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Integrative Families and Systems Treatment: A Middle Path Toward Integrating Common and Specific Factors in Evidence-Based Family Therapy


  • J. Scott Fraser, PhD, is Professor in the School of Professional Psychology at Wright State University in Dayton; Andrew D. Solovey, MSW, LISW, is Associate Director of Clinical Services at the Scioto Paint Valley Mental Health Center; David Grove, MSW, LISW, is Co-Director of the Family Therapy Institute of Columbus; Mo Yee Lee, PhD, and Gilbert J. Greene, PhD, LISW, IMFT, are Professors in the College of Social Work at The Ohio State University.

Address correspondence to Dr. J. Scott Fraser, Ellis Institute, SOPP, Wright State University, 9 N. Edwin Moses Blvd., Dayton, Ohio 45407; E-mail:


A moderate common factors approach is proposed as a synthesis or middle path to integrate common and specific factors in evidence-based approaches to high-risk youth and families. The debate in family therapy between common and specific factors camps is reviewed and followed by suggestions from the literature for synthesis and creative flexibility in manual development. A preliminary integrative model termed Integrative Family and Systems Treatment is offered as one option in developing and testing a moderate common factors approach. Such a model might then be studied in eventual clinical trials with other well-developed evidence-based protocols to further address the common versus specific factor debate. Implications for further research and practice are offered.