Person-Centred Therapy: 100 Key Points, 2nd Edition (Paperback) book cover

Person-Centred Therapy

100 Key Points, 2nd Edition

By Paul Wilkins


310 pages

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Person-centred therapy, rooted in the experience and ideas of the eminent psychotherapist Carl Rogers, is widely practised in the UK and throughout the world. It has applications in health and social care, the voluntary sector and is relevant to work with people who are severely mentally and emotionally distressed. As well as being a valuable sourcebook and offering a comprehensive overview, this edition includes updated references and a new section on recent developments and advances.

The book begins with a consideration of the principles and philosophy underpinning person-centred therapy before moving to a comprehensive discussion of the classical theory upon which practice is based. Further areas of discussion include:

The model of the person, including the origins of mental and emotional distress

The process of constructive change

A review of revisions of and additions to person-centred theory

Child development, styles of processing and configurations of self

The quality of presence and working at relational depth

Criticisms of the approach are addressed and rebutted and the application of theory to practice is discussed. The new final section is concerned with advances and developments in theory and practice including:

Counselling for Depression

The Social Dimension to Person-Centred Therapy

Person-Centred Practice with People experiencing Severe and Enduring Distress and at the ‘Difficult Edge’

A Review of Research

Throughout the book, attention is drawn to the wider person-centred literature to which it is a valuable key.

Person-Centred Therapy will be of particular use to students, scholars and practitioners of person-centred therapy as well as to anyone who wants to know more about one of the major psychotherapeutic modalities. 


As a succinct overview of person-centred theory and practice, this book is a valuable handbook for students as they move through their training and into the early stages of practice. It offers an up-to-date guide to the key concepts, discussions and controversies in contemporary person-centred counselling. The development of theoretical ideas is presented as a natural process, inspired by research and practice. The inclusion of child development and the impact of social and environmental forces on psychological distress offer welcome additions to mainstream person-centred thinking. - Connie Johnson, Senior Teaching Fellow, University of Edinburgh; Counsellor and supervisor in private practice.

This is an extraordinarily important book. Paul Wilkins did a great job in combining scholarly profound descriptions of the person-centred essentials with a clear and easy-to-read language. It serves the academic as well as the practitioner as both introduction and reference book to a wide range of topics from the philosophical underpinnings via an overview of criticisms and thoughtful rebuttals to the social dimensions and (as a new section to the second edition) recent developments . I like particularly that Wilkins thoroughly follows Rogers’ original intentions in describing the core values of a truly client-centred approach to psychotherapy and at the same time does justice to the different branches and developments that originated the classical endeavour.- Peter F. Schmid, Sigmund Freud University, Vienna

Table of Contents

Section I: The Underlying Epistemology, Philosophy and Principles of Person-Centred Therapy. Section II: Classical Person-Centred Theory. Section III: Revisions, Reconsiderations and Advances in Person-Centred Theory. Section IV: Criticisms of Person-Centred Therapy - and Rebuttals. Section V: Person-Centred Practice. Section VI: Person-Centred Theory and Practice When Working With Reactions to Life Events. Section VII: Newer Developments, Advances and Understandings: Expanding Person-Centred Therapy For The 21ST Century.

About the Author

Paul Wilkins is a person-centred academic, practitioner and supervisor. After managing local authority mental health resources, he worked as a senior lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University until 2009.

About the Series

100 Key Points

The 100 Key Points series are concise and practical introductions to approaches and modalities in counselling and psychotherapy.

Ideal for those in training, or for professionals wishing to improve their practice.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Psychotherapy / Counseling