his first book, Counseling and Psychotherapy. Some considered it to be an affront to Freudian psychoanalysis, because interpretations were not given. In 1945, he went to the University of Chicago, serving as executive of their counseling center and a professor, where he remained until 1957. After Chicago, he returned to his alma mater, Wisconsin, as professor during 1957–1963. In the following decade he published Client-Centered Therapy and probably his most popular book, On Becoming a Person. In 1963, he moved to LaJolla, California, where he established the Center for the Study of the Person, and he remained there until his death in 1987.


  • client-centered therapy;
  • humanism;
  • non-directive therapy;
  • self-actualization;
  • treatment methods