Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)



Committee Chair(s)

William R. Dobson


William R. Dobson


This study was conducted to determine whether learning specific writing techniques and discussing them in a small group is more beneficial to women than writing a journal using self-taught techniques, or not writing at all.

Instruments used included the Beck Depression Inventory and the California Personality Inventory (Self-Acceptance and Well-Being scales).

The literature review covers four general areas: a brief discussion of the impact of contemporary feminism on traditional therapy; an examination of feminist therapy, specifically its advocacy of consciousness-raising groups as a therapy alternative; women's self-reports on diary or journal writing; and information on modern non-literary journal uses including an investigation into the status of therapeutic uses of journal writing.

A group model was developed and examined for this study using a modified consciousness-raising format to teach journal writing techniques and provide for group discussion of the writing practices.

Pre- and posttest scores were compared among three groups of women (N = 52). An additional follow-up sub-sample was contacted (n = 25) to test statistical differences in writing frequency, number of writing techniques used and level of subjective satisfaction with personal writing.

No empirical evidence was found to justify the supposition that structured journal writing groups are more beneficial than either self-taught, solitary diary writing or not writing at all.

Includes bibliography for journal writers, outline for 8-week structured writing group, references, and recommendations for possible further investigation.



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