Solution Focused Brief Therapy is now a well-established approach used broadly in the fields of counselling and therapy, mental health, social care, education and in organisations. The outcome research is extensive, with studies reporting from across the world in relation to the widest range of presentations and settings including work in both in-patient and out-patient settings, in prisons, in schools, health clinics, residential units, in home visits and more. The approach is also being used by a wide range of front-line professionals in addition of course to therapists, counsellors and coaches. Some of the research studies relate to very serious mental health problems, drug and alcohol use, criminal behaviour and domestic violence. The highest satisfaction ratings come from clients themselves.
The most common follow-up studies are when clients are asked their opinion. Some of these have been continued for several years and show that in more than 75% of cases the client is satisfied and the problem if not completely resolved is no longer a dominant influence.
To date researchers have found little significant outcome difference between the different problems or people who come for Solution Focused Brief Therapy. Indeed what can honestly be said to anyone who is considering the approach is that there is a 65 - 83% chance of the problems the person has come with being resolved or significantly reduced, typically in 3 or 4 sessions but with a single session often proving of use in helping people to get themselves unstuck.
Should you wish to examine the research in more detail the best place to go is to the EBTA (European Brief Therapy Association) website where a large range of studies reporting over more than 35 years are listed and are also divided into types of study. Click HERE for access to the site.
You might also like to have a look at this book which focuses on the evidence underpinning the approach:
Franklin, Cynthia, Trepper, Terry S., Gingerich, Wallace J., and McCollum, Eric E. (Eds.) (2012) Solution-Focused Brief Therapy: A Handbook of Evidence-Based Practice. New York: Oxford University Press.
This book includes a summary of the BRIEF follow-up studies.