A study examining changes in self-concept of psychiatric patients: Utilization of video feedback versus verbal feedback in groups

Joseph Herschel Rubin (1990)

The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of video replay on self-perception. There is much evidence suggesting the usefulness of videotape replay in assisting people to monitor their interpersonal style and better understand the effect they have on others. Many of the previous studies in this area are single case reports, which document little regarding the method of replay or the context in which the treatment is most effective. Two groups of psychiatric patients were involved in a structured communication skills group. Each group participated in social skills exercises aimed at assisting them in becoming more aware of their interpersonal behavior. One group was videotaped, and members were given focused feedback; that is, the tape was stopped by group leaders and/or members during which time adaptive and maladaptive behaviors were discussed. The other group was not video-taped but received only verbal feedback and support around their interpersonal skills. Each group was given the Soares Self Perception Inventory, the Rotter Internal External Locus of Control, and the Tennessee Self Concept Scale as pre- and post-tests measuring the changes in self-concept. It was hypothesized that the video feedback group would change significantly imore than the verbal feedback group in the following ways: (1) the video feedback group would show more positive growth in self-concept than the verbal feedback group; (2) the discrepancies between ideal self and real self would be significantly less for the video feedback group than for the verbal feedback group; and (3) the video feedback group would show greater movement toward internal locus of control than the verbal feedback group. Every measure did reveal a difference in the hypothesized direction, though none was statistically significant. However, when chronic patients were removed from the study sample, significant differences favoring the video group were found for the variable behavior on the Tennessee Self-Concept Scale and differences approaching significance for internality on the Rotter IE. The discussion focuses on the merits and limitations of video replay, specifically in altering behavioral skills to enhance communication.