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A Short Version of the Post-Focusing Check-List: PFC-2
By Carlos Alemany, Ph.D.

Cuestionario Post-Focusing-2 (PFC-2)

Introduction:

This paper presents research of the Department of Psychology of the University Comillas, in Madrid, on focusing measures designed by Wolf and VandenBos1.

We propose a reduced version of the Post-Focusing checklist (PFC) which we call PFC-2. This research used Spanish samples.2

The purpose of the instrument is to discriminate the good focusers, to evaluate the results of training, or to discover the natural ability to focus without training.

Focusing research has classified persons into two types:

a) "focusers": persons who have the ability naturally or by training.

b) "non focusers " : persons with low capacity to engage in the process.

Research has developed two types of instruments:

a) those which use judges to rate taped statements: e.g. the Experiencing scale, or open questionnaires.

b) auto-evaluation.

The PFC pertains to the second group. It consists of 28 items with dichotomous responses (yes/no) . The instrument was designed to remedy problems with the open questionnaires (judges, training, reliability, etc.).

The PFC has been validated by Wolf and VandenBos ( 1970) 3 VandenBos ( 1972) 4; VandenBos (1973) 5; Murray ( 1978) 6; Alemany (1984)7 through correlation with other criteria.

We wanted to know the index of discrimination of the different items in order to obtain shorter versions of the instrument without losing its reliability.

At the same time we tested the reliability of Spanish samples.

We also believed that to know the most discriminating items could help in practice with our clients and others as direct questions.

Method:

1. First analysis:

The original scale of 28 items was administered to a sample of 28 subjects who took part in a seminar on Focusing. 8 The items were analyzed comparing the means of the 27% with highest and lowest total scores. The results are shown in Table 1.

TABLE 1

ITEM

p

q

Pq

ps

Pi

d

signif.

1

0.324

0.675

0.219

0.3

0.5

-0.2

ns

2

0.324

0.675

0.219

1

0.2

0.8

p<0.02**

3

0.279

0.702

0.208

0.9

0.7

0.2

ns

4

0.081

0.918

0.074

1

0.7

0.3

ns

5 0.486 0.513 0.249 0.8 0.9 -0.1 ns

6

0.351

0.648

0.227

0.9

0.5

0.4

ns

7

0.243

0.756

0.184

0.8

0.6

0.2

ns

8 0.459 0.540 0.248 0.7 0.2 0.5 p<0,0.09*

9

0.783

0.216

0.169

0.3

0.3

0.0

ns

10 0.270 0.729 0.197 1 0.4 0.6 p<0.09*

11

0.279

0.702

0.208

1

0.4

0.6

p<0.09

12

0.459

0.540

0.248

1

0.1

0.9

p<0.03**

13

0.648

0.351

0.227

0.4

0.2

0.2

ns

14

0.135

0.864

0.116

1

0.5

0.5

p<0.15

15

0.135

0.864

0.116

0.9

0.7

0.2

ns

16

0.054

0.945

0.051

1

0.8

0.2

ns

17

0.459

0.540

0.248

1

0.1

0.9

p<0.03**

18

0.216

0.783

0.169

1

0.4

0.6

p<0.09*

19

0.297

0.702

0.208

0.9

0.5

0.4

p<0.09*

20

0.459

0.540

0.248

0.9

0.0

0.9

p<0.02**

21

0.567

0.434

0.245

0.9

0.0

0.9

p<0.02**

22

0.675

0.324

0.219

0.2

0.4

-0.2

ns

23

0.459

0.540

0.248

0.9

0.3

0.6

p<0.06**

24

0.162

0.837

0.135

0.9

0.5

0.4

ns

25

0.270

0.729

0.197

0.9

0.5

0.4

ns

26

0.135

0.864

0.116

0.8

0.7

0.1

ns

27

0.243

0.756

0.184

0.9

0.5

0.4

ns

28

0.108

0.891

0.096

1

0.5

0.5

p<0.15

 

As can be seen, the discrimination power of the items varies from high discrimination (items 2, 12, 17, 20, and 21) to low discrimination, and even three items which had negative discrimination.

As a second step, the coefficient of reliability was calculated with different sets of items, successively dropping the less discriminating items.

The formula used was Kuder-Richarson 20, which is appropriate with dichotomous items.

The resulting reliability coefficients are shown in Table 2

TABLE 2

 

Remaining items

 

SD

KR 20

First total

K = 28

10.35

5.41

0.85

Second total

K = 17

5.89

4.10

0.84

Third total

K = 13

4.78

3.26

0.80

Fourth total

K = 6

3.00

2.03

0.77

As can be seen, reliability is highest in the first total with all original items, including those with negative discrimination. Since our purpose was to develop a shorter scale, we took the third total which has adequate reliability.

This total includes items 2, 17, 20, 21, 23, 8, 10, 11, 14, 18, 19, 28, and 12 of the original instrument.

Of the selected items, only five discriminate below the usual level of p<.05. The other eight items have significance values between .06 and .15, well above the usual limits. We took them for further analysis because the sample was small (n=28) and we hoped to find more stable discriminating values in a larger, more representative sample. The discriminating power so far obtained was used only as an orientation for the second analysis.

2. Second analysis:

For the second analysis we combined three small samples of subjects participating in Focusing workshops making up a total of N = 75.

The analysis of items was this time the item-total correlation minus the item. These correlations are shown in Table 3:

TABLE 3

Item

S

 r

p

1

.913

.275

.414

.001

2

.713

.433

.509

.001

3

.633

.478

.335

.01

4

.733

.418

.362

.001

5

.753

.419

.557

.001

6

.706

.432

.368

.001

7

.633

.478

.512

.001

8

.813

.372

.512

.001

9

.820

.352

.325

.01

10

.880

.303

.311

.01

11

.746

.419

.479

.001

12

.520

.479

.341

.01

13

.800

.382

.477

.001

 

Post-Focusing Check-list: -Short-version (PFC- 2)

 

 

Y E S

NO

Item 1:

Everything is exactly as it was before.

   X

Item 2:

The words or pictures had old or familiar elements, put together in a new way.

 X  

Item 3:

Had you seen these words or pictures in the same light before?

 

X

Item 4:

The words I use to describe the feeling are the same but mean something different now.

X  

Item 5:

I began to see how I could make things different.

X  

Item 6:

Did you see now something you hadn't thought of before?

X  

Item 7:

Was there a sense of having worked something through?

X  

Item 8:

Words or pictures seemed to come from the feeling.

X  

Item 9:

The feelings began to make sense and fit in with other things.

X  

Item 10:

Focusing put things into a new perspective.

X  

Item 11:

The process seemed to get deeper and more engaging.

X  

Item 12:

Did you have a sense of "I've thought all this before and it's stale?"

 

Item 13:

Were you eventually able to see more clearly the interrelation of the things making up the feeling you had?

X  

X Check marks reveal the appropriate responses of a successful  focuser.

 

All the coefficients of correlation are significant at least at the .01 level. The reliability of this scale of 13 items is 0.789.

The mean and standard deviation of this scale are:

N = 75

= 9.66

SD = 2.828

We consider that this scale has adequate reliability and can be used as a short version of the original PFC. We have securely confirmed that the discriminating values of the first analysis were a good indication of the quality of the items. The reliabilities of the two samples (N = 28 and N = 75) with this short version are practically identical ( .80).

These results show that all the items measure the same process.

Focusing is an interaction between symbols and feelings. The process implies a new configuration where words and images proceed from at first unclear sensations in the center of the body.

The process is best shown by the most discriminating items: 5, 7, 8, 2, 13, 11 and 1 of the short scale. (See Short Version PCC-2. )

Item 5: I began to see how I could make things different (r = .55)

"To make things different" is not the same as to make different things. The discriminating power of this item resides in the change of direction of the same things. Originally unclear meanings now become transparent. One can feel able to make things different when one experiences a deepening, a more bodily sensation of the totality, a closeness to what was previously seen as threatening.

Item 7: Was there a sense of having worked something through? (r = .51)

Because we cannot control the change, something new may appear or not. That is not up to us. Suddenly the change comes. We cannot impose on the body when, where, and how change will occur. When it comes from the process, from working something in concrete terms, it is very different from a discontinuous change without the process.

Item 8: Words or pictures seemed to come from the feeling? (r = .51)

The symbols (words, images, sounds) come not from what is thought but from the experienced sensation. One of the objectives of this process is the formation of the felt-sense, which is different from the known details which come to mind. The focuser waits until words and images come from this new sensation or/and new totality. To repeat to oneself what one has been saying to oneself, never solves the problem (preaching) 9 . But to feel this new totality leads to new meanings.

One can sense when symbols proceed from the new and fresh sensation or when they come from the old repetitive thought.

Item 2: The words or pictures had old or familiar elements put together in a new way. (r = . 50 )

In focusing one finds new meanings and relations in "known" data. It is a new and fresh perception.

Item 13: Were you eventually able to see more clearly the interrelation of the things making up the feeling you had? (r = .47)

In steps from a felt sense we find that connections and interrelations between feelings and new symbols (words, images etc.) bring changes again and again. There are increasing adjustments of feelings and symbols. Each small step of change is a bodily shift. We become more conscious of feelings as products of interrelated things or problems. We get more details and at the same time a better picture of the totality.

Item 11: The process seemed to get deeper and more engaging ( r = .47) .

The process becomes more engaging as many things happen. The process deepens. This is experienced through the quality of the felt-sense, connections between feelings and symbols, new and fresh perceptions, etc. More importantly we become more in touch with our inner self. And we become astonished with the wise direction which comes from it. 10

Item 1: Everything is exactly as it was before. (r = .41)

The good focuser obviously says "No!" Whether it is a big change or just a small step, one feels oneself different. The problem is sensed with a different perspective. One feels lighter, enlarged, or more patient with the circumstances. Not only does a shift within the body bring specific insights, new feelings or new perceptions, but the person does not remain the same.

References

1. Wolf L., VandenBos G.R., Experimental Focusing: New Research Tools, Unpublished Manuscript, University of Chicago, 1970.

2. Alemany C., Evaluacion del Entrenamiento en Destrezas Interpersonales del Modelo de Carkhuff. Editora de la Universidad Complutense de Madrid. Madrid. 1984. pp 581-645.

3. Wolf L., VandenBos G.R., op. cit. not. 1.

4. VandenBos, G.R., Several analyses regarding post focusing checklist. Unpublished manuscript, University of Detroit. 1972.

5. VandenBos, G.R. An investigation of several methods of teaching "Experimental Focusing". Doctoral Dissertation, University of Detroit, 1973, Appendix 2.

6. Murray, V.J., Experimental Focusing and Classroom Verbal Behaviour. Doctoral Dissertation. The State University of New Jersey, 1978.

7. Alemany C., op. cit. n. 2 .

8. Alemany, op. cit. n. 1, Spanish translation of PFC pag 771-772.

9. Gendlin E.T., Focusing, Bantam. New York. 1982 pp. 65-66.

10. Alemany C., Introduccion a la Edicion Espanola, in Gendlin E.T., Focusing: Proceso y Tecnica del Enfoque Corporal. Mensajero. Bilbao. 1983. p. 14.

Carlos Alemany
Universidad Pontificia COMILLAS
Biblioteca y Despachos de Profesores
Madrid 34 - Spain


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