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The evolutionary paths of clinical psychology studies in the United States: a bibliometrics illustration of 69k publications
  • Mingzhu Gao,
  • Wen Lou
Mingzhu Gao
East China Normal University College of Economics and Management
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Wen Lou
East China Normal University Department of Information Management and Information Systems

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Objective: Clinical psychology, a pivotal aspect of psychology, combines research and practice. This study aims to assess the recent decade’s clinical psychology research, particularly post-COVID-19 paradigm shifts. Method: Analyzing 69,295 clinical psychology publications from 2010 to 2022 in the Web of Science database, we used advanced bibliometrics tools (CiteSpace and Mapequation) to scrutinize authorship networks, publishing trends, and research focus in the US, the field’s rigin. Results: We found a significant upswing in clinical psychology research prompted by the advent of the pandemic, particularly in the study of psychological trauma caused by issues such as family conflict, elder abuse, collective trauma, and so on. Clinical psychology research has been profoundly formed with a dynamic group of scholars and institutions, surrounding mainly higher education systems. Research participants are widely diverse, with a progressive focus transition to the populations on gender and race minorities, maternal, and adolescents. Mental disorder, such as PTSD, anxiety, and suicidal behaviors have caught more attention especially during the pandemic. Therapeutic approaches have long been another focus in clinical psychology, interventions such as mindfulness-based practice and AI-assisted technologies have started to gain prominence. Conclusions: This paper serves as the first large-scale bibliometrics analysis in clinical psychology, which offers an interdisciplinary collaboration potential with information science besides the originality of documenting publication trends in psychology. The integration of open data initiatives, machine learning, augmented reality, and virtual reality technologies shows promise in assessing mental health and fostering well-being, indicating an evolving landscape in clinical psychology research.