Information Consulting

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Webotherapy: Reading Web Resources for Problem Solving

Alireza Noruzi
Department of Library and Information Science, University of Tehran, Iran

Abstract
Background: The term 'webotherapy' has been coined to refer to a form of supportive psychotherapy in which carefully selected reading material (web resources, e-books, e-journals, poetry, and short stories) are used to assist an individual in solving personal problems or for other therapeutic purposes. Webotherapy is simply defined, here, as the use of selected web resources to help people solve personal problems or for psychiatric therapy.

Methods: Webotherapy, which can be conducted with individuals or groups, refers to the use of web resources or other online reading material (e.g., e-books, e-journals) to assist clients (especially children and young adults) in their healing process. It may be defined as the use of web resources to help others gain additional insight and to help them cope with everyday life. Most people have probably read web resources to determine how others have approached a delicate issue.

Discussion and Conclusion: This article suggests that webotherapy is a potentially powerful method for psychologists, librarians, school teachers and counselors to use on many levels. It begins with a brief review of the history of webotherapy; continues with a discussion of some approaches to webotherapy (developmental, clinical, and interactive); then addresses the four basic stages of webotherapy (identification, selection, presentation, and follow-up); and finally discusses benefits and limitations of webotherapy.

Keywords: Web-based therapy; Internet therapy; Online therapy; E-therapy; E-mail therapy; Webtherapy; Bibliotherapy; Counseling; Self-improvement

References
Noruzi, A. (2006). Editorial: Webotherapy and Beyond. Webology, 3(3), editorial 9. Available at: http://www.webology.ir/2006/v3n3/editorial9.html
Noruzi, A. (2007). Webotherapy: Reading Web Resources for Problem Solving. The Electronic Library, forthcoming.

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