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Allen Eric Bergin (born in 1934) is a clinical psychologist known for his research on psychotherapy outcome and on integrating psychotherapy and religion. His 1980 article on theistic values[1] was ground-breaking in the field and elicited over 1,000 responses and requests for reprints,[2] including luminaries such as Carl Rogers and Albert Bandura. Bergin is also noted for his interchanges with probabilistic atheist Albert Ellis.

Bergin was raised in a family that did not actively attend any religious services. He went to high school in Spokane, Washington and then began college at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He then transferred to Reed College. The school had four Latter-day Saints in its student body that year, one of whom was Bergin's roommate and another one, Marian Shafer, he began dating. The following year Shafer decided to transfer to Brigham Young University (BYU) and Bergin decided to do the same. Through interactions with BYU professor and Reed alumnus Robert K. Thomas Bergin learned more about the LDS Church and in March 1955 was baptized a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by Thomas. After this Bergin married Marian Shafer.

Bergin eventually earned a master's degree from BYU and then a Ph.D. from Stanford University followed by post-doctoral research at the University of Wisconsin under Carl Rogers. Bergin then became a professor at Columbia University. While on the Columbia faculty Bergin lived in New Jersey and served as a bishop and later as a counselor in the Eastern States Mission Presidency. It was also while at Columbia that Bergin co-edited the Handbook of Psychotherapy and Behavior Change with Sol Garfield.[3]

In 1972 Bergin joined the faculty of BYU in part due to the encouragement of Thomas.

Bergin served as president of the Society for Psychotherapy Research in 1974-1975.

Dr. Eric Swedin wrote, "The American Psychological Association awarded him the prestigious Distinguished Professional Contributions to Knowledge award in 1989, citing him as a 'leading expert in psychotherapy research' and for challenging 'psychological orthodoxy to emphasize the importance of values and religion in therapy.'" [4]

Allen Bergin also has a special place in the history of psychologists and researchers who are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, who traditionally work hard to harmonize scholarship and religion and to reconcile any differences between the truths discovered in science with the truths they believe to be revealed by God.[5][6]

Allen and Marian Bergin are the parents of nine children, the youngest three of whom are triplets.[7]

Important Publications Edit

Bergin, A.E., & Garfield, S.L. (1971). Handbook of psychotherapy and behavior change: An empirical analysis. New York: Wiley.
Bergin, A.E., & Strupp, H.H. (1972). Changing frontiers in the science of psychotherapy. Chicago: Aldine-Atherton.
Garfield, S.L., & Bergin, A.E. (1978). Handbook of psychotherapy and behavior change: An empirical analysis 2nd edition. New York: Wiley.
Bergin, A. E. (1980). Psychotherapy and religious values. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 48, 95-105
Garfield, S.L., & Bergin, A.E. (1986). Handbook of psychotherapy and behavior change 3rd edition. New York: Wiley.
Bergin, A.E., & Garfield, S.L. (1994). Handbook of psychotherapy and behavior change 4th edition. New York: Wiley.
Richards, P.S., & Bergin, A.E. (1997). A spiritual strategy for counseling and psychotherapy. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Richards, P.S., & Bergin, A.E. (2000). Handbook of psychotherapy and religious diversity. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Bergin, A.E. (2002). Eternal values and personal growth: A guide on your journey to spiritual, emotional, and social wellness. Provo, Utah: BYU Studies.
Bergin, A.E., & Richards, P.S. (2004). Casebook for a spiritual strategy in counseling and psychotherapy. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Richards, P.S., & Bergin, A.E. (2005). A spiritual strategy for counseling and psychotherapy 2nd. edition. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

ReferencesEdit

  1. Bergin, A. E. (1980). Psychotherapy and religious values. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 48, 95-105
  2. Slife, B.D. & Whoolery, M. (2003). Understanding disciplinary significance: The story of Allen Bergin’s 1980 article on values. In R. Sternberg (Ed.) The anatomy of impact: What has made the great works of psychology great? Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.
  3. Ensign. Sep. 1983, p. 34
  4. American Psychological Association (1990). Allen E. Bergin: Citation - Award for Distinguished Professional Contributions to Knowledge. American Psychologist, 45(4), 474. As cited in Swedin, E. G. (2003). Book Review: Eternal Values and Personal Growth: A Guide on Your Journey to Spiritual, Emotional, and Social Wellness, by Allen E Bergin. AMCAP Journal, 28(1), 41.
  5. Swedin, E. G. (2003). Book Review: Eternal Values and Personal Growth: A Guide on Your Journey to Spiritual, Emotional, and Social Wellness, by Allen E Bergin. AMCAP Journal, 28(1), 41
  6. Ezra Taft Benson, “Your Charge: To Increase in Wisdom and Favor with God and Man,” New Era, Sep 1979, 40
  7. Ensign. Sep. 1983, p. 34

External linksEdit

Preceded by:
Lester Luborsky
President
Society for Psychotherapy Research

1974
Succeeded by:
Sol L. Garfield
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